One of the best ways to receive the benefits of herbs as well as alleviate dry skin is through the creation of a healing salve. The skin is one of the largest gateways on the body to receive actions of the plants. Calendula, or Calendula officinalis, known commonly for its skin healing magic is a great herb to start with in salve making. It is used to heal wounds, rashes, and other skin irritations. This time of year, dryness, and irritation can be prevalent due to the weather’s icy bite and moisture-sapping indoor heat.

For a dry skin salve, you can use a calendula base, then add lavender (Lavandula), which is soothing and anti-inflammatory. The addition of coconut oil is very moisturizing as well as a nice compliment to the lavender smell.

What Materials You will Need To Make the Salve

1 cup of oil (coconut, or olive oil is best) – choose an organic oil
Equal parts dried herbs
1 ounce of beeswax (shaved)
Jars or containers to store salve in

Winter Salvation Salve


One cup of coconut oil
One part lavender
Two parts dried calendula
One part dried rose
One ounce of beeswax
15-20 drops of grapefruit essential oil to uplift

Calendula, Rose, Lavender Salve Recipe


Step 1 – Create Herbal Oil Infusion

The first step to making a healing salve is to create an herbal oil infusion.

Creating an herbal oil infusion can be completed through the double boiler method

Place herbs and oil in Pyrex container or smaller pot, over top of a large pot with water about full

Bring water to a boil.

Once water is boiling, you can then turn the stove down to a simmer and let the herbs and oils infuse in this double boiler method for 30-60 minutes.

Take care not to splash water into your oil/herb infusion.

How To Make A Salve

Step 2 – Prepare Infusion For Salve

Now you will prepare your infusion for the salve:

Place three layers of cheesecloth over top of a funnel or atop a bowl.
Pour the infused oils over cheesecloth to strain oil and keep herbs separated.
Once drained, gather the cheesecloth with your clean, dry hands and squeeze out the remaining oil.

Step 3: Making The Healing Salve

Place your shaved beeswax in a pan over low heat, and pour the infused oil over top and melt together.
Once the beeswax and oil have combined, pour the mixture into jars.
Place your herbal salves the refrigerator for about 10-15 minutes to determine the solidification of the salve.
Using less beeswax will yield a more creamy salve, and more generous usage will yield a harder salve.

Salve Application

Once complete, you can simply rub fingers over the top of your salve and then spread over desired area on the body, avoiding the eyes. One of the hidden benefits of salves is that they can make wonderful massage oils. Coconut oil is especially known for its ability to heat at lower temperatures, so it warms very well with natural body heat and the salve instantly becomes a massage-like oil. Use this opportunity, after bath or whenever you are using your salves, to mindfully take time for yourself or your loved one and massage any worries or tension away.

Learning how to make a healing salve is just one of the first things beginners learn in herbalism. If you are interested in studying herbalism, start your journey in the Online Introductory Herbal Course or in the Online Intermediate Herbal Course. Learn more about herbs and how to use them as medicine and as food.

This article is written by Lena Yakubowski, yoga teacher and herbal student.

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