UPDATE: This post originally ran on January 31st 2013, but with Spring around the corner we wanted to share it again!
Valentine’s Day is just a couple of weeks away and it’s a time to show the special people in your life how much you love them…but it’s also a great time to pamper yourself! Loving and taking care of yourself is always important, and this DIY will help you do just that. Rose water was first made by chemists in the Islamic Golden Age as a perfume and beverage, and in the years since it has become quite popular for a number of uses. Most commonly it is used as a toner or body spray for the skin – the natural fragrance and moisturizing properties make it especially refreshing. It can also be used to flavor certain dishes, or added to lemonade for a delicious summer beverage. Make a batch and keep some for yourself, and bottle the rest up as gifts for your friends and loved ones!
What you need: fresh roses, a large pot and distilled water.
There are a couple of ways to make rose water. There’s the old fashioned way, which I did, or there’s a slightly more complicated process. For that process you will also need a heat-safe bowl.
Start by plucking the petals from the roses – you won’t need the bulb or stems. The fresher your roses are, the better your results will be. If you can cut your own roses, that would be your best bet. If you must buy them from a store (like I did) rinse the petals in some cool water to get rid of any potential chemicals.
Place the rose petals in a large pot and fill with just enough distilled water to cover the rose petals. Too much water will dilute the rose water. Cover with a lid and let simmer until the petals lose their color. This is also where the two methods differ – for the other method you would place the heat safe bowl on top of the petals, and cover the pot with a lid. As the petals simmer, steam will collect on the lid of the pot and drip in to the bowl, which is pure rose water. The old fashioned method that I use is still effective but the rose water just might not be as pure.
Once the petals lose their color, drain the liquid into a jar – this is your rose water! Store in a cool place and give your skin a spritz whenever you need a sweet and refreshing little pick me up!
Photos by Julia.