Doing a botanical facial steam is as simple as pouring hot water over a bowl of dried botanicals, then holding your face over the bowl for a few minutes as it steams. After a long day, a facial steam is a great way to relax and unwind. As an added benefit, facial steams can help improve circulation, moisturize your skin, and cleanse your pores. It’s especially nice to do a facial steam during dry winter months, or when you’re feeling stuffy and congested.
It’s easy to find botanical facial steam blends available online, but what’s even easier is making a batch yourself! All you need to do is combine your favorite dried botanicals to create a custom blend. The best part about making a botanical facial steam yourself is that you have control over what ingredients to use, and you can make a large batch for a fraction of the price!
Botanical facial steam blends make wonderful gifts for birthdays or Mother’s Day, and would also be fun favors for bridal showers. If you sell your handmade creations, facial steam blends are also an excellent product to add to your line! Follow along as we make this easy DIY facial steam recipe with dried botanicals.
How to Choose Botanicals
There are lots of different ingredients you can use to make your own facial steam. When selecting botanicals, consider the color, scent, and therapeutic properties of the ingredients. Popular ingredients for facial steams are Calendula, Rose Petals, Chamomile, and Lavender. However, ingredients like Hibiscus Petals, Jasmine Buds, Lemongrass, and even Orange Peel are great options for facial steams!
Although most people are not sensitive to the botanicals we carry, you’ll want to avoid any ingredients that you are allergic to or might be sensitive to. As you will be breathing in the steam and aroma of the botanicals, you’ll also want to use ingredients like Peppermint, Spearmint, and Juniper Berries sparingly. While these ingredients smell wonderful, the aroma can be too intense when steam is added, and they can cause irritation if you use too much.
How to Blend Ingredients
Choosing ingredients for a facial steam is the hard part. Once you have that figured out, it’s super simple to make a DIY facial steam blend! All you need to do is gently mix your ingredients in a bowl, then pour the mixture into a jar, bag, or Packaging Tube. For the longest shelf life possible, store your facial steam botanicals in an airtight container.
The recipes in this blog each make enough mix to fill one of our Packaging Tubes. Made from clear plastic, these tubes are great for packaging projects that you want to show off!
The recipes in this blog list ingredients in “scoops” rather than by weight. The scoop we used is our ½ oz Measuring Scoop, which holds 1 tablespoon. These scoops are great for measuring small amounts of ingredients! If you want to make a larger batch, simply translate the measurements into grams or ounces to get more accurate results.
1 scoop = 1 tablespoon (T)
Recipes shown in order from left to right
Find all the botanicals for these recipes on our website NorthWoodDistributing.com!
Recipe 1: Sage & Lavender Facial Steam
By combining lavender and sage, you get a soothing herbal aroma that’s great for relaxation. Rose petals balance out the herbal notes with a softer floral scent.
- 3 T Sage Leaves
- 3 T Lavender Buds
- 4 T Pink Rose Petals
Recipe 2: Starry Night Facial Steam
With just a hint of mint and orange, this blend smells fresh and invigorating. Calendula makes up the bulk of this recipe with a touch of cornflower for added beauty.
- 3 T Calendula Petals
- 3 T California Orange Peel
- 2 T Cornflower Petals
- 1 T Peppermint Leaves
Recipe 3: Soothing Chamomile Facial Steam
Lavender and chamomile are both common ingredients used for relaxation. Balanced out with lemongrass, this blend is perfect for unwinding at night.
- 3 T Lavender Buds
- 3 T Chamomile Flowers
- 3 T Lemongrass
Recipe 4: Hibiscus & Rose Facial Steam
This colorful blend smells amazing. The energizing aroma of citrus and hibiscus is balanced out with the softer scent of rose petals. As an added benefit, the hibiscus petals tint the water a wonderful pink color.
- 4 T Hibiscus Petals
- 3 T California Orange Peel
- 3 T Red Rose Buds & Petals
Recipe 5: Jasmine Facial Steam
Jasmine has a lovely earthy scent that pairs well with lemongrass. Pink rose petals round out this blend with a floral aroma.
- 2 T Jasmine Flowers
- 4 T Pink Rose Petals
- 4 T Lemongrass Leaves
How to Use a Facial Steam Blend
Preparing a botanial facial steam is a lot like making hot tea. Instead of using a tea bag, you’ll be pouring hot water over loose herbs. To make a facial steam, you’ll need the following:
- Boiling water (approx. 3-4 cups)
- Glass or ceramic bowl
- Tea towel or other similar towel for draping over your head
- 1-3 tablespoons facial steam blend
When you’re ready, follow these simple steps:
- Start by boiling some water. Some people prefer to use distilled or filtered water, but tap water is fine to use as well. If your tap water has a strong smell or taste, you may wish to use filtered water.
- Meanwhile, scoop your desired amount of facial steam botanicals into a glass or ceramic bowl. Depending on how strong you want the scent to be, you can use up to 3 tablespoons of the blend (amount doesn’t have to be exact – these are just guidelines).
- Place the bowl on a table or counter in a location where you will be able to sit next to it in a chair.
- After the water begins boiling, remove it from the heat and slowly pour it over the herbs in the bowl. Stop when the water is about 1 inch from the top.
- Let the petals absorb the water. You may stir with a metal spoon to speed up the process.
- Sit in a comfortable position with your face about 12 inches from the bowl.
- Place a towel over the back of your head to create a tent over yourself and the bowl. This will help contain the steam so you can get the full benefits.
- With your eyes closed, breathe in the steamy air. Move closer or farther away from the water to find a level of heat you’re comfortable with. Be sure to take a breather outside of the towel if you get too warm or need some fresh air. If you experience any discomfort or irritation, stop immediately.
- Sit in the steam for 5-10 minutes or until you’re ready to be done. To prevent irritating your skin, avoid sitting for too long in the steam.
- Discard the petals. If you have a compost bin, these petals are great to add.
After you’re done, you may wish to wash your face and follow with a moisturizer.
How often can you do a facial steam?
Facial steams are great for hydrating your skin, opening your pores, and increasing blood flow and circulation to your face. However, you don’t want to overdo it. For most people, a facial steam is safe to do once per week. If you have sensitive skin, you may want to go every other week instead.
Doing a facial steam is perfectly safe for most people, as long as you follow the guidelines and don’t overdo it. If you have sensitive skin or skin conditions, it’s best to consult a doctor before doing any herbal regimen. If you are allergic to any of the botanical ingredients in these recipes, don’t use them.
It’s best to keep your eyes closed when doing a facial steam, as your eyes are extra sensitive. If your blend contains peppermint or other minty ingredients, remember to use only a small amount.
Can you add scent to a facial steam blend?
We don’t recommend adding scented oils – essential oils or fragrance oils – to a botanical facial steam blend when you mix it. This is because adding oil to dried botanicals can encourage mold/fungal growth. To keep your facial steam blends fresh, you want to ensure they remain completely dry until you use them.
Some people like adding a drop or two of essential oil to the bowl when they pour in the water. This is fine to do as long as you use essential oils sparingly. In the steamy environment, aromas can become very strong. Concentrated essential oils can quickly become overpowering if you use too much.
We don’t recommend adding scented fragrance oils to your facial steam blends, even if you’re using skin-safe oils. This is because you will be breathing in the steam, which is different from breathing the scent of the fragrance from a candle or applying the fragrance to your skin as you would with a scented lotion.
Disclaimer: Any herbal information on our website is intended for educational purposes only. These statements have not been evaluated by the FDA. The information on this website is not intended to prevent, diagnose, treat, or cure any disease. Please consult a medical professional before beginning an herbal regimen.