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Benefits of Herbal Distillates Revealed. Which Herbal Distillate Should You Choose to Improve Skin?

They soothe irritations, help skin regenerate and carry out self-renewal processes properly - this is how herbal distillates work. However, are they powerful enough to take the place of facial toners and lotions? What makes herbal distillates effective when used for skincare purposes? Today we're discovering the secrets of herbal distillates. Learn the most popular herbal distillates and their benefits.

It wasn't that long ago when just few heard about them, yet today, for many people, herbal distillates (e.g. moisturizing ones) constitute an integral part of daily skincare routine. Even though herbal distillates have taken the cosmetic industry by storm, still there are people who don't know what herbal water really is and how to use such products properly. It's high time to change this and discover all the benefits offered by herbal distillates.

What is a herbal distillate?

What are herbal distillates? It's the same thing as: floral water, herbal water, hydrolates/hydrosols, essential waters - there are several names given to this one all-natural cosmetic.

The naturalness of herbal distillates is owed to the method of obtaining. The easiest way to explain what herbal distillate is, is by explaining its origins. Herbal distillate is a side product of essential oil production - the extraction process of herbs due to steam distillation. Once considered as useless, today their outstanding skin and hair improving abilities are highly appreciated worldwide.

Fun fact!

The word hydrolate has its origins in French language, where hydro stands for water and lait means milk.

Herbal distillate for skincare

Natural herbal distillates that are used for skincare purposes don't differ much from the distillates used to improve hair, which in fact are better known as hair hydrosols.

They are aqueous and have a really subtle aroma. Obviously, the plant a particular herbal distillate is extracted from determines the way its smells. Despite being colorless, there are some hydrosols that can be distinguished by their characteristic shade, and this applies to for example rosemary water, sage water or cinnamon water.

Still, it should be realized that a good herbal distillate - the one you want to treat skin with - must be free from additives: no colorants, synthetic aromas, preservatives. The simpler the formula, the better it is for our face skin.

Herbal distillate vs. face oil

Herbal distillate or face oil? Instead of wondering which natural product suits your skin better and which one delivers better results in daily skincare routine, you should make use of both!

Hydrosols are lighter and penetrate skin quicker to deliver hydration to the deepest skin layers. On the flip side, their effects are less apparent. Natural oils in turn are saturated with essential fatty acids and are able to prevent water loss. The effects delivered are definitely more dramatic. Together, they create a duo to handle special tasks!

Oils that you can combine with herbal distillates should be all-natural, cold-pressed and unrefined. Argan oil, almond oil and jojoba oil make the best choice but, of course, they aren’t the only oils that you can reach for.

How to use herbal distillate & beauty oil duo correctly?

Although combining both substances may appear to be fairly troublesome for some people, application of herbal distillates and oils to skin is workable. There are a few possibilities to give a try to.

  1. Hydrosol prior to oil - first, cleanse the face, use a herbal distillate and then prevent skin dehydration through spreading a beauty oil over the face.
  2. Hydrosol with oil - pour a dash of oil and herbal distillate into the palm of your hand, combine both products and rub the blend into the skin giving your face a short massage.
  3. D.I.Y. bi-phase lotion - mix oil with herbal distillate (2:1) and pour the blend into a bottle; shake before each use, pour onto a cotton pad to wipe your face with it.
  4. D.I.Y. face mask - use chosen oil and herbal distillate as a base to create a face mask (or scrub providing that you add some abrasive particles) with honey, aloe, yogurt, avocado flesh, etc.

What are the benefits of applying herbal distillate to face?

Without a doubt, herbal distillates are beauty products that Mother Nature gave us. Recently, we have started appreciating such gifts more often because we became more conscious of the advantages that natural skincare offers.

Definitely, the biggest asset of herbal distillates is their neutral pH, therefore it's so easy for them to play in tune with our skin and restore balance to it. Neither do they irritate nor cause allergic reactions. What they do instead is just bring relief. Still, these aren't the only benefits of using herbal distillates for skincare. What are all the other properties of hydrosols?

Natural herbal distillates for face:

  • demonstrate abilities to soothe skin
  • counteract inflammations
  • reduce redness and blemishes
  • tonify and restore natural pH to skin
  • have an antipollution and antioxidative effect
  • cleanse skin and fight back bacteria
  • leave skin fresh and improve moisture levels

Obviously, the majority of the above-mentioned properties are strictly connected with the benefits offered by a plant/herb a particular hydrosol is obtained from. Therefore, you can expect achieving different effects when using different floral waters and herbal waters.

Common hydrosols and their properties

Below you will find 10 most popular herbal distillates presented together with their effects on skin.

  1. Rose water - gently moisturizes skin, smooths it out and improves its suppleness. Apart from that, rose water fosters wound healing, reinforces blood vessels, reduces redness and inflammations (the highest quality rose water is obtained from Damask rose).
  2. Cistus water - displays cleansing properties, leaves skin fresh, tightens skin pores, lights up post-acne marks, normalizes skin as well as improves suppleness and rejuvenates.
  3. Lavender water - is antiseptic, soothes irritations, reduces swellings (e.g. eye puffiness), nourishes skin and gives it healthy tone. What's more, lavender water is an antioxidant and is able to facilitate natural self-renewal processes of epidermis.
  4. Witch hazels water - (known commonly as hamamelis water) deals with common skin problems such as acne, blackheads and redness. Furthermore, it's antibacterial, reduces capillaries, aids skin in its regeneration and has an antiseptic effect.
  5. Green tea water - contains tannins that are compounds having antibacterial properties and antioxidative polyphenols. However, what's most important is that green tea water is known for its soothing abilities, it helps cure sunburns and reduces broken capillaries.
  6. Aloe water - is a highly effective moisturizer that is also able to rejuvenate skin due to encouraging synthesis of collagen and elastin, which are two proteins responsible for maintaining skin's suppleness and firmness.
  7. Raspberry water - recognized for its great skin rejuvenating abilities. It smooths skin out, replenishes it with water and tonifies to help it preserve the youthful look. On the top of that, raspberry water makes it easier for skin to regenerate and eliminate inflammations. It leaves face protected.
  8. Rosemary water - offers the following skin benefits: antioxidation, anti-ageing (in general it rejuvenates), is antibacterial, antiseptic, anti-inflammatory. Additionally, rosemary water gets the circulation going in skin, gives skin nourishment and improves skin tone.
  9. Chamomile water - not only does it smell like meadow during summer but also it deals with irritations, relaxes, soothes, leaves skin soft, moisturized and clean.
  10. Opuntia water - is incredibly rich in vitamin C, vitamin E and pro-vitamin of A, therefore it aids skin in regeneration, rejuvenates, inhibits oxidation, nourishes deeply and counteracts premature skin ageing. Last but not least, opuntia water is also able to lighten skin up.

Which herbal distillate to choose?

Which herbal distillate is the best to improve skin? There is no clear-cut answer to this question. Simply, you have to pick a hydrosol that answers needs of your skin. Below you will find tips that will help you choose the perfect herbal distillate for your face.

The best herbal distillate for dry skin

It has to be gentle which means that is shouldn't display the properties of astringent but deliver moisture. The best herbal distillates for dry skin are: rose water, lemon water, jasmine water, neroli and lotus flower water.

The best herbal distillate for sensitive skin

It’s supposed to soothe irritations and provide good skin protection. The best herbal distillates for sensitive skin are: again rose water, raspberry and aloe water, jasmine water as well as lavender and chamomile water.

The best herbal distillate for oily/acne-prone skin

Such skincare product should help oily glands function properly (deal with hyperactivity), cleanse, be antibacterial and balance skin's pH. The best herbal distillates for oily and acne-prone skin are: witch-hazels water, cistus water, rosemary water, strawberry water and cornflower water.

The best herbal distillate for couperose skin

Instead of boosting blood flow, it should soothe irritations, bring relief to skin and make capillaries stronger. The best herbal distillate for couperose skin are: rose water, green tea water, opuntia water, lime water and Helichrysum italicum water.

The best herbal distillate for mature skin

Obviously, it must have an anti-age effect, moisturize, regenerate, improve skin suppleness and protect. The best herbal distillate for mature skin are: Damask rose water, orange floral water, witch-hazels water and opuntia water.

How to apply herbal distillate to face?

The easiest way to use herbal distillate for skincare purposes is to treat it as an alternative to a facial toner (especially when the toner you use is heavy, contains alcohol and dehydrates skin!)

How to do it? The simplest way of using herbal distillate on face depends on patting it into skin after face cleansing carried out in the evening. Just a really small amount of hydrosol helps you moisturize skin and soothe irritations. If you notice that the herbal distillate hasn't fully penetrated skin after a short while - so when the skin hasn't absorbed all of it - you can wipe the excess off with a cotton pad. The last step of natural skincare routine depends on applying a face cream as normal.

Feel encouraged to share your opinion about the article with us.


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