Rose essential oil has a long history of extensive use in treating physical ailments and aiding in general physical wellbeing. In France, rose water and rose oil were often used to treat mild diarrhea, dermatological ailments, chapped skin, and insect bites, and many also used rose water or rose oil as a mouthwash for oral hygiene. Besides these traditional uses, rose essential oil has several additional medicinal properties for which it is still used today.
Rose oil is an anti-inflammatory and thus is often found to be extremely nourishing and freshening in skincare. The oil’s cooling and soothing properties are beneficial for dry, hot, inflamed, or itching skin and for many other inflammatory conditions, like conjunctivitis (rose water rather than rose essential oil is more often used for this) (NYR Natural News, source, 2012). Rose oil is also a cicatrizant and possesses antioxidant qualities. It helps the scars and marks of boils, acne, and pox on the skin to fade quickly. This property is also beneficial for the fading of stretch marks, surgery scars, and marks associated with pregnancy (Organic Facts, source, 2014).
In addition to skincare, many studies have also shown rose oil to possess antibacterial and antiviral properties, protecting against many different types of infections. Rose oil is also an astringent, a quality that has been valued by many different cultures since the ancient Greeks and Romans. The oil strengthens gums and hair roots, tones and lifts skin, and protects against the untimely loss of teeth and hair, wrinkles, and other effects associated with aging (Organic Facts, source, 2014).
Rose essential oil should not be used during pregnancy since there is not enough evidence to demonstrate its effects on the fetus. According to the European Medicines Agency report in 2013, “The safety of rose flowers during pregnancy and lactation has not been established. In accordance with general medical practice, the herbal medicinal products (as infusion preparation or finished products) should not be used during pregnancy and lactation” (EMA, source, 2013). This oil also should not be applied directly to the skin, as it can cause an allergic reaction in individuals with sensitive skin types (Organic Facts, source, 2014).