DIY Organic Rose Water (+ Face Mist & Toner)
When it comes to green beauty, rose water might just be the holiest of holy-homemade-grail products. Why’s that?
For starters, it’s got a laundry list of beauty and health benefits — from its ultra-hydrating, acne-fighting, inflammation-reducing properties to its power to reduce stress and work as a refreshing makeup-setter (one of my favorite uses) — making homemade rose water one eco-DIY worth adding to your green beauty regimen.
But its uses don’t stop there. In addition to using rose water as a facial mist and skin toner, it can be combined with essential oils to create all-natural perfumes, fabric and air fresheners, soothing bath oils, and more! For more ways you can use this floral H20 check out THIS great post by Chloe Hall on Elle.com.
And sure you could just go out and buy some pre-made rose water (quality options range from $10-$30 but can go up as high as $70), but most commercially available options aren’t organic and they’re certainly not going to be as fresh (or in my opinion as romantic) as your own homemade DIY rose water.
So let’s get into how to make your own DIY Organic Rose Water, Face Mist + Toner.
• Fresh rose petals (organic & pesticide/chemical-free) — I like to use 1 cup of fresh rose petals per batch (about 3 to 4 roses depending on their size), which nets me a little less than 1 ½ cup of rose water using this recipe.
I highly recommend only using FRESH ROSES for this (white, pink, or red will work — although I find that red roses give the prettiest pink color). If you use the petals of old, dying roses you’ll likely end up with yellowish-colored rose water that smells a lot like it looks. I’ve also tried using dried rose petals and will say that the final rose water base just wasn’t as colorful or aromatic as it is when I use fresh rose petals.
• Distilled water — approximately 1 ½ cup per 1 cup of rose petals
• Organic vodka (optional) like THIS one from Prairie — 1 to 2 teaspoons per cup of fresh rose petals
Vodka (aka ‘alcohol’) is a pretty powerful antiseptic that can help kill bacteria and remove dirt and oil from your skin, which I personally like to have in my toner. It can also be used as a preservative to help increase the shelf life of your rose water, so, as long as your skin does well with topical products that contain small amounts of alcohol, I recommend using it if you plan to store your batch for more than a week unrefrigerated or a few weeks refrigerated.
• Large pot or saucepan with cover (a clear/seethrough glass cover is ideal)
• Large glass bowl or something equivalent to cool hot water in
• Glass jar, carafe, or other storage container with a sealable lid large enough to store the rose water in — approximently ¾ of a liter of storage space per 1 cup of rose petals being used
• Funnel (optional but highly recommended)
• Small reusable bottle (with a fine mist sprayer if making the rose water face mist) — a 2 oz travel size works great for both the mist and toner
I always suggest storing any DIY products in darker glass containers (like THESE amber or THESE cobalt blue bottles) as they offer better protection from UV light, which helps to increase the shelf life of natural ingredients.
• Distilled water — enough to fill approximently ¾ of the size bottle(s) you’ll be using for your mist and/or toner.
• Essential oil (optional & mainly for the smell) — 1 small drop per approximately 2 oz of rose water face mist and/or toner
I like adding lavender or jasmine when making my rose water face mist and toner, but if you only want yours to smell like roses then I recommend using rose essential oil or leaving this step out altogether.
• Witch Hazel (also optional) — 1 teaspoon per 2 oz of rose water base being used
Personally, I like my rose water face toner with witch hazel but don’t like to add it to my rose water face mist since I mainly use the mist for setting my makeup and/or as a refreshing sprits throughout the day and the toner as part of my green facial cleansing regime.
To ensure your rose water remains fresh and potent I recommend making no more than you can use up within 3 to 4 weeks (if stored in the fridge your batch should hold its quality for up to a month, unrefrigerated, about 7-10 days). Or better yet, consider making a big batch to share with friends or use to make eco-beauty gifts (like face mist) to give away!
Step One: After seperating the rose petals from their stems, thoroughly rinse your loose rose pedals with room temperature or cooler water (tap water is perfectly fine but if you can use distilled water that’s ideal).
Once clean, remove any access water by either lightly dabbing the rose petals with a clean cloth and/or gently shaking them dry inside of something like a regular pasta strainer.
Step Two: Place the clean, loose rose petals into a pot/pan and add just enough distilled water to cover the pedals (approximately 1 1/2 cups to 1 cup of fresh rose petals).
Step Three: Cover the pot/pan and simmer over low heat until the color of the petals is faded and the water takes on the original color of the petals (for those using white or very light pink color rose petals, note that this takes approximately 30 minutes).
If possible, try to keep the rose water from reaching a full simmer as too much heat can potentially decrease the batch’s beneficial properties — maintaining steam-level heat is ideal (this is when having a clear glass top comes in handy).
Step Four: Using a strainer, strain the rose water into a large glass bowl, separating the petals from the liquid. Be sure to squeeze as much water from the rose petals as possible (this is when having a nut milk bag or cheesecloth comes in handy)
Step Five: Discard the used rose petals (shoutout to my fellow composters out there) and allow your new fresh rose water to sit and cool to room temperature (approximately 30 minutes).
Step Six (optional): If you plan on adding alcohol to your entire batch of rose water then this would be a good time to do so. Alternatively, you can hold off and add it directly to your individual bottle(s) of rose water face mist and/or toner later on (the adjusted amount is provided under Part 3).
Step Seven: Using a funnel, pour the cooled rose water into a sterilized glass bottle, jar, carafe, or other sealable storage container (if posssible use a dark-colored glass container such as amber or cobalt blue).
Step Eight (optional): Label your rose water. I also recommend putting the batch-date somewhere so that you can easily keep track of its freshness.
Step Nine: Store your new rose water in a cool, dark place (refrigeration is ideal).
Recommended shelf life:
• Refrigerated — no more than 30 days.
• Unrefrigerated — no more than 10 days.
Step One: Using a funnel, fill a small reusable bottle with one part rose water base from ‘Part 2′ above and three parts distilled water, making sure to leave enough empty space at the top to add any essential oil(s) and/or witch hazel as well as the bottle’s top without it overflowing.
Step Two (optional): Add 1 small drop of essential oil and/or 1 teaspoon of witch hazel per approximently 2 oz of rose water face mist and rose water toner being made.
Step Three(optional):Label your rose water face mist and/or rose water toner. As with the rose water base, I also recommend putting the batch date somewhere on the bottle(s) so that you can easily keep track of its freshness.
As mentioned early in this post, there are a number of green household and beauty uses for your new DIY organic rose water.
Some of my favorite household-uses include using it as a fabric and laundry freshener (I spray it all over mine and my hubby’s couch, bed, carpets, and re-worn clothes) and as an addition to my morning coffee (if you’ve never had a rose water latte please do yourself a favor and try one). When it comes to my green beauty regime, I swear by rose water as the base for my makeup setting mist and my nightly toner.
That said, if you’re planning to use your organic rose water base in a makeup setting face mist I recommend leaving out any essential oil(s) as well as the witch hazel to avoid any greasy feeling or medicinal-like smell on top of your makeup. However, if you’re just using it as a refreshing face spray then I say go for the added essential oil(s).
Now, if we’re talking about a rose water facial toner then I definitely say spring for an essential oil in addition to a little added witch hazel. Personally, I like using my rose water face toner with added lavender and witch hazel at night (after I’ve removed any makeup from the day and washed my face) and a lighter, cucumber-based toner in the morning.
To apply the toner, simply add a few spritzes to a cotton pad (I use and love THESE reusable organic cotton pads) and gently wipe across your face and décolletage area.
Last but not least, as with the rose water base, be sure to store your rose water face mist and toner in a cool dry place (refrigeration is also ideal).
Thanks for reading and I hope you enjoy all the amazing benefits of your new DIY Organic Rose Water, Face Mist + Toner.