Hydrosols. Affectionately called the red-headed, step-child of the Essential Oil world. I love them. They are super handy to have around, especially for little ones! They are also great for daily hair and face care.
So today, I’m going to talk a little about Rose Hydrosol. Oh, this one is divine. Most hydrosols have a different, usually less pleasant smell than their essential oil counterparts. But Rose, this one is a little lighter but just as lovely as Rose essential oil.
Rose is amazing as a hair spray. No, not the kind you use to keep your hair in place, but as a kind of toner, but for your hair.
You can also use it on your face, it’s a wonderful facial toner. Smells delightful and helps balance skin and reduce redness.
So, you may be asking yourself a few questions. 1) What is a hydrosol? 2) How do you know what therapeutic benefits a hydrosol has? and 3) Why mess with hydrosols at all?
1) Quick answer: Most oils are steam distilled. To steam distill, you add plant material and water to a large vat, and add heat. The oil and water are drained off, the oil is floating on top, and the hydrosol is what is left. Hydrosols contain water-soluble compounds from the plant material, essential oils contain fat-soluble compounds.
2) You can usually tell the therapeutic benefits of hydrosols by their essential oil counterparts. Rose essential oil is calming and soothing to the skin, so the hydrosol will have similar benefits. Hydrosols are less studied than essential oils, so there isn’t as much data out there to learn from, but if you want a hydrosol to help with anti-microbial properties, tea tree hydrosol would be a good bet, because tea tree essential oil has those properties.
3) Why mess with hydrosols? Because they are water-soluble, they are more gentle on the skin. Hydrosols do not need to be diluted AND they are gentle enough for infants or the elderly or anyone who has very sensitive skin. It is also really conveneient to just grab it out of the fridge and spray and be done. No mess, no mixing, just go.
And yes, because they are water-based, they do have to be stored in the fridge and they have a very short shelf life. 1 year, tops. But, they are not concentrated, so using 4 oz of rose hydrosol in a year is not a big deal. I have a few hydrosols that I use frequently – helichrysum and frankincense hydrosol mixed together for a wound spray (helps with pain and scarring), tea tree or Melissa hydrosol for a facial toner for oily skin, rose for face and hair, lavender or chamomile for sleepy linen spray.
They are magical, you will love them.