Instructions on how to make rose water toner using fresh rose petals. Use directly on your skin as a natural toner or blend it with oils to create creams and lotions
People have used rose water for generations as a natural yet gentle astringent. Probably long before we had commercially produced rose water, the average person would have used this very method to make soothing and cleansing skin toners. It’s just so simple! You apply it with a spray bottle or cotton pad and it helps to cleanse and tighten the skin and to reduce redness and inflammation. It’s also very sensitive and can be used on most skin types making it a great addition to creams and lotions.
True rosewater is made by distillation so this recipe is technically an infusion. However, an infusion of rose petals can provide just as much skin-loving therapy as some of the more expensive products. Rose absolute and rose hydrosol are beautiful skin therapeutic extracts but they can also be pricey. This recipe will give you a sweetly scented natural skin toner that you can make yourself for practically nothing. All you need is rose petals and distilled water.
Which rose petals to use?
At the end of the process, rose water should smell softly of roses. If you want even a little of the fragrance to remain then it’s best to start with old-fashioned or wild roses. The more fragrant the roses, the more fragrant your rose water will be. Any organically-grown rose petals will do though. However, do not use rose petals from flowers in bouquets. Flowers sold as ornamentals are in most cases sprayed with insecticides and fungicides that could be harmful.
Another thing to consider is that the color of the rose petals will affect the color of the rose toner. If you use pink or red roses then it will be pink, white roses will result in clear, and orange rose petals create yellow rose water. I personally wouldn’t say that the color means that one is better than the other but I do prefer using pink or red roses.
Wild Rose Petals
My favorite rose to use for this recipe is any of the wild roses. There are about half a dozen different types but the ones on my doorstep are rosa rugosa (beach rose) and rosa canina (dog rose). When foraging for wild roses, pick the petals direct from the flower, leaving the hip in place. It could already be pollinated and you could return in the autumn to pick them for rose-hip syrup or tea. With garden roses, place your hand over the flower and gently pull all the petals off. They tend to come off fairly easily if the flower has been blooming for a few days.
Make Rose Water
To make rosewater, pick about three cups of rose petals. Leave them outside on a tea towel to allow any insects to escape. Give them around half an hour.
Next, put the rose petals into a saucepan. You can fill it up all the way to the top with rose petals if you’d like. Fill the pan with water (preferably distilled) until the petals are just covered. Place a lid on the pan and heat on low until most of the color has faded from the petals. It will take about twenty minutes and whatever you do, keep the water from coming to a simmer. Too much heat can destroy the flower’s beneficial properties and color.
Straining and using Rose Water for Skin
After the petals have paled considerably, strain the liquid through a fine-mesh strainer and compost the remaining rose petals. Pour the rose water toner into a sterilized jar, allow it to cool, and then keep it refrigerated until you’re ready to use it. Kept this way, it will keep for about a week.
You can use rose water toner on its own with a cotton pad or as a face mist with a mini spray bottle. It provides immediate freshness, reduces redness and inflammation, and smells lovely. When you use it on a pad you’ll notice that it picks up a lot of grime and make-up too. Afterward, your skin feels squeaky clean and if the rose water is fragrant enough, you can smell roses coming off your skin.
Using Rose Water in Lotions
If you’d like the rose water toner to last a lot longer, you can use it to make handmade lotions and creams. They’ll provide all the benefits of rose water plus the benefits of the oils you use. The preservatives you use in lotion-making will extend the life of your rose water too. Use homemade rose water in any of my lotion recipes by just substituting part or all of the water content with rose water.Inspired by this idea? I have even more rose recipes for you to check out.