Roses, synonymous with love through the ages, now find themselves at the heart of a growing wellness trend.
In part, experts say, because we're increasingly agro -- tuned into the presidential race lately? -- and rose calms us down.
Pantone chose Rose Quartz as a color of the year in part because consumers are seeking mindfulness and well-being as an antidote to modern-day stresses and as a way to disconnect from technology and unwind.
And rose is a warm and embracing hue.
"Rose is the scent that helps calm down aggression and as a nation as a whole we're in this funny place where we're getting super enlightened about some things but also getting super aggressive and hostile," says Dr. Kulreet Chaudhary, a San Diego-based integrative neurologist and expert in ayurvedic medicine. "The rose is a deeply respected flower in ayurveda used for thousands of years."
Here are just a few places where you'll find rose popping up:
FACE & BODY
Pure rose water, and rose oil, are gentle and refreshing and can be used to reduce excess redness and inflammation, and heal acne. Chaudhary recommends using rose water as a toner, and rose oil as a moisturizer. She likes supplements, for their anti-oxidant properties, too: "Rose hips are one of the highest sources of vitamin C and a good source of vitamins A, B, K."
EAT & DRINK
Advocates believe the medical benefits of roses may include relieving heart palpitations, arrhythmias, high blood pressure, PMS symptoms, stomach ailments including nausea and hyperacidity, and boost the immune system to fight respiratory infections and prevent colds. Chaudhary enjoys rose petal preserves on toast or in hot milk. When consuming rose petals and extracts, however, "Be sure to eat organic only," says Dr. Millie Lytle, a Brooklyn-based nutritionist and naturopathic medicine practitioner.
"Perhaps the most legendary benefit of rose petals is its use as an aphrodisiac," says Chaudhary, adding that couples experiencing marital distress should try wearing rose essential oil or using it via a diffuser in the bedroom.
London-based aromatherapist Danièle Ryman said she uses rose to help treat post-natal depression, menstrual problems and "calm feelings of anger and fear."
Chaudhary says the scent can additionally lighten feelings of resentment, jealousy and grief. She suggests using pure rose essential oil in a diffuser or "in a nice hot bath for you and your partner."
"If you're starting to get irritated, take a sip of rose water and instantly enjoy the cooling effects it has on your temper, gut, and skin," Chaudhary says.