Have you ever wanted to learn to use herbs and essential oils? If you’ve ever wanted to learn to use Essential Oils and Herbs, join me in making a Cooling Tendonitis Balm. For the last few years, I have been studying Herbalism and also how to use Essential oils. It’s so satisfying knowing that we’re capable of taking charge of our own health and the health of our families. And Herbalism is so simple and easy. If you are interested in herbalism, I highly recommend The Herbal Academy.
If you’d like to learn about essential oils, I have been studying with The Franklin Institute of Wellness. This school teaches evidence-based education. You’ll be amazed what you didn’t know about essential oils and what you should know before using it.
I made this cooling tendonitis balm because I have been bothered by Achilles tendonitis for several months and let me tell you, it is really problematic. When I get out of bed in the morning or have been sitting for more than a few minutes and get up, it takes a long time to walk out the soreness so I can walk like a normal person. If I’m on my feet too long or walk too much, it hurts! So, I’ve gathered my books together and done my research on which herbs and essential oils I can use to help myself. I thought I’d share with you the recipe I’ve come up with for a cooling tendonitis balm.
To make a cooling tendonitis balm you’ll need the following.
1-1/4 cups olive oil
6 Tablespoons Arnica Flowers
1-1/2 Tablespoons Lavender Flowers
2 Tablespoons Calendula Flowers
5 teaspoons Beeswax or Beeswax pastilles
And the following Essential Oils:
30 drops Lavender
20 drops Sweet Marjoram
10 drops Clary Sage
20 drops Peppermint
20 drops Lemongrass
25 drops Frankincense
I figured the essential oils to be at a 2% dilution but since I only got about 1 cup of the oil out of the herbs after they had been infused it came out around 2-1/2 to 3% dilution which is fine.
I didn’t think to take a picture of the herbs before I put the last of my arnica into the oil, so I just got the lavender and calendula in the picture. Luckily, these are from my own herb garden. Isn’t the dried calendula gorgeous? When you dry them in a dehydrator they maintain their dark orange color.
So, to get started place the oil, arnica, lavender, and calendula in a double boiler. Heat to a low simmer and let it go for two to three hours. This is enough time to infuse the herbs into the oil, but I like to let it sit overnight after I take it off the stove.
Press out the infused oil.
My husband made this little press for and it works great to get the oil out of the herbs. I put the muslin bag that I made to go inside the container – you have to have them so the herbs don’t just go through the holes – and poured the oil and herbs in.
After you have it all in the bag, fold the bag up so it’s closed and no herbs will leak out the top.
Then place the platelet on top of the bag and get everything into the press. The bottom bowl has a hole in the bottom edge so the oil can drain into a container, so be sure to put the stopper in before you pour the oil into the top.
As you can see, you get most of the oil from the herbs as you’re pressing them. The herbs do absorb quite a bit of the oil that you won’t get back, but you’ll still end up with about a cup.
I tried to get a picture of the herbs after they’ve been pressed and you can kind of see how dry they are.
Carefully get it to the right consistency.
Once you have the oil squeezed out, put it back in the double boiler (be sure the double boiler has been washed and dried before putting the oil back in). Add the beeswax and heat the oil just enough to melt it. This is where I always had problems when I first started making salves. I always added a little too much beeswax. And it gets really hard! It’s better to start out with a little less and add more until it’s the right consistency. You can’t take it out once it’s in there.
To test if you’ve added enough beeswax take a little of the salve out of the boiler on your spatula and either wait a bit until it cools or stick it in the fridge for a few minutes. Once it’s cool to the touch, it will be the consistency the finished product is going to be. If you think it’s too thin, add a little bit of beeswax to the pan, melt it and retest. Trust me it’s worth it to take the time to do this. There’s nothing more discouraging to get to the end have a hard balm. Unfortunately, I’ve had many a balm end up hard because I was in a hurry.
Add Your Essential Oils.
Once it’s melted and it’s the right consistency, go ahead and add the Essential Oils. I put all the oils into a small container so I could pour it all in at one time. If you’re interested in the properties of the essential oils I chose I will be adding some information on all of them to this blog very soon. If you’d like to take some courses on essential oils, check out The Franklin Institute of Wellness website.
Give it a few quick stirs and pour it into your containers. I got the two 2 oz. containers and one 4 oz. container from this batch, which will last for quite awhile. We just rub the balm onto the area with tendonitis or sore muscles and relax.
Keep in mind that with herbal medicine, you won’t get the instant results like you would if you take an aspirin or ibuprofen that covers the pain. Herbals works on the root cause of the problem and it takes some time to start working. I’ll let you know how it works for me. If you make some, let us know how it’s working.