How to Make Glorious Soothing Lavender Salve (Smells Amazing and Has Multiple Uses!)
Fields of lavender….Doesn’t that vision conjure up complete joy and relaxation? I love looking at pictures of lavender flowers growing in fields, and maybe one day I'll get to see that in person. I live in a desert with some truly heinous soil, and growing lavender is just a dream in my mind. BUT! I sure can make lavender salve! It's a lovely, soft salve with tons of uses, and it smells heavenly. Keep reading for my easy recipe and ways to use this salve for beauty and health!
Edit: If you’ve been reading our journey here at Healing Harvest Homestead for a while, then you know we’ve moved to N. Idaho! And I recently met a new friend who actually owns a lavender farm here: Little Canyon Lavender & Wool. Now I can go see all the lavender I want! Stay tuned because I’ll have Cheryl’s recipe for Lavender Jelly on the blog soon…it’s a WINNER.
Now! On to the lavender salve recipe!
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How to Make Lavender Salve
Ingredients for Making Lavender Salve:
1) Lavender flowers---about a cup or so.
2) Organic olive oil or sweet almond oil, about two cups
3) Beeswax pellets---you'll need 1/4 cup for each cup of fully infused oil
5) You'll need containers to hold your salve. I use either amber glass jars or Mason jelly jars in a four ounce size. You can also use a two ounce jar if you prefer. The four ounce jars are also GREAT for any salt or sugar scrubs you might want to make as well!
Directions for Making Lavender Salve:
Step 1) Infuse your Oil
To make a lavender flower infused oil, there are two best ways to go about it. There is a long way and a short way.
Personally, I prefer the long way because more of the plant chemicals seem to get infused into the oil, and it's just stronger that way, in my opinion.
How to Make Lavender Infused Oil: The Long Way
Using a quart Mason jar or other jar about that size, place 1 to 1 1/2 cups of Lavender buds in the jar. Pour your oil of choice over them to within an inch of the top of the jar. Place a lid on top, and shake well. Put this jar in a sunny window, shaking daily, for about a month. You'll have lovely infused oil to use!
How to Make Lavender Infused Oil: The Short Way
Personally, this is a more violent way to treat your flowers, and I have actually burned them before, infusing oils the short way. However, if you don't have time to infuse your oil the long way, then this is your next best option.
Using a pan with a heavy bottom, add your oil and flowers. Turn the heat as low as you can, and allow the oil to gently warm up. Your flowers will infuse in this oil for up to several hours.
Here's the thing about the Short Way: It is so easy to get that oil too hot, and you might just cook your flowers without realizing it. Keep a good eye on it, because you don't want to "cook" those flowers. Infusing is supposed to be a gentle process.
OTHER OPTIONS FOR THE SHORT WAY:
Since I wrote this article, I’ve discovered less violent short ways to infuse your oil with herbs. You can read about those here.
For both methods, you'll need to strain out the lavender flowers when the infusing is done. You'll be left with a lovely green-tinted oil infused with the plant constituents of the lavender!
Step 2) Melt your Oil & Beeswax Together
You'll need a double boiler of some type for this part. What I do is place a quart Mason jar into a pan of cool water that's about 1 1/2 inch deep. No more than 2 inches, because you don't want that jar floating.
For a perfect salve, use 1 cup of oil to 1/4 cup of beeswax. You can adjust up or down accordingly. For example, if you want to make more, you could use 2 cups of oil to 1/2 cup of beeswax, and vice versa if you want to make less!
Pour the oil and the beeswax into your double boiler. Set the heat to low-medium, and allow the beeswax to melt into the oil.
Step 3) Remove from Heat/Add Essential Oil
Once the beeswax is completely melted, just remove the mixture from the heat and let sit for a few minutes to cool it down a bit. The heated oil is not the best for essential oils, and although you'll need it to remain liquid for this part, you don't want it cooling down and beginning to solidify.
Add your essential oil: I use about 50 drops per cup of oil. You can add more or less---you can tell how strong it will be somewhat by smelling as you add and stir in the essential oil. NOTE: The strength of the scent will decrease a bit as the salve hardens, so keep this in mind.
Step 4) Pour the Oil Mixture into Containers
Carefully pour the oil mixture into the containers you choose to use. This part is where some patience comes in because now you'll need to leave it completely alone while it sets up and hardens.
Trust me: You don't want to move it around as it's setting or you won't have that nice smooth surface that make a salve so pretty before it gets used! Wait til it's completely hardened--usually a few hours, depending on the temperature of your kitchen.
Step 5) Enjoy!
This salve is wonderful! It smells great, is soothing to use, and great for gift giving too! You could actually gift this salve along with a handmade Lavender salt or sugar scrub too. For complete directions and ideas, see these articles: How to Make a Juniper/Rosemary Salt Scrub and Sugar vs. Salt: Which is Best for Making a Scrub?
Ways to Use Lavender Salve
There are many uses for Lavender salve, due to the properties of Lavender. Lavender is soothing, softening, and also has anti-microbial qualities. Here are some of my favorite ways to use my lavender salve:
2) To shorten the healing time of sunburn
3) Rub on temples for immediate feelings of relaxation
4) Use on temples, chest, and neck to help improve your sleep
5) Rub a small amount behind your ears to sooth motion sickness. Ginger works well for this too.
6) Helps to alleviate allergy symptoms. Just use on your neck and near ears.
7) Just use it to moisturize your skin and enjoy the lovely scent! I often rub a small amount right into my hands, arms, and the rest of my body because it's so good for your skin!
Final Thoughts About Lavender Salve
This is such an easy salve to make! The most difficult thing about it is being sure you have your infused oil ready to go! I recommend keeping several infused oils on hand all the time so you are ready to make different salves and medicinals.
Have you ever made a salve? Do you like to use them? I'd love to know your ideas, experiences, and anything I may have left out! :-) Leave a comment in the comments section! And if you love this salve, you’ll love this Lavender Linen spray from my friend Kelly at Montana Happy.
You may also be interested in reading:
Hugs, Health, & Self-Reliance,
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Disclaimer: I am not a medical doctor, and in no manner, stated or implied, is any statement in this article, in newsletters, or in any publication written by me meant to cure, treat, diagnose or prevent any health issue or illness. My statements are my personal opinion and are for informational purposes only. These statements have not been evaluated by the FDA.