Galen’s Cold Cream

November 05, 2016 1 Comment

Galen’s Cold Cream

Galen was a Greek physicist who invented a recipe for a cream using rosewater, olive oil and beeswax. After application, the rosewater in the cream evaporates leaving the skin feeling cool. Hence the name Cold Cream. Creams are made of a mixture of vegetable oils, beeswax and water. The ratio between these components determine the density of cream. More wax we use in a mixture, the more solid the cream will be. If we add more vegetable oil(s), the cream will be more soft and fluid.

Basic ingredients:

You can see detailed recipe and instructions in the video below.

In principle we use water bath (bain marie) to dissolve oil and wax. Then we remove a container from steam and we begin to stir and slowly adding water of floral water (hidrolat). We recommend you to use distilled water. We have decided to use virgin olive oil, peppermint hydrolat and peppermint essential oil.

During solidification we stir the mixture and we try to break water drops as much as possible. We want to obtain a cream as evenly as possible. When the cream is cooled enough we stir in essential oils and pour the creme into a suitable container. Because there are no preservatives in the cream, we must store it in a cool and dark place. We have to use it in two to three weeks.

In the video you can see a simple recipe for making homemade Galen’s creme with essential oils.

You can use this cream as a night cream or as a body butter. If you want to use it as a face cream we suggest adding less essential oil and a little bit less vegetable oil.

Write your questions and your experiences in the comment below.


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November 05, 2016

Herbal distillates, floral waters, hydrosols, hydrolates and essential waters are all synonyms.

They are by-product of steam distillation of essential oils. Essential oil float on the top of the distillate, where it is removed, leaving behind watery distillate. In the past floral waters were often considered as by-product of steam distillation, but nowadays they are important co-product. They are used in cosmetics and gastronomy.

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