queen of hungary water

How to Make Queen of Hungary Water

We have a recipe that explains easily how to make queen of Hungary water. What exactly is the Queen of Hungary Water's use? Undoubtedly, It’s an interesting story which has a few different versions.


Most sources say that Queen of Hungary's water dates back to sometime in the late 14th century. Evidently, It is unclear who exactly created it. A legend says someone formulated it at the command of Queen Elizabeth of Hungary.

Queen Hungary water first appeared outside of the country in 1370 when Charles V of France received some. He was famous for his love of fragrances. By the 18th century French hungry water became popular.

Medicinal Uses

Herbalists believed the preparation had medicinal uses such as helping relieve a headache, toothache, or ringing ears. Undeniably, It started to become known as a cure-all. At the time, it was made through a distillation process concentrating the ingredients which often included rosemary and wine.

In addition, Hungary water was also used to wash with. Additionally, people used it to wash one's face to prevent irritation and breakouts. Many thought it helped maintain a youthful appearance and beauty.

What is Queen of Hungary Water Made of?

Although it is called a water, it technically isn't made with water. Basically, historical recipes of the queen of Hungary water were alcohol based perfumes primarily made with rosemary. Some called for the distillation of fresh rosemary and thyme with brandy. Other preparations also included wine, lavender, mint, sage, margarine, orange, and lemon. 

Modern Preparations

Generally, modern homemade recipes infuse herbs into witch hazel extract, alcohol, or vinegar. It is the same process you use to make an herbal tincture. Lastly, you will mix the finished infusion with rosewater to use as a toner. Herbalist Rosemary Gladstar has referenced this preparation in many of her books and touts its benefits for clear and useful skin. 

Queen of Hungary Water Benefits & Use

Presently, herbalists use this as a facial toner because it helps to normalize the skin's ph. It gently tones skin, tightens pores, and soothes itchy or acne prone skin. Queen Hungary water is beneficial for all skin types. In particular, the recipe posted here is an infusion which helps to extract the volatile oils, flavonoids and phenyl acids which are antiseptic and anti-inflammatory. 

Queen of Hungary Water Recipe

Of course, you will find quite a few variations of this recipe online. You can use several different herbs in a variety of Queen of Hungary water recipes. My recipe is Loosely based on Rosemary Gladstar's version.

  •  4 part  lemon balm
  •  4 part chamomile
  •  1 part rosemary
  •  3 part calendula
  •  2 part rose petal
  •  2 part rose hip
  •  1 part lemon peel
  •  1 part sage
  •  3 part  comfrey root
  •  distilled witch hazel
  •  apple cider vinegar
queen of hungary water

Queen Hungary's Water Recipe

Print Recipe


  • Glass jar


  • 4 part lemon balm
  • 4 part chamomile
  • 1 part rosemary
  • 3 part calendula
  • 2 part rose petal
  • 2 part rose hip
  • 1 part lemon peel
  • 1 part sage
  • 3 part comfrey root
  • distilled witch hazel
  • apple cider vinegar


  • Fill a glass jar with the herb mixture listed. You can use a tbsp. as your "part" measurement.
  • Pour apple cider vinegar over the herbs to fill the jar half way
  • Fill the jar the rest of the way with distilled witch hazel extract
  • Let this mixture sit for 4 weeks.
  • Strain out your herbs and compost
  • Pour the infusion into a jar and mix it with rosewater at a 1:1 ratio.
  • Use this as a toner!


You may use all vinegar or all witch hazel in this recipe. I like to use half and half to get the benefits of the vinegar with a less pungent smell.
queen of Hungary water

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