HEALING HERBS: HOW TO MAKE MACERATED OILS

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If you’ve got herbs growing in your garden or locally, why not try making herb-macerated oils and replace some of those cosmetic products full of petrol-chemical that are not missing in our cabinet?

Macerated oils, also called infused oils, are carrier oils used to extract the therapeutic properties of a certain plant or plants. Using infused oils in any skin care preparation is extremely therapeutic, as they contain the nutritive properties from  both the carrier oil and the herbs or flowers.

When making macerated oils, the most commonly used carrier oils are sunflower, olive, sweet almond and jojoba oils, as they are easily obtained and suitable for all skin types. Sunflower oil have less nourishing compared to other oils itself, but spreads well on the skin, lighter in color and scent, and makes a great macerated oil choice.

Olive oil is especially suitable for dry, mature and sensitive skin types, and as an anti-inflammatory, is beneficial for eczema and psoriasis. It has indeed a stronger scent and one may wish to mix it with another oil to neutralize the scent. Jojoba and coconut oils are also often used or added, while sweet almond oil suit best the making of smaller batches as it goes rancid faster then the other oils.

Choose properly dried herbs with high levels of natural volatile oils such as yarrow, lavender, rosemary, St. john’s wort, chamomile, calendula, rose.

INSTRUCTIONS

the Cold Infusion 

  • Fill a jar halfway with plant material
  • Pour oil over the herbs till covering them
  • Stir to release air bubbles
  • Cap with a lid and place in a warm place
  • Shake your mixture daily
  • Your infusion will be ready in 3-4 weeks
  • Strain the oil and pour into clean bottles, label and date

 

This is the preferred method because it preserves better the delicate constituents found in plants. However it’s possible to speed up the process by gently heating up the jug or jar containing your infused oils with a slow cooker or with the bain-marie method.

Herbal oils will nourish the body and heal dry skin and even hairs. Dressed up in nice bottles will make a lovely gifts or could be used as a great soothing massage oil