There is more to roses than their beauty, as rose petals can also be used to make rose oil, which offers several benefits. Researchers at Srinakharinwirot University in Thailand tested the effects of rose oil massage on the human nervous system. The results of the study, published in the February 2009 issue of "Natural Product Communications," show that rose oil absorbs beyond the skin barrier and causes an anti-anxiety affect. Author T. Hongratanaworakit explains that rose oil causes a significant decrease in blood pressure and breathing rate, and it also relieves anxiety, stress and may act as an anti-depressant.
Bring 4 cups of water to a boil, then remove it from heat.
Put 1 cup of jojoba or olive oil in a glass jar. The North Country Soap Making Library reports that jojoba oil tends to capture and hold the rose scent longer than other oils, but if you do not have jojoba oil, olive oil is suitable.
Set the glass jar with the oil in the pan of hot water. This will keep the oil warm, which helps it pull the scent from the petals.
Shred or crush 1 cup of rose petals with a pestle in a glass bowl. You can also use a wooden spoon or your fingers if you have no other supplies available.
Place the petals in the jar with the oil and cover. Once the pan of water cools, you can move the jar to a warm, sunny window sill.
Leave the oil and petals alone for at least 24 hours. Tea Rose Lane.com recommends letting the petals soak in oil for up to 7 days, depending upon how strong of a scent you desire.
Remove the rose petals from the oil and squeeze them to get all of the oil into the jar.
Strain the oil through a fine mesh sieve into another jar or glass bowl to remove any petal pieces or other debris.
Repeat Steps 1 through 8 for a minimum of 7 days.
Store the finished rose oil in a dark glass jar, or a glass jar kept in a dark cupboard.
Experiment with soak time while making your rose oil. You can let the first cup of petals remain in the oil for 24 hours, and then allow the second cup to remain in for 48 to 72 if you wish.
If you experience itching, burning or redness when using rose oil on the skin, discontinue use. You may still be able to use it for aromatherapy purposes.
A certified nutritionist who majored in health, fitness and nutrition, Traci Vandermark has been writing articles in her specialty fields since 1998. Her articles have appeared both online and in print for publications such as Simple Abundance, "Catskill Country Magazine," "Birds and Blooms," "Cappers" and "Country Discoveries."