Say goodbye to dry, itchy skin with this DIY rose water toner! The rose toner helps to hydrate, smooth, and refine your skin’s appearance. The rose water face mist targets the skin’s moisture level and pH balance with a blend of natural ingredients that can make your complexion look radiant and glowing.
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DIY rose water toner
I LOVE making natural skin care at home. You get to choose exactly what goes into your product and customize the formula for your individual skincare needs.
Take this DIY rose water face mist, for example. The natural rose water toner is incredibly hydrating. It will replenish your skin with natural ingredients that will make your complexion radiant and oh-so glowing. And the elegant rose scent is sure to lift your mood. Enjoy!
This post is very in-depth because I wanted to give you a thorough resource. If you prefer to skip past the information part, tap here to see the rose water toner recipe.
Rose water toner benefits
Excited to make your own rose water facial toner? Me too! But first, let’s find out what this homemade rose water toner can do for your skin. Here’s a quick overview of the potential rose water toner benefits:
- Hydrating: Rose water is an excellent hydrator and provides natural moisture needed to make the skin appear plump + luminous and lessen fine lines.
- Balancing: Rose hydrosol can balance the skin’s natural oils and sebum, helping you achieve a refreshed appearance.
- Astringent: Rose water is said to have astringent properties that reduce the appearance of large pores, making the skin look smoother.
- Soothing: The anti-inflammatory properties in rose water calm skin irritation, redness, and puffiness. The floral water can even help to soothe eczema and rosacea.
- Antioxidant: The antioxidant content in rose water will nourish your skin, protect it from cell damage and help to heal scars, abrasions, burns, and small cuts.
- Cleansing: The floral hydrosol can aid in clearing oil and dirt from clogged pores.
- Softening: The extra moisture will make your skin feel softer and moisturized.
These skincare qualities can be attributed to the main components of rose water, which are phenyl ethyl alcohol, citronellol, linalool, geraniol, and others. Think of these compounds as natural, active ingredients.
Rose toner ingredients
I love making my own face toners at home. You can customize the toner recipe to meet your skincare needs. And it’s also so easy to do. You need a few ingredients that you may not have in your collection yet. But the good news is that some of them are optional. You can omit them and still create an excellent rose water toner.
Materials for homemade rose water toner
Here’s what we’ll need for the best rose water toner:
- Rose water is the main component of this homemade rose toner. You can use both rose water and rose hydrosol. Don’t know what the difference is? Read on to find out.
- Hydrolyzed silk, a liquid form of silk fibers, is made up of amino acids, which help to strengthen and nourish the skin. The ingredient also has excellent moisture-binding properties that promote elasticity. Use hydrolyzed rice protein if you need a vegan rose water toner.
- Vegetable glycerin acts as a humectant and helps to seal in moisture and plump your skin.
- D-panthenol (provitamin B5) plays a key role in keeping your complexion healthy and good-looking. The ingredient moisturizes, softens, and soothes the skin and helps to build up a protective barrier to prevent water loss.
- Sodium PCA (optional) is the sodium salt of PCA (pyrrolidone carboxylic acid) and an excellent hydrating agent. PCA is naturally found in the skin. Sodium PCA helps the skin attract and retain moisture and replenishes the skin’s PCA content.
- Plant extract (optional): You can customize the natural rose toner with botanical extracts according to your skin care needs. I’ve listed ideas for different skin types below.
- Lactic acid ensures that the DIY face toner has a pH range that is close to the human skin. Adjusting the pH minimizes the risk of irritation and helps to restore your skin’s natural pH level.
- Preservative: I used Preservative Eco (Geogard ECT), a natural broad-spectrum preservative with a strong activity against mold, bacteria, and yeast. Please read me tips for preserving homemade rose water toner at the end of the post.
Rose water vs rose hydrosol – which is best for a DIY toner?
You’ll often find folks using the terms rose water and rose hydrosol interchangeably. I do it, too. So, what’s the difference between the two, and does it matter for homemade rose water toner?
Rose hydrosol is created by steam-distilling fresh rose petals. It contains small amounts of essential oil, whereas rose water is produced by infusing and filtering fresh or dried rose petals in water. Sometimes, rose water is also made by diluting rose essential oil in water.
Although rose-infused water and rose hydrosol have different qualities, either will work fine in this DIY rose water toner without witch hazel.
I use homemade rose water for products that are meant for my personal use. However, if you intend to sell your DIY rose water toner, it’s safer to invest in a premade rose hydrosol. Commercial rose hydrosol is purer than the DIY version (thanks to better filtration) and will result in longer shelf life.
Rebecca from Botanical Formulations shares more helpful insights on the use of floral water in cosmetic formulations.
I recommend the organic rose hydrosol from Plant Therapy, or the rose hydrosol and white rose hydrosol from Mountain Rose Herbs. Mystic Moments offers a brilliant Bulgarian rose hydrosol to those living in the UK.
Rose water face toner for every skin type
As promised, let’s discuss ways how you can adapt the rose face toner recipe to fit your personal skincare needs with the help of plant extracts.
The botanical extracts are water-soluble, meaning no solubilizer or emulsifier is necessary (more on this later). These extracts contain beneficial phytochemicals (plant-based actives) and are gentler than essential oils.
Adding plant extracts is entirely optional. They aren’t cheap, and I totally understand that you may prefer to omit them.
All skin types
- Hibiscus extract is rich in vitamin C and antioxidants. The ingredient stimulates cell turnover and refines skin texture.
- Red clover bioferment contains isoflavones, plant compounds that protect the skin from oxidative stress and soothe irritated skin.
Rose water toner for sensitive skin
- Arnica extract has anti-inflammatory and anti-irritancy capacities thatalleviate skin irritations and is gentle enough for sensitive skin.
Rose toner for dry skin
- Bamboo extract raises your skin’s moisture levels and has a conditioning effect.
- Pansy extract increases hydration and strengthens the skin’s protective barrier.
Rose water toner for oily skin
- Chaparral Extract has antioxidant and antiseptic properties that are helpful to calm oily skin.
Rose water toner for acne
- Thyme extract provides potent anti-bacterial, cleansing, and astringent qualities, making it a good choice for those dealing with acne and clogged pores.
Anti-aging rose toner for mature skin
- Birch wood extract can help to prevent the loss of skin elasticity and stimulate collagen growth.
- Forget-me-not extract promotes collagen production, which will make your skin appear plumper and reduce wrinkles.
How to make rose water toner with essential oils
Can I make a rose water toner with essential oils? Yes, but with reservations. The reason why I chose plant extracts over essential oils is that these extracts are water-soluble.
Essential oils, on the other hand, won’t dissolve into the water-based toner formula but instead pool on top. These droplets of undissolved, highly concentrated essential oils can cause irritation.
If you want to make a rose toner with essential oils, include a liquid solubilizer, such as Tego Solve 61. You might still see separation, and I recommend shaking the product before each use to form a short-term emulsion.
You can include any essential oils that work well on your skin except for citrus and spice essential oils. Add not more than 0.5% essential oils to the formula (that’s about 1 g or 20 drops) plus 1/2 tsp 2 g / 0.07 oz solubilizer.
Drop a comment below if you have more questions about making a homemade rose water toner with essential oils, and I’d be happy to help you out.
How to make rose water toner
DIY toner recipes are generally pretty straightforward, even you’re new to the homemade skincare game. This organic rose water toner is a breeze to create, and here are the simplesteps for how to make rose water toner at home:
Step 1: Mix liquids
- Add the rose water, hydrolyzed silk, glycerin, D-panthenol, sodium PCA, and your plant extract of choice into a glass beaker or mixing bowl. Stir the liquids until combined and the glycerin has dissolved. You may still see streaks of glycerin, which is fine as they will dissolve after a while.
Step 2: Adjust pH
- Adjust the pH of the homemade toner by adding lactic acid. 12 drops should be sufficient to lower the pH to the 4.5 to 5 range. Of course, you can do your own test to check if the pH is where we wanted it to be.
Step 3: Preserve
- Add the preservative. Give the mixture a good stir to combine everything.
Step 4: Store
- Transfer the rose face toner into a cosmetic bottle for storage. Optionally, apply the free printable rose toner label to the bottle.
How to use rose facial toner
I didn’t know how to use a skin toner for the longest time. So don’t feel bad if you don’t know either. The steps for how to use rose water toner are super simple, but I totally understand that it isn’t common knowledge.
- Cleanse. The first step is to cleanse your skin and remove any makeup, sun protection, and grime of the day.
- Tone. Distribute the rose water facial toner onto a cotton pad and apply it over your face, neck, and decolletage. Try not to rub against your face but gently press the product into the skin. If you don’t have a cotton round, use a piece of cloth or clean fingertips.
- Moisturize. To lock the moisture the DIY rose water toner provides to the skin, follow up with a serum or face oil and a moisturizer. I love this DIY rose serum.
- Protect. Although the toner won’t make your skin more susceptible to sunlight, be sure to apply SPF.
When is the best time to apply rose toner?
The best time to apply toner is right after cleansing. Cleansers offset the natural pH level of your skin and strip away some of the good oils, making the skin feel parched and sensitive.
This rose toner helps to bring your skin back into balance and gives an instant moisture boost. The soothing ingredients in this natural toner recipecan also help calm any irritation caused by the cleanser.
You can use the DIY rose water toner in the morning and at night.
Can I use the homemade rosewater toner daily?
Absolutely! You can use the toner twice a day. Pause the toner if you notice any irritation or itchiness.
How much toner do I need?
A little goes a long way with this DIY rose water toner. I pour just enough toner on my cotton pad until the pad feels damp, which amounts to probably 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon. That’s enough for my face, neck, and chest area.
If using a spray bottle, 1 to 2 spritzes are enough for your whole face.
Rose water toner spray
I like to apply my toners to a cotton pad, but you might find a rose toner spray more convenient. If so, simply fill your floral toner into a spray bottle or atomizer and spritz it on your face whenever your skin needs a little pick-me-up.
Homemade rose water toner FAQ
Can I use pure rose water as a toner?
Yes, you can use rose water as a toner. I talk more about the use of rosewater for skin care in my homemade rose water tutorial. Great! And what’s the difference between pure rose water and this rose water toner recipe?
Well, my rose toner recipe is pH balanced and contains additional ingredients that will make your skin healthy and dewy looking.
Another aspect is moisture retention. If you splash your face with rose water, the water will evaporate quickly, and your skin feel will feel as dry as before.
My homemade toner recipe contains humectants, such as glycerin, sodium PCA, and liquid silk, that will bind the rose water to the skin and provide lasting hydration.
However, if you prefer a simple homemade face toner, rose water on its own offers skincare benefits to some extent.
Will this rose toner dry out my skin?
No, this DIY rose water toner recipe is made without alcohol and won’t dry out the sink. Instead, your skin should feel hydrated afterward.
Can I make a cleansing rose toner?
Yes, it’s pretty simple to turn this toner recipe into a cleansing rose toner. All you do is add 1 tbsp of a mild surfactant (= the cleansing agent) to the rose petal toner.
An oil-free cleansing toner can be the last step in your cleansing routine and help to remove any leftover makeup and residue from the other cleansers. Don’t leave a cleansing toner on your face but wash it off with water or remove it with a washcloth.
I recommend coco glucose (Plantapon SF) because it’s very gentle and won’t offset the pH of the toner solution. Just to be sure to add 2 additional drops of lactic acid.
If you prefer another surfactant (e.g. coco glucoside), you may have to use slightly more lactic acid to achieve the optimal pH range.
Why does the rose water toner appear pink?
The color of the toner depends on whether you used rose-infused water or rose hydrosol.
My DIY facial toner is pink because I used a rose-infused water. Infusion means that dried or fresh rose petals are steeped in distilled water. During the infusion process, pink or red petals release their color into the water, hence the pink rose water.
Rose hydrosol, on the other hand, is always colorless because it’s made via steam distillation.
I’ll show how to make your own rose water with dried or fresh rose petals in this post.
Natural rose water toner storage instructions
How to store rose water face toner
Store the DIY rose water face mist in cool to ambient areas. I like to keep my rose water toner in my bathroom cabinet. Room temperature is fine. Moisture and humidity won’t affect the DIY skin toner since we’re keeping the bottle closed.
To maintain the integrity of the ingredients, keep the toner out of direct sunlight. Both sunlight and heat can impact the quality of rose skin toner. Some cosmetic ingredients (e.g., extracts and hydrosols) break down if exposed to UV light.
Glass bottles are best for storing your rose water facial toner because glass doesn’t react with any ingredients (unlike plastic). You can opt for a clear or frosted bottle (like the one in the pictures) or buy an amber or cobalt blue bottle. If using a clear or white frosted bottle, be sure to avoid exposure to sunlight.
Rose water toner shelf life
DIY rose water toner has a shelf life of 5 to 6 months, but only with a preservative. Discard the product if you notice a change in smell or detect mold. If you’re using rose-infused water (like me), the color of the rose skin toner can lessen over time.
Want more skin toner recipes?
If you like this DIY rose toner, you may also like my other homemade toner recipes:
- green tea toner
- DIY toner for dry skin
- DIY anti-aging toner
- homemade toner for acne with tea tree essential oil
- 2/3 cup / 160 ml / 5.4 fl oz rose hydrosol or rose water
- 1 tbsp / 15 g / 0.5 oz hydrolyzed silk (or hydrolyzed rice protein if vegan)
- 1 tsp / 5 g / 0.2 oz vegetable glycerin
- 1 tsp / 3 g / 0.1 oz D-panthenol
- 1/2 tsp / 1.5 g / 0.05 oz sodium PCA
- 1/4 tsp plant extract (optional, see ideas above)
- 12 drops lactic acid
- 40 drops / 2 g / 0.07 oz Preservative Eco (Geogard ECT)
- Mix liquids. Add the rose water, hydrolyzed silk, glycerin, D-panthenol, sodium PCA, and your plant extract of choice into a glass beaker or mixing bowl. Stir the liquids until combined and the glycerin has dissolved. You may still see streaks of glycerin, which is fine as they will dissolve after a while.
- Adjust pH. Adjust the pH of the homemade toner by adding lactic acid. 12 drops should be sufficient to lower the pH to the 4.5 to 5 range. Of course, you can do your own test to check if the pH is where we wanted it to be.
- Preserve. Add the preservative. Give the mixture a good stir to combine everything.
- Store. Transfer the rose face toner into a cosmetic bottle for storage. Optionally, apply the free printable rose toner label to the bottle.
Printable Rose Water Toner Labels
Tab or click the button below to download free printable rose toner labels.
How to preserve rose water toner
The main ingredient in this homemade face toner is rose water. Any water-based product is prone to become a breeding ground for bacteria, mold, yeast, and other microorganisms that you don’t want to put on your skin.
While you can easily spot mold with the bare eye, the same isn’t true for bacteria. Some bacteria omit a pleasant floral scent that you won’t even recognize as bacterial contamination.
As mentioned earlier, I used Preservative Eco (Geogard ETC), a paraben-free broad-spectrum preservative, to formulate my DIY rose water toner. The preservative has a faint bitter almond smell that pairs nicely with the rose scent.
Of course, you can opt for another preservative. Just ensure to use it at a concentration that is high enough to protect your deep hydration facial toner.
What about preservative-free rose water?
Interestingly, steam-distilled rose hydrosol contains ca. 1% to 2% ethyl alcohol, a byproduct of the distillation process. The ethyl alcohol offers protection against bacteria and is the reason why you find preservative-free rose waters.
However, the moment you introduce other materials, you need to include a preservative as the ethyl alcohol won’t be strong enough on its own.
My rose water is already preserved – do I still need to add a preservative?
Some rose hydrosols already contain a preservative, such as Leucidal Liquid. Is that enough, or do I still need to add more preservatives? My guess is that you could get away without additional preservatives, especially if you use up the toner quickly.
However, if you want to be on the safe side or plan on selling the rose water toner, your best bet is to include the preservative in your rose toner formula. It won’t affect the quality of the product, but will ensure that your homemade toner is safe to use and has the best shelf life.