Calendula salve is an all-purpose, gentle skin remedy that’s suitable for diaper rash, scrapes, scratches, razor burn, dry skin, insect bites, and more!
This week on my site, I’ve been sharing ways that you can use calendula.
What I really love about this sunny flower is that it’s:
- extremely easy to grow from seed
- is safe enough to use on a baby or pet
- is a potent skin healer
- and is a powerful fighter of germs and inflammation
Not sure what the difference is between calendula and marigolds? This article will help: Calendula vs. Marigolds – The Differences
By letting calendula flowers infuse in oil, we’re able to extract many of those properties and incorporate them into easy-to-use products such as: salve (recipe below), lip balm, soap, cream, and lotion recipes.
Another use for calendula oil is in treating ear aches. Place 2 to 3 drops in your ear and hold a heated rice bag or hot water bottle over it. (Not for ruptured ear drums and if symptoms get worse, check with your doctor.)
For ear mites in pets, place a few drops in their ear. Gently massage the area to work it in a bit, if they’ll let you.
Now that you know some ways to use it, let’s make this wonderful oil!
Drying Calendula Flowers
While you can use fresh herbs to make infused oils, the extra water content greatly increase your chances of early oil spoilage when doing so, so I recommend using dried calendula flowers to make infused oil.
If you raise your own flowers, just spread them out in a single layer on a paper towel or brown paper bag in a place they won’t be disturbed. Turn them over every day or so and let them air dry for a week or so.
If you don’t have access to fresh, you can buy dried calendula online from Mountain Rose Herbs. If I can’t grow something myself, Mountain Rose Herbs is my go-to place, but your local health store might be able to supply you with some as well.
HERBAL SALVES & BALMS
Subscribe to Things to Make Thursdays and receive:
- Build Your Own Salve eGuide
- 18 Herbs & Flowers for Salves Chart
- Salve Building Printable Worksheet
- A Weekly Email with Natural Project Ideas
How to Make Calendula Oil
Fill a jar about one-fourth to one-half full with dried calendula flowers and pour sunflower or your favorite carrier oil (like sweet almond, rice bran, jojoba, apricot kernel oil, etc) over them. Fill the jar almost to the top.
Cap and store in a cool, dark place for four to six weeks, shaking periodically, then strain and use.
You can infuse your oil in a quicker manner by setting the uncovered jar of oil and flowers gently into a pan of water set over a medium-low burner. Heat slowly and mindfully for 2 to 3 hours, then remove the pan from the heat source.
You can then use it right away, or for better results, let it infuse several days longer in a dark cabinet.
To make a double infused (and more powerful) oil, take your freshly strained oil and repeat the process with a new batch of dried flowers.
Once the oil is finished infusing, we’re ready to make our salve!
Calendula Salve Benefits
Calendula salve is an all-purpose first aid product that’s used for:
- diaper rash
- razor burn
- mild burns
- hot spots
- insect bites
- dry skin areas
- and more!
Calendula is safe for use on: dogs, cats, horses, cows, bunnies, goats, chickens and ducks too! (Since cats are especially sensitive to herbs, use a small amount at a time and don’t use long term. I safely use a bit, sparingly, on my cats, but check with your vet first to find out if calendula is safe for your kitty’s particular health situation.)
This salve is perfect to have on hand in your emergency kit since it will cover almost any minor skin ailment that a person or animal could experience.
How to Make Calendula Salve
To make, you will need:
- 3.5 ounces of calendula infused oil
- 0.5 ounces beeswax pastilles
Add the oil and beeswax into a heat proof container. Set it gently into a pan containing several inches of water. Bring the temperature up to medium-lowish heat and let the container stay in the makeshift double boiler until the wax is melted.
Remove from heat and pour into tins of jars. This batch will fill about 2 to 2 1/2 of the two-ounce tins, as pictured. (I buy tins and small jars from Specialty Bottle or Mountain Rose Herbs.)
For more calendula ideas, check out: