Hydrosol Vs. Flower Water, Is There A Difference?
Flower water and hydrosol are both terms that get used interchangeably in the natural products market. The reasoning is simple, since it helps to brand each product in a simple way, but the practice has led to a lot of confusion about what a hydrosol is and what a flower water is. And, because of the confusion around their name, many people are also confused about how to use these products. Today, we decided to get right to the heart of the matter and explain the differences between the two products, and some of the best uses for both.
Before giving each a definition, however, it is important to note that, at their very base description, hydrosols and flower waters are essentially the same thing. Both are a diluted product made from the same plants as essential oils. They both contain a mixture of the plant products used to make essential oils and water, which is used to dilute the product into something less powerful and, as a result, more useful in day-to-day products. But they are different in smaller subtler ways.
A hydrosol is a diluted essential oil which derives its power from the same plant compounds as popular essential oils, including lavender, rosemary, lemongrass and more. The best versions of these products use steam distillation to create their products, an ancient and completely natural method of extracting the powerful oils from plants and turning them into something more useful. Because they are derived directly from the plants, however, hydrosols will take more organic materials than simply the essential oils, which provide them with a more rounded and subtler effect, even if most of their power is coming from the same compounds found in essential oils.
A flower water, by contrast, is water that has been scented using essential oils. So instead of a rounded collection of the plant, it’s only the essential oil, one that has been diluted using either steam distillation or, in the event of a more delicate plant product, solvents or chemical processes. Floral waters are usually useful for their scent alone, since that is why they’ve been infused with essential oils. More often than not, flower waters are made using actual flowers, which often contain powerful yet delicate compounds. But hydrosols are usually made with plant parts like leaves, bark, or even the roots, which are much heartier.
As for their use, many people use flower waters and hydrosols in a similar capacity. Indeed, both can be used to moisturize your face after a good cleaning or as a toner for your skin. But hydrosols can also be mixed into all-natural aromatherapy products and also your favourite beauty products, like shampoo, to provide extra volume, a nicer scent, and more healthy results. Flower waters can also be used in cooking, which isn’t usually recommended with hydrosols, which can often contain powerful compounds best used on the outside of the body.
So what is the difference between a hydrosol and a flower water? It depends on the seller. Either way, be sure to research your products beforehand so you can make an informed decision.