Hydrosol from a home distiller?

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Catscankim

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I was looking up how to make hydrosols and all the diy sites give instructions for usung bowls in a big pot….

Looking up home distillation only shows moonshiner devices. No where can i find if this is possible using my electric counter top distiller that i use to make distilled water.

I am presuming that i can. Does anybody know for sure, and will it ruin my distiller for water use in the future?
 

Sarah B

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What kind of countertop distiller are you using? In general to make a quality hydrosol, it's low and slow (in contrast to EOs). And you use fresh plant material rather than a little bit dried. I make it in my copper still on a gas burner (an outdoor project), so will help you if I can. What are you distilling?
 

Sarah B

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Oh--to the other question: I would not distill water in the same still I distilled hydrosol in. You can clean the still with super high test ethanol (standard is Everclear), but I typically just scrub mine out in between batches.
 

Catscankim

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Its this one. I have been using it for distilled water since may. Nothing worse than going to the store to get distilled water and another mysterious shortage pops up.

Impulsive and impatient: i am distilling lavender buds. Hope i dont ruin my machine, i will make a gallon of water after it to hopefully clear it out.

My house smells wonderful right now lol.
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Catscankim

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Soooo… as i typed the last message, the distiller finally kicked in. It looks like iced tea color. I dont know how long that was going on with that color, but what i saw dripping from the distller was crystal clear so i switched containers.

i believe i have a nice hydrosol. The clear lavender water has a really potent lavender scent.

Will keep you updated on this experiment
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Sarah B

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Oh wow! I can't wait to hear how it turns out! I'd imagine you'd lose a lot of the EO, but maybe it'll work for hydrosol! So cool!
 

Sarah B

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Post pictures if you can! Here's one of my first distilling attempts (was appalled by how little oil comes out of lavender lol):

IMG_20210705_125648_536.jpg
 

Catscankim

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The ice tea one seems to have a layer of oil. I have no clue how to separate that. Looking for the hydrosol as opposed to eo anyway. Maybe i can figure out eo extraction in the future lol
 

Catscankim

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So I got two pitchers of distilled hydrosol, plus the little amt of brown liquid and a bunch of brown lavender buds that I will throw in compost. Neat experiment.

I think the brown liquid smells the most of lavender. And it has the most oil sitting on top (presumably essential oil).

I guess when my nose clears of lavender I will report on how they all smell LOL. Right now I cannot even smell actual lavender eo out of the bottle, which I guess is because I have been only smelling lavender all day lol. Olfactory overload.

lavender distillery.jpg
 

Catscankim

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Update: after the experiment, i could not smell lavender at all, including eo directly from the bottle, presumably from smelling nothing but avender all day, plus i was making lav shower steamers.

I bottled up the water that i got from the distiller into mason jars and stuck them in the fridge. I just opened them now, and WOW lavender!!! Like way more potent than i thought i was going to get. I already had plans on soaking the buds first to make it stronger, but it is not necessary. My nose was just overloaded.

I am thinking a 6 month shelf life in the fridge. I ordered 2oz spray bottles, which come today. I really dont know what to do with all this lavender water/hydrosol lol. Guess ppl are gonna have to get used to me smelling like it all the time. Its my fav small anyway.

Next hydrosol will be hibiscus since i have two plants that i collect and dry flowers from. Oh my gosh, the possibilities. I might have to move out of state so i can sell stuff that i can use it in lol. Maybe i can make a room spray. I think that might be legal.

Since my face breaks out from my mask all day, im gonna add some witch hazel and use it as a facial spray for now.

Now i want to plant some rose bushes lol.
 

Catscankim

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I typed out a whole long post about my hydrosol update and first use, then accidentally deleted it :mad:

In summary, my lavender hydrosol experiment smells like feet, or an armpit...I haven't decided which one. At first it is yummy lavender, but the final note is body odor of some kind as it dissipates LOL. I don't smell that out of the mason jar that it's in. And it went straight into the fridge after bottling. It can't be bad already. After I spritzed it on my face...BO. I was so afraid that I smelled like it all day lol.
 
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