Well, if the number of times I’ve sung happy birthday while washing my hands the last few weeks counts for anything, I’m 2,786 years old now. And man, do my hands feel it.
If yours could use a little TLC, too, I thought I’d share this easy hand salve recipe. It’s based on my calendula salve recipe, BUT:
- You don’t need any herbs to make it (although you can use them if you want to)
- It’s a more intensive moisturizer than your typical salve
I’ve been applying it at night after I say goodnight to my littles, and once more at bedtime. I pop some light, stretchy winter gloves on on my hands to keep my sheets clean, and by morning my dry hands are soft again.
So, what is hand salve?
Basically, it’s a mixture of oil and beeswax that acts as a deeply moisturizing, protective emollient. In this recipe I’ve also incorporated unrefined shea butter because it’s naturally rich in vitamin E and adds thickness.
If you have it on hand I recommend including it, but if not I suggest using my dandelion salve recipe and just using regular oil instead of infused oil.
You can use just about any oil you have in your kitchen or bathroom to make it – olive, avocado, almond, etc. If you have skin nourishing herbs like calendula, comfrey or plantain on hand, you can infuse them into your oil for extra TLC. Click the links below for my “quick method” step-by-step instructions on making all three:
- Calendula infused oil – Gentle enough for babies and yet potent enough to draw the attention of researchers, calendula flowers are the “secret ingredient” behind many beloved face serums and lip balms.
- Comfrey infused oil – Sometimes called knitbone or All Heal, comfrey has been used for centuries to support bone and wound healing. It’s also often used in skincare products due to its moisturizing properties.
- Plantain infused oil – Plantain is sometimes called the “band aid” plant because – thanks to the presence of iridoids – it has a very soothing, anti-inflammatory effect on skin. It also contains allantoin, which supports skin healing.
DIY Moisturizing Hand Salve Recipe
- double boiler (or stainless steel bowl and a pot large enough to set it in)
- stirring spoon or fork
- 2 oz tins or other containers
- 5 tbsp olive oil, avocado oil, or sweet almond oil (You can use herb infused oil if you have it on hand)
- ¾ oz beeswax (by weight, or you can use approximately 3 tablespoons grated, gently packed beeswax or pastilles)
- 5 tbsp shea butter
- 25-30 drops essential oil (optional – lavender essential oil, chamomile essential oil and tea tree essential oil are good choices)
How To Make Hand Salve
- Gently heat the beeswax in a double boiler. (If you don’t have a double boiler you can use a stainless steel bowl set inside a pot of boiling water.)
- When the beeswax is melted, add in the shea butter (if using) and allow it to fully melt.
- When the shea butter is melted, add in the oil and let it warm up for 1-2 minutes. Stir everything until it is well combined and then remove the mixture from heat.
- If you're adding essential oils, allow the mixture to cool for a few minutes before stirring them in. You want it to be warm and pourable but not hot.
- Pour the salve into your container (or containers) and allow to cool fully before using. I used three of these 2 ounce tins.
How To Use Hand Salve
- Apply to cuticles, hands, and dry skin patches as needed.
Want More DIY Recipes?
Here are a few of my most popular ones:
3- Ingredient Pure Coconut Oil Soap – When it comes to soap, this is probably the easiest recipe you’ll ever make, and it can be modified for use as a very effective laundry soap.
Easy Homemade Deodorant – Summer-tested and husband approved, this recipe takes less than 5 minutes to make and WORKS!
Magnesium Body Butter – Magnesium is often called the “magic mineral” due to it’s ability to relax muscles, help with stress, support restful sleep, and ease growing pains for littles Unfortunately for some people, magnesium oil can cause an itchy or uncomfortable sensation when applied in undiluted form. In this recipe, I’ve blended it with coconut oil and beeswax to ensure that it doesn’t irritate sensitive skin.
This body butter recipe incorporates magnesium, which is often called the “magic mineral” due to its ability to relax muscles and support restful sleep.
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