Ah summer! The sunshine, the gardening, the sports, the playing! And all that comes with being more active and outside more--including, the boo boos. This salve is for the minor scrapes, cuts, and abrasions that are part of living, working, and playing: part of well-lived lives. Made with local, well-listened-to and loved plants. We made this for ourselves and friends out of local plants that are trusted friends. And, we are all adults, so please check with a trusted medical professional--and your trusted parental others--before using this with young children.
Ingredients: Organic olive oil infused with local calendula, chamomile, dandelion flowers, purple dead nettle, and cottonwood buds, plus locally sourced beeswax. The calendula, chamomile, and purple dead nettle were grown here at Silly Dog Studios on Whidbey. The dandelion flowers were grown here at Silly Dog and also ethically wild gathered on Whidbey in places where they live well away from roads and poison spraying. The cottonwood buds came from windfall branches after winter windstorms gathered on friends' farms both here on Whidbey (at beautiful Nice Hen Prints farm) and in Arlington, WA (at stunning Mountain Tree Farm). The beeswax I use comes from Maya Farm on Whidbey, and when she doesn't have any, from Brambleberry in Bellingham, WA.
Size/container: Reusable 2-ounce, screw-top tin. If you'd like a larger tin of this, let me know. I'm thinking about doing a 4-ounce tin.
To use: Use a clean, well-washed fingertip to apply a bit of salve to well-cleaned minor cuts, scrapes, and abrasions. One to three times a day, as needed. Cover with a clean bandage when that's helpful. Consult your trusted medical professional (doctor, nurse practitioner, naturopathic physician, or clinical herbalist, for example) for more serious cuts/scrapes/abrasions, and if your skin doesn't heal as expected, and also before using this salve with young children. As with all our products, if your body or their body doesn't like this salve, stop using it.
What our relationships with local plants bring us! Your experience of the flowers, plants, and tree buds in this salve may be remarkably different from ours: that's the nature of relationships with the living. See medical disclaimer below. And. Here is what our relationships with the local plants and trees (interconnected with our relationship with the land, local wise women, and ancestors) in this salve bring to us:
- Calendula - Infused into olive oil, calendula just seems to adore human skin! We use this skin healing and tissue and cell repair champ for scrapes, cuts, abrasions, chapped, and sometimes mildly sunburned skin. Has antiseptic and anti-inflammatory properties, aka Boo Boo Superpowers.
Dandelion flower - We find the dandelion flower-infused oil that we make to be both calming and mildly pain relieving, similar to lavender in some respects. And there's just something about the sunny disposition of the flowers and the bright yellow infused oil that is also uplifting to the spirit. Uplifted spirits are useful when you have a boo boo.
- Purple dead nettle - Another lovely, just-outside-our-doorstep friend that too many overlook as a "weed." Here we use it for its astringent (skin contracting) and styptic (stop bleeding) properties. I've read it has antimicrobial (anti-bacteria and anti-fungal) properties, too. Thank you, quiet beauty.
Cottonwood buds - Oh this powerhouse! Here, after just one season of working with them, we can verify what so many other herbalists say (most recently I was reading Pacific Northwest Medicinal Plants by Scott Kloos, such a lovely book). Namely, that they reduce swelling, help prevent infection, and promote rapid skin regeneration, which is how they ended up in this salve. In listening to a dozen other herbalists, I'm also convinced that cottonwood bud oil will likely extend the life/shelf life of this salve well out beyond our other salves, but I haven't been making it long enough to know for sure. Here we also use our cottonwood bud-infused oil for joint and muscle pain and carpal tunnel pain and inflammation. I'm so blown away by it that I now plan to offer cottonwood bud oil on its own, or in a massage oil blend, before 2021 is over.
- Chamomile - In this salve, we use chamomile-infused olive oil (not essential oil) because it's gentle (on the plants themselves and on us), and we believe its antimicrobial properties can help reduce the chance of infection. Pulled from the garden and infused into olive oil for six weeks, it is a gentle, trusted friend. However, if you're allergic to flowers in the Asteraceae family (chamomile's family), this may not be the boo boo salve for you.
Medical Disclaimer: You should probably avoid this salve if you have a known allergy to the Asteraceae family (where chamomile flowers live). And as with all our products, if your body doesn't like the plant, listen to your body. To make well-informed decisions for yourself, seek the guidance of your qualified health professional, such your medical doctor, nurse practitioner, naturopathic physician, and/or clinical herbalist with questions regarding your medical conditions, dosage information, and possible ingredient interactions with prescription drugs. This is especially important if you are pregnant, breastfeeding, taking prescription drugs, have a chronic disease or any chronic health concern, if you have allergies, or if you have never touched, worked with, or used products with these plants in them before. The information on this page is for general reference for further exploration and study. It is not intended as a replacement for professional medical advice. I'm an herbalist who leans on ever-deepening relationships with local forests and plants and herbs and flowers and lichen on Whidbey, local wise women, ancestors (my own and others), other herbalists, and learning traditional folk ways from people who love to share them, every chance I get. I intentionally spend a lot of time studying forests and plants and infused oils directly, plus I study community, wellness and connectedness, resilience, self-organizing groups, playfulness and deep fun, and life lived by elders who laugh often and don't take themselves too seriously--because I believe these are what I, and we, need to learn more about or become better at right now. I don't study illness and disease. I'm not a doctor. I'm not a scientist or a professional researcher in the allopathic (western) medicine sense. I've also never been pregnant. I experience myself as a sister, aunt, daughter, neighbor, spouse, dog and cat lover, herbalist, essayist, poet, natural researcher (with the doctorate degree pursued for fun to prove it), and every day mystic who's lucky and blessed to be a life-long student of plants and forests (thank you Grandma Kane), aware that the trees and plants at our doorstep are healers and that there is much wellness and confidence to be found in remembering and re-deepening our relationships with the plants, flowers, lichen, herbs, trees, and forests closest to us.