Do you want to restore beauty to skin and hair? Let yourself be helped by the properties of hydrolates, herbal distillates with a high moisturizing power. Here's how to use them
Hydrolates, or aromatic waters, are natural products obtained from the current distillation of fresh medicinal plants. They have numerous soothing properties, and can be used as face tonics, or as a refreshing for dry, red skin or tired eyes. Let's find out what are their most common uses and what are the greatest benefits they guarantee to our body.
What are hydrolates
Hydrolates are obtained thanks to the steam distillation of flowers, leaves and other aerial parts of plants. Their preparation takes place simultaneously with that of the essential oil extracted from the same plant. During steam distillation, the hydrolate, which is water-soluble, is separated on one side, and the essential oil which is fat-soluble on the other (so it does not dissolve in water but in fatty substances). The hydrolate retains the scent and some properties of the plant of origin; but unlike essential oils, they do not present any risk or contraindication and can also be used in pregnancy or on children.
The uses of hydrolates
Hydrolates are very light and delicate, and can be used alone or mixed together, thus exploiting the properties of different plants. Given their calming and soothing properties, they are used in a long list of cosmetic products, such as face and hair masks, creams, facial tonics or as decongestants for tired eyes. In addition to helping the skin, hydrolates are used for friction on the scalp, or they can either be included in cosmetic recipes to replace demineralized water to enhance the effect we want to obtain from the finished cosmetic.
Hydrolates: what they are and how to use them. Hydrolates can be purchased in herbal medicine, and should be stored in a cool place away from light. There are many varieties, below are the most common and known for their properties.
- Lavender hydrolat: lavender water relaxes and disinfects the skin. It is very useful in case of mixed or impure skin, always to be used instead of the tonic. It is also useful in case of insect bites, itching and sunburn.
- Rose hydrolat: also known as "rose water", it is a powerful anti-wrinkle and toning agent, particularly suitable for dry and mature skin. It is also used in case of allergies and redness, as it has soothing properties. It is the best-selling and best known among the hydrolates also by virtue of its excellent perfume.
- Chamomile hydrolat: thanks to its anti-inflammatory virtues, it is very useful for sensitive, irritated, inflamed, red skin and in case of couperose. It can also be used as an eye contour or as a base for a flaming compress.
- Mint hydrolat: has a refreshing and regenerating effect, making it perfect especially in summer. Particularly recommended after a shower, it also helps fight water retention, relieves headaches and keeps mosquitoes away.
- Rosemary hydrolat: it is mainly used in hair lotions, as it stimulates regrowth and at the same time regulates sebum and fights scalp irritation that causes dandruff. For the face, on the other hand, it is useful for purifying combination or oily skin.
- Grapefruit hydrolat: works as a natural and energizing tonic. Massaged on the skin it helps circulation, while on the hair it tends to remove the greasy effect.
- Sage hydrolat: helps strengthen hair and prevent hair loss, also preventing the formation of dandruff. Since sage regulates sweating, it can also be used to make deodorants and emulsions.
- Orange blossom hydrolat: this product moisturizes and perfumes the skin, while on the hair it has a regenerating effect, making it shiny and soft. Finally, among its properties one cannot fail to mention the calming and relaxing effect on the nervous system.
- Witch hazel hydrolat: it is the best ally of women with oily or impure skin thanks to its astringent and sebum normalizing action.
- Cypress hydrolat: thanks to its draining qualities, it is very suitable for fighting cellulite. Also excellent for fighting acne and improving the condition of brittle or breaking hair.
- Lemon balm hydrolate: this water is also known above all for its soothing properties, which is why it soothes irritations, promotes healing and improves sensitive skin. It also has a good calming effect on the nervous system.