Rose water has been used for thousands of years for its potential health benefits. It is made by distilling rose petals in steam. It is a popular ingredient in beauty and food products. Studies show that it may have antibacterial and relaxant properties (1).
You can also drink rose water. Some anecdotal evidence suggests that this can offer certain benefits. But most advantages of rose water have to do with your skin. In this post, we will explore them in detail.
Table Of Contents
What Are The Health Benefits Of Rose Water?
The potent antioxidants in rose water can fight skin inflammation and redness. They may also help delay the signs of aging. Rose water is also known to promote wound healing and help treat eye infections.
1. Can Fight Skin Inflammation
Rose petal extracts were found to exhibit anti-inflammatory activity on the skin. This could be attributed to the polyphenols, anthocyanins, and flavonoids in the extracts (2).
Rose water may also protect the skin from inflammation induced by UV radiation (2).
Rose water also contains vitamin C that further contributes to its anti-inflammatory properties. Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant (1). This way, rose water may also reduce skin redness and irritation.
The anti-inflammatory properties of rose water may also aid the treatment of acne (3).
2. May Help Delay Signs Of Aging
Regular use of rose water may delay wrinkles and even tighten pores. You may use it to tone your skin every morning after your bath (4). However, more research is needed to establish this.
3. May Soothe Sore Throat
In traditional Indian medicine, rose water was used to soothe a sore throat. It also was used as a treatment for enlarged tonsils (5). This effect could be attributed to its antibacterial effects. However, more research is warranted.
4. May Help Treat Eye Infections
Rose water may help treat conditions affecting the eyes. In studies, a herbal eye drop treatment containing rose water as one of the primary ingredients helped cure eye infections, including conjunctivitis and dry eye syndrome (1).
Rose water has analgesic and antiseptic properties that may help treat ocular diseases (6).
5. May Help Heal Wounds
The antibacterial and antiseptic properties of rose water may help heal wounds. It may be used to treat burns, scars, and cuts (1).
The wound-healing effects were also observed in a rose species in the same family as that used to prepare rose water. Inhalation aromatherapy using the rose species could reduce the pain intensity in patients with burns (7).
6. May Relieve Stress
There is very less research here. Proponents of rose water believe that inhaling its vapors can help boost mood and relieve stress in individuals.
Some research suggests that rose water may have antidepressant-like effects. The studies have been done on mice, though (8). More research is needed on human subjects to establish this fact.
7. May Help Treat Headaches
Vapor therapy using rose water (or rose oil) may help relieve headaches and migraines (1). Applying a compress soaked in rose water to the head for 45 minutes may give you relief.
8. May Soothe Digestive Issues
Some research suggests that rose essence can positively influence digestion, bile secretion, and circulation (9). This way, it may also help treat bloating and an upset stomach.
Rosewater (the extracts) was also used in ancient medicine to treat abdominal pain and other digestive problems (1).
Though rose water has been used extensively in ancient medicine, in modern times, its benefits are still being discovered. More research is warranted. But you can start using it to avail some of the benefits we have discussed here.
What Forms Is Rose Water Available In?
Rosewater contains 10-50% rose oil (1). It is used in the beauty and food industry and also quite often in religious ceremonies. Apart from using rose water, you can also enjoy the goodness of the flower species through rose oil and dried flowers.
Rose oil is produced by distilling the rose flower. It is usually mass-produced by companies. It is comparatively more expensive.
The dried flowers can also be used, wherein their buds and petals are dried. The petals are usually consumed along with yogurt or other foods.
The goodness of rose water is also available in the form of rose hips (the seedpods of roses) and hydrosol extracts (extracted from the flower or petals and is a cheaper alternative to rose oil).
The aqueous and ethanolic extracts are also taken from the flower and petals but are used for research purposes.
In addition to its health benefits, you can also use rose water in other ways.
How To Use Rose Water
Before we understand how to use rose water, let us discuss how to make it. The simplest process is the simmering method. Here’s what you need to do.
What You Need
- 7 to 8 roses
- 1.5 liters of distilled water
- Remove the petals and wash them gently under lukewarm water.
- Add the petals to a pot and pour the distilled water.
- Cover the pot and allow the water to simmer over low heat. Wait until the petals have lost all their color.
- Strain the liquid and discard all the petals.
- You can store the rose water in a glass bottle and use as required.
You can use rose water in various ways.
You can dip cotton balls into the water and gently pat over your skin. This will not only enhance skin health but may also help fight inflammation and acne.
You can also use it in your kitchen. Adding a couple of drops of rose water to your cocktail can make it all the more appealing. You also can use it in your baked goods in place of the conventional vanilla essence.
You may also add a few drops of rose water to your bathwater. It can have a therapeutic effect on you. Rose water can also leave your skin feeling pampered and soft.
Sprinkling some rose water over your steaming iron while pressing your clothes can leave them beautifully scented.
You can also use rose water to create a fragrance mist. Pour some rose water into a spray bottle and mist your curtains, bed sheets, and other soft furnishings around your house. This way, you will be filling your house with the natural freshness of an elegant fragrance.
Using rose water is simple. But does it have any adverse effects? Scroll down to find out.
Does Rose Water Have Any Side Effects?
Rose water is relatively safe. There is no research stating serious effects following rose water application/intake. However, if you are easily prone to allergies, you may want to be careful. Do a patch test and wait for 24 hours before using rose water on your skin.
As far as consumption goes, you may take a little and check for any reactions.
Please consult with your doctor before you do so. Certain reactions of rose water may cause include redness, irritation, and a stinging sensation.
There is no specific information about the dosage of rose water. You may take two to three drops with every use.
Rose water is an ancient remedy, whose goodness is yet to be completely explored in modern times. As far as research goes, it can promote skin health and even have certain benefits on your body. Using it usually causes no harm, so you can go ahead and try it today.
Do you use rose water? What did you observe? Share your experiences with us by leaving a comment in the box below.
Expert’s Answers For Readers’ Questions
Does rose water help in weight loss?
No, there is no research that shows that rose water may help in weight loss.
What is the pH of rose water?
Rose water is slightly acidic and usually has a pH ranging from 4 to 4.5.
Can you drink rose tea every day?
Yes. You can drink rose tea daily. But if you are prone to allergies, please check with your doctor first.
- Pharmacological Effects of Rosa Damascena, Iranian Journal of Basic Medical Sciences, US National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health.
- Skin anti‐inflammatory activity of rose petal extract (Rosa gallica) through reduction of MAPK signaling pathway, Food Science & Nutrition, US National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health.
- Treatment Modalities for Acne, Molecules, US National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health.
- Five Benefits of Rosewater, Cinta Aveda Institute.
- Chemical Composition and Vasorelaxant and Antispasmodic Effects of Essential Oil from Rosa indica L. Petals, Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine, US National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health.
- Anti-inflammatory and Antihistaminic Study of a Unani Eye Drop Formulation, Ophthalmology and Eye Diseases, US National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health.
- The effect of inhalation aromatherapy with damask rose (Rosa damascena) essence on the pain intensity after dressing in patients with burns: A clinical randomized trial, Iranian Journal of Nursing and Midwifery Research, US National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health.
- Antidepressant-like effect of aqueous extract from Rosa damascena in mice, Avicenna Journal of Phytomedicine.
- Rose Water, Small and Medium Enterprise Development Authority, Government of Pakistan.
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