Herbal Interests // Beeswax Herbal Healing Salve

My slight fear of not truly knowing what I am doing to the best of my ability and only small horizon of knowledge on herbs has left me feeling inadequate enough to try any remedies that step away from the realm of teas. Teas I can do. Tinctures? I am still frightened by them. What if I overdose or do not make them correctly, only to leave what was supposed to nourish and heal to cripple and fatigue. It's a little scary, but I know that I can do it once I work up the courage. And also the time, because I feel that I have had not had a lot of that lately. That's the beauty of the internet! If you follow me on Snapchat, you'll know that I made this herbal salve (my first attempt) this past Saturday. I was so blown away by my own skills! And it actually works becasue during the process of preparing this healing salve, I cut my thumb open, and was able to use the salve when it was finished.

I did not really take a lot of photos of the entire process because my house was so dark (super cloudy here for the past couple of days) and also because I was doing about ten other things. Did I mention that I was home alone? I didn't! Well, that means cram-everything-you-can't-do-with-a-toddler-time. If you're a parent, you understand. 

This salve was super easy to make! I was so surprised, and you really can't mess up too much. This salve is to help in the aid of cuts, scrapes, and burns. It is similar to Neosporin, however, it does not contain any of the common ingredients found in Neosporin, only natural ones that you can purchase either at the grocery store or online at Mountain Rose Herbs. I suggest buying as many ingredients as you can locally, like the beeswax or herbs! This salve can be used in the same way as you would Neosporin; I would suggest not using it on a deep puncture wound, as it could cause the skin to heal over an infection, which is not good. Also, please seek medical help for any burns or cuts that are serious, as my advice is purely out of interest and hobby. I am not a trained herbalist, nor am I a doctor.

Chinese Utility Scissor c/o The Freckled Hen Farmhouse / Copper Bangles - Rust and Willow

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1/2 cup grapeseed oil (or any other carrier oil such as olive oil, which is what I used)
  • 1/2 cup coconut oil
  • 1/2 cup healing herbs such as lavender, chamomile, and comfrey (you could also use jasmine, calendula, plantain leaves, or St. John's Wort)
  • 4 tbsp beeswax
  • 2 tsp honey
  • Lavender essential oil

DIRECTIONS:

  • Infuse your oils. This can be done a couple of ways. If you want to infuse more of the herbs' healing properties, I suggest using the long method. To infuse herbs over time, place the herbs in a jar (such as a mason jar) and cover in the oils. Let them sit in a dark area for 2-3 weeks, shaken daily. If you would like to go about the quick way of infusing them, like I did, heat and stir the one cup of oils and 1/2 cup of mixed herbs in a double boiler set over low heat for about 30 minutes, stirring often.
  • After the oil has infused, strain into a small bowl over a cheesecloth or coffee filter. I used one of our flour sack towels and it strained like a charm.
  • To begin assembling the salve, rinse out the pot your were heating your herbs in, as you are likely to have some herb bits still sticking to the sides. Pour your infused oil back into the pot, put the pot in the double boiler, and heat on low. Add in the beeswax, stirring constantly, until completely melted and mixed thoroughly. 
  • Here is the tricky part, which is not all that tricky. You just have to make sure you are working fast! Pour the wax, oil mix into the container you would like to store your salve (a tin, mason jar, or other small container, just make sure it has a lid!). Add a few drops of essential oil and the 2 teaspoons of honey. Stir these ingredients in thoroughly. The salve will begin to set up in minutes, but continue to stir (I suggest using a wooden popsicle stick, as the salve will cling to whatever you use to stir it). If you like, you could place the salve in the freezer for about 10 minutes, stirring every minute or so. 
  • When it is set up, it should look creamy and slightly yellow, and it should smell amazing!

Now it is all ready to use!! I placed my finished salve on my fresh cut, which made it burn slightly. After a minute, my wound felt much better and had stopped bleeding. I was pretty impressed! It's still sore, as I didn't have a Band-Aid on hand, but it hasn't opened up at all. I have been trying to look online to see how long a homemade salve will last, but I have not been able to find out much information. I am guessing it will last a few months, as many store bought salves tends to last around nine months, but this one does not have any preservatives or chemicals in it. If I find out that it goes bad quickly, I will make sure to let you know!

Thanks so much for reading. Have fun!

xoxo Kayla