When I was younger, I would always watch my mom with curiosity when she performed her daily beauty routine. Each product she used had its own unique smell, which seemed so luxurious and foreign to me at the time.
Smell is strongly linked to the memory, which in this case, is very true. I can still smell the face moisturizer by Shisedo and the Body Shop Cucumber Cleansing Milk so vividly to this day.
When I became old enough to use cosmetics, my mom would explain what certain products were and their special roles. For some reason it felt as though she was sharing these century old secrets that no one else in the world knew, and that I’d be responsible for one day handing them down to my daughter.
A new beauty trend (or so I thought it was new) that I had been noticing over the past year is Rose Water. What’s so special about Rose Water? When it comes to beauty, all I can think of is a bath tub sprinkled in rose petals, but only for the aesthetic appeal. After a bit of research I learned that roses are one of the oldest tricks in the cosmetics book, passed on from generation to generation, to today. Totally and completely legit. Rose Water was first produced by Muslim chemists in the medieval Islamic world through the distillation of roses, for use in the drinking and perfumery industries. It is said to have many beneficial cleansing, anti-aging and astringent-like properties when applied to the skin. This explains why rose petals are used in the bath! And can also add a refreshing kick to cold beverages.
I took it upon myself to try and make my own and see what all the fuss is about.
Here’s what you need:
- A dozen fresh roses – the more fragrant the better
- A large stock pot with a lid
- Distilled water
- A small heat safe bowl
- A deeper heat safe bowl
- Ice cubes
*You want your pot to be able to accommodate a medium and small bowl, with enough free space for an inverted lid on top.
Start by plucking the petals off of each rose, and if they were bought from a florist or the grocery store, give them a good rinse with water to ensure any chemicals or dirt are removed.
Next, place the medium bowl upside down in the stock pot. This will act as a short pedestal. Now, place the small bowl on top of the upside down bowl. This is where your Rose Water will be collected. Place the petals all around the bowl and pour enough water on top so that it just covers them. You don’t want too much.
Next you’ll put the lid on but you’ll invert it so that the handle is facing downwards into the pot.
Simmer the petals over medium heat for about 30 minutes. During this time steam will collect at the top of the pot and pure Rose Water will drip into the small dish from the handle. To speed up the process, you can put 2-3 ice cubes on top of the lid.
Once the petals have lost all their color, your rose water is done. This may not necessarily produce as much Rose Water as you’d like but it’s pure and your skin will appreciate it!
Let the water cool completely and then transfer to a small bottle. Use however you wish, whether to remove dirt and grime from your face before bed or as a refreshing pick-me-up on a hot summer day. But shh…don’t tell anyone!