This is from an article on Tenth Acre Farm

Herbal salves are often used for healing skin ailments.
Learn how to use herbs from your garden to make healing salves.


Instructions for making a healing salve are simple–there are just two-parts to the recipe. First, you’ll take dried herbs and infuse them in oil. Then, you’ll mix the infused oil with beeswax to thicken it. That’s it!


There is a quick way to make an oil infusion and a slow way. Both are easy. If you want to make your salve right away, then you’ll have to go with the quick method.

The Slow Way to Make an Oil Infusion

You’ll need:

2 cups of dried herb (loosely packed)
Up to 2 cups of olive oil
Sunny windowsill
pint-sized mason jar

Add the dried herb to a sterilized mason jar. Top with olive oil so that all the herb is covered. Use a skewer to stir and release air bubbles. Cap the jar tightly. Set the jar in a sunny window for 4 weeks, shaking gently every day or so.

When the time is up, separate the oil from the plant matter by straining it through a fine mesh strainer lined with cheesecloth. Be sure to squeeze the cheesecloth to release the last bit of oil.

See my detailed instructions for making a calendula oil infusion.

The Fast Way to Make an Oil Infusion

You’ll need:

2 cups of dried herb (loosely packed)
Up to 2 cups of olive oil
pint-sized mason jar
Slow cooker (I like this model)


jarsAdd the dried herb to a mason jar and top it with olive oil until the herb is covered. Stir well. Cap the jar tightly.
Set the jar in the slow cooker and add water up to one inch below the jar lid.

Turn the crockpot to low and let it sit (without the lid) for 12-24 hours. Once or twice, check the water level and add water if necessary.

Strain the oil through a fine mesh strainer lined with cheesecloth, squeezing the cheesecloth to extract the last bit of oil from the dried herb.
I made 2 jars of herbal oil the quick way – one of lemon balm and one of comfrey.


To make a salve, we’ll simply thicken our infused oil with beeswax.

You’ll need:

– 1 1/4 cups infused oil (If you followed the instructions above, you’ll have about 1 1/4 cups oil)
– 1.5 oz (about 1/3 cup) beeswax pastilles
– Heavy-bottomed pot
– 10-20 drops of essential oil (optional)
– Whisk
– Glass measuring cup
– 5 4-oz glass jelly jars or screw top tins
– Spatula


Add the beeswax to a heavy bottomed pot on the stove, and heat on low. (My stove temperature ranges from 1 to 10 and I put mine on 2.) Use the lowest temperature possible. The low temperature will ensure that the beeswax retains some of its healing properties. Beeswax melts at 140 degrees.

Note: You may want to get a pot that you only use for making herbal preparations in case there’s any residue leftover. I didn’t have any trouble washing my pot and utensils as I would my other dishes.

Wait for the beeswax to melt, then whisk in the herbal oil.
The cooler temperature of the oil will solidify some of the beeswax again, so continue whisking until the beeswax is completely melted and the two are mixed well. Add the essential oil, if using. Start by adding one or two drops at a time until you’ve reached your desired strength of fragrance.

apourQuickly pour the mixture into a glass measuring cup, then fill the jelly jars or tins. I reused a few sanitized, store-bought tins.

Note: The beeswax-oil mixture will solidify quickly in the measuring cup, sometimes before you’ve finished filling the jars. If this happens, simply use the spatula to put the mixture back in the pot on the stove and melt it again.

Let the jars cool for up to 24 hours, then cap them tightly and label.

Read more details here.


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