Wintertime is the perfect season for the gift of a nourishing balm, handmade with rich oils and soothing herbs. With the often dry winter air (or airline travel during the holidays), a healthy balm may help soothe or prevent dry skin.
I also use a good balm on my little ones to heal and protect their skin, since they love playing outside, even on blustery days. I also keep a jar of balm on hand for the little rash my teething babies get on their chin/neck from the extra drool at this age.
During pregnancy, I have loved applying it as a “belly balm” once or twice a day. It soothes and nourishes the itchy belly as it stretches (and maybe it might be part of the reason I haven’t ever gotten stretch marks?).
It is simple to mix up a nice batch, and would make a nice gift or stocking stuffer at Christmas.
Use organic ingredients when possible, to avoid pesticide residue in your finished product, since you will be applying it to skin- the largest organ in your body! I usually get most of my ingredients (oils, herbs, etc) from Mountain Rose Herbs. They also have containers available, including cute little “travel size” tins!
4 Tbl. Jojoba Oil
4 Tbl. Coconut Oil
3 Tbl. Rosehip Seed Oil
3 Tbl. Olive Oil
4 Tbl. Cocoa Butter
4 Tbl. Shea Butter
1/4 Cup Beeswax Pellets/Pastilles
1/2 Cup dried Calendula Petals
1/2 Cup dried Lavender Buds
30 drops Lavender Essential Oil
In the top of a double-boiler pot (or a bowl over a pot of simmering water), heat the Jojoba Oil, Coconut Oil, Rosehip Seed Oil, and Olive Oil to a gentle simmer. Pour in the calendula and lavender, and stir well into the oils. Continue stirring occasionally, and simmer for 1-2 hours.
Remove from heat, and strain out the oil, using a finely-meshed sieve or cheesecloth to catch the herbs. Discard the herbs (compost if you can), and save the oil.
Pour the oil back into the warm pot, and add the Cocoa Butter, Shea Butter, and Beeswax. Stir to melt into the warm oil, then remove from heat. Let cool slightly (but before it begins to thicken), and add the drops of lavender essential oil. Stir to combine.
Have containers ready, and immediately pour in the finished oil. As it cools, it will thicken into a balm. You can repurpose jars/containers to fill with your balm, if desired.
Makes about 1/2 Cup of Balm.
The oils (plus the addition of the lavender essential oil) have have pretty long shelf life; usually about a year or two? If you want to help ensure its longevity and prevent any molding, you can choose to add the contents of a Vitamin E capsule (prick with a pin, and squeeze) or a few drops of Grapefruit Seed Extract. Making sure to use well-dried herbs instead of fresh will help prevent the accumulation of mold, also.
Looking for more Natural Remedies and gift ideas? Check out my ebook, “Herbal Nurturing: A Family Healing & Learning Guide“!