Rosemary is an evergreen shrub native to the Mediterranean where it grows wild on dry, rocky slopes near the coast. The name “rosemary” comes from the Latin rosmarinus meaning “dew of the sea,” which is most likely derived from the ancient Egyptian word wʒḏ. Signified by a papyrus stem hieroglyph, the ancient Egyptian term was used to denote green, youth and sea as well as the Mediterranean, which was known as the “Great Green.”
Associated with beauty since antiquity, rosemary has been used in beauty preparations for more than 4,000 years. The origin of rosemary’s use as a beauty elixir can be traced back to ancient Egypt where the remedy known for its power to transform the old to the young, remove all signs of age and beautify the skin. The recipe was such a closely guarded secret it was unknown in the West until the late Middle Ages. After its introduction into Europe at the end of the 13th century, knowledge of the ancient beauty secret spread and by the 17th century became legendary as Queen of Hungary Water, an elixir of youth and beauty whose popularity lasted for hundreds years.
Rosemary’s long history of use as a beauty elixir can be attributed to its having one of the highest antioxidant activities of all known plants. With its skin rejuvenating benefits and revitalizing aromatic effects, rosemary is a powerful active botanical ingredient and benefits all skin types.