The rose is an erect shrub or woody perennial spanning more than 150 different species. More than twenty thousand hybrids exist. Roses can be free standing, trailing, or climbing in nature. Seven distinctive types have been identified including Grandiflora, Hybrid Tea, Tree Roses, Miniature, Climbing, Floribunda, and Shrub & Landscape. The stems of the rose bush are covered with sharp thorns. Growing naturally throughout North America, the rose is a popularly cultivated flower across the United States. Roses require a minimum of six hours of full sun each day as well as regular watering. Aside from that, they are quite easy to grow.
Rose hips and petals are edible. They have been used in medicinal treatments since ancient times. Rose hips are the portions that grow at the base of the rose flower. They are rich in beta-carotene, vitamin C, vitamin E, vitamin F, bio-flavinoids, and pectin. Therefore, rose hips deliver a powerful antioxidant capability that protects the body and skin from harm. Enhancing the status of the body’s immune system, rose hips are often used to improve digestive capabilities, control weight gain, and improve both blood pressure and cholesterol. Rose petal wine has been used to treat heart disease, headaches, fever, and stomach pain.
Both rose waters and oils are used in the formulation of beauty products. In order to obtain rose water and oil, the roses are distilled first. Large quantities of rose petals are needed in order to extract a single drop of oil. Almost 9,000 pounds of roses are needed to make one drop of oil, making it costly to purchase. Nonetheless, the high concentration of rose oil enables a single drop to go a long way. Rose oil is not used in a concentrated form, but rather, it is combined with secondary carrier oils such as grape seed, almond, or jojoba oils. It is applied topically rather than taken internally.
Roses are beautiful and highly fragrant. A state symbol of New York since 1955, the rose is designated to be the official state flower in any color. Offering many symbolic reflections, roses have long been a part of societal functions. Additionally, roses offer many practical uses within the home and beauty industries.
The symbolism of roses dates back centuries to the time of ancient Greek mythology. A rose bush grew from the blood of Aphrodite’s (Greek goddess of love) slain lover. She is frequently portrayed with roses, symbolizing immortal love. Christian reflections portray red roses as symbolizing the ultimate sacrifice in the death of Christ. The red roses symbolize the crown of thorns covered in blood. In ancient Roman times, roses were hung above meeting tables, delivering the message that anything discussed “sub rosa” or “beneath the roses” was to remain secret. Roses came to symbolize tacit understanding.
The colors of roses have long held symbolic meaning. Pink roses reflect gentility, first love, elegance, happiness, gracefulness, and healing. White roses (bridal roses) suggest purity, humility, sanctity, innocence, and mysticism. The gift of a white rose without a note suggests that a secret admirer exists. Yellow roses (friendship roses) reflect caring, mature love, friendship, protection against envy, and joy. Bold and dramatic, red roses (lovers’ roses) are symbolic of immortal love, enduring passion, respect, and sacrifice. Orange roses are reflective of desire, enthusiasm, and excitement. Lilac and/or purple roses suggest enchantment, desire, and love at first sight. Of course, variations in shade may signify a slightly different meaning, and the number of roses must also be taken into consideration.
Rose oils and waters vary in coloring due to the different hues that are available. Common types of roses for use in skincare products include Rosa Damascena, Rosa Centifolia, and Rosa Gallica. Although rose waters and oils are suitable for all skin types, they are especially beneficial for sensitive, dry, or mature skin types. Therapeutic benefits offered in aromatherapy are delivered via inhalation methods.
Rose oils can be used to boost skin circulation, enhance elasticity levels, and strengthen capillary walls just beneath the surface of the skin, which is quite helpful in reduce the redness created by enlarged capillaries. Synthetic versions of rose essence have been created, but they do not deliver any therapeutic value when used. Rose water, less expensive than its counterpart rose oil, is soothing to skin that has been irritated. It can also perform as an antiseptic solution or tonic, helping to clear up infections. It offers astringent, anti-depressant, and mildly sedative capabilities.