Homemade Salves for Every Household: Simple Salve Method

If you’re just starting out making salves, try this easy three-ingredient approach. The use of vitamin e helps your salve last longer.

| July/August 2016

  • simple salve
    "Simple" salves use only one herb at a time, instead of a combination. It's one way to learn the true properties of an herb, and ensure you don't have an allergic reaction.
    Photo by iStock

  • simple salve

Simple Salve Method


• 1/2 ounce beeswax
• 1 cup herbal oil
• Vitamin E or rosemary antioxidant (extract)—optional


1. Use a double boiler, or place a glass bowl into a pot of water to gently heat beeswax and oil over low to medium heat until thoroughly combined.

2. Do a consistency test before removing from heat: Place a few drops on a plate and allow to come to room temperature. Depending on your salve’s intended use, you may need to adjust consistency. Anything going into a lip balm tube needs to be firmer, for example, while a salve intended for diaper rash should be softer. If you discover the consistency isn’t quite right, simply add oil to make it softer, or beeswax to harden it.

3. Once you’ve got the desired consistency, turn off heat. If using vitamin E oil or rosemary antioxidant, pour it into salve.

4. Quickly pour salve into container—a shallow tin or lip balm tube works well. It will firm as it cools. Allow to cool completely before covering with lid. Label with herb used and date.

Learn more about Homemade Salves for Every Household.

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