Homemade Healing Salve

Homemade Healing Salve Recipe Like Neosporin but more effective and all natural Homemade Healing Salve

I’m not a fan of Neosporin because its made with petroleum jelly and isn’t nearly as effective as the natural options.

My homemade healing salve (or “boo-boo lotion”, according to the kids) is helpful on cuts, bruises, stings, poison ivy and skin irritations. It also helps diaper rash and baby skin irritations- just don’t use with cloth diapers or line them first.

It’s easy to make and some of the ingredients even grow in your front yard during the summer… The picture on the left is Plantain, which grows in most parts of the country and is great for the skin. Most people just know it as a common garden weed.

This salve is naturally antibiotic, anti-inflammatory, anti-fungal, and astringent. It also doesn’t contain petroleum! I never goes bad, so I make it in big batches, but you can reduce the size if needed. I always keep this on hand while gardening for skin irritations and bug bites.

All ingredients and tins and lip chap containers to store it in are available here. (Storing in a lip-chap container makes it portable and easy to apply. )

Homemade Healing Salve Instructions

  • 2 cups of olive or almond oil
  • 1 tsp echinacea root (optional)
  • 2 tablespoons comfrey leaf
  • 2 tablespoons of plantain leaf (herb-not banana!)
  • 1 tablespoon of calendula flowers (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon yarrow flowers (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon of rosemary leaf (optional)
  • 1/4 cup beeswax pastilles
  • 1/2 tsp grapefruit seed extract or vitamin E oil to preserve

How To Make Healing Salve:

  1. Infuse the herbs into the olive oil. There are two ways to do this. You can either combine the herbs and the olive oil in a jar with an airtight lid and leave 3-4 weeks, shaking daily  OR heat the herbs and olive oil over low/low heat in a double boiler for 3 hours (low heat!) until the oil is very green.
  2. Strain her herbs out of the oil by pouring through a cheesecloth. Let all the oil drip out and then squeeze the herbs to get the remaining oil out.
  3. Discard the herbs.
  4. Heat the infused oil in a double boiler with the beeswax until melted and mixed.
  5. Pour into small tins, glass jars or lip chap tubes and use on bites, stings, cuts, poison ivy, diaper rash or other wounds as needed.

Ever made your own salves? Share below!

Reader Comments

  1. Becky says

    This would be worth trying. I found out the hard way that I am allergic to Neomycin. I had an ear infection and they gave me Neomycin drops for it. I almost lost my hearing. They weren’t sure if I would get it totally back. Thank GOD I did. I just about won’t use any medicaitons. Too many risk.

  2. Aingael says

    Thank you. I learned of the healing properties of “Soldiers herb” aka plantain last summer but was unsure of how best to utilize it. I have to young boys 5 and 2 and we all have allergies to a lot of things. This will be taking a place of honor in our medicine cabinet!! Thank you a thousand times.

  3. Sam says

    hey there wellness mama, I’m new to your site but I was wondering where you got your double boiler from? everything I find at target looks like what I use to steam my veggies, are they one in the same?

    • says

      I found mine at a garage sale, but it is basically a small pan with a slightly bigger pan that fits on top of it. I put water in the bottom one and the ingredients in the top one. Most of the time though I just use a glass bowl on top of a saucepan that is a little smaller…

  4. Conlyn says

    This herb is more amazing than most people know.  My dad lived in the Jungle of Peru (Tarapoto) to be exact and a medicine man introduced this herb to him when one day he showed him a lesion on the back of his left leg. Dad had previously gone to see a regular doctor, and was told he had a skin cancer and it was not curable unless cut off and it was the size of his calf muscle.  Well… this herb that USA calls plantain is called “LLANTEN”‘ in Peru. The medicine man told him to boil water and to drop a leaf in the boiling water just long enough to wilt it, take it out an cool slightly and put the entire leaf or leaves on the affected area and wrap with cheese cloth. Change it daily and do this for a week or until it was gone. After this primitive treatment, all dad had left was a discolored smooth area on the back of his leg for the rest of his life. I personally grow this herb, (it grows wild) and when i make collard greens or other greens I also include some LLANTEN leaves. I also make tea with the leaves, boil water and let it steep, add some honey and a little lemon and enjoy.

  5. Susan Bewley says

    Wow, this is so cool! I have this week growing throughout my yard and had no clue it was anything but a weed!  Can you move it to a pot to grow indoors?  I have never seen it for sale normally.

  6. says

    What is the size of the jar you use?  I can’t seem to find that, and b/c of the small amount of herbs, I’m guessing it matters so that its not to diluted?  Thanks.

  7. Sarah says

    This is wonderful stuff! I was looking for something to put on wounds in place of antibiotic ointment, and this is perfect. I didn’t have the yarrow, but made it anyway. We needed something for cracked thumbs, so I took my healing salve, put it in the double boiler with some cocoa butter and beeswax, and wa-la. Thick, non-melty healing salve that coats skin.

    • Lisa n says

      I can’t help myself but I must correct you: please don’t take offense!
      It’s VOILA no wa-la and it means “see it there” as in, from the two words voir (to see) la (there) so it’s voila, meaning, see it there for yourself, that is the meaning. And now you can voila for yourself :)

  8. Aliyah says

    I wish I could find an effective healing salve that didn’t contain comfrey. I realize healthy individuals can use certain amounts of comfrey without trouble, but I am a battling cancer– all naturally–and don’t want to overload my liver with anything since I need my liver to help fight the cancer. Is there any suitable substitute for the comfrey? Thanks in advance.

    • Branwen says

      The Comfrey makes cells replicate so that they heal faster–it is a “top down healer” which means the skin will seal at the surface first, so it’s not for use on deep wounds until infection has been cleared and the wound well on its way to finishing healing.. This formula should be just fine without it, all of the herbs are great for healing the skin. Using the Comfrey as a part of a formula for an external application such as this should not have an adverse effect on your liver. That worry comes more from internally ingesting Comfrey long term. But again, you don’t need it for this recipe to be effective.

    • Natalie says

      An alternative to comfrey for cancer, could be hemp oil, not hemp seed oil, but CBD oil or hemp oil. See: Run From The Cure on youtube for more information. Extremely Valuable Information!!

  9. jkfreeman says

    My mother used to call this leaf a Frogs leaf because of the way it resembled a frogs back. I still use the whole leaf for infected cuts and the like!

  10. says

    I have comfrey in my yard – lot of it but I made a salve and it smelled so bad – is that normal? I did a jar of olive oil and comfrey leaves and then after it sit – I made a salve adding beeswax. it was more of a soupy green and stank so bad. it wasn’t stink it was Stank – I ended up just tossin it. does comfrey smell bad – or maybe my neighbor was wrong and it wasn’t comfrey. They were some nice big leaves. Thanks D*

    • Lyndsay says

      Did you use fresh leaves in the oil and how long did you let it sit? Fresh leaves are very juicy and will start to rot and this will smell nasty, best to dry the leaves first so there is no water in your mix!

  11. Laura L says

    This is so sad it’s funny. We have the best medicinal plants growing freely all over and we are taught that they are all weeds. I had no clue what plantain was and looked it up on google. This has been plaguing my yard for the last 3+ years that I have lived here and I am constantly ripping it up because I don’t want to use pesticides! lol Now I feel silly. Looking forward to the spring and my yard full of plantain, dandelions & other stuff this year! :)

  12. Sylvia says

    Does infusing multiple herbs together in the same jar of olive oil take away from the effectiveness (potency?), as opposed to, say, if you were to infuse each herb in its own jar of olive oil?

    P.s. your website has become a favorite! I share it with as many people as I can… it’s really helping me change my lifestyle – for the better :) Thank you!

  13. Erika says

    Is the plantain you refer to the one with long, tapered leaves and seedy sticks on long stems, or the short, rounder leaves with the seedy sticks on short stems? I’ve seen both pictures on google. I’m sure the taller plant is refered to as “English Plantain”. When I had allergy testing done about a decade ago, the doctor told me that I was allergic to English plantain. Do you think it would be unsafe to use like this, or could it just be the pollen that agravates my allergies and not the leaves?

  14. Guest says

    I’m going to give this a try! Quick question, what do you think of anise seed? I read it is an expectorant herb and since I have some at home I was wondering if I could add it to this recipe, if so, is it [anise seed] okay for toddlers.Thanks!

  15. Michelle Johnson says

    Your formula is almost exactly like mine. I add Lavendar and Teatree Essential oil after I strain. I also use a crockpot on low to make mine. Much easier for me. I don’t have to worry about checking the water. And I leave the lid off, so it doesn’t get too hot. Thanks for your site and keep the recipes coming!!!

  16. Leah Herbas says

    I made this and it smells and feels wonderful. I decided to pour the mixture into these cute 1 oz push up tubes. The only problem is when I went to sample pushing one up the whole mixture fell out. It was very very soft. I live in Florida and it’s extremely hot and humid here and I store them in an un air-conditioned area. Is it possible to add more beeswax so this is a tad more solid and not as soft more like a balm texture?

    • Austin says

      Yes! Try adding a few drops of carrot seed oil and German chamomile oil to it. Both of those oils are reputed to be great for eczema.

  17. Cindy Green says

    I grow all these herbs….but it dosen’t say if they are fresh or dried…I am assuming dried since most people would not have them fresh???

  18. Morgan D says

    Hi! LOVE your blog :D Question about this salve-I don’t have any comfrey but have an infused oil I bought from Mountain Rose, so I think that would work, how much should I add?
    Thanks and keep up the good work!!

  19. susan denmark says

    I have hand dermatites (spelling) how do I get rid of it? The Dr said I will always have it but symtoms may go away. Help

    • Austin says

      Try switching to handmade soap. You can make your own using lye & oils, there are plenty of recipes online. I like 30% coconut oil, 70% olive oil soap with a 7% superfat. Handmade soap naturally contains glycerin which helps to keep your skin moisturized. If you’re worried about the lye, don’t be – it reacts with the oil and forms soap, there is no leftover lye. Just soap! All soap is made this way, but store-bought soaps have no glycerin – it is removed and sold to pharmacies.

  20. Stephanie says

    I have sensitive skin that’s normally itchy all over, all the time. Drs haven’t been able to figure out the cause and I’m taking allergy meds am and pm. I would love to use this as an all-over body cream/butter. What modifications should I make for that?

  21. Katie DuBois says

    Hi. I love all of your recipes for cleaning and bath and body, but we’re vegan. Which is pretty much the opposite of Paleo. Being vegan we don’t use gelatin or beeswax or honey…. any suggestions of things to use in their stead? Thanks!

  22. Sandi White says

    I”ve been vegan for about a year and 85% raw for the past 9 months, but this past spring every time I had a few abrasions (from a shoe that rubbed the top of my foot raw, and scraped up knees from tearing up a tile floor) that just turned into full-blown eczema that I still can’t get rid of. I eat a lot of coconut (milk and oil), have tried everything from coconut oil to shea butter, to tea tree oil, to grapefruit seed extract, but nothing seems to make it better. I’ve also been making sure I drink 50 ounces of water every day, so it’s not dehydration. The rashes are extremely itchy at night, get oozy if I scratch them, and look like alligator skin. The only relief I have found is putting ice on it. I’d love to hear if anyone has had the same problem and gotten rid of it.

    • Austin says

      It seems that it would be hard to infuse coconut oil unless it is very hot where you live, as coconut oil is solid below 76 degrees. Coconut oil’s inconsistent hardness would also affect the consistency of the salve and make it too hard sometimes

  23. Cindy says

    Would this be useful for burns? Or is there something else you can recommend? I burned my upper lip (1st degree) drinking tea this past Sunday and it has started to peel/flake and it feels so dry and itchy. I’ve been using raw honey when I’m home, which seems to help but is not practical for when I’m out.

  24. Sarah G. says

    Hi Katie,
    Would this be good for a small minor burn? My one-year-old burned her thumb and I’m worried about tissue repair/scarring… I hate thinking that her thumb will have a scar, but I don’t want to use Neosporin or Mederma to help the skin heal. Will the Vitamin E help with scarring? Thanks :)

  25. Deborah says

    Hey, I was wondering if this salve is safe to use when pregnant? I suffer with eczema and can’t use anything usually would due to the pregnancy, looking for something before it takes over my whole body!!! Thanks

  26. Kelly says

    Approximately how many 1/2 oz tins does this recipe make?
    According to the math it would be around 36. That seems like a lot.

  27. Diane says

    can you use plantain leaf powder and comfrey leaf powder? the supplier is out of both of these currently and would like to make this salve soon. Also i saw that you were going to post a recipe for Healing Bar and Vapo Rub bar have you done that yet? I have not found it if you did.

    Thanks

  28. Chantel says

    Hello. I was wondering, when you mention the measurements of leaves, herbs, flowers, etc… are you talking about dried or fresh? I am new to making my own slaves and I just want to do it right. Thanks!

  29. Donna says

    Thank you so much for sharing this recipe!! Am looking forward to trying it, someone recently told me that Comfrey is a carcinogen?? Have u heard of this?? Thanks for any thoughts you might have on this….

  30. Chantel says

    I have a question. :) What kind of olive oil do I use? I notice at the store there are olive oils of different colors and they have labels for different uses. Like this one is dipping, for frying, for baking, etc etc… which one is good for salves? Any of them? Does it matter? Would if affect the salve differently with different olive oils?

    Thanks!

  31. Heidi says

    I have a question also- Everyone seems to be sold out of small quantities of organic comfrey leaf, so I’m ordering it in powder form. What would the measurement be for that? Seems like it would be less since it’s more condensed. I’m making it for my 1 yr old’s excema so I’m trying to be very cautious about the amount of comfrey I put in it since I don’t want him ingesting any. Oh also I’m using coconut oil, I’m assuming that will work just as well? Thanks!

  32. Quianna says

    Seems like a silly question but when you say olive oil do you mean extra virgin olive oil or the refined olive oil? Im getting everything to make several of your home products Friday that all require olive oil and I’m just not sure if I’ve got the right one.

  33. Sandy says

    Hi this sounds great! Is it ok to use around the eye area. My most bothersome eczema patch happens to be on my upper eyelid.
    Thanks

  34. Elian says

    This is exactly what I’ve been looking for!! I only have a solid block of beeswax on hand. If the amount of beeswax needed will be different than the amount the pastilles calls for, how much would you suggest?

    Thanks!

  35. Heather says

    This is great! I live in a dry climate, so have been using this on problem dry skin. My teenager uses it on acne and most recently we used it to heal a sunburn. I also discovered that olive oil has UV protection in it, so I will apply it before going in the sun too. Thanks for the great recipe!!!

  36. Juliet says

    I was considering making this, but I am pregnant and on your Comfrey page, you say that Comfrey shouldn’t be used when pregnant, even externally. Would this salve still be useful without the Comfrey? Or do you have a different recipe? Thx!

  37. Leslie says

    Starting making this last summer, and I am making another batch as we speak. I made this using coconut oil as a base, along with comfrey and plantain herb (harvest and dry my own), and vitamin E. It works great for people and dogs, and stops bleeding very quickly.

  38. Elizabeth says

    If you want to use this to stop bleeding, would you just apply it directly WHILE it’s still bleeding or do you wipe off afflicted area first and THEN apply directly?
    I can’t wait until my ingredients come in to try as many of your recipes as I can this weekend!

  39. Kathleen says

    Thanks for the inspiration! I have all of these growing in my garden – would it matter if you used fresh herbs or would it be better to dry them first?

  40. Michelle says

    I am new to making oils/salves but I have all of these herbs in my garden/yard in abundance. Can you have too much of a good thing? Trying to get past the “if a little is good a lot is better” mindset. What I’m asking is can you double or triple the mount of herbs in the same amount of oil or would that cause more harm than good? What about adding lavender to the mix? Thank you.

  41. Melissa says

    Is your eczema salve similar to champori cream? If so, do you have a pre-treatment spray similar to it as well because it as worked wonders, but it is so expensive. I know I can make it at a cheaper price.

  42. Karen says

    Thanks for all the time and effort you put into sharing this info – I’ve been following your blog for over a year and have learned so much! I was considering adding melaleuca essential oil to this as I’ve read it’s supposed to be very healing for the skin – but am just learning about oils and am not sure how much, or if that’s even a good idea. We use your original recipe on my son’s excema patches, which he has at times scratched raw. Would you advise trying the oil?

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