How to Make Nourishing Rosehip Oil + 12 Ways to Use It
Rosehip oil is intensely hydrating, healing, and nourishing for your skin. Even better, it’s easy to make your own – and requires only two ingredients! So, read along and learn how to make homemade rosehip oil at home. This article will go over two different methods: a slow, passive, cold-infusion method, as well as how to make rosehip infused oil on the stovetop or in a crockpot. We’ll also cover a few different carrier oil options, as well as 12 different ways to use your homemade rosehip oil once it’s done.
I used to buy rosehip oil all the time; I love to use it as a facial moisturizer. But then we moved into a new homestead with established rose vines, so I started harvesting and drying my own hips! I love that I can now make rosehip oil with homegrown ingredients, though it’s even easier to buy dried rosehips to use in this recipe.
Benefits of Rosehip Oil for Skin
Rose hips are the fruit of rose plants, and rosehip oil is like a superfood for your skin! Studies confirm that rose hips are exceptionally rich in antioxidants, healthy omega fatty acids (oleic, linoleic and linolenic acid), polyphenols, flavonoids, and many vitamins, including Vitamins C, A, B, E and F. By infusing rose hips in oil, all those therapeutic compounds are extracted into the carrier oil and transformed into a highly-absorbable form to use topically.
Rosehip oil hydrates skin while protecting against free radicals and sun damage. It can help to reduce inflammation and redness as well as the appearance of scars, stretch marks, fine lines and other discoloration. Thanks to the presence of Vitamin A, retinoids, and Vitamin F, rosehip oil will also help fight acne, eczema, dermatitis and psoriasis while simultaneously locking in moisture. In a nutshell, rosehip oil has the potential to make your skin glow!
And that’s only highlighting the rose hips themselves. You’ll glean additional benefits depending on the oil you choose for your rosehip infusion. For example, I love to use organic argan oil to make homemade rosehip oil, which is well-known for its healing and protective properties too.
Supplies Needed to Make Rosehip Oil
- Dry rose hips. You can use homegrown rosehips, wild foraged hips, or store-bought hips to make homemade rosehip oil. They can be left whole, or cut in half – your choice! We usually cut them in half to increase the surface area and flesh contact with the oil. Either way, they’ll need to be thoroughly dried before infusing them in oil. Fresh hips contain too much water and can make your oil go rancid! Buy organic dried rose hips here, or check out this article to learn how to harvest and dry your own fresh hips.
- Oil of choice, such as jojoba oil, extra virgin olive oil, or sweet almond oil. I love all of those, but am especially keen on argan oil right now. Read about various oil options and their benefits below. No matter the type, I highly recommend using an organic cold-pressed oil for the best quality!
- A jar or other glass container with a lid. A pint jar is perfect for this recipe.
- A fine-mesh strainer, sieve and/or cheesecloth to strain the infusion.
- Bottles of choice for final storage and use – such as a small jar, oil dropper bottle, or a small pump bottle.
- Optional: If you want to your rosehip oil to be ready more quickly (using the low heat method) you’ll either need a crockpot (slow cooker) or a double-boiler to use on the stove.
Carrier Oil Options
You can make this homemade rosehip oil recipe with any type of oil you prefer. Jojoba oil, sweet almond oil and grapeseed oil are all popular choices for oil infusions intended to be used on your face. They’re all nutrient-rich, moisturizing, and rank 1 or 2 on the comedogenic scale – meaning they’re considered “noncomedogenic” and are unlikely to clog pores or cause breakouts.
Olive oil and coconut oil are even more hydrating but may cause breakouts for acne-prone skin, so I only like to use those for body oils and salves – not my face. However, using an edible oil like olive oil will enable you to consume your homemade rosehip oil if you wish (e.g. as salad dressing) and reap the immune-boosting benefits it offers! To use coconut oil, choose one that is liquid at room temperature.
My current favorite is organic argan oil. It is rated 0 on the comedogenic scale, and is known to protect against sun damage, treat acne, and soothe skin irritation. It’s loaded with vitamin E and antioxidants, making it highly nourishing and hydrating for your skin without being greasy.
To explore even more oil options, pop over to our homemade calendula oil recipe where I cover 11 different carrier oils in more detail.
Instructions to Make Rosehip Oil (Slow Cold Infusion)
This is my favorite way to make rosehip oil. The passive cold infusion is easy and essentially hands-off! Also, avoiding high heat will better preserve the therapeutic compounds found in the hips. However, it does take more patience and time. So if you want your rosehip oil ASAP, try the stovetop method instead (described to follow).
Step 1: Mix Oil and Dry Rose Hips
Start by combining 1 cup of dry rose hips with 1.5 to 2 cups of oil in a container with a lid. A glass container is ideal. For instance, I add 1 cup of dried rose hips to a pint mason jar, and then pour over enough oil to fill the rest of the jar (which ends up being about 1.75 cups). The final yield of finished rosehip oil will be about the same amount of oil you start with. Scale up or down as needed.
Remember it is essential to use dry rose hips, NOT fresh ones! Since the infusion will be strained at the end, it’s okay to use dry rose hips that haven’t been thoroughly cleaned or de-haired. I like to save my really clean homegrown dry hips to make rosehip tea, while saving the fuzzy or seedy ones for infusions. Plus, rosehip seeds contain many medicinal compounds too – so I welcome them to the mix!
Step 2: Infuse
Now we wait! Let the rosehip oil infusion sit at room temperature to steep for at least two weeks. If you have time, longer is even better! During this time, the beneficial compounds will be pulled from the rosehips and infused into the oil. Keep the container in a fairly cool and dark location. (Despite the name “cold infusion” it doesn’t need to be cold-cold. You just don’t want it sitting somewhere hot.)
I put my homemade rosehip oil either in a cabinet or on a dark shelf in the back of our Homestead and Chill storage room, where our calendula oil and lavender oil also hang out to infuse. I also like to occasionally shake the jar during this time (once every few days or whenever I see it and remember) though it’s not totally necessary. I let this particular batch go for over a month, just because I was too busy to strain and bottle it.
Step 3: Strain
After two or more weeks, it’s time to strain the finished oil from the dry rose hips. Position a fine-mesh strainer (sieve) over a small bowl or fresh jar. If your rose hips were halved and at all hairy (or, if you want to put your finished oil in a pump bottle), I suggest lining the strainer with several layers of cheesecloth to better filter the oil. The sieve alone should be sufficient if you used whole dry rose hips. Now pour the rosehip oil through the filters and into the clean container below. Let it sit to drip awhile, and then compost or discard the solids.
Step 4: Bottle and Enjoy
Finally, transfer your homemade rosehip oil into a storage container – such a glass jar or bottle. Since I mostly use rosehip oil for my face (as a daily moisturizer) I like to store it in a small dropper bottle or pump bottle for easy application.
Store your finished rosehip oil in a cool dark place. The quality will be best if used within 6 months (also depending on the shelf life of your chosen oil). If the oil becomes cloudy, moldy, or develops an off odor, discontinue use. Storing rosehip oil in the refrigerator will help extend its shelf life up to a year or longer. Note that pure argan oil will solidify in the fridge. That’s normal, and a good sign that it’s pure! If you intend to leave it out (such as on your bathroom counter) I suggest using amber bottles to protect your oil from light degradation.
Keep reading below for more ideas of how to use homemade rosehip oil!
How to Make Rosehip Oil on the Stove (or in a crock pot)
To make rosehip oil in the stovetop or in a crock pot (aka slow cooker) it is important to maintain the lowest “warm” temperature possible. As I mentioned before, high heat can destroy the beneficial antioxidants and essential fatty acids in the rose hips. Therefore, I recommend using a probe thermometer to monitor the temperature of the oil and do your best to keep it below 100ᵒF at all times.
- Combine 1 cup of dry rose hips per 2 cups of oil either in a double-boiler or crock pot. Don’t have a double-boiler? Create your own by nesting a smaller pot inside of a larger one, or resting a heat-safe glass bowl on top of a pot of water.
- In a crock pot, use the lowest heat setting possible. In a double-boiler, bring the water in the lower pot to a low boil but then reduce down to a simmer.
- Allow the mixture to infuse over low heat for several hours, up to 8 to 12 hours for maximum extraction.
- Some herbalists recommend macerating or chopping up the rose hips prior to infusing to maximize the extraction. Another option is to press and mash the rose hips while they’re heating in the oil.
- Allow to cool, and then thoroughly strain away the solids using a sieve and/or cheesecloth before bottling (as described in detail above).
12 Ways to Use Rosehip Oil
- As a daily facial moisturizer. Use just a few drops; a little goes a long way!
- As spot treatment directly on scars, eczema, stretch marks or other areas of concern.
- Use rosehip oil as an ingredient in other homemade body care products that call for oil, such as our homemade lip balm recipe, calendula salve or lavender salve, or this rosehip soap recipe. For instance, you could use half rosehip oil and half calendula oil to create an extra-strength healing salve!
- If you use edible carrier oil, you can use rosehip oil as salad dressing, marinade or in other culinary creations.
- Apply rosehip oil to cracked heels and feet.
- For dry hands, or as a nail and cuticle “cream”.
- As a massage oil.
- On dry, cracked or chapped lips or around your nose when chaffed.
- Work a few drops through damp hair to soften hair and smooth split ends.
- To treat cradle cap on babies (check your carrier oil safety first).
- To soothe burns, rashes, sunburns, or scrapes.
- Use on dry elbows or other rough patches of skin.
Basically, you’ll want to rub it all over!
And now you know how to make rosehip oil!
I hope you enjoyed learning this new simple skill, and love using your homemade rosehip oil even more. A printable recipe is included below for easy reference. Please let us know if you have any questions in the comments below, and stop back by to leave a review once you give it a try!
You may also love:
- Natural Lip Balm Recipe
- How to Make Homemade Lavender Oil or Calendula Oil
- Homemade Elderberry Syrup for Immune Health & Allergy Relief
- Soothing Homemade Lavender Salve Recipe
- Calendula Salve Recipe for Healthy Skin
- Homemade Cannabis Oil and Salve Recipe (THC or CBD)
Homemade Rosehip Oil Recipe
- a glass container for infusing, such as a pint jar
- cheesecloth and/or sieve for straining
- bottles for final storage
- Optional: double boiler or crock pot (only if using the heat method instead of passive cold infusion)
- 1 cup dried rose hips, whole or halved (organic if possible)
- 1.75 cups carrier oil of choice. Popular options include jojoba oil, extra virgin olive oil, argan oil, grapeseed oil, and sweet almond oil. Select a high-quality, unrefined, cold-pressed, and organic oils for the most healthy and healing results. (Choose an edible oil if you intend to ingest your rosehip oil.)
Passive "Cold Infusion" Method
- Obtain dried rose hips. It is important to start with 100% dry hips, not fresh.
- Fill a clean glass container 1 cup of dried rose hips
- Combine 1.5 to 2 cups oil for every 1 cup of rose hips used. Pour oil of choice over the dried rose hips until the container is full. (A pint glass jar with 1 cup of rose hips can usually hold about 1.75 cups of oil)
- Place a lid on the container, and store it at room temperature in a fairly cool and dark place for at least 2 weeks. Shake on occasion (optional).
- After two weeks or longer, strain the solids from the oil. If your rosehips are at all fuzzy or hairy, I suggest lining a fine-mesh strainer (sieve) with a few layers of cheesecloth to filter it well. Place the strainer over a clean container, and then pour the oil and rosehips in to strain. Compost or discard the solids.
- Store the finished rosehip oil in a cool, dry, dark location. Rosehip oil should stay good for 6 months or longer. Discontinue use if the oil gets moldy, rancid, cloudy, or develops a bad aroma. Rosehip oil can also be stored in the refrigerator to extend the shelf life up to a year or more.
- Enjoy! Use your homemade rosehip oil as a daily facial moisturizer (only a few drops needed), as a massage or body oil, on problem areas, as part of your oil cleansing method, an ingredient in other homemade skincare recipes such as salve or soap, to condition and soften hair, as salad dressing or marinade, and more.
Stovetop or Crockpot Method
- Combine 1 cup of dry rose hips per 2 cups of oil either in a double-boiler or crock pot.
- In a crock pot, use the lowest heat setting possible. In a double-boiler, bring the water in the lower pot to a low boil but then reduce down to a simmer. Maintain the temperature below 100F for the best results (high heat can denature or destroy the beneficial antioxidants and fatty acids).
- Allow the mixture to infuse over low heat for several hours, up to 8 to 12 hours for maximum extraction.
- Some herbalists recommend macerating or chopping up the rose hips prior to infusing to maximize the extraction. Another option is to press and mash the rose hips while they're heating in the oil.
- Allow to cool, and then thoroughly strain away the solids using a sieve and/or cheesecloth before bottling and using (as described in detail above).
My first batch of rose hip oil is in the cupboard. I can’t wait for the 3 weeks to be up! I’m going 3 weeks for extra measure. Thank you for the recipe & for the great idea. Super easy!