Saturday, January 21, 2023

Calendula and Lavender Herbal Salve Recipe

Learn how to make an herbal salve recipe.  This is the best healing salve that I've used, and it's an excellent multi purpose salve to keep in your home.  Use it for hands, feet, or anywhere that you need some extra love for your skin.

How to Make Herbal Salve

Homesteading means a lot of work, both indoors and outdoors.   My hands take a lot of abuse all summer.  In the winter, I'm dealing with dry skin from heating the house.

I always have an herbal healing salve on the shelf.  This time, I made a calendula and lavender salve.

This might be my favorite healing salve recipe!  I love both calendula and lavender for their properties for the skin.  

It has calendula and lavender infused oil and an essential oil blend called Bumps and Boo Boos that I love for promoting skin health.

For more DIY skin care recipes, check out these posts:

Want to learn how to formulate your own salves, butters, and balms?  The Natural Creator School has courses to learn how to create your own formulas so you can customize the products to your specific needs.  

The Toxin-Free Butters and Balms Formulation Course includes butter, balms, salves, and cleansing balms.

What is Calendula Lavender Salve Good For?

This calendula and lavender salve recipe can promote skin health.  Both lavender and calendula are excellent herbs for skin care.

I infused both herbs in oil, which transfers the properties of the herbs to the carrier oils.  Then you don't have a salve with bits of herbs in it so it's easy to use.

Lavender has beta-caryophyllene, which makes it naturally anti-inflammatory.  This helps reduce inflammation and even redness on your skin.  It's good for eczema and dry skin.

Lavender is said to also promote healing.  During one study on rats using lavender, the rat's wounds healed faster than the control group.

Lavender can also promote collagen production, which helps the skin heal.  I always suggest putting lavender in the best healing salve.

Calendula is also a great herb for the skin.  It can promote healing, and using aloe and calendula together helped people heal quicker than the control group. (source)

In another study, calendula was shown to help hydrate the skin and make the skin firmer.

What is a Healing Salve Good For?

I use this herbal salve recipe mainly for my hands and feet.  It's good for dry skin, and it can help keep dry or rough skin away on your heels and feet.

I also like it for minor skin irritations, chapped lips, and dry areas.  You can also use it to soothe sunburned skin and minor cuts and scrapes to promote healing.

It is important to note that you should not use this on broken skin.  

What Herbs to Use for Salves?

I made a calendula and lavender salve, but you can use other herbs to make yours.  Here are some good herbs for the skin:

  • Chamomile is a gentle herb that's used to soothe the skin and reduce redness.
  • Chickweed has minerals that nourish the skin.
  • Horsetail is high in collagen and silica.  It promotes circulation and delivers nutrients to your skin.
  • Nettle Leaf is a natural astringent and contains minerals and silica for your skin.  It's good for dry skin.
  • Peppermint can boost circulation thanks to the menthol content.  It's good for minor skin irritations.
  • Rosemary can soothe redness and irritation.  
  • Plantain can promote healing. Learn about plantain oil benefits here.
  • Comfrey can promote healing.  Learn how to make comfrey infused oil to use in natural skincare or this DIY comfrey salve.

I buy my herbs from either Mountain Rose Herbs, Starwest Botanicals, or Grassroot Herb Supply on Etsy.

If you want to learn more about using herbs, I highly recommend The Herbal Academy.  They have courses from beginner to advanced and workshops for specific topics.

What is the Best Oil for Making Salves?

You can use your choice of carrier oils to infuse the oils to make a healing salve recipe.  I don't recommend using solid coconut oil because it will make the salve too firm.  

Carrier oils have different properties and absorption rates, which will affect your salve and how greasy it is.  You can learn more about carrier oils and their benefits and grab a printable carrier oils chart.

  • Sweet almond oil is a great all purpose oil, and I use it for both hair and skin.  It has vitamins A and E to promote healing.  
  • Apricot kernel oil is a dry oil, so it soaks into the skin quickly.  It's a gentle oil that's good for sensitive skin.
  • Avocado oil is a heavier oil.  It has fatty acids and vitamins that can promote healing.  Since it's heavy, I recommend mixing it with a lighter oil so it doesn't leave your skin greasy.
  • Fractionated coconut oil is a liquid oil.  It's light and soaks into the skin quickly.  It has a long shelf life, so it's good for making a healing salve recipe.  It has saturated fats to nourish your skin.
  • Hemp seed oil is a heavier oil, so it's good for dry skin.  It has a nutty smell and a green tint, so it can make your healing salve DIY have a green color.
  • Neem oil is naturally antimicrobial, so it's a great option for the best healing salve.  However, neem oil has a strong scent.  I recommend using it about 1:3 or 1:4 with another oil.
  • Sunflower oil is a light oil, and it soaks into the skin quickly.  It's a great oil for dry or damaged skin.

I buy my carrier oils from Mountain Rose Herbs or Simply EarthHB Oils Center on Etsy is also a good source.

I stay clear of the oils from craft stores.  The quality just isn't there.

How Do You Make Homemade Salves Less Greasy?

Salves are mainly oils, so they are greasy.  To reduce the greasy feeling, I added shea butter.  Shea butter is not greasy feeling on the skin.

You can also use a dry oil like fractionated coconut oil or apricot seed oil.  They soak into the skin quickly.  

However, these lighter oils are not the best for dry or cracked skin.  I recommend using a heavier oil like avocado oil or hemp seed oil, which will make the herbal healing salve greasy.

You can also try adding some arrowroot powder.  I recommend adding 1/2 teaspoon to the oils.  To prevent clumps, sprinkle it in the oil and stir very well.

Best Essential Oils for Herbal Healing Salve

I used a blend called Bumps and Boos from Simply Earth.  It has Tea Tree, Lemon, Lavender, and Helichrysum Essential Oils.  

Helichrysum essential oil is excellent for your skin, but it's expensive.  Using it in a blend helps lower the cost and still get the benefits of it.

Here are more essential oils that would be good to use in a healing salve recipe:

How to Infuse Herbs and a Carrier Oil for a Homemade Salve Recipe

Before you learn how to make herbal salve, you need to learn how to infuse your oils and herbs.  

  • Fill a pint jar about half way with dried herbs.  
  • Cover the herbs with your carrier oil.  Make sure to completely cover the herbs.
  • Place a lid on the jar and let it sit for 2 weeks to infuse.  Gently shake it each day.
  • When it's done, strain out the herbs and discard them.  Save the oil.

You can infuse the calendula and lavender together or separately.  You will need either 1/2 cup of each oil or 1 cup of them combined.

You can also buy lavender infused oil or calendula oil premade.

How Long Does a Calendula Lavender Salve Last?

Your healing salve DIY will last about 6 to 12 months after you make it.  This is why I make smaller batches.

What Ingredients Are in an Herbal Salve Recipe?

How to Make a Healing Salve Recipe

Step #1

In a double boiler, heat the herbal infused oils, beeswax, and shea butter over medium heat.  Stir it every few minutes until melted.  The beeswax takes a while to melt.

Step #2

Remove from heat.  Add essential oils and stir well.

Step #3

Pour the salve into tins.  Let sit undisturbed until the salve hardens.  Place the lid on and it's ready to use.

Now you know how to make healing salve.  Use this for minor skin conditions, dry skin, or chapped skin.  You can also use it on your lips, so you can pour a smaller tin just for using on your lips.

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salve, herbal salve, lavender, calendula, healing salve
Yield: 3 2-ounce tins
Author: Cari @ Homesteading in Ohio
Estimated cost: $5

Lavender and Calendula Hand Salve Recipe

prep time: 15 Mperform time: 1 hourtotal time: 1 H & 15 M
How to make an herbal healing salve.


  • 1/2 cup lavender infused oil
  • 1/2 cup calendula infused oil
  • 1 1/2 tablespoon beeswax pastilles
  • 1 1/2 tablespoon shea butter
  • 10 drops essential oil


  • Double boiler
  • Spatula
  • 3 2-ounce tins


  1. In a double boiler, heat the herbal infused oils, beeswax, and shea butter over medium heat. Stir it every few minutes until melted. The beeswax takes a while to melt.
  2. Remove from heat. Add essential oils and stir well.
  3. Pour the salve into tins. Let sit undisturbed until the salve hardens. Place the lid on and it's ready to use.
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