Making Homemade Herbal Salves

Posted 10-31-2011 at 09:04 AM by Mel

I have spent quite a bit of money over the last few years on herbal salves, especially ones for diaper rashes.  I have always been intimidated at the concept of making my own as it sounded complex.  Boy was I wrong!  A few weeks ago I learned to make my own and it’s SO easy!

First of all, herbal salves are just a simple mix of infused oils, wax, and sometimes essential oils.  They are used externally and can be made many different ways to suit your needs.  In order to make herbal salves you need to find a good supplier for wax (I prefer beeswax), herbs (they MUST be completely dry in order to have a good shelf life), and a good quality carrier oil.   The quality of ingredients you choose will affect the quality of your salve, so choose wisely.  Also, be familiar with the herbs you are using and their recommended usages.  With the internet this can be done easily and quickly.

I am going to share with you a quick recipe to make Calendula Salve as it is easy to make and has many uses (including diaper cream).

What you will need:
A glass oven safe dish
Carrier Oil
Dried Calendula petals
Storage container (glass or metal are best – you can use wide mouth canning jars)

Take a cup of the dried calendula petals and put them in your oven safe dish.  Cover completely in your carrier oil (pure olive oil is what I prefer to use).  Don’t put too much oil in, but just enough to cover the calendula.  I typically use equal amounts of herbs and oil.  Heat your oven to about 200 degrees and then shut it off.  Place the oil and herb blend into the oven and let it sit for about 4 hours or so.  Remember, the oven is OFF during this time.  Let cool until it’s cool to the touch and then strain the herbs with a fine strainer or cheesecloth.  Put the oil back in your pan and add two ounces of beeswax.  Put on low heat and stir constantly until the beeswax is pretty much dissolved.  Remove from heat and stir until it’s blended well.  Pour into your storage container and let cool.  You can add more or less beeswax to change the texture.  More beeswax would make it firmer and less would make it softer.

Easy, huh?  I thought so too!  My hope is that you too can save some money and make some of your own!  I should add that my absolute favorite place to buy herbs and supplies is Mountain Rose Herbs.  They carry high quality products and have good prices.

Filed Under: General


9 Responses to “Making Homemade Herbal Salves”

  1. MiamiBaby on October 31st, 2011 7:17 pm

    Thanks for sharing, hope this encourages others to make their own salves, it is easy!

    I find that with beeswax my salves always end up too hard though. Have you tried emulsifying wax? I hear that makes a more liquid salve, and am interested to hear if anyone has experience with it.

  2. nursemom23 on November 1st, 2011 2:38 am

    Thanks for the information mama!
    It DOES soound easy. Maybe you have inspired me to try to make some myself.

  3. Sarawithouth on November 1st, 2011 1:47 pm

    Wonderful!! I’ve made salve before – using equal parts beeswax and olive oil and adding essential oil. My baby’s butt loves it!

  4. pinktree on November 3rd, 2011 6:43 am

    Wow that sounds like fun! To make your own nappy cream would be pretty impressive I think. I may give it a try.

  5. echobravo on November 3rd, 2011 1:20 pm

    Ooh, I want to try it. My baby is having a hard time with eczema from a milk allergy.

  6. Luv4My3Kids on November 4th, 2011 6:27 am

    Darn, I wish I saw this a week ago, I just bought some for my daughters face as she has eczema so bad. I will try this next time though!! Thanks for sharing! :)

  7. kastolzm on November 10th, 2011 5:40 am

    This sounds great. Can coconut oil be used as the carrier oil?

  8. Mel on March 10th, 2012 1:37 pm

    Absolutely! I sometimes create a blend of oils. You just want to make sure the coconut oil has liquefied prior to pouring it over the herbs (easy to do if you stick the jar in a sink of warm water). :)

  9. Mel on March 10th, 2012 1:39 pm

    Not heard of emulsifying wax. The softness or hardness of your salve really depends on the amount of beeswax you add. I always take some out of the pan if I’m making a bit batch and let it cool to check the texture before I pour it all into the containers. :)

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