ROSE OIL: THE HIDDEN BENEFITS BENEATH BEAUTY
June 1 - 7, 2009
Rose oil is perhaps one of the most well-known essential oils. The Essential Oil of Rose is extracted by steam distillation of fresh Damascus Rose.
The steam-distilled rose oil is known as 'rose otto' whilst the solvent extracted product is known as 'rose absolute'. The complicated and delicate distillation process makes the oil very expensive, and as such, it is often used in high-end skincare.
Rose oil is good on most skin types, but works especially well on mature, dry, and irritated skin. It is often used to help repair broken capillaries, reduce inflammation and calm redness. It is believed to help reduce anxiety, as well as to help balance the emotions. Rose promotes feelings of well being, so is especially good for helping to cope with depression or stress.
Rose oil is used in creams, lotions, and soaps for its mild anti-viral and bactericidal properties, as well as for its fragrance. Rose water, recovered from the distillation of rose oil, is mildly astringent and beneficial for cleansing and refreshing dry, sensitive skin.
In aromatherapy, rose oil inspires emotional calm and stability without sedative effects. The aroma is powerful and comforting. Its physical actions are mildly astringent and balancing. Rose and lavender facial cream is excellent for sensitive combination skin. Dabbed onto a freshly washed face this cream is a fragrant, toning emollient.
Besides being used as a medicine in history, the rose has a long history as a costly perfume. Fresh roses were macerated in hot fat to produce fragrant pomades in ancient India, Greece, and Egypt. In Egypt, these pomades were shaped into cones and placed on the top of the head. As body heat melted the fat, fragrant, rose-scented oil would trickle down the face and neck. In perfumery rose absolute adds incredible richness, warmth, and depth to just about any personal essence. Even in tiny amounts, rose otto will contribute a sweet, natural radiance and balance to floral blends.
More than 300 compounds have been identified in rose oil. The most common are: citronellol, geraniol, nerol, linalool, phenyl ethyl alcohol, farnesol, stearoptene, ?-pinene, ?-pinene, ?-terpinene, limonene, p-cymene, camphene, ?-caryophyllene, neral, citronellyl acetate, geranyl acetate, neryl acetate, eugenol, methyl eugenol, rose oxide, ?-damascenone, ?-damascenone, benzaldehyde, benzyl alcohol, rhodinyl acetate, and phenyl ethyl.
The key flavor compounds that contribute to the distinctive scent of rose oil, however, are beta-damascenone, beta-damascone, beta-ionone, and rose oxide. Beta-damascenone presence and quantity is considered as the marker for the quality of rose oil. Even though these compounds exist in less than one percent quantity of rose oil, they make up for slightly more than 90 percent of the odor content due to their low odor detection thresholds.
The best oil is distilled from newly opened flowers, picked in the cool morning hours before the sun has warmed away the aroma. In order to extract every trace of the precious oil, the distillation is done in two phases. An initial distillation yields a small quantity of concentrated green essential oil and a large amount of rose flower water. The flower water is then redistilled to produce an additional amount of pale yellow colored oil that is combined with the green oil from the first distillation.
A rose blossom contains only about 0.02 percent essential oil. It takes about 60,000 roses to produce just one ounce of oil, and ten thousand pounds of rose blossoms to produce one pound of oil. The extraction of rose absolute with chemical solvents is more efficient than the steam distillation of the essential oil. Ten pounds of a substance known as concrete can be extracted from 10,000 pounds of roses using this method. The concrete is further refined to produce rose absolute, the yield of which is about 67 percent from the concrete.
Rose absolute is a refined, liquid extraction of fragrant compounds from the fresh blossom. Although absolutes contain essential oil compounds, they differ from distilled essential oils. An absolute is a refinement of a concrete, which is a thick, fragrant material extracted from the plant using a hydrocarbon solvent. The concrete contains essential oils, fatty acids, and waxes. Absolutes are extracted from concretes with pure alcohol. The alcohol dissolves and absorbs the fragrant material from the concrete. Waxes, fats, and other non-aromatic contents precipitate out and are removed by filtering. The alcohol is removed through evaporation. What is left behind is the pure, fragrant absolute -- a concentration of aromatic compounds including essential oil constituents.
Regardless of its price, the potency and incredible fragrance power of even tiny amounts of rose otto or absolute makes it a sound investment -- especially considering that a dozen fresh roses costs around $60 and it takes about 2 and 1/2 dozen roses to produce a single drop of oil.
WHAT IS AROMATHERAPY?
Aromatherapy is the use of essential oils (many of which have magnificent aromas) found in various plant parts like flowers, seeds, fruits, leaves, bark or wood in a curative manner.
Some aroma therapists prefer to use only essential oils because they feel that the chemical solvents used in the extraction of an absolute have a negative affect on the properties of the oil. Others believe that the intensity and radiance of botanicals like rose are able to withstand the extensive processing and still yield positive benefits in the absolute.
Use of Rose Essential Oils in Aromatherapy
A) TONER- The exquisite oils are excellent skin toners. They are cell rejuvenators that tighten pores, control sebum production, maintain pH balance, give a refreshed complexion and help maintain a silky smooth delicately scented skin.
B) CLEANSER- The oils gently cleanse, soften, condition and harmonize the skin without dehydrating it. They are suitable for all skin types.
C) MOISTURIZER- The oils make classic moisturizers that nourish, moisturize and revitalize the skin enhancing the woman's natural beauty. They help combat the environmental damages, replenish the skin's natural oils and have a calming effect on the skin. Regular use helps fight fine lines and makes skin flawless.
In addition, the oils are used for skin allergies, dermatitis, baby skin, broken capillaries, scars, inflamed skin and eczema. They are particularly good for dry and mature skins.
2. FRAGRANT PRODUCTS- The oil is used as body fragrance as is and as fixative in various cosmetics, anti-ageing lotions, aftershaves, compresses, soaps, detergents and perfumes.
3. SORE EYES- Applying a warm compress with a piece of cloth, moistened with lukewarm water containing a few drops of the oils, over the eyelids help relieve eye strain and promote restful sleep. The oils also treat minor infections of conjunctivitis.
4. MOOD SETTING AND STRESS RELIEVING- Burning incense containing the oils creates an exotic atmosphere. The divine aroma calms the mind, soothes the senses, and relieves tension after a hectic day. Rubbing the forehead with a drop or two of the oil sets the mood for meditation and focus of the mind. Soaking the body in the tub with 5-6 drops of the oils and inhaling the luxurious vapors is an excellent way to bust stress, relieve emotional fatigue and anxiety. The vapors penetrate the skin and reach the brain, where they stimulate the nerves and send down a cool, revitalizing and relaxing sensation all throughout the body.
5. TONIC FOR INTERNAL ORGANS-
A)HEART- It regulates heart palpitations, reduces blood pressure and enhances blood circulation.
B) DIGESTIVE SYSTEM- It treats nausea and vomiting and relieves liver congestion and constipation thus strengthening the digestive system.
C) RESPIRATORY SYSTEM- It works wonders in cases of hay fever, asthma, sore throats and coughs, especially when mixed with Roman chamomile.
D) REPRODUCTIVE SYSTEMS - Anticipation of ovulation becomes easy since it acts on uterine muscles and helps regulate menstruation. It also treats disorders like menstrual cramps, vaginitis, menorrhagia and leucorrhea. In males, it increases semen production thus having an overall influence on fertility.
6. VAPOR/INHALATION THERAPY- Rose oils are widely used in burners and vaporizers for treatment of coughs, dry and sore throats, nervous tension, insomnia and stress. The fragrances enter the human body through the nasal pores and stimulate the olfactory nerves. These nerves then carry the impulses to the brain thus energizing it, which in turn does its job of arousing the whole body. This influences the hormone levels of the body that regulate desires, passions, urges, emotions and memories. The subtle effect of the oils thus can control the senses and the body responses accordingly.
7. PSYCHOLOGICAL EFFECT- Rose oils have a calming effect for grief, anger, depression and resentment.
8. PREGNANCY AND CHILDBIRTH- Nipple soreness during the early days of breast feeding after childbirth can be relieved by rose oils. The oils can also be used to soothe external vaginal damage from childbirth and ease womb tension.
9. OTHER PROPERTIES- I) Oils from different plant parts have different properties- A) HONEY OF ROSE- treats sore mouths and throats. B) ROSE VINEGAR- treats headache caused by heat. c) Rose leaves- used as laxative. d) Dried rose petal tea- treats headache, sore mouth, dizziness and menstrual cramps. E) ROSE HIPS- are a significant source of vitamin C, treat cold and flu as well as diarrhea, frequent urination and leucorrhea. f) Petals- act as appetite stimulant especially in cases of anorexia.
II) SEDATIVE- have a calming effect.
III) ASTRINGENT- help tighten and bind tissues.
IV) ANTIDEPRESSANT- act as a tonic to stimulate the nervous system.
V) ANTISEPTIC- help control fungal, bacterial and viral infections. Because of this property, illnesses caused by E. coli, anthrax and diphtheria can be treated.
VI) ROOM FRAGRANCE- Rose petals and rosehips are used in potpourris for color and aroma. Rose beads are also prepared with cloves and allspice to add to the fragrance of the potpourri.
VII) APHRODISIAC- The oils act as a potent aphrodisiac and can solve sexual problems such as frigidity.
VIII) ALTERNATIVE MEDICINE- The oils are widely used in a variety of unconventional therapeutic health care practices like homeopathy, herbal medicine and naturopathy. These include massage therapy, emotional, physical and spiritual healing, herbal therapy, vitamin mega dose and dietary supplements.
IX) AYURVEDA- The oils are used in Ayurveda for centuries which represents, in a holistic way, the science of life and longevity. This classic Indian medicine harmonizes the mind, body and soul and arms the individual with the power to better adapt to his surroundings, retain his health, thwart diseases and fight imbalances in mind and body. Ayuvedic therapeutics implement the goodness of mother nature to fortify general health, boost the immune system, detoxify the body, enhance mental and physical abilities, improve management of diseases and illnesses, step up healing processes, maintain resiliency of the vital organs, decelerate aging and rejuvenate skin, radiate confidence and have a positive outlook towards life.
The health benefits of Rose Essential Oil can be attributed to its properties like anti depressant, anti phlogistic, anti septic, anti spasmodic, anti viral, aphrodisiac, astringent, bactericidal, cholagogue, cicatrisant, depurative, emenagogue, haemostatic, hepatic, laxative, nervine, stomachic and uterine.
Rose Oil boosts self esteem, confidence, hope and mental strength and efficiently fights depression. This can be very helpful to drive away depression from those who are suffering from depression due to any reason. This also relieves anxiety. Being an anti depressant, patients of acute depression or who are undergoing rehabilitation can be given routine and regular doses of this essential oil to bring hope in their lives. This oil is widely used in aromatherapy and invokes positive thoughts, spiritualism and feelings of joy, happiness and hope.
It may calm down a patient of high fever by sedating the inflammation caused by fever. It can also be beneficial in other cases of inflammations caused by microbial infection, ingestion of poisonous stuff, indigestion, dehydration etc.
This is the most fragrant and perhaps a majestic way to treat your wounds and protect them from being septic and catching infections.
It efficiently relieves spasm in respiratory system, intestines and muscular spasms in limbs. It also helps cure convulsions, muscle pulls, cramps and spasmodic cholera which are caused due to spasms.
The astringent property of Rose Oil has many benefits. It strengthens gums, hair roots, tones and lifts skin, contracts muscles, intestines and blood vessels, thereby giving protection from untimely fall of tooth and hair, wrinkles, loss of firmness of intestines and muscles of abdominal area and limbs associated with age, and above all, helps stop flow of blood from wounds and cuts by contracting the blood vessels. This astringent property can also cure certain types of diarrhea.
It is a good bactericide. It can be used in treatment of typhoid, diarrhea, cholera, food poisoning and other diseases which are caused by bacteria. Further, it can cure internal bacterial infections like in colon, stomach, intestines and urinary tract as well as external infections on skin, ears, eyes and in wounds.
It promotes flow of bile from the gall bladder and helps regulate the acid level in the stomach as well as in the blood, thus keeping you safe from problems like acidity and acidosis. This bile also helps in digestion of food, together with the acids secreted into the stomach.
This property of Rose Essential Oil can be of great interest for those who care a lot about their looks. It makes the scars and after marks of boils, acne and pox etc. on the skin to fade away. This includes fading of stretch marks and surgery marks, fat cracks etc. associated with pregnancy and delivery.
It purifies blood by helping removal and neutralization of toxins from blood. Once your blood is purified and free of toxins, you are protected from nuisances like boils, rashes, ulcers, skin diseases etc.
This is yet another beneficial property of Rose Oil. It stimulates the hormone secretions which trigger off menstruations. It is particularly effective on those who are suffering from obstructed and irregular menses. It also eases cramps, treats nausea, fatigue and reduces pains associated with the menstruations and Pose Menopause Syndromes.
This property of the Essential Oil of Rose can be very useful for people who are suffering from hemorrhage (bleeding, external or internal) after an injury or surgery. This speeds up clotting or coagulation of blood and stops bleeding and can save life of such patients.
It simply means it is good for liver's health. It keeps it strong, functioning properly and protected from infections. It also treats problems like excess flow of bile and acids, ulcers etc.
There cannot be a laxative with a better scent than this and I can bet it, if not for its laxative properties. It can serve as a harmless and effective laxative with a beautiful smell and without any adverse side effect. It actually influences the intestinal and anal muscles to help clear bowels.
It acts as a tonic for the nerves. It gives them strength to bear shocks and protects them from disorders resulting from age, injuries etc. It won't let your hands tremble or let you go nervous when saying those three magic words to your dream girl for the first time, of course, with a rose in your hand.
Rose Oil is a stomachic too. It soothes stomach, sedates inflammations in it, helps it function properly and protects it from infections. It also protects it from ulcers which often happen due to over production of acids and their release into the stomach.
This can take care of many feminine problems such as uterine discharges, tumors, bleeding, irregular menses etc. It purifies the uterus too and keeps it functioning properly even in higher ages and can push away the time of menopause.
It regulates hormone production and helps balance them. It is one of the best oils which can give you a shining, fresh and youthful skin. Its aroma keeps you charged and feeling happy. It promotes circulation, takes care of heart, reduces blood pressure and helps cure headaches, asthma, dehydration and effect of loo (very hot winds), leucorrhea and certain infections.
Few Words of Caution: It can take away your headache if used in mild concentrations, but its strong aroma can just play the opposite if very high concentration is used. Being an Emenagogue, it should not be used during pregnancy.
BLENDING: This Essential Oil blends well with Geranium, Jasmine, Clove and Palma Rosa essential oils.