Make Your Own Healing Skin Salve: Helichrysum & Bergamot Salve

Your healing salve cooling in their jars!

Your healing salve cooling in their jars!

One of my life long hobbies is studying healing plants in the form of herbals, essential oils and flower essences.   As a hobbyist, in 1985, I took my first herbal studies class from the  Australasian School of Herbal Studies. It has since evolved into a much larger entity. Now there are so many local courses to be taken with big names around the tri-state area, such as Robin Rose Bennet ,  Susan Weed and Peeka Trenkle. There just weren’t any local classes that I knew of in 1985.  In 1986, I studied homeopathy with Jane Cicchetti at the Five Elements Center in Mountain Lakes.

To dovetail with the acquisition of my massage therapy license, I decided to undertake my aromatherapy certification in 2014 with Liz Fulcher at her Aromatic Wisdom Institute in Pennsylvania. It was a wonderful course and she mentored me further into the secret life of plants. I discovered a whole network of wise women working with plant secrets. It was a great experience.

It’s fascinating to me that there’s extensive research about the detailed chemistry and healing properties of herbals and essential oils, but this research and information isn’t widely disseminated. Interesting, huh?

Anyway, here’s a recipe for healing skin wounds I made for a friend who had been hurt in an accident. Of course, common sense disclaimer: There was a needed stay in the hospital, and this is not a substitute for medical care. But there was alot of trauma, both physical and emotional, and the closed wounds were in for a long healing period. This  salve was used as complementary care in the healing process. You can make it at home, too!


First, get your stuff together:


The base oil ingredients! Yellow beeswax, coconut oil, and shea butter. Yum!

The base oil ingredients! Yellow beeswax, coconut oil, and shea butter. Yum!


2 oz  yellow beeswax

1 oz virgin organic unrefined shea butter

1 oz organic coconut oil

2 oz avocado oil


My box of oils!

My box of oils!


6 drops Helichrysum (organic)
6 drops Bergamot
6 drops Blood Orange

Other useful objects for this project!

Glass double boiler (or you can just put a heat proof bowl in a pot)

Glass stirrer (I had some old bar stirrers in my kitchen drawer!)

Wide Mouth Glass jars to pour the salve into when it’s ready!

If you are sensitive to essential oils, use a small fan to keep the air moving around you as you work


Let’s start!


Sanitize everything in the dishwasher!

Sanitize everything in the dishwasher!

Wash your double boiler, glass jars and stirrers in the dishwasher to sanitize them. I got an old-fashioned glass double boiler on Ebay for $9.99 and I love it!  I bought a few cute Ball jars from Amazon to use for this project.

Get your clean jars ready to fill!

Get your clean jars ready to fill!

Line up your glass jars on the ready for pouring the mixture in!  You don’t want to be stuck with a fresh, warm salve and no place to put it! That would be a drag!





Time for fun!

Remember, it’s like cooking, so don’t step away from your project and accidentally overcook it!


Use a double boiler to melt the ingredients together, I bought this on Ebay for ten bucks!

Use a double boiler to melt the ingredients together, I bought this on Ebay for ten bucks!

Melt the beeswax, stirring occasionally

Put in the shea butter, let it melt, too.


Coconut oil melting in

Coconut oil melting in


Put in the coconut oil.


Here's what the oil looks like when it's all melted together!

Here’s what the oil looks like when it’s all melted together!

Stir in the avocado oil.
Take the mixture off the heat.

Add the essential oil drops and stir!  Helichyrsum, bergamot and then blood orange.




Pour the mixture into the jars, let it cool and harden overnight and it’s

it’s ready for giving as gifts to your friends and family!

Your healing salve cooling in their jars!

Your healing salve cooling in their jars!


It’s not like commercial salves, that just immediately soak in.

It’s kinda greasy, but it will eventually soak into your skin if you just wait a bit.


My skin loves it and really retains the softness from the properties in the pure natural oils you are using!

Some notes:

I am very sensitive to essential oils, so I used less than what is considered therapeutic amounts of the oils in the recipe. A 2% dilution is 12 drops of oil to 1 ounce of carrier oil, so I should have used 36 drops total of oils, but I only used 18 drops total. And I’ve gotten a good report back from my friend on reduction of inflammation and general overall healing and lifting of mood.


To those who are sensitive to carriers and essential oils, here’s a hint from Liz Fulcher, Clinical Aromatherapist, Director of the Aromatic Wisdom Institute.  She says to use a small fan when creating homemade salves at home and to take things slow, using one oil at a time to see how you react.  Good advice!

Liz has written a detailed article about safety and sensitivity to essential oils. Read it here!

Also, Penney Keay of Birth Hill Aromatherapy, LLC has written an informative article about essential oil and safety as well. Read it here!

When using the salve, test it out on a small area first, wait 24 hours, and see how your skin reacts before going all out and rubbing it over a wider area.


Most of all, Have fun!

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