A salve is simply a topical ointment, balm or cream that is mixed with herbs, oils and waxes. There are numerous ways to use salves based on the types of herbs and ingredients used in it. For instance, salves can aid in promoting healing to damaged skin tissue, draw out toxins, prevent infections and as well as protect and moisturize the skin. Salves have historically been used for a variety of ailments like inflammation, eczema, tattoo-after care, itchiness, sunburns, scars, sore muscles, bug bites, small wounds and even as a general body moisturizer. Salves are typically created with an oil base and then combined with a wax like beeswax or carnauba wax. I personally create my salves with a combination of herbs mixed in an oil base like grapeseed or sunflower oil to diffuse. Then when the diffusion is finished, I combine the herbal oil with either beeswax or carnauba wax and then cocoa butter.
Many people have compared salves to lotions and body butters although the ingredients and shelf-life differ. For instance, lotions are typically made with water and oil, in which they only last for less than 6 months if a preservative is not added to increase that shelf-life. On the other hand, salves does not contain any water, thus giving it a long, stable shelf life without the added preservatives.
Salves are a natural, chemical-preservative free way to provide healing to the skin.
Caution: For all salves I would suggest doing an allergy test by placing a small amount of the salve on the back of the hand prior to using it on other parts of the body. My salves are for topical use only, not meant for human consumption.
A tincture is a concentrated herbal extract made by combining plant material (root, bark, leaves, flowers) into a container with alcohol or vinegar and allowing the combination to diffuse for a certain period of time. Tinctures are often administered sublingually, or under the tongue. They can even be mixed into drinks like tea or water and even placed into food. Although, when mixing into foods, the onset effects of the tincture will take longer than consuming sublingually because the medication is absorbed through the digestive process rather than directly into the bloodstream. Thus, tinctures are deemed an effective and fast way to take herbal medicine since its easy to consume, store and transport.
Since tinctures do not have any added preservatives and are typically diffused into alcohol or vinegar, they have a long shelf life compared to other medications like pharmaceuticals that have a short expiration date combined with added preservatives and chemicals.
Caution: My tincture remedies are formulated for people who do not have any medical conditions and are not taking any prescription or over-the-counter medications. Please consult with your doctor or primary care physician if you have any medical conditions, food or plant allergies or are taking any medications (over-the-counter or prescription) prior to taking herbal extracts/tinctures.
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