Making your own herbal salve is extremely easy plus simple, effective, and useful medicine that travels well. The herbs or herbal combination that you use will determine the specific use of the herbal salve that you make. What I love about salves is that they can last for 1-3 years and their healing properties are potent.
What you will need:
8 oz Herbal Oil Infusion (Ideas below & here)
1/2 tsp Vitamin E Oil
10-20 drops of essential oil (optional)
Place herbal infused oils and wax over a double boiler, and gently warm over low heat until the wax melts. Remove from heat and add the vitamin e oil and essential oils if using. Quickly pour into prepared tins or glass jars and allow to cool completely. Salves should be stored in a cool location.
DIY Double Boiler
If you don’t have a double boiler, you can create your own by melting the oils and wax in a Pyrex glass measuring cup in a pot of water. I love using glass measuring cups because I find the measurements on the side to be helpful along with the easy-to-pour spout. You could also use any thick glass jar. Another option to create a double boiler is to use a stainless steel bowl that sits steadily on top of a stainless steel pot. It is important to make sure that no water get into your oils or wax as they could spoil.
Infusing Herbs in Oil
Solar Method—You can use the solar method for infusing oils which is placing dried herbs into a dry sterile glass jar and filling the jar with your carrier oil of choice. Make sure to cover the herbs completely and seal the jar. Place this mix in a warm sunny window and shake the jar daily. You can infuse this oil for 2-6 weeks.
Quick Method—For an even quicker herbal oil infusion you can place the herbs in a crockpot or double boiler and gently heat the herbs in the oil for three hours on a very low heat setting no higher than 140 degrees Fahrenheit. Once cooled your oil should be ready for use.
Herbs For Salves
Arnica–Prevents and reduces swelling. Great for minor sprains, sore muscles, and bruises.
Burdock root–For treating psoriasis, eczema, and skin infections.
Calendula–Great for sensitive and dry skin. It soothes and heals damaged skin.
Comfrey Leaf–Used for bruises and general healing.
St. John’s Wort–Mood booster and anti-inflammatory herb.
Oat Straw–Soothes eczema, dry and irritated skin.
Thyme–A strong antiseptic used for cuts, scrapes, and sore muscles.
For more DIY Herbal Infused Oil ideas go here!
Best Carrier Oils for Infusions
There are many carrier oils which you can use for herbal infusions. The best oils to use are stable oils. I find that using oils that can withstand high heat for quick method infusions such as grapeseed oil, avocado oil, or coconut oil are better to use over olive oil which is better for solar method infusion. I personally prefer to use oils high in linoleic acid that are better for acne prone skin.
Do you have a favorite herbal infused oil recipe?
(Image by Mountain Rose Herbs)