Roses are one of the oldest flowers known to man and powerful symbols of love, beauty, war and politics. Rose oil (nowadays mainly synthetic) is found as a component in 46% of men's perfumes and 98% of women's. (The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Essential Oils by Julia Lawless) Powerful stuff! But it takes more than 60,000 roses to produce just 1 ounce of the essential oil. Expensive stuff! But the amazing scent makes every drop worth it's weight in...rose oil!
Rosa damascena (Damask rose), Rosa gallica (French rose), Rosa rugosa (Chinese rose) and/or Rosa centifolia (Cabbage rose)
Deep, soft, rich, hypnotic, spicy, honey-laden, floral, tenacious - are just a few of the words to describe the smell of the rose. While there are many different varieties that vary in smell as well - a rose is a rose is a rose - when it comes to its truly unique scent.
Blends Well With:
If you can afford to, or would ever dare to blend it, I have heard of people blending it with jasmine, sandalwood, orange, lavender, clary sage, patchouli, Peru balsam. Like lavender, it's deep, mellow scent blends well with, and rounds out most any blend.
Rose Essential Oil Safety:
The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Essential Oils by Julia Lawless lists rose essential oil as "Non-toxic, non-irritant, non-sensitizing."
Believed to have been first cultivated in Persia and Asia, the roses that are distilled into rose essential oil are now mostly cultivated in Bulgaria, Turkey, France, China, Italy, Morocco and Tunisia. The flowers are picked before 8:00 AM and carefully protected from the heat.
Usage in Soap or Candles:
At hundreds of dollars an ounce, no one would be crazy enough to use pure rose essential oil in soap or candles. There are many great synthetic rose fragrance oils out there...but naturally, none can really match the real thing. I have heard of folks putting a single drop of rose oil on the top of an unscented votive candle. The tiny vial of rose essential oil that I have just sits high on my essential oil shelf to be carefully taken down every once in a while for a decadent, luxurious sniff.