What are Herbal Salves

Home / Alt Medicine Medically reviewed by Jennifer Adams, MD

Many herbal remedies are available today which are quite useful in both salve or ointment form. The majority of these remedies are used externally, by rubbing them onto the area where treatment is needed. Injuries such as burns, scrapes, cuts and other skin wounds respond well with treatment from these herbal salves.

Alternative Health Herbal Salves and ointments are usually made with aloe vera juice, mineral water, or petroleum jelly. Because of the density of Petroleum jelly, it is the easiest to use as it has the ability to stay in place for a longer period of time. Aloe vera is an excellent option for salves and ointments that need to penetrate the skin, such as herbal remedies created to treat pulled tendons and ligaments.

When you make Alternative Health Herbal Salves or ointments with aloe vera juice or mineral water, they'll be a bit thin and runny. To help thicken the mixture, an herb called Slippery Elm can be added which will result in the mixture becoming more dense.

How to make Herbal Salves To make your own salves and ointments, you simply buy dried or ground herbs in bulk form, or buy gel capsules which contain 100% ground herb inside them. Capsules are easier to find in general grocery or health food stores, and to make salves with them you simply pull apart the gelcap and shake out the powdered herb that is contained inside.

Place the ground herb on a small plate or dish, then mix in your petroleum jelly, aloe vera, or mineral water. Virgin olive oil can also be used in a pinch too. Only add a small amount of juice or jelly to the herb at a time, and stir until all of the herb powder is fully mixed into the liquid material. You may have to add additional liquid until the right consistency is reached. You can create Alternative Health Herbal Salves and ointments using tinctures and oils, but you may have problems with separation depending on the types of products you use. Herbal salves should be stored in a small air tight container, and it will last more than a year in most cases. When needed, simply scoop out a little bit and rub it onto the area requiring treatment.

Most Popular Herbal Salves

The most useful herbal salve to have on hand - particularly when you have kids in your home - is comfrey salve. Comfrey is a cell regenerative herb which promotes super fast healing. This herb helps wounds heal so fast in fact, that you run the risk of trapping germs and bacteria beneath the new skin the develops, so you have to be careful an infection has not set in. Ensure to clean the wound thoroughly before applying this salve. Comfrey will also relieve pain on contact. General comfrey salve is made by simply mixing ground comfrey into petroleum jelly or aloe vera juice. Most popular is the jelly, and to be on the safe side, mix Golden Seal in as well. A combination of Golden Seal and Comfrey salve will prevent infection while healing the wounds quickly. Comfrey salve is excellent for scrapes, burns, cuts, abrasions, and any number of general wounds. The wounds heal extremely fast - literally in less than 24 hours usually - without leaving any scars.

Another excellent salve to have on hand is for hemorrhoids. This salve can be used externally or inserted into the anus for internal hemorrhoids. Using aloe vera juice as the liquid base is best for this one, because you can apply it externally and the medicine will penetrate the skin and help heal internal hemorrhoids as well. This salve is a simple mixture of aloe vera juice, golden seal, and white willow OR white oak bark.

This combination usually shrinks hemorrhoids within just a few hours. Apply it at night before bed and by morning the hemorrhoids are usually gone, and stay gone for weeks at a time in some cases.

A variation of this salve is for kids or people with parasites - particularly pin worms. Adding garlic to the salve, is excellent for killing and expelling pin worms and their eggs. A woman's son fell and scraped the front of his face severely at school one day. The scrape was so bad that school officials feared he'd be scarred for life. The boy's mother only had Golden Seal and Comfrey on hand, so she mixed the two with petroleum jelly to form a healing salve, and slathered it thickly on his face. He slept overnight with the application on. His mother washed it well the next morning to find new, pink skin already in place. The wounds were almost completely healed overnight, and the school officials were shocked. Within days the wound was completely gone with no evidence of scarring.