The high sugar content of the delicious maple syrup gives it humectant properties, which keeps the skin and hair hydrated while conditioning and softening.
The sap of the maple tree, called maple water, starts flowing from the roots to the branches in early spring and is collected by tapping holes into the tree trunks when the weather becomes warmer after the frosty winter. The clear, watery sap will naturally flow out of the spouts carefully placed in the holes. If the harvest is carried out respectfully the trees will not be negatively affected and can live for hundreds of years.
In some provinces of Canada, the first sap of the year is highly celebrated as it represents the arrival of spring after a long snowy winter. Families gather around the trees and cook maple taffy: a sugar candy made by boiling maple sap until it creates a sort of sugar paste that is then cooled and hardened in the snow.
To make maple syrup, the sap is collected and condensed by boiling; this concentrates the sugar content to about 60% and adds flavour and colour to the finished product. It needs thirty to fifty litres of sap to make one litre of syrup.