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How Hydrosols Can Naturally Improve Your Skin & Overall Wellness

July 22, 2019

How Hydrosols Can Naturally Improve Your Skin & Overall Wellness

Want to improve your skin, clear your mind, and feel energized? Hydrosols are aromatic therapy for wellness, both inside and outside of the body. Delicately scented, refreshing, and gentle, hydrosols represent a synergy of natural skin care and aromatherapy. Not only can they improve your skin, but they can give your overall wellness a boost. Best of all, they are 100 percent natural.

If you’ve never heard of hydrosols, it’s time to learn about this growing trend in natural skin care. We’ll talk about how to use hydrosols for skin conditions and well-being, as well as specific hydrosols from Abbey St. Clare and their benefits. But first, let’s take a look at what hydrosols are and how these wonderfully aromatic waters are made.

What are Hydrosols?

Hydrosols—also known as distillates, hydrolates, plant waters, or flower watersare healing waters with therapeutic benefits delivered in a gentle and safe format. They deliver the  properties of essential oils; however, they are less concentrated and significantly milder. They are not just water with added essential oils, but a byproduct in the distillation process of essential oils. Some hydrosols are even produced as the primary product. Each hydrosol is unique, carries its own scent, and has a perfect acid balance to match human skin. From potency to chemistry to aroma, everything about hydrosols is gentle, but they remain highly effective.

Hydrosols are made through distillation of fresh leaves, flowers, and other plant materials. Distillation is a procedure that separates two liquids from each other, using the fact that the two liquids have different boiling points. As steam or boiling water moves through the plant, it nudges open the cellular structures that contain the essential oils and other components. The oils and components are carried with the steam and separate as the steam cools. The oil is easily separated from the cooled distillate. The remaining waters contain micro-drops of essential oils, as well as the water-soluble plant components that offer herbal therapeutic benefits. There is approximately 0.02 percent of each essential oil in hydrosol. 

Once discarded as a by-product of oil production, distillate waters contain the essence of the plant, but in a milder form. Not only does this provide a more cost-effective delivery of botanical benefits, but it allows for a wider variety of applications where the intensity of essential oils would be too strong.


Hydrosols are 100 percent pure from nature. They cannot be synthetically manufactured. The highest quality hydrosols are obtained from distillers who are devoted strictly to the production of the waters to maximize the collection of every drop of plant essences. The hydrosols offered by Abbey St. Clare are produced in this manner. Hydrosols are usually delivered without preservatives, or with minimal concentrations for safety and stability. 

How to Use Hydrosols

There are many uses for hydrosols when it comes to personal care and wellness. Remarkably, hydrosols are considered adaptogens, meaning they respond uniquely within each individual to balance conditions in the skin and body. In fact, their primary action is to balance the skin’s current external condition.

Here are ways to use hydrosols to naturally improve your skin and overall wellness:

  • Use hydrosols to address a variety of skin conditions. When used after cleansing and before treatments, hydrosols make a wonderful facial toner. They lock in moisture and equalize the skin’s balance of oil and water. Spritz a hydrosol on the skin to moisturize without a greasy feel and prevent overly oily patches. Their acidic nature makes hydrosols useful as astringents—they tighten and tone the skin and shrink pores by constricting and contracting the skin’s tissues. 
  • Rely on hydrosols for emotional well-being. Hydrosols are therapeutic and promote emotional balance. Whether the cause is stress, depression, or menopause, hydrosols are emotionally calming. They can help you re-energize and de-stress throughout the day. For example, lavender and chamomile hydrosols—known for their calming properties— are wonderful to spray around your bedroom before you retire for the night. For a nice pick-me-up, spritz melissa or lemongrass hydrosol in your office or on your wrists. Consider the effects of each hydrosol individually or blended, and how they can help you. Use them regularly to see if they make a difference for you.
  • Use them to soothe rashes, burns, and more. Many hydrosols are antibacterial and anti-inflammatory. Ingredients such as tea tree, witch hazel, rose, helichrysum, and peppermint can calm sunburn, reduce razor bumps and burn, clear acne, reduce redness, and relieve itching. The acidic nature of hydrosols naturally deters the growth of bacteria, making them useful for various skin applications and first aid purposes. They can also soothe diaper rash pain almost instantly! 

Types of Hydrosols and Their Benefits

Below are various types of hydrosols and the benefits they offer. 

Lavender Hydrosol 

Benefits:

  • Skin-soothing, especially for burns.
  • Sedative
  • Antidepressant
  • Cleansing
  • Antibacterial
  • Anti-inflammatory
  • Soothes sensitive skin
  • Relieves irritated skin
  • Anti-aging

Our Lavender Hydrosol has a calming aroma that is perfect for when your spirits need a lift. It’s also wonderful for children—use it to calm cranky moods and bring an end to tearful tantrums. Gentle enough for a baby’s bottom, lavender hydrosol relieves, soothes, and helps to prevent diaper rash. It’s ideal for sensitive skin—spray skin both before and after shaving or hair removal to get a closer shave and help prevent razor bumps. Add it to bathwater or spray it directly on the bed for a restful night's sleep. 

Roman Chamomile Hydrosol 

Benefits:

  • Sedative/calming
  • Antihistamine
  • Anti-Inflammatory 
  • Antibacterial

Gentle and calming, Abbey’s Roman Chamomile Hydrosol is perfect for delicate, sensitive skin. A compress of chamomile hydrosol soothes tired eyes. Add to a bath with lavender hydrosol to calm your body and mind for a restful night’s sleep. Roman chamomile hydrosol is particularly useful for mother, baby, and child care—mist baby’s bottom while changing their diaper, use in a sitz bath or as wipes to heal and soothe episiotomy discomfort, or make a compress or mist tender breasts to relieve discomfort and to prevent cracked or sore nipples.

Orange Blossom Hydrosol

Benefits:

  •  Skin toner
  •  Hair conditioner
  •  Cicatrisant (skin and wound healer)
  •  Ideal for sensitive skin

Orange Blossom Hydrosol—also known as neroli hydrosol—is an antibacterial and antifungal astringent that makes a wonderful treatment for sensitive, delicate, or oily skin to reduce irritation and clear acne. Use it after exercising to cool down and relax, close pores without clogging them, relieve sweaty skin, and prevent breakouts or athlete's foot. Its wonderful floral, citrusy scent makes a room smell lovely. Spritz throughout any room for a burst of freshness. Orange blossom hydrosol offers a calming effect, and it can be used to calm a child in the throes of a tantrum and may help to moderate hyperactivity in children with ADHD.

Rose Geranium Hydrosol 

Benefits:

  • Anticoagulant
  • Antiviral, antibacterial, and anti-infectious
  • Excellent facial mist
  • Anti-inflammatory
  • Antidepressant
  • Humectant
  • Astringent
  • Analgesic

One of our favorite hydrosols, Rose Geranium Hydrosol responds to the needs of dry, oily, normal, combination, or sensitive skin. Anti-inflammatory and cooling, rose geranium is useful for skin conditions where heat and/or redness are present: menopausal hot flashes, rosacea, sunburns, inflammation, rash, or insect bites. It makes an emotionally calming makeup setting mist, and can be misted over makeup throughout the day to refresh and cool. Deodorizing and sweet-smelling, rose geranium hydrosol makes a wonderful air purifier.

Rose Hydrosol 

Benefits:

  • Skin beautifier
  • Hair growth booster
  • Facial toner
  • Natural perfume
  • Anti-inflammatory
  • Cooling and refreshing
  • Antibacterial
  • Aphrodisiac
  • Antiviral
  • Antiseptic

Abbey’s Rose Hydrosol is ideal for just about anything! An excellent toner for sensitive skin, it is useful for setting makeup, particularly mineral makeup. It’s a favorite of travelers to counteract dry airplane air by periodically spritzing one's face and arms. Spray before naptime or bedtime to instill a sense of serenity. Mist during the day to soothe the body and the psyche. Spray around hair or head to hydrate skin or lift spirits. Cooling and refreshing, rose hydrosol is wonderful on sunburn to cool, soothe, and heal.

Witch Hazel Hydrosol 

Benefits:

  • Astringent
  • Antioxidant 
  • Antibacterial
  • Anti-fungal
  • Anti-inflammatory
  • Stitz bath treatment
  • Analgesic

Our Witch Hazel Hydrosol is the strongest antioxidant hydrosol, making it one of the most effective anti-aging substances. It cleans the skin and leaves a light film of oil to soothe dry skin. A natural analgesic and anti-inflammatory product, this hydrosol is ideal for acne-prone skin, and calms razor burns, bites, stings, rashes, itching, sunburn, and scaling. Witch hazel hydrosol makes excellent hand wipes as well as a refreshing room, linen, or clothing spray. Use as an instantly soothing wipe for “itchy bottom” issues such as colitis or irritable bowel syndrome. 

Peppermint Hydrosol 

Benefits:

  • Analgesic 
  • Cooling properties
  • Anti-inflammatory
  • Decongestant
  • Antibacterial
  • Astringent
  • Digestive aid
  • Deodorizer
  • Boosts hair growth

A cooling refreshing and uplifting distillate, our Mint Hydrosol is a powerful synergy of cooling mint (peppermint and spearmint). In hot weather, a cold mist of mint hydrosol will do wonders to cool the skin, help physical or mental fatigue, and ease sunburn. Spray on your feet or add to a foot soak to combat odor and refresh. Peppermint invigorates hair follicles. Spray it on your scalp to stimulate hair growth. You can also use this hydrosol as an air freshener to neutralize odors and freshen up a room. Keep refrigerated for a cooling mist during hot, humid weather, to cool hot flashes, or after work or exercise.

NOTE: This hydrosol is the rare variety that should not be used with children under the age of three. 

Everlasting (Helichrysum) Hydrosol 

Benefits:

  • Anti-inflammatory
  • Anti-scarring
  • Analgesic
  • Anti-aging
  • Wound healing
  • Emotional healing

Helichrysum is one of nature’s healing gifts. A gentle but potent anti-inflammatory, helichrysum is ideal for rashes, burns, and other skin irritations. Uplifting and grounding, it’s used in prayer and meditation, and can contribute to healing emotional wounds when spritzed around a room. Mist the Everlasting (Helichrysum) Hydrosol on legs several times a day to temporarily relieve thread veins and provide cooling relief. It also helps to prevent the appearance of razor bumps after shaving and offers powerful anti-aging properties for the skin. 

Tea Tree Hydrosol 

Benefits: 

  • Disinfectant
  • Antibacterial
  • Anti-fungal
  • Astringent
  • Anti-inflammatory
  • Analgesic

Tea tree essential oil and its hydrosol are Australia's healing gift for inflammation and distressed skin. Our Tea Tree Hydrosol belongs in every household first aid kit because of its gentle antibacterial and analgesic properties. Safe enough for babies and children, this hydrosol is a natural gentle cleanser that repairs and soothes. Use as a toner for blemished, oily skin. It’s also excellent in a refreshing foot soak, and is ideal for fighting fungal infections including diaper rash, candida, dandruff, and toe-nail fungus. 

Yarrow Hydrosol 

Benefits: 

  • Anti-itch
  • Antiseptic
  • Anti-inflammatory
  • Antibacterial
  • Wound cleaning
  • Emotionally calming
  • Relieves cold, flu, aches and pains
  • Reduces fever

Yarrow Hydrosol is a summer staple for relieving the itch of insect stings and bites. In fact, yarrow hydrosol is known to stop an itch in its tracks, regardless of the cause. One of the more potent waters, yarrow hydrosol helps stop the burning from allergic reactions and is a great choice for relieving skin conditions such as eczema and psoriasis. Use as a compress for achy varicose veins. Yarrow enhances mental calm and inner peace. Spritz some of this herbal hydrosol in the room before doing yoga or meditation.

Lemongrass Hydrosol

Benefits:

  • Antibacterial
  • Circulatory stimulant 
  • Helps oily skin
  • Soothes sore throats, colds, and fever 

Abbey’s Lemongrass Hydrosol is extremely useful because of its astringent, antioxidant, and cleansing properties, which makes it helpful to relieve oily skin and blemishes. It's often used post exercise on the neck, shoulders, and back to clarify skin. This refreshing hydrosol boasts a pleasant aroma that’s fresh and lemon-like. Use as a toner morning and night for oily skin care, and mist on your body as often as needed for a nice energizer. Lemongrass hydrosol also makes an effective scalp-cleansing hair rinse. Spritz on the legs and feet after a long, hot day. It is especially helpful during the heat of summer, along with lemongrass soap. Men love the aroma of lemongrass. 

Melissa (Lemon Balm) Hydrosol

Benefits:

  • Good for stress, anxiety, depression, and insomnia
  • PMS relief
  • Anti-asthmatic
  • Skin toner
  • Helpful for herpes and shingles

Melissa (also known as lemon balm) essential oil is prized, and our Melissa (Lemon Balm) Hydrosol retains some quantity of the antiviral active components. One of nature's calming botanical wonders, melissa is gentle enough for babies when used in a bath. An excellent skin clarifier, this hydrosol is an ideal toner and astringent.

SAFETY NOTE: Lemon balm has some effect in lowering blood pressure, so please exercise caution if using on a long-term basis and/or you are hypotensive. 

While hydrosols are often recommended for internal use as well as external applications, we leave the ingestion of hydrosols to your discretion. While most pure hydrosols are given a shelf life of over two years, we prefer to be conservative and recommend a yearly renewal of hydrosols. We have reduced the size of our hydrosol bottles for this very reason. 

We offer our hydrosols in spray bottles but they can be mixed in with any other carrier you desire. Use caution not to contaminate the waters, and keep refrigerated if you are not going to use your hydrosol routinely. 

Our hydrosols are formulated with only the finest ingredients, all taken from nature—not a factory. Trust Abbey St. Clare to help you become the best you can be with effective hydrosols and other skin care protocols. 



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