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A Primer On Salve Making

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Salve making is an important skill now, and it will become an even more important skill after SHTF. So, master the skill now, collect your recipes, and obtain the various ingredients and equipment needed, because after SHTF there will be no more manufactured goods, and you may not have access to the essential oils and extracts that are needed.

My salve making came about when I went looking for a way to replace store purchased hand lotion with a better product that I could make post-SHTF and has evolved from there. From rosemary salve for dry hands to salve for pain to hand sanitizer to shampoo bars, the list of my products goes on. Everyday I look for something I am used to purchasing that I can make better and cheaper at home and can store the basic ingredients long term.

  • Frying pan; dedicated to salve making.
  • 28 oz tomato sauce cans.
  • #10 cans.
  • Measuring cups & spoons; dedicated to salve making.
  • Plastic lids for cans.
  • Small gravy ladle; dedicated to salve making.
  • Jars.
  • Labels.
  • Fine mesh sieve, or cheese cloth.
  • Dish towels.
  • Supplies:
  • Bees wax (I like to use ½ white and ½ yellow bees wax beads). Do not use paraffin wax.
  • Essential oils.
  • Extracts.
  • Fresh Herbs.
  • Oil (any type of oil can be used, but my preference is vegetable oil and olive oil).
  • Cotton Twine.
  • Vitamin E oil (optional).
  • Disposable chop sticks (I bring them home from the Chinese take-out). After use, I then add them to my wood stove kindling pile.
  • There are two main types of salves. The first is made from essential oils or extracts and the second is made from fresh herbs.

    Salves made from essential oils or extracts can be made and will be ready for use the same day. Salves made from fresh herbs can take from five to ten days to be ready for use, depending on the herb used.

    All the equipment I use in salve making is used only for salve making and never for cooking or processing food. I have chosen to use equipment in a different color, so there is never a mistake.

    All cans should be washed, dried, and left in the dish drainer for a minimum of one week to remove all smells of the prior food it contained. You want your rosemary salve to smell like rosemary not tomato sauce.

    A few drops of food coloring can be added, if you want a different shade for each of your salves.

    The Base

    Almost all salves use the same base of three cups of oil and one cup of bees wax.

    All recipes can be cut in half or doubled as needed.

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