Best Organic Rose Waters & Sprays of 2021
PUBLISHED: 03/13/2019 | UPDATED: 1/17/2020
In ancient times, roses were the ultimate display of opulence and beauty, and, as the centuries went on, royals began to make use of the flower for their skin-beautifying treatments (1). It’s no surprise that today, roses are a staple ingredient in luxury skincare. However, is there any truth behind the claims about this intoxicating bloom? Do you have to spend a fortune to reap the benefits of this highly-coveted ingredient in your skincare routine? In this article, we’ll discuss the scientifically-proven benefits of rose water and share some of our favorite organic rose water products.
Where Does Organic Rosewater Come From?
Organic rose water is traditionally extracted from the Damask Rose which is also known as Rosa Damascena (although wild rose (rosa canina) and cabbage rose (rosa centifolia) are two other commonly found roses used to make rose water). Although Rosa Damascena can be cultivated worldwide, the two main producers of the flower are located in Bulgaria and Turkey; however, producers can also be found in Egypt, Morocco, France, and Russia. Experts agree, organic Bulgarian rose water is the preferred ingredient amongst organic skincare formulators.
How is Organic Rose Water Made?
To make rose water, organic roses are first harvested by hand. The highest quality organic rose waters are made from roses that were picked just after blossoming in the morning, but before the harsh afternoon sun dries up the moisture from the petals. From there, the oil and essence of petals are extracted in one of two methods: simmering or distillation. Simmering is the easiest and often most preferred for DIY projects. Dried or fresh rose petals are gently boiled in a pot of water until small amounts of oil and color from the petals are extracted. This water is then cooled and stored. While simmering may be easier, distillation is the most preferred and widely-used method of extraction for commercial rose waters. Fresh petals are placed in a distiller where steam gently extracts the precious oils and water from the plant. Dr. Mira Herman, Founder of Rose Mira Organics, mentions that “Some voices in the industry are of the opinion that “real” rose hydrosol is produced by steam distillation of fresh rose petals in a special process of repeated distillation intended specifically to become rose water, rather than as a by-product of essential oil distillation.”
Benefits of Using Organic Rose Water
Rose is cooling and mildly astringent. It is effective in masks, steams and compresses. It’s also beneficial for those suffering from environmental or chemical sensitivities. Rose has an affinity with the heart, and regardless of the form in which it is used (be it a hydrosol vs essential oil or applied externally vs taken internally) it promotes emotional balance and uplifts the spirit. – Dr. Mira Herman, DC
A well-formulated organic rose water toner, cleanser, or moisturizer has the ability to transform your skin in many ways. Its nourishing and soothing properties work wonders for dry, inflamed, or itchy skin by maintaining the skin’s hydration levels. Of course, there are many factors that contribute to dry skin; one of the most prevalent being transdermal water loss which can be exacerbated by stress (2). A natural hydrator and brimming with antioxidant properties, rose essential oil (10-50% in rose water) has shown to inhibit stress, thus strengthening the skin’s barrier function; which when working well, prevents water loss at a cellular and transdermal level (3). Although essential oils of Rosa Damascena are considered to have more potent moisturizing benefits, rose water has been shown to exhibit antibacterial properties against certain organisms as well as healing properties for open scars, cuts, or wounds (4).
Finding a High-Quality Organic Rose Water
As with all good skincare products, the effectiveness of rose water is determined by the formulation. There are many factors to consider such as the purity (extraction method used), quality of the roses (fresh vs dried), region where the roses come from (contributes to the characteristics), and whether any additives or fillers were used during the extraction and production process.
Unfortunately, it is common practice in the beauty industry for skincare brands (yes even organic brands!) to cut corners and settle for low quality, lab-prepared, and heavily-diluted versions of rose water, which can irritate your skin. With that in mind, we set out to find truly organic rose water products that are free from Sulfates, Parabens, Phthalates, Petrochemicals + Mineral Oils, Synthetic Fragrances + Dyes, PEG compounds, Ethoxylated Ingredients, and Synthetic Rose Oils. As you’ll see, the ones that made the cut contain the purest form of rose water we could find. You’ll find options you can use as a gentle and refreshing facial mist, organic toner, and there’s even rose water in the list so pure it’s edible! Enjoy!
This Article Has Been Medically Fact-Checked By…
DR. MIRA HERMAN DC, Founder @ Rose Mira Organics
Dr. Mira Herman is a Doctor of Chiropractic, a Licensed Acupuncturist, and an Herbalist with specialties in both Western and Chinese Herbology. She holds degrees from the California School of Herbal Studies (where she was mentored by world-renowned herbalists), The Palmer School of Chiropractic, and Samra University of Oriental Medicine. In addition to her 40 years of experience as a medical practitioner and herbalist, Dr. Mira is also the head formulator and founder of an organic skin care line: Rosemira Organics. Owned and operated out of California for 11 years, Dr. Mira personally handcrafts each and every product. She is driven by her passion for supporting women’s well being and beauty through potent, yet natural formulations. Dr. Mira serves on the Skincare Ox Medical Advisory Team as our expert on essential oils, herbs, extraction and distillation processes, skin care formulation methods, plant extracts, and aromatherapy.
1. (2011) Iranian Journal of Basic Medical Sciences: Pharmacological Effects of Rosa Damascena. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3586833/
2. (2009) International Journal Of Pharmaceutics: Transepidermal water loss and skin site: A hypothesis. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0378517309000738
3. (2012) Division of Integrative Physiology, Department of Functional, Morphological and Regulatory Science, Tottori University Faculty of Medicine, Yonago, Tottori 683, Japan. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22167272
4. (2014) African Journal of Microbiology Research: Antimicrobial Activity of Rosa Damascena Petals Extracts and Chemical Composition by Gas Chromatography-Mass Spectrometry (GC/MS) Analysis. https://academicjournals.org/journal/AJMR/article-full-text-pdf/F45F80445336