Saturday, May 26, 2012

Rose water made from your own roses....

Every time I see the rambling rose bush in a riot of yellow blooms, I want to make something rosy-smelling with the petals.  There are SO many, many petals that fall each day, that a lady could make gobs of rose water in a couple weeks while the bush is still blooming. Today while Toodles was napping, Peach and I went over and plucked handfuls of yellow roses petals and stuffed them into mason jars.

Honestly, at first I wasn't sure what I'd do with the rose water.  I tried making a "lotion.", but I ended up with a bowl of oily rose water with a scum of beeswax on the top -- I guess it didn't emulsify.  Perhaps I don't know what I'm doing which wouldn't be the first time!  Upon hunting through the interwebs, I found these useful ideas:

  1. Refreshing mist: Pour rose water into a spray bottle and store in the fridge.  Use as a cooling mist to refresh yourself on hot days, spraying on face, neck and chest.  Or carry a small mister in your purse to freshen make-up.  It won't run, but instead, moisturizes.
  2. Toner: Soak a cotton pad and wipe over face to remove dirt and oil.  Use it for treating acne and skin irritations; rose water nourishes and hydrates your skin at any age.
  3. Hair rinse: Work a palmful of rose water through your hair after conditioning. Leave for 1-2 minutes, then rinse. 
  4. Light face/body moisturizer: mix together equal portions of rose water and glycerin.  This product doesn’t contain preservatives, so use it within a few days.
  5. Light scent: When it’s too hot to use traditional perfume, dab rose water on both wrists and neck for a summery, refreshing scent.
  6. Sunburn and bug bites: Rose water is a natural anti-inflammatory tonic and can be applied as a topical treatment for sunburns and allergic skin.
  7. Bath: add a few tablespoons to a warm bath for added relaxation and moisturizing.
  8. Dry Skin Treatment:  Mix together rose water, milk and honey with some oatmeal to form a paste and use it as a nourishing face mask.
  9. Make Rose Syrup:  recipe from Storybook Woods and one from Epicurious.
  10. Rose Recipes for ice cream and cocktails here and here.
  11. Laundry Mist: Pour  a couple tablespoons into a spray bottle and fill with water filtered water.  Use to mist clothes when ironing.
  12. Freshen up bedding by spraying rose water mist on pillowcases and sheets, let air dry, make bed.
  13. Give for gifts.  Print this vintage French Rose perfume label and add to the bottle.

Quick Method for Making Rosewater

*Gather fresh, fragrant rose petals and pack them tightly in a jar.

*When you get home, bring some filtered or distilled water to a boil.  Pour about 3 cups over petals, cover lightly with jar lid.  No need to put the screw-on top over the lid.  Steep for 20 minutes.

*Strain petals from water.  I used a coffee filter and my coffee funnel to strain out the tiny particles from my rose water, but you could use your coffee pot filter holder and do the same thing, or you could use a strainer with a coffee filter or cheese cloth.

*Allow rose water to cool to room temperature without a lid.  Then add a clean lid and screw top and store in the fridge.

Here is a more complex method of making rosewater. 

Tonight after my face washing, I will apply some lovely scented rose water to my face and see if it adds its goodness to my complexion.  I think my girls might enjoy a bottle for their beauty needs too. 

Addendum:  Since there are no preservatives in this rosewater, I am going to freeze some of it in ice cube trays and store them in ziplock bags so I can have fresh rosewater anytime.

The Rose Family

The rose is a rose,
And was always a rose.
But the theory now goes
That the apple's a rose,
And the pear is, and so's
The plum, I suppose.
The dear only knows
What will next prove a rose.
You, of course, are a rose -
But were always a rose.
~Robert Frost

(yes, you are!)


  1. What a fun thing to do! I wish I could smell it. I love the pretty yellow color. My roses are not making that many yet, but hopefully in the next couple of years they will. I've planted three bushes in less than the year we have lived here and they all greet me by the front door.

  2. Many times I have collected rose petals by the dozens because it didn't seem right to let all that loveliness go into the dirt -- especially if they were of a sweet-smelling variety! But then, I just left them in a bowl on my table to sniff at as I passed by. Now I will be prepared with a plan next time I come upon a bush wanting to give me its flowers. Thanks, Jody!

  3. G'day Gumbo Lily. The rose water looks great. I have never tried it, but before the house move, I had roses by the score. Wish I had done something like that with them now. I do love the little poem. Take care. Liz...

  4. Lovely refreshing sunshine yellow color. Great craft idea

  5. Your yellow roses are BEAUTIFUL!!! Thank you for sharing how to make rose water. I'd love to try that.

  6. I'll save this for next spring, when our single bush comes into bloom again. It always blooms very early in the season, when it gets light, and then fades away after the leaves are fully on the trees. It's tucked around the corner of the house, and since we weren't the ones who planted it, I always forget it's there until I see the blooms in early May.


  7. Oh good for you not letting all those pretty sweet petals go to waste! I've used Thayer's Rosewater witch hazel on my face for years. Last time I ran out, I just mixed Rosewater (store bought) with witch hazel, and it worked just fine. I've always wanted to make crystallized rose petals. You go first, k ;)? I'll be waiting for the tutorial.

  8. When I have roses in bloom...I am totally trying this!! Thank you for the tutorial Jody!Country Living has a recipe for Blackberry Rose Popsicles...using rose water. I thought I would try that on the 4th of July for the kids:).


  9. Thanks for making this for us. Hazel and I have been using it everyday :)

  10. In the middle of winter, there is nothing like rose water/syrup to bring back summer xox Clarice

  11. Yay ~ So many ideas, my yellow rose bush is about to bloom!!! Nice post


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