Rosewater is a remarkably versatile liquid that dates back centuries, and while its heyday may have been back in 30BC Ancient Egypt, when it was used for Cleopatra’s indulgent, beautifying baths, or even during the Roman Empire, when the Romans first classified it as a healing elixir, it’s still as brilliantly life-enhancing in this day and age. There are hundreds of ways that you can be utilising rosewater, but here are 10 applications you may not have thought of.
Replace your mouthwash
Yes, you read that right. Rosewater actually has a variety of antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties, meaning that swilling it post-brush is a natural way to cleanse the mouth — perfect if you’re cautious of carcinogenic and health detrimental hygiene care, more of that here — while its healing properties have been known to reduce pain and heal mouth ulcers.
Shake up your skincare routine
Rosewater has a deluge of benefits for all skin types, but it’s especially good for those with uncomfortable skin problems such as acne, eczema or rosacea as its strong, anti-inflammatory properties can help soothe the irritation. Additionally, those who struggle with conventional makeup removers should opt for a few drops of coconut oil mixed in with rosewater instead — this creates the ultimate cleanser that still leaves the skin soft and hydrated after use.
Cook with it
Not only reserved for floral, spring-inspired cocktails, rosewater also serves as a fantastic ingredient in a medley of delicious meals. It has been used as a flavouring for centuries in Middle Eastern, Indian and Chinese cuisines, often added to rice puddings, sprinkled over cakes and even added to curries.
Add it to your laundry
Steer clear of the supermarket stuff and instead make your own homemade laundry softener by combining rosewater, 20 drops of lemon or orange citrus oil, one cup baking soda, one half cup borax and a cup of white vinegar, add to your laundry detergent and use as usual. Alternatively, fill the iron with rosewater and steam your clothes to divine-smelling perfection.
A few drops of rosewater mixed in with your shampoo or conditioner will help hydrate your hair, while its therapeutic properties can help soothe the scalp and, again, combat inflammation.
In Malaysia and Singapore, rosewater is used to create Bandung, a distinctly bright pink drink that combines condensed or evaporated milk. If a rose flavoured milkshake doesn’t take your fancy, instead add it to everything from tea to lemonade, and of course — for the more booze-inclined — it makes a dashing addition to cocktails.
Add it to your first-aid kit
Rosewater is added to a plethora of natural and medicinal treatments due to its proven powerful antiseptic properties. The natural oils from the rose can help prevent and treat infections, help wounds heal faster, soothe headaches and has even been used to help treat sore throats.
Rosewater relaxes the nervous system and has been proven to harbour strong antidepressant and antianxiety properties, making it a perfect stress reliever and sleep inducer. We recommend you spray a bit on your pillow for a one-way ticket to dreamland.
Many conventional air fresheners pollute your room with lots of unconventional nasties, instead, pour some rosewater into a spray bottle and mist your bed sheets, curtains or any other soft furnishings for an all natural scent.