15 Practical Ways To Use Hydrosols | Growing Up Herbal | Learn 15 practical uses for hydrosols for your skin, your health, your home, your food, and more!

Have you made hydrosols a part of your herbal apothecary yet? If not, what’s stopping you? Not only are they easy to come by, but they have tons of benefits and are safe for kids and adults to use. Plus, there are lots of practical ways to use hydrosols so you’ll never find yourself wondering what to do with it or feeling like you’ve wasted your time and money on another herbal preparation you have no idea how to use. 

If you’re not already familiar with them, keep reading because today, I’m going to introduce you to the world of hydrosols!

I’ll be talking about their benefits, where you can buy them and how you can make them in your own home as well as some of the best herbs for hydrosols. Then, I’ll tell you about some practical ways to use hydrosols (including some DIY recipes) so you can put these beauties to use in your home. 

The Wonderful World of Herbal Hydrosols

If you’re wondering what a hydrosol is, let me tell ya.

A hydrosol is a milky looking water that is the result of steam-distilling an herb. This water contains a small amount of essential oil which you can often see the oil floating on the surface of the water as well as the water-soluble properties of the plant such as alkaloids, flavonoids, glycosides, mucilage, saponins, tannins, and vitamins and minerals (Forȇt, 2008). Most hydrosols are clear and have a faint aroma to them, but some turn out slightly milky looking or with a hint of color depending on the herb you distil (think pink with roses).

Hydrosols have many benefits, most of which center around the properties of the plants they originate from. Most of them are used externally, but they can be used internally as well. We’ll talk more about uses for hydrosols later.

15 Practical Ways To Use Hydrosols | Growing Up Herbal | Learn 15 practical uses for hydrosols for your skin, your health, your home, your food, and more!

Getting Started With Hydrosols

Hydrosols can be purchased from local suppliers or online. I know Mountain Rose Herbs and Plant Therapy carries them as does Wildroot Botanicals on Etsy. If you’re not able to purchase them, though, you can always make them yourself at home.

Hydrosols are fairly easy to make. In fact, you probably already have all the supplies you need in your kitchen right now. The only thing you may need to collect or purchase is your herbs. You can see how easy it is to make an herbal hydrosol right here in this post where I walk you through the steps to make a lavender hydrosol.

You can use fresh or dried herbs to make hydrosols, but some herbs lend themselves better or are used more often than others. Really, the hydrosols you make will totally depend on your needs and the properties the herbs lend to the hydrosol.

Some great starter options are:

  • chamomile
  • elder flower
  • fennel
  • peppermint
  • yarrow
  • catnip
  • lavender
  • lemon balm
  • rosemary
  • rose petal

(Green, 2000)

15 Practical Ways To Use Hydrosols | Growing Up Herbal | Learn 15 practical uses for hydrosols for your skin, your health, your home, your food, and more!

Practical Ways To Use Hydrosols

Now that you know what a hydrosol is, that it’s one of the safest herbal preparations you can use (especially for littles), that they have many different health benefits, and that they’re easy to make (and buy), now it’s time to talk about how to actually use hydrosols.

Below, I’d like to share 15 of the most common ways hydrosols can be used. And yes, I’m talking about practical uses for your home, your skin, and your health.

Hydrosols On Your Skin

Hydrosols are most often used externally on the skin. Most times this is to achieve some sort of action like minimizing swelling, itching, or discouraging bacterial growth. Here are a few examples of using hydrosols for direct use on the skin.

Hydrosols In Food

Yes, you can use hydrosols in your food. They can be used to impart a very mild flavor and aroma when used as part of the liquids in food recipes like the ones below.

Hydrosols In The Home

Hydrosols can easily be used in the home. They’re most often used for aromatic purposes, but can also be used for some therapeutic action as well. Some practical uses of hydrosols in the home could be as a disinfecting surface spray, an air freshener, or in your homemade cleaning products.

15 Practical Ways To Use Hydrosols | Growing Up Herbal | Learn 15 practical uses for hydrosols for your skin, your health, your home, your food, and more!

Hydrosols For Health

Like I mentioned earlier, hydrosols have many therapeutic uses which can vary depending on the herb the hydrosol stems from. Most times, hydrosols are use used externally, but they can also be used internally as well. Below are some examples of using hydrosols for your health.

Hydrosols In Personal Care Products

Another way to use hydrosols in daily life would be in the form of your personal care products as a part of your daily skincare routine, as the liquid ingredient in body creams, or even in scented body sprays. Check out the fun hydrosol personal care product recipes below!

So there you go. Hydrosols are a great herbal preparation, and if you’ve not considered using them, especially if you have little ones in the home, perhaps you will now that you know some practical ways to use hydrosols for yourself and your family!

Are hydrosols a regular part of your natural medicine cabinet? How do you use them most often?

15 Practical Ways To Use Hydrosols | Growing Up Herbal | Learn 15 practical uses for hydrosols for your skin, your health, your home, your food, and more!

REFERENCES:

  • Forêt, R. D. (2008, September 19). What’s Chemistry Got to do With It? Retrieved February 01, 2017, from http://www.methowvalleyherbs.com/2008/09/whats-chemistry-got-to-do-with-it.html
  • Green, J. (2000). The Herbal Medicin-Maker’s Handbook. New York, NY: Crossing Press.