Do thou smile like the rose at loss and gain;
For the rose, though its petals be torn asunder,
Still smiles on, and it is never cast down.
Yes, Rumi was correct… rose wears an eternal smile. But, more than a popular symbol of love, rose Rosa ×damascena (Mill.) also has many therapeutic properties that speak to its loving, happy, and smiling disposition. It can be purifying in DIY skin care, immune enhancing in organic body care formulas, and mood boosting in aromatherapy diffusions.
So, let’s take a moment to stop and smell the roses together. Your body will thank you for a little aromatic R&R! Plus, I’ve included a DIY recipe for a Rose Essential Oil Body Scrub at the end of this post. It’s one of my favorites and simple to make at home.
Skin Purifying Effects of Rose
With antibacterial properties, rose is cleansing and purifying to the skin. One 2010 in vitro study demonstrated that thyme Thymus vulgaris (L.), cinnamon Cinnamomum zeylanicum (Blume), and rose R. ×damascena essential oils have strong activity against Propionibacterium acnes, a Gram-positive bacteria linked to skin acne.
Immune Enhancing Effects of Rose
When you’re feeling run-down, rose is there to offer a sweet lift. Rose has been shown to have potential stimulating effects on the immune system.
One study evaluated the ability of rose to promote the natural healing of canker sores (common mouth ulcers said to be triggered by stresses in the immune system). Participants who were given mouthwash containing rose essential oil reported less pain and their ulcers were smaller and in fewer numbers. And as an added bonus, rose contains a small but effective amount of the numbing constituent eugenol!
The Mood Boosting Effects of Rose
One of the most sought after uses for rose is that it’s a beautiful, stimulating mood booster! Yes, a 2013 study done on rats showed that inhaling rose R. ×damascena essential oil may have a positive effect on stress and mood levels.
So with skin purifying, immune enhancing, and mind boosting effects, rose petals and rose essential oil are the perfect addition to my favorite body scrub.
DIY Recipe: Rose Essential Oil Body Scrub
With all these wonderful properties to the flower of love, it’s a must-have ingredient in your DIY body care.
This is one of my favorite natural body scrub recipes and uses for rose. It’s simple, yet luxurious and will allow you to experience all of rose’s delightful effects while enjoying a soothing exfoliating shower.
White clay: 1/8 cup
Ground almonds: ¼ cup
Ground oatmeal: ¼ cup
Powdered roses: ¼ cup
(You can also substitute with lavender Lavandula angustifolia or peppermint Mentha ×piperita)
Rose Rosa × damascena essential oil: 2-3 drops
Mix all ingredients together and then add water to make a paste. Use the paste to gently exfoliate the body. Wash off. Add an additional base oil for an oil-rich scrub.
You can also use this scrub as a gentle facial exfoliant. But since it includes essential oils (and you want to make sure to use organic if possible!), I would recommend you do a skin patch test first, just to be safe.
Are you absolutely in love with rose? Then you won’t want to miss our next webinar with renowned author, aromatherapist, and educator Mindy Green:
Disclosure of Material Connection: I am the President and Founder of American College of Healthcare Sciences, the Institution that publishes this blog. However, all opinions are my own. This blog may contain affiliate links. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”
This article is for informational purposes only. It is not intended to treat, diagnose, cure, or prevent disease. This article has not been reviewed by the FDA. Always consult with your primary care physician or naturopathic doctor before making any significant changes to your health and wellness routine.
 Zu, Y., Yu, H., Liang, L., Fu, Y., Efferth, T., Liu, X., et al. (2010). Activities of ten essential oils towards Propionibacterium acnes and PC-3, A-549 and MCF-7 cancer cells. Molecules, 15(5):3200-10.
 Hoseinpour, H., Peel, S.A., Rakhshandeh, H., Forouzanfar, A., Taheri, M., Rajabi, O., et al. (2011). Evaluation of Rosa damascena mouthwash in the treatment of recurrent aphthous stomatitis: a randomized, double-blinded, placebo-controlled clinical trial. Quintessence Int., 42(6):483-91.
 Nazıroğlu, M., Kozlu, S., Yorgancıgil, E., Uğuz, A.C., & Karakuş, K. (2013). Rose oil (from Rosa × damascena Mill.) vapor attenuates depression-induced oxidative toxicity in rat brain. J Nat Med., 67(1):152-8.