Sunday, May 30, 2010

Homemade rose water

This time of year every time I walk out the front door I get the heady waft of of roses at the peak of bloom and sometimes I shut my eyes and breathe deeply lingering for a few moments to imprint the scent on my memory.

I decided to try capturing the delicate scent by attempting some homemade rose water! From what I know of the process I thought a home set up might be do-able and got to work searching the interweb for some methods! I found some things, made a slight modification and went to work with rudimentary household utensils (thought I was, in my mind, acquiring glass do-dads and pipe, rubber stopper and connector thingys and burners like a mad scientist to make something a little more sophisticated - next project!).

TIP: You can use your rose water by itself as a refreshing toner or add 10% witch hazel to make an astringent!

Stuff you will need
• about 8 oz of fresh rose petals - preferably that are chemical free and picked in the morning
If you don;t have roses as a neighbor or see if a local florist will give/sell you old roses (that thye will probably throw out anyway)
NOTE: I made 2 oz of rose water with 8 oz of fresh petals
• double boiler with a steamer
• ramekin or small heat safe dish
• tin foil ( a stainless steel bowl will work better)
• ice
• tap water or distilled water

What to do:
This process will take 3-4 hours depending on how many rose petals you pick.
1) clean the picked petals - mine were covered in insects and spiders so I just filled the pot holding my petals to the top with water to flush critters out.
2) set up your pot. Fill the bottom with water so the steamer pan is about 1 inch above the level of the water. Place the ramekin in the center.
3) Put petals around the ramekin, you can really stuff them in just make sure they sit at or below the level of your ramekin.

4) place a sheet of foil over the top so that it is in a concave shape - you can also use a stainless steel bowl.
5) set water to boil and then simmer - put a few ice cubes on the top of your foil - you will have to keep refilling ice and emptying water so a bowl would indeed be better for this! Just make sure the lowest point of the bowl sits above the ramekin and that it completely seals the top of the pot so that rose water does not escape!
6) You will have to refill rose petals every half hour or so - do not remove old ones. You will already see the rose water in the ramekin after just 30 minutes!You may also have to add more water to the double boiler, but just add a few ounces at a time so it does not breach the bottom of the steam pan. After you have added your last batch of rose petals let the whole thing steam for another hour and then you are done! Discard rose petals into the compost heap or back into your garden soil.
Place the rose water in a sterile glass jar and keep in the refrigerator - lasts about a week.

Has anyone tried making floral water with other types of flowers? If so what did you make and what was your method!


  1. Rose water has always had that sense of sophistication and reminder of the Victorian times, it's great that we can make it at home!

  2. I would like to try this too! Didnt make the rose jelly... would have to buy jelly jars and I dont think anyone would eat it around my house. :( I'll concentrate on my soaping for now! I wish I could smell your rose water!! Does it smell strongly of roses Erin?

  3. Yes Pili - it does remind of a certain sophistication - and romance!

    Carole - it smells pretty strongly of roses but with a green note - I actually took off some leaves and hips which I should separated out from the petals (but was too lazy) - I think that is giving the green note.

    If I were there I would eat the rose jelly! You can always dry the rose petals for soap making too!

  4. Erin, I tried this with my crock pot, using a vegie steamer and turning the lid upside down to cause the drip. I did not have much success. I did not use ice cubes so maybe that would help. I have some OK Red Roses that smell so good it hurts, so I am going to try it again. That is if summer ever comes here!
    Michelle in NV

  5. Do you have to use fresh rose petals? I have a huge bag of dried rose petals my mother gave me and was hoping I could use them for rose water. If not, they would always make lovely toppers to a rosie soap.

  6. You can apply rose water, skin, besides being very fragrant and pleasant
    has some properties that help dry skin.
    * Here I found something I found interesting, I see that quote to say ...

    EL AGUA DE ROSAS "ROSE" refreshes, moisturizes and softens the piel.TIENE PROPERTIES
    Softening, which is very suitable for dry and sensitive skin.
    Purification and astringent, is very popular with oily skin.
    For anti-wrinkle and firming is ideal for skin lacking firmness. Its aroma is fresh and relaxing.
    read more here

    greetings =)

  7. OMG Your soaps are beautiful.. I bet the smell just as beautiful... Can't wait for payday to order some.. Iam having some trouble getting on the email list.. I have tried all three options. I would really like the feed to go to my iphone, but either way through my gmail it would go to my phone. I can;t wait to get on the mailing list...

  8. WOO HOO, I'm subscribed to the email list..
    Can't wait..

  9. This is great Erin, Thanks for sharing!

  10. Glad you found it Rebecca! Thank you for the compliments too! (blushing)

    lørð$kørþîû$ - thank you for the info and the link! It looks like rose water can benefit all skin types!

    p-lee - I did use fresh - I think once the rose petals are dried a lot of the essential oil has been evaporated out but you should certainly try the dried petals!

    Glad you like it etco!

  11. Wow! These home made rose water is really an amazing way for us to get relaxed after a very stressful day. I've actually tried it and it really feels and smell so good. It's also amazing tom know that you can actually made this at home and you can also make a business using this product. I have a friend and she started her own hand made soap business by getting some company's payday loan (Utah) and because of that, she now has an extra income that she can use for her family.



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