Sometimes, it occurs to me that I’m not actually frolicking through rose gardens, picking beautiful blooms at whim. Reality can be a big shock for someone like me.
Yes, I spent way too much time reading The Secret Garden as a child and now spend way too much time on Pinterest.
Not all roses smell as sweet
Ever since this lavender post (Blah Blah’s very first post, back when I had blonde hair and no comment spam filter!) I’ve been meaning to do an infused rose oil and quite a few of you have been asking for this, lately.
I actually did a rose oil last year with my friend’s home grown roses. It smelled heavenly, but do you think I took any photos of those gorgeous blooms? Nope. None. And if it’s not on Instagram it didn’t happen.
I thought I could just do another batch with the rose petal tea purchased at my local Chinese supermarket. Nope. Not the same. It turns out if the dried petals don’t smell much the oil won’t smell much.
I realise this sounds obvious to a sensible person, but I persisted, because, well, because I’m, ahem, stubborn and I have to KNOW for sure.
I don’t like using the florist bought bunches of roses, because they’re often sprayed with all sorts of things. I have done it (after washing the petals) and it hasn’t killed me, but I prefer the spray-free ones now.
The long and the short is this infused rose oil recipe works with fragrant, spray-free rose petals and not much else. I think the same for making rose water.
The petals are best when dry or very wilted, because this means the water has evapourated, increasing the purity of oil extracted. This just means leaving fresh petals out on a tray for a day or two to wilt and dry a bit.
When choosing what oil to use as the base, think about what you would like to use the rose oil for. An infused oil like this can be mixed into body scrubs, hand creams, facial serums or used as is for massages. All of the oils listed in the recipe below are great for the skin.
Printable gift tag
We made a printable label or gift tag for you in case you’re making this for a gift (Mothers’ Day isn’t too far off – just saying). All you need to do is click on the link below, print on card stock, cut out and attach to the gift jar.
The quick way to make rose oil is to use dried or very wilted rose petals and follow a similar method for this lemon oil post, but keep the heat down really low. In terms of quantities, the more rose petals the better, so long as the oil covers the petals. Cook until you’re happy with the fragrance, changing the petals if need be.
However, I think the fragrance is better quality from the slow method, so I tend to recommend the slow road.
The slow way, takes 3+ weeks and here is the recipe…
- Glass jar
- Lots of dried, spray-free rose petals
- Enough almond, sunflower, macadamia or grape seed oil to fill the jar
- Cheese cloth or muslin
- Fill the jar with rose petals
- Pour in oil until it covers the rose petals and put lid on
- Place in a spot out of direct sunlight. The ideal spot is a warm, dark cupboard.
- Gently turn or roll the jar every couple of days.
- Check the fragrance after 3 weeks. If you would like a stronger scent, strain the old petals and add more dried petals. Continue until you are happy with the fragrance.
- When happy with the fragrance, strain the oil through cheese cloth or muslin, pour into a jar, label with the date and ingredients.
- If using on the skin, always test on a discrete spot for allergies.