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Old 04-30-2010, 10:49 AM
maggie357 maggie357 is offline
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Default Make your own homemade salve

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You can make your own salve. You will need a small amount of beeswax or paraffin, cooking or nut oil(peanut, sunflower, olive, walnut, soybean etc.) and essential oil. Essential oils are available at health food stores and are generally sold by a fraction of an ounce. Don't hesitate to pay a good price-you will only be using a few drops at a time. A 1/2 ounce bottle could last for many years. Different essential oils, which are oils extracted from plants, have different purported healing properties. My experience has been that they are not "purported" but actually do work, but to say so would be giving medical advice, which I am not qualified to do. You will want to do your own research-my favorite book is here:
You can use a fairly strong scented oil such as peppermint, rosemary or eucalyptus to help cover a disagreeable smell. Or you can start with Lavender essential oil, a very safe, gentle and versatile oil with many uses and benefits. Be careful with the straight essential oil-they can melt plastic.

In a double boiler (I use a tuna can with a pour spout bent into it and set in a shallow pan with 1/2 inch of water) combine your choice of oil or shortening and a SMALL amount of beeswax or paraffin, heat sloooowly until it is melted together. Using a chopstick, drop a couple drops on wax paper or foil and pop it in the fridge a few seconds. Rub it between your fingers to check the consistency. If it is too runny or slippery, add a few more shreds of wax to the tuna can. If too stiff, add more oil. Repeat until you get the consistency you want.

Remove the tuna can from the heat and add a few drops of essential oils(not fragrance oils or candy flavoring) and stir with a toothpick or chopstick. You can pour this in an old altoids tin, carmex jar or baby food jar. Keep in mind it will be very hard to clean beeswax or paraffin off the tools and containers you use.
You will only want about 5-6 drops of essential oil total to each ice cube sized volume, 3 drops to a jar the size of a carmex jar. This translates to about 20 drops total for a standard altoids tin and maybe 40 drops for a baby food jar full. It doesn't have to be exact. You could also use an empty, clean stick deodorant, or chapstick tube. Wintergreen or a strong peppermint could burn your skin and melt plastic, so beware and use less if working with these oils.
Using rosemary oil, this salve has kept me from getting colds and flu for many years, even swine flu. I have sat right next to people who had the flu and by putting some under my nose, either before, during or right after exposure, have stayed illness free. The essential oils have been shown to kill germs as they come in contact with them before they have a chance to multiply in your bronchial tract.
As with any natural medicine, essential oils are not without risks. Always consult a manual, NEVER use undiluted essential oils directly on the body and do not use on pregnant women, babies or debilitated persons.

Last edited by maggie357; 04-30-2010 at 10:55 AM.. Reason: explain double boiler
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Old 04-30-2010, 11:25 AM
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Default Re: Make your own homemade salve

I use Soybean lecithin and aloe as a salv base. Then I soak medicinal herbs in alcohol for a few months, add that to it. I generall concentrate it more by gentily simmerinng off the alcohol.
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Old 04-30-2010, 03:44 PM
maggie357 maggie357 is offline
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Default Re: Make your own homemade salve

I have made the plant infusions and tinctures as well,(may start a new thread for those) which are very cost efficient, especially if you can collect the plants for free. Soybean lecithin and aloe-sounds like a great, effective and beneficial base. I may try that.
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Old 04-30-2010, 05:39 PM
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Default Re: Make your own homemade salve

I have that book, it's fantastic! I use coconut oil as a base for some of my salves, my 3 year old daughter calls it "the good stuff" because it helps heal little small wounds quickly. I also keep some cocoa butter on hand to use in the salves.

I've been building my essential oil collection, some from bulk purchases with a local group and other from an eBay seller that has good oils.
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Old 04-30-2010, 09:17 PM
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Default Re: Make your own homemade salve

woah, I thought the title read "Make your own homemade slave" I was about to be like WTFOMG slave making? I pictured a step by step process of whacking someone on the head and tie'n um up lol.
Old 04-30-2010, 09:19 PM
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Default Re: Make your own homemade salve

I'd like to make Charlise Theron my home made "slave."
Or Elizabeth Mitchell... ooooh, yeah--she'd be a good homemade slave.
Let's not forget Pam Anderson... she'd be a great homemade slave.

Ohh, wait--it's salve, not slave.... sorry never mind!

Old 05-01-2010, 12:23 AM
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i always like threads like this...
Old 05-01-2010, 04:21 PM
maggie357 maggie357 is offline
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Originally Posted by kestrel View Post
I have that book, it's fantastic! I use coconut oil as a base for some of my salves, my 3 year old daughter calls it "the good stuff" because it helps heal little small wounds quickly. I also keep some cocoa butter on hand to use in the salves.

I've been building my essential oil collection, some from bulk purchases with a local group and other from an eBay seller that has good oils.
There are so many things that can be used as a base oil. I love apricot kernel oil for facial oils, castor oil for barrier type salves like diaper rash, lanolin, jojoba, emu oil too-there are just so many good ones. I have heard great things about coconut oil, but can't find mine to try it.

My intention was to choose oils that most every kitchen would have, to encourage people to try this without investing much money at first. I forgot that coconut oil is now a common item in supermarkets, right there with the cooking oil and Crisco. It wasn't that way, at least not near me, until about a year ago.

Citronella is a good essential oil to have on hand as an insect repellent. You can make candles, nontoxic repellent sprays, repellent for flies for pets' ears, and even an repellent salve or oil for humans. All nontoxic.

I forgot to add that instead of buying a lump of paraffin, you can either shave a candle or preferably buy those little vintage wax bottles of juice. Just the top off of one would probably thicken an altoid tin of oil. They sell them at some Cracker Barrel restaurants.

It's such a fascinating craft that just never gets old.
Old 05-01-2010, 06:53 PM
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My basic salve:

Remember you will be applying to wounds, so keep this all as clean as possible. Pull back your hair, use aprons, clean spoons, jars, cloths, hands, surfaces etc. Also remember that both oil and beeswax are flammable. Everything is done at a low heat. A double boiler or a small electric simmering pot work nice.

Calendula poultices and salves were used during the world wars. It has antibiotic properties and speeds cell regeneration. Use a hand full of dried calendula in a small pan with two cups of regular olive oil. Let the herbs sit in the oil over night unheated, then simmer the next day for a few hours until herbs are crispy or the oil is dark. These are signs that you have got "the goodness" out of the herb. Let it cool so to be safe to handle. Strain the oil through clean gauze, cloth or pantyhose/knee-high.

Rewarm the oil and add some beeswax. This takes a little trial and error, because the amount of oil you have left after staining your herbs is never exactly the same. Drip a little of the mixture on to a saucer and cool in the fridge or freezer for just a few minutes. Rub it between your fingers, try some on your lips. At room temp, it should be the consistency of soft chap stick. I just keep adding beeswax until I get it right.

Once I have it right I dived it into smaller amounts. I use sterile half pint jars until I am ready to transfer to smaller containers.

In one portion I add a few drops of essential peppermint or lemon oil for flavored lip balm. The color wont show because the film on your lips is so thin.

In a separate portion, I add MEDICAL grade powdered sulfur to my basic salve. I add as much as I can without making it too thick. If it gets to thick or dry add more olive oil. This is the BEST salve for chiggers!!! (Rub it in really well. Repeat if it doesn't kill them the first time.)

Another portion I will leave plain to be used on scratches and tiny cuts, or on dry skin like my heels or elbows, even chapped hands.

In the days of 35 mil. film, the empty cases, washed and dropped in hot water, (water that had been boiled then removed from the heat before adding plastic cases,) worked as great containers. I have bought small plastic salve and lip balm jars by the case on e-bay in the past. If made thick enough with the beeswax this can be put in the chap stick tubes sold by the same companies.
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Old 05-02-2010, 09:09 PM
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Combine that book with "Where there is no Doctor" and you could really make some good stuff.
Old 05-02-2010, 11:21 PM
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For those wanting essential oils you might try Camden Grey.


Good quality, decent prices and never had any problems with them. Nice thing is being to buy smaller amounts (like 1/4 #) of a lot of the ingredients.

I use the WSP site for info on usage as well, since they have the latest safe amounts that can be used for each of the EO's on their site. This can be hard to find elsewhere, and since safe amount varies based on product (some things shouldn't be used on lips but are safe on skin in a salve, cream or lotion, or can be used more sparingly etc.).

Wholesale Supplies Plus

If you like your salve not quite as waxy as the originally posted recipe, use "hard" butters. The basic recipe that most Bath & Beauty product makers start with is 1/3 Beeswax (melts better on contact with skin), 1/3 liquid oil (sweet almond oil, olive oil, sunflower, wheat germ, hemp or jojoba are all good ones) and 1/3 "hard" butters (cocoa butter and shea butter are commonly used, but some use things like mango, coffee or avocado butter). Once a base of the desired consistency is achieved by tweaking the various amounts to your tastes the essential oils can be added. The last thing you want is a container of salve melting and running out of its container all over things, thus the use of wax and harder butters to offset the oils.
Old 05-02-2010, 11:24 PM
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Thanks for all the great info...


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