“No perfume without rose”

This old perfumery saying sums up the popularity and enduring appeal of the rose. Often hailed as the 'Queen of Flowers', the rose has held a prominent place in the mythology of cultures both in the East and West for thousands of years. It is widely recognized across the world over as a powerful symbol of sovereignty, love, femininity, beauty and spiritual insight. The fragrance of the rose is unmistakably the most universal of all scents, which is why it is still an indispensable ingredient in most classical perfumes today!

Now in my garden at the foot of the Epynt in Wales, all the roses are just coming into bloom. My favourite has to be ‘Compassion’ a beautiful, amber–pinky climber with an old-fashioned rich, musky scent. The perfume is somewhat similar to the Moroccan centifolia rose used for making ‘rose maroc’ absolute, which has a rich-floral, sensual fragrance. The collecting of petals for the absolute usually takes place in May (or early June depending on the weather) thus it is also called Rose de Mai or the Rose of May. We supply ‘rose maroc’ in a 5% dilution so it can be used directly on the skin: it has a really rich-warm and soothing fragrance, which envelops and comforts the heart. At the same time it is uplifting to the spirits so it can provide an amazing ‘lift’ for anyone suffering from heartache, loneliness, grief or depression.

The Bulgarian Damask rose (Rosa Damascena) used for making rose ‘otto’ has a sweeter, lighter and more refined scent by contrast and is made by decanting the recovered oil from the hydro-distillation process of the petals. This is an expensive and sophisticated product but the scent is truly spectacular and far superior to any commercial perfume to my mind … plus it is 100% natural! This ‘100% natural’ label also applies to our Chinese wild rose absolute (Eubatus Rubus), which is more woody and earthy in character: it is quite a rare perfume if you are looking for something unique … in fact I am not aware of any other aromatherapy company who supplies it!

Rose water hardly needs any introduction as it has been in use for thousands of years as a rejuvenating and revitalizing skin tonic. We supply our own hand-made rose flower water for use on the face and body: ideal for keeping cool and hydrated on hot summer days! Rose hip seed oil has also seen a great surge of interest in recent years due to it’s excellent regenerative skin healing qualities, being especially suitable for dry and mature complexions. What is lesser known is that rose oil has been highly valued for a multitude of therapeutic applications for centuries. For example, it can be used in the home for a range of conditions including asthma, heartburn, hangovers, headaches, insomnia, during pregnancy and for helping to deal with stress and nervous tension. If you are keen to discover more, ‘Rose Oil: Nature’s most Precious Perfume and Traditional Remedy’ by Julia Lawless, is available as a Kindle edition from Amazon for just £1.49