I have had the wonderful pleasure of being able to work with Rosalee de la Forêt and the release of her new book, Alchemy of Herbs. I’m so excited for its release, and I know a number of you are too, so I managed to procure a sneak peek of one her recipes: Green Tea and Rose Facial Cream.
This is only one out of many fabulous recipes in her book, Alchemy of Herbs. She really does a great job of using herbs daily for a healthier body inside and out.
Rose and Green Tea Facial Cream
This recipe is so perfectly up our ally that I was bursting to share it immediately.
Not only does this green tea and rose facial cream have all of the ingredients we are used to using in our homemade natural skin care like cocoa butter, bees wax and coconut oil, and fabulous essential oils, it also has a rose hydrosol and green tea infusion.
If you’re not used to working with these ingredients, don’t worry. She does a great job of explaining each step.
You can basically break it down into 3 parts:
- The first four ingredients are used to create the infused oil (jojoba, green tea, rose petals, and alkanet root).
- The next three are melted together (beeswax, coconut oil, shea butter).
- The last ingredients (aloe, hydrosol and essential oils) come together with everything else to make your green tea and rose facial cream.
So without further ado, here is an excerpt from Rosalee de la Forêt’s new book, Alchemy of Herbs.
One of my favorite recipes from herbalist Rosemary Gladstar is her recipe for the “Perfect Cream.” I’ve made my own versions of this blend countless times over the years. I know it’s a big hit because my friends are not shy about requesting another jar!
Admittedly, this may be the most complicated recipe in this entire book, but if you love decadent and nourishing facial creams, learning how to make them yourself will open a whole new world of luxury. Most facial creams you can buy at the store—even the “all natural” ones—have all sorts of weird ingredients. This cream is filled with the best and most nourishing ingredients for your skin.
Many of the ingredients in this recipe are oddly shaped, so you will need a scale to measure them by weight.
Because this cream doesn’t have any harsh preservatives, make sure you use clean utensils, bowls, blenders, etc. Also, make sure all instruments are dry; you don’t want to put any water in the mixture since this can increase the likelihood it will spoil. In many years of making this recipe, I’ve had only one batch ever go bad on me. You can tell a batch has spoiled if you see mold growing on the cream.
Jojoba oil is very luxurious. It is shelf stable, and it readily soaks into your skin. It’s also expensive. Almond oil, grapeseed oil, and apricot kernel oil will also work. Rosemary antioxidant can be bought from herbal apothecaries like Mountain Rose Herbs. Besides helping to preserve the oils in the cream, rosemary antioxidant also has protective qualities for the skin.
Here’s a tip for an easy cleanup: Wipe down all oily surfaces with a paper towel before using hot, soapy water to wash them.
Green Tea and Rose Facial Cream
- 1 cup jojoba oil
- 30 grams green tea leaves
- 10 grams dried rose petals
- 1 gram alkanet root optional; turns the oil red to make a pink cream
- 20 grams beeswax
- 25 grams coconut oil
- 20 grams shea butter
- ⅓ cup rose hydrosol
- ⅓ cup aloe vera gel
- 1 teaspoon rosemary antioxidant extract
- 15 drops geranium essential oil optional
- 10 drops grapefruit essential oil optional
- 8 drops clary sage essential oil optional
- Your first step is to infuse the herbs into the oil. Put 1 to 2 inches of water in the bottom of a double boiler. Place the oil into the top. Add the green tea, rose petals, and alkanet root (if using), and stir well. Turn on the heat and heat the oil until it is fairly warm to the touch, about 100˚F. Remove from the heat. Heat the oil 3 to 5 times per day for 1 to 2 days. You can also put this in a modified slow cooker or yogurt incubator as long as the temperature of the oil doesn’t exceed 110˚F.
- Once the herbs and oil have infused, strain off the herbs, reserving the oil. When straining the oil I recommend using cheesecloth so you can squeeze all the oil out of the herbs. After you strain the herbs you should have 3/4 cup jojoba oil. If you fall short of that, add enough pure jojoba oil to reach that amount.
- In a double boiler, heat the beeswax, coconut oil, and shea butter until melted. Add the oil and stir until everything is liquid and combined. (I like to use a small wooden stick for stirring to avoid a messy cleanup.)
- Pour the warm oil mixture into a food processor or blender. Let cool just until solid.
- Mix together the rose hydrosol, aloe vera, rosemary antioxidant, and essential oils, if using. The next step is to emulsify these waters with the oils. For best results, the two mixtures should be roughly the same temperature.
- Turn on the food processor or blender with the oils in it, and slowly drizzle in the water mixture. Continue to blend until the ingredients have combined to form a thick cream. Do not overblend. If necessary, use a spatula to scrape down the sides and around the blade as you blend.
- Spoon the cream into containers. Store in a cool, dark place or the fridge.
To use: Massage a tiny amount of cream into your face and neck just after washing your face with warm water. It may feel oily for a few minutes but will soon soak in, leaving your skin feeling silky and smooth. Use within 3 months.
Recipe and photo from Alchemy of Herbs: Transform Everyday Ingredients into Foods and Remedies That Heal by Rosalee de la Forêt (Hay House, 2017)