What is a hydrosol?
What is a hydrosol?
The word hydrosol comes from hydro meaning water and sol meaning solution, the term is applied to the aromatic water that carries over with the essential oil over during the process of distillation. The end products of a distillation are the hydrosol (condensate water) and the essential oil.
Hydrosols are bursting with similar aromatherapeutic affects as the essential oil counterpart, but in the water soluble format it is much more subtle and contain attributes not in essential oils.
Hydrosols have many names including distillate water, floral water, plant water and hydrolat, lat referring to the transparent milky color of the water as it initially comes out of the still. In some instances words such as floral or plant water may not be a hydrosol but a water with added scent material.
During the distillation process plant matter gently imprints the water with its molecular trace particles resulting in a fragrant water. Referred to as "waters of life" in the past, hydrosols are considered a lost art that are now circling back as a revolutionary new form of aromatherapy. The distillates have been termed as “the soul of the plant”, with the ability to transmit non-verbal messages, bypassing the thinking mind.
I distill hydrosols with a heart-fulness that begins with harvesting the material throughout the entire process to bottling. I use both a cooper and glass still, depending on the time of year and availability of plant matter.
Hydrosols contain essential oil molecules which help preserve them and in turn offers many of the benefits of the essential oil. I use them for skin care as toners, room & body misters, perfume, deodorant and combining with other ingredients to make eco friendly cleaners, facial masks, drinks or for flavoring.
Since hydrosols are water element they have a cooling quality and are said to reduce inflammation, they are especially useful in hot weather, when someone has a fever and when heat rises in the body, such as a hot flash.
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