Hydrosols or floral waters are formed during the water or steam distillation of plant material to make essential oils. Aromatherapists describe the water that is formed during essential oil production as a hydrosol or hydrolat.
Hydrolats or Hydrosols can be used safely on the skin without dilution. If you have eczema or sensitive skin, be cautious and test a small area of skin for reactions before using all over the body. Hydrosols are often used in skin toners and fresheners. Hydrosols are useful for calming pets.
Cautions with hydrosols of Rosemary, Eucalyptus, and Peppermint for high blood pressure, pregnancy and epilepsy. Apply as much of the active compounds in these plants are still present in a hydrosol or hydrolat.
Hydrosols can be used in the following ways:
- As a base for a body mist with 1-2% essential oils.
- As a base for a room spray.
- Add 2-3% essential oils to make a natural air freshener.
- As a natural anti-bacterial spray with up to 5% anti-bacterial essential oils to clean surfaces and purify air.
- In a spritzer bottled and applied directly to the skin of the face and body to refresh skin and cool down
- Used in a bath for gentle, natural cleansing.
- Add to unfragranced base creams to make lotions suited for your skin
Hydrosols can be used alone or blended with essential oils or plant extracts. They can be added into base creams and lotions. As hydrosols are water based, they will not dissolve in an essential oils. Use a small amount of vegetable glycerine to emulsify the floral water to the essential oil.
Hydrosols are not strongly scented.