DIY Guide to Making Rose Water
by Blake Cooley on Apr 09, 2021
There’s nothing that says luxury like taking a bath in rose water. But, did you know you can make it from home and feel like royalty whenever you please? Let’s find out how.
What is Rose Water?
Rose water is made by distilling rose petals with steam. Due to its lovely fragrance, rose water is often used as a natural alternative to perfumes. People have been using rose water for centuries in beauty products as well as food and drink products.
Simmering Versus Distilling
The fastest and most simple way to make rose water is by simmering dried or fresh rose petals in water. The result is rose-colored, fragrant water.
Distilling rose water technically turns it into hydrosol. This method is also quite easy, though it takes a bit more time than simmering does. The distilled rose water (hydrosol) will be clear and have a much longer shelf-life than the simmered rosewater.
Pick Your Petals
Did you know that there are more than one hundred varieties of roses? And, you can use any kind to make rose water. If you’re picking your blooms, pick them early in the morning when the blossoms are the most fragrant. If you are purchasing your roses, make sure you buy them from an organic source that doesn’t use pesticides— you don’t want your rose water to be chock full of chemicals!
Rose Water Uses
As we mentioned, people have been using rose water for centuries— and for a wide range of uses, including:
Perfume spray: This allows people to use a chemical-free spray that has the same beautiful effects as perfume without the harsh additives and chemicals. To make perfume spray:
- Mix one teaspoon of pure vanilla extract with essential oils of your choice in a glass spray bottle. Then, fill the bottle to the top with your rose water. Spray on hair or skin for a beautiful, refreshing scent.
Skin care: Rose water helps balance the skin’s PH, in addition to reducing redness and irritation, tightening pores, and helping to cool and soothe hot skin. To make a rose water facial toner:
- Keep your rose water in a dark colored bottle. Add one or two drops of lavender or rose essential oil and apply to your face with a cotton ball after showering or washing your face.
- To use rose water for sunburn relief:
- Mix equal parts of apple cider vinegar and rose water in a spray bottle. Spray over irritated, sunburned skin for fast relief.
- Mood improvement: Rose water also happens to have mood-boosting effects. You can either mist it on yourself and breathe in the mist or spray the area you’re in and enjoy the mood boost. Or, dump one to two cups of rose water in your bath water for a calming bath.
- In the kitchen: You can add rose water to herbal teas, yogurts, lemonades and drinks, and even makerose water cake— a traditional and delectable Middle Eastern dessert.
How to Make Rose Water
Now let’s go over, step-by-step, how to make rose water.
To simmer rose water:
- Combine rose petals and water in a small saucepan.
- Cover the pan and allow the water to come to a boil.
- Lower the temperature as low as it can go that still lets the water simmer.
- Simmer until the rose petals’ color has faded— about 5-15 minutes.
- Leave the lid on the saucepan and cool completely.
- Pour the water and petals into a dark bottle through a cheesecloth. You can also use a funnel to pour your rose water into the bottle if you don’t have a cheesecloth.
- Store your creation in the fridge for several weeks or un-chilled for up to one week.
To distill rosewater:
- Place a clean construction brick in the middle of a large stock pot.
- Set a metal or heat-safe glass bowl on top of the brick.
- Sprinkle rose petals around the brick— make sure none fall into the bowl.
- Pour water into the pot over the rose petals until the water reaches near the top of the brick.
- Flip the stockpot's lid and cover the stock pot with the lid to allow the steam to collect and drip into the bowl.
- Place ice on top of the lid to encourage condensation and dripping into the bowl.
- Bring rose water to a boil.
- Reduce to the lowest heat setting that still lets the rose water simmer.
- Simmer for at least half an hour. Replace the ice as it melts.
- Remove the pot from heat and allow it to cool completely.
- Lift the lid carefully, so no melted water falls into the pot.
- Carefully pour the rosewater that has been collected in the bowl into your bottle.
- This can last up to six months un-chilled, and if stored in the fridge, it will last even longer.
We hope this post can guide you to creating delightful rose water of your own. Good luck and enjoy!