Published on December 5th, 2016 | by Yashodhara Ghosh
Kitchen Secret: Roses
When the Scottish bard Robert Burns famously waxed lyrical about his lady love being ‘like a red, red rose,’ he probably wasn’t aware that the rose is not just a synonym for beauty, but in many cases the actual cause behind it. We have all the dope. The ultimate feel good food for your skin, nothing gives more TLC to your skin than this flower – add to that its ineffable fragrance, which relaxes, rejuvenates your senses. So if you haven’t added rose to your kitchen-sink beauty salon yet, here are some good reasons why you should start immediately.
A rose, by any other name?
- Astringents are a must after any cleansing regime, but an overdose of it can make your skin burn. The good thing about rose is that it has very mild, gentle astringent properties. So if a facial or a waxing session has rubbed your skin the wrong way, pulling at your pores and enlarging them, you can spray rose water and dab your skin down with it. The rose water tones your skin, and shrinks the pores, so pollutants like dirt and grime can’t enter them. While alcoholic astringents tend to dry your skin out, rose has precious essential oils to offset its astringent properties: these oils will restore any lost moisture.
- Rose has antiseptic properties, which means it fights and protects your skin against the nasty little monsters that are always trying to colonise pores, leading to nasty outbreaks of acne. Whenever you are applying cream or lotion, add a squirt of rose water – this goes a long way in protecting against pimples caused by pollution.
- Rose is also rich in anti-oxidants, which fight the onslaught of free radicals, the harbingers of fine lines and wrinkles. A rose a day can keep wrinkles at bay.
- Is your skin sensitive, irritable and susceptible to inflammation? Use rose to maintain its equanimity. Throw out your store-bought toner and use home-made rose water several times a day. This is truly a miracle worker for irritable skin, and moreover leaves your skin feeling fresh, happy and in the pink of health.
Rose water: Tonic for your skin
Of course, you will need a bunch of roses. If you want to go the extra mile and ensure that the roses you use are bursting with unadulterated natural goodness, grow them in your own patch. (Added benefits include the divine fragrance of roses in your home, and lots of leftover petals for potpourri.)
- Pluck them fresh right after sunrise when their moisture content is at its peak, and give them a thorough wash under the kitchen sink to remove soil and dirt.
- Now take a pan and steep the petals in distilled water, which you can get easily at the pharmacy. Put just enough water to cover the petals.
- Next, put the pan on the fire but keep the flame low: simply simmer. After about 40 minutes, you will see that the water has taken on the hue of the rose, with little flecks of oil floating on the surface. You’re almost done.
- Take the largest colander. Sieve the petals, pour the liquid into a container, let it return to room temperature, and then place in your refrigerator.
- Dab some on your face at regular intervals or whenever your skin feels stretched out and dry. Add it to your lotions, butters, night creams to lessen the heaviness and stickiness.
Rose milk, for skin like silk
Tired of the store-bought moisturisers with their cloying smells? Try rose milk. Go to your rose patch, pick out the plump ones, and pluck the soft fleshy petals till you have a little mound. Pour full cream milk to cover the heap. Let the milk soak in the goodness of the rose petals all night. The next morning, arm yourself with a blender and puree the mixture till it attains a thick curd-like consistency. Rub it gently over your face and then wash off. Milk works well to alleviate tan, so you are left with fresher, clearer skin and an improved complexion.
Mask, then show off
After a hot grimy day outdoors, a mask enriched with the goodness of rose can really restore you to your early morning equanimity. Take a few soaked and crushed rose blossoms, add a few spoons of warm golden microwaved honey, add an equal measure of curd, and a few tablespoons of oatmeal. Mix it well and apply in a thick even film. Once it cakes up, wash it off.
FAB BAG PICKS
SoulTree Aloe & Rose Water Cleansing Milk : Organic Aloe and fresh Rose water made from the wild Indian Rose is blended with Ayurvedic extracts of organic Licorice to give your skin multiple benefits. It cools and heals skin, lightens sun tan and using it daily as a cleanser ensures an even skin tone with visibly reduced blemishes. CLICK HERE to view product
Ananda Spa Rose Toner : Gentle and protecting in nature, so gentle it can even be used around the eyes. It rebalances and hydrates the skin and men can also use it as a way to naturally calm razor burn and as an after shave. CLICK HERE to view product
Just Herbs Shatpatri Wild Indian Rose Gentle Body Wash : Shatpatri or the rose with hundred petalshas its special place in Ayurveda. A great emotional stimulant, mind pacifier and skin nurturer this flower has been also been used to promote physical and emotional love for centuries. Wildly cultivated throughout India and also in the French city of Grasse-the perfume capital of the world, its fragrance is clear and sweet with light notes of honey. This mild and gentle sulphate and paraben free formula seeks to transform your bath into an indulgent rejuvenating ritual. CLICK HERE to view product