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Make Your Own Rose Water Toner

Rose Water Tone by Ashley Neese

Roses are one of my favorite flowers. My grandmother grew roses in her back patio and had dried rose petals in every bathroom. Her roses were fragrant with large petals and I loved watching her tend to them.

Using rose water toner as part of your skincare ritual is a wonderful way to calm and soothe the skin. Rose toner is cooling in nature and helps to reduce inflammation, minimizes the appearance of scars and also balances our skin’s pH. Rose water toner is loaded with antioxidants which help to strengthen cells and boost skin regeneration. This organic skin smoother will also help your face glow, giving it a natural, bright appearance.

Rose Water Toner by Ashley Neese Rose Water Toner by Ashley Neese Rose Water Toner by Ashley Neese

Roses have been used for ages to calm and soothe the heart. Energetically they are very effective medicine for nourishing the spirit. Roses give us an opportunity to see our true beauty by balancing our emotions. For a troubled heart roses are the way to go. Each time I spray this rose toner on my face I am instantly grounded and at peace. Rose water toner helps me stay heart centered and soothes frayed nerves after a particularly busy or stressful day.

As we gear up for Valentine’s day I thought it would be fun to share a recipe involving roses. I’ve been purchasing rosewater toner for years and since I started making my own last summer I haven’t looked back. Most purchased hydrosols smell old because they have such a short shelf life. Hydrosol is the name of the process that is used to stem distill more fragile plant material. When you steam fresh roses at home the water lasts longer, especially if you add in some organic witch hazel. Some recipes call for vodka to preserve the water but I prefer to use witch hazel as it is very gentle on the skin.

RoseWater Toner by Ashley Neese Rose Water Toner by AshleyNeese Rose Water Toner by Ashley Neese

There are many ways to make rose water toner. You can simply add a few drops of essential rose oil to distilled water or make a ‘sun rose petal tea’ by placing the petals in a bowl of water and letting it steep in the sun for hours. This can be a really nice practice on the summer solstice. Given that it is winter I went with a simmering method.

Because this rosewater is so fresh I suggest keeping it in the fridge. If you add the witch hazel it will last a couple of weeks. Rose water toner makes amazing gifts too! I love surprising friends with a bottle.  Also please note that the simmering method will make your water brown as it takes the color from the water. If making a gift I suggest bottling in a blue or brown bottle.

Rose Water Toner by Ashley Neese Rose Water Toner by Ashley Neese Rose Water Toner by Ashley Neese

Use the toner after you wash your face or anytime you need to ground in and relax. When I’m home I use it multiple times a day. Oh and bonus, you can totally use this rose water (minus the oils and witch hazel) in other recipes. Even a simple rose petal tea can be delicious and healing.

Be sure to use organic, untreated roses. They can be challenging to find but it’s important so you’re not creating a water full of chemicals. I got mine from a nice neighbor ;)

Rose Water Toner by Ashley Neese

Rose Water Toner by Ashley Neese

Rose Water Toner

Ingredients + Materials //


Method //

Separate the rose petals and place in a medium pot. Pour the distilled water over the roses just to cover them. Too much water will give you a very diluted rose water. Use a lid that fits inside the pot to gently press the petals down and keep them in the water. Cover the pot with a lid and turn on the heat to low. Simmer on the lowest possible setting until the petals have lost their color. Remove from heat and strain the water. Allow to cool on the counter. Mix in 1-2 tsp. of witch hazel and add a few drops of rose otto oil until desired scent is achieved. Pour rose water into spray bottle and keep in the fridge. It will last 2 weeks. Also, we put the petals in the bottles just for the photo shoot, I don’t advise putting them in your finished toner.


// Photos by Asami Zenri


  • I love diy for beauty products! I will search for organic roses in season :)

    • ashley

      Right there with you Valentina!! You will really like making this, it’s so easy and makes the house smell incredible. Wishing you a beautiful week. xoa

  • Hi Ashley, do you mind if I include two of your pictures in a graphic?

  • Hi there!

    Is there a way to make this last longer than two weeks?

    Love your post – thank you!

    • ashley

      Hi Bre,
      Thanks so much for writing! You can use more witch hazel in it, that will help, could make it last up to a month. Keeping it in the fridge will extend it’s life too.

  • Niiyi

    If I am using rose water as a facial toner do I need to refrigerate it ? Or can I use it and still have it effective without refrigerating it? Thanks

    • ashley

      If you make it yourself I suggested keeping it in the fridge as it doesn’t have strong preservatives in it. Store bought, you don’t need to keep in fridge! x

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