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Make Your Own Healing Skin Salve: Helichrysum & Bergamot Salve

Updated January 1, 2022

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 the salve 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. The salve helped heal his closed wounds. I also made this for a friend who suffers from an eczema-type skin condition that she has had for many years. Of course, she saw a dermatologist and tried medications and it would still not clear up. She used this and it cleared up!

Please, only use this salve was as complementary care in the healing process. You can make it at home, too!

First, get your stuff together:


For a vegan option, you can substitute Candelilla wax for beeswax

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!

Wash your double boiler, glass jars and stirrers in the dishwasher. I also sanitize them in the Wabi UV Sterilizer and Dryer. I use the Wabi to sterilize jars for my projects and lots of everyday objects, like keys, eyeglasses, etc. I scored 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.

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!

Melt the beeswax, stirring occasionally

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

Put in the coconut oil.

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!

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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