Hydrosol? What is that anyway?

Meet Līhau Facial Mist, the most refreshing, antioxidant and exotic facial mist you'll meet.  Līhau has a lot of secret powers, one of them being the Hawaiian sandalwood hydrosol we use, which serves as the base ingredient for this creation.

The hydrosol makes this creation so beneficial for your skin.  But wait a minute, what IS a hydrosol?  We throw this word around like it is commonplace in every vocabulary but really....it is not at all.  What exactly does it mean?

Hydrosols have been widely used around the world for....well, centuries or maybe longer.  But in the western cosmetics world, they began making appearances more recently. Hydrosols were often discarded and not used because they are a byproduct of essential oil production.  As a byproduct, they just weren't bothered with, unfortunately.  However, that has changed and we now recognize these are less potent versions of their essential oil counterparts.

Also known as distillates, flower waters and floral waters, hydrosols can be distilled from the petals, leaves, bark, stems, roots and other parts of a plant. They are produced during the distillation process that extracts essential oils. 

How are they created? 

The fresh cut leaves, stems, petals, etc. are placed in a distillation tank.  As the water boils, steam rises, softening the specialized glands that secrete the essential oils.  The rising steam causes these glands to burst, allowing the essential oil within to release as a vapor into the air. This vapor mixes with the steam and rises up to the top of the tank, then into the coils of neighboring condensing chamber.  The condensing chamber is filled with cold water, which surrounds the coils, cooling the steam and vapor, which pours into a separating tank. The essential oils naturally separate and float to the surface, where they are removed. The remaining water is the hydrosol and has minute concentrations of the essential oils present.  This hydrosol contains therapeutic properties that are not always present in the essential oil itself.

We use hydrosols in various products. Currently we only use sandalwood hydrosol in Līhau Facial Mist and Moana Mask but we also use rose and neroli hydrosol in the Moana Mask, which helps contribute to the unusual, evocative scent we've all grown to know and love.

Do you have any favorite hydrosols? Let us know!

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