Simple Lavender Salve

Simple DIY Lavender Salve

This lavender salve is one of my all-time favorite things to make. It smells divine, but is not over powering. Perfect for dry hands, it also relieves rough patches on elbows and knees.

The best part: it is EASY to make. This recipe only contains 4 ingredients and a few simple steps.

If you have been intimidated by the thought of making your own body products, fear no more! This one is an excellent way to start.

It also makes a great gift.


Here is what you’ll need:


(Makes ½ cup, enough for two, small, 2-ounce jars)

¼  cup dried lavender flowers
5 to 7 drops lavender essential oil
2 tablespoons grated beeswax (Have a separate grater dedicated to grating beeswax – it does not come off! Don’t use a grater you want to grate cheese on again. You can always avoid grating by using beeswax pastilles.)
½ cup virgin olive oil


Heavy saucepan
Glass liquid measuring cup
Clean jars for finished salve (I use 2 ounce jars)
Rubber band
tea towels


Pour the oil into a heavy saucepan.

Add lavender flowers. Stir to combine.

Warm slowly over low heat. Once warm, turn off heat and let sit for 20 minutes.

Place cheesecloth over measuring cup and secure with a rubber band.

Strain lavender/oil mixture through cheesecloth.

Once most of the oil has dripped through, remove rubber band and pull the cheesecloth around the lavender. Squeeze any excess oil into the measuring cup.

(Have a towel nearby; your hands are going to be oily!)

Put a few inches of water into pan, place cup (with olive oil) into pan. Warm slowly over low heat until the water is simmering.

While the water is warming, add the 5 drops of lavender essential oil and 2 tablespoons of beeswax to the olive oil.

Let this mixture sit in simmering water and stir occasionally until the beeswax has melted. This takes about 10 minutes.

Once melted, pour into clean jars.

Allow to cool completely before putting the lid on.

Once cooled completely, the salve may have a dip in the top. But I don’t mind that. It shows it’s homemade.

Keeps for 6 months to a year.

I purchased my dried lavender, essential oil, beeswax, and jars from Mountain Rose Herbs.

This recipe is adapted from one found in Gardening How-To Magazine, May/June 2008 issue.

shg 5This is Day 11 in the 31 Days of Simple, Homemade Gifts Series. 


Links to Mountain Rose Herbs are affiliate links. I buy most of my herbs and oils from them. They are great!

This post was originally published on Nov. 11, 2010.

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  1. This looks great – I love the smell of lavender! And just in time for Christmas too. Thanks for sharing it with Simple Lives Thursday!

  2. oh wow, you made that look so easy! I’m thinking of trying this, though I’ve never tried making something like this before. I love, love lavendar :) Thank you for sharing this, and thanks for the tweet letting me know you posted it!

  3. That looks so easy! And I have two big lavender plants in my yard too! :) I think I will do something with them this year. Thanks!

  4. Question about your recipe: would “1/2 virgin olive oil” mean 1/2 “cup”? Sounds like a wonderful recipe. I plan to make these for Christmas gifts – and for myself, of course! Thank you for sharing the recipe.

  5. I was wanting to try to make this b/c it looks like it would be a nice gift, but i have one question. What exactly is a salve used for?

  6. I grow lavender as well. I am so making this next year!

  7. I am fairly new to herbs and salve making. I have read that infusions should sit infusing for a while. Is the infusing time shorter in this recipe because essential oil is also used? Thanks in advance for helping me learn. :)

    • I wondered the same thing the first time I saw this recipe. I hesitate to answer this question because I consider myself to be quite the amateur…perhaps the infusing time is so short becuase it is mostly for fragrance. The olive oil does most of the moisturizing. That was my take on it anyway…

  8. I just made a batch of this for my mom for Christmas. She has terribly dry skin, and most lotions don’t work for her. I cannot wait to give this. It’s sitting on my counter cooling and smells WONDERFUL!! Thanks so much 😀

    • Yay! I’m so excited you made this! What fun! I hope it helps your mom’s dry skin. My mother-in-law has said it is one of the only things that helps her. So maybe it will her your mom :)

      I made some for my sister this year…it’s going in her stockng :)It’s such a fun gift.

  9. I can answer your question about the infusing time. When you do the infusion on the stovetop, the time is much shorter. Another way to infuse is to cover the herbs with oil in a sealed jar and leave to sit for six weeks in a warm place. (The herbs should be at least one inch below the top of the oil.) This method takes much longer for the oils to infuse, but is a gentler way to infuse the oils and the best if you plan ahead. When infusing on the stovetop you should be very careful to keep the oil at a very low temperature. Anytime you heat a food, it deminishes its nutrients to a degree. But when you don’t have six weeks to wait, stovetop is the way to go.

  10. I am so excited to try this recipe! We have all these ingredients on hand after making our own creamy lotions and salves last year when my daughter was experiencing frequent skin lesions and ongoing hives. The lotion turned out great, but we had to do more research into natural mold inhibitors as there were no preservatives and it did not last long in the summer heat!
    This recipe seems easier (no double boiler or blender or distilling water) and equally natural and soothing for the skin.

  11. Thank you for this simple recipe! I’m TOTALLY going to make this as soon as my supplies come in! I think this would be a great calming aromatherapy tool as well! :-)

  12. elaine lancaster says:

    I am new to this and it is so exciting to learn how to do this thank you for having this page

  13. This looks like a great recipe! I have discovered that a few drops of Vitamin E oil helps to preserve the salve.

  14. I love this idea, but I was wondering if I wanted to add a vanilla scent to this as well what i would use?

  15. Could I substitute lavender flowers with jasmine flowers (same with jasmine essential oil)?

  16. can u just use the essential oil and forget the flowers??

    • It would have a much milder scent if you only use the essential oil. I’ve never tried it that way so I’m not sure exactly how it would turn out. But I expect the consistency would be fairly similar.

  17. Just stopping by to invite you to My Wednesday Linky party.

  18. Can you use powdered lavender? My local health food store has that. The flower buds are expensive, and you don’t get much for your dollar. Since I have a big family, big bucks.

    • I haven’t tried using powdered lavender. I assume you could but you would need less powdered lavender than if you used lavender flowers. But I’m not sure what the ratio would be. Let me know how it turns out if you try it.

  19. My salve is more like thickened oil. I am not sure what went wrong.

    • Sorry the salve didn’t turn out as you hoped. This is a rather soft salve, but it should be a little firmer than thickened oil. You can re-melt and add more beeswax to get it firmer.

  20. tnpakrat says:

    Just a quick question, as I have never ever done anything like this before, but I SO want to. Anyway…is it possible to color this? I think if it was tinted a very light “lavender” color it would look so much more appealing. Could I use a few drops of food coloring perhaps? Thank you so much for your awesome recipes and tips!! :)

    • I’m sure it is possible to color this. I have never done it,so I can’t give much advice about that. I’d look for a natural food coloring, since it will be soaking into your skin.

  21. Hi there,
    Why olive oil? Could coconut oil be used in its place?

  22. Has anyone tried using coconut oil instead of olive oil?

  23. Can the salve be syored in plastic small containers instead of glass?

  24. I think I would melt the beeswax on its own, rather than in combination with the infused oil and essential oil. You don’t want to heat the other two ingredients if you don’t have to, or you could lose some of the beneficial properties. I’d like to try this, though. :)

  25. An outstanding share! I’ve just forwarded this onto a friend who was conducting a little homework
    on this. And he actually ordered me dinner simply because I
    found it for him… lol. So allow me to reword this….
    Thank YOU for the meal!! But yeah, thanx for spending some time to talk about this topic here on your blog.

  26. Could I let the lavender soak in the olive oil for a week or two (like your calendula salve) instead of heating it up twice?

  27. Amanda lew says:

    I plan on making a salve for my sister as a gift and I was wondering if you could make it a different color by using food coloring and not have it stain.


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