Here’s a nice beginner how-to from Ashley at Practical Self Reliance on how to make healing salves. She includes a general recipe and then several herb-specific recipes toward the end. I like to use a calendula salve for minor skin injuries which is similar to the Gardener’s Healing Salve recipe she links. I’ve only included some of the key parts of the article below, more detail is through the article links.
Herbal healing salves are simple and effective ways to enjoy the benefits of herbal medicine, and they couldn’t be easier to make at home. Salves are semi-solid at room temperature, making them easy to transport and store. When they come in contact with skin, the botanicals go to work, released by our own body heat for absorption through the skin.
&amp;amp;lt;img class=”aligncenter size-full wp-image-13045″ src=”https://i2.wp.com/practicalselfreliance.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/02/Herbal-Healing-Salve.001.jpeg?resize=600%2C400&amp;amp;amp;#038;ssl=1″ alt=”Herbal Healing Salve” width=”600″ height=”400″ data-recalc-dims=”1″&amp;amp;gt;
I’ll admit it, as a budding herbalist I was intimidated by making my own salves. Homemade tinctures and infused oils are easy enough, just place herbs in a medium and wait.
It took me over a decade of herbal practice before I made my first herbal salve. Start to finish, the whole process only lasted about 10 minutes and I had a whole counter full of homemade herbal medicines. Why had I waited so long to try this?!?!?!
…Usually, healing salves are made with just a few ingredients. Often just three ingredients are enough to get the job done, those being herbs, oil, and beeswax…
Active Time: 10 minutesAdditional Time: 10 minutesTotal Time: 20 minutesDifficulty: EasyEstimated Cost: $5 to $6 per batch
Herbal healing salves are incredibly versatile, and this semi-solid topical herbal medicine is an easy way to incorporate natural herbal remedies into your routine.
Herbal Infused Oil
- 1 1/2 cups carrier oil (olive, almond, grapeseed, etc)
- 1/2 to 1 cup dried herbs
- 1 cup (8 Ounces) Herbal Infused Oil
- 1 ounce (or 1 heaping tablespoon) Beeswax Pistils
- Pint Mason Jar
- Fine Mesh Strainer
- Double Boiler
- (or saucepan & heatproof bowl)
- Salve Tins
- (or other containers)
Herb Infused Oil
- Add dried herbal material to a pint mason jar. Cover completely with about 1 1/4 to 1 1/2 cups of oil.
- Allow the oil to infuse at room temperature for 3 to 6 weeks before straining through a fine-mesh strainer. (Note: Some of the oil will absorb into the herbal material, so starting with slightly more than 1 cup of oil should yield about 1 cup for making a herbal salve.)
Herbal Healing Salve
- Measure about 1 cup of herb infused oil. Place it in a heat proof bowl (or double boiler). Add about 1 inch of water to a small saucepan and then place the bowl over the water. Turn the heat on low and gently heat the oil.
- Add in about 1 ounce of beeswax pistils (roughly 1 heaping tablespoon). Stir gently until melted.
- Remove the oil/wax mixture from the heat and pour it into containers.
- Allow the salve to cool to room temperature and reach a semi-solid state before using it.
The amount of beeswax used is a matter of personal preference. Feel free to use more for a firmer healing salve, or less for a softer more spreadable herbal salve…
The Herbal Academy: How to Make Calendula Salve