Herbal Infused Oils Recipe
Oils made by macerating (soaking) herbs in vegetable oils (apricot, hazelnut, or almond oil for the face; olive oil for the body) are called infused oils. These oils can be used as a base for salves or lip balms, added to lotions, or used instead of plain carrier oils in massage blends. For a skin-healing massage oil blend, try a mixture of lavender, Echinacea, and chamomile.
• 1 cup dried herbs
• Vegetable oil to cover the herbs
1. Coarsely grind the herbs in a blender. Place the herbs in a wide mouthed jar and add enough oil to cover. This oil can vary widely, especially if you are using a fluffy leaf or a root powder.
2. Check the mixture in a day or two; you may need to add a bit more oil. Keep in a warm place and shake daily. After 1 or 2 weeks, the oil should take on the color, aroma, and healing properties of the herb.
3. To strain the oil, line a kitchen strainer with cheesecloth, muslin, or a thin flour-sack dishcloth and place the strainer over a bowl.
4. Put the oil/herb mixture into the strainer and let it drip for a day or two undisturbed. To get every precious drop, gather the corners of the cloth and wring out as much oil as possible.
5. Store the unused portions in the refrigerator.
Mindy Green is an herbalist, aromatherapist, educator, and writer. She is also an esthetician, a consultant to the natural products industry, and director of education at the Herb Research Foundation in Boulder, Colorado.