Homemade Calendula Oil
While studying for my Aromatherapy certification, I stumbled upon directions for making infused (or macerated) oils. These are carrier oils, which form the base for mixing and diluting essential oils.
I was super intrigued. As one who likes to try everything for herself, and who desires to try everything at least once...I really wanted to make this incredibly healing and soothing carrier oil on my own.
Not a true essential oil, Calendula oil is shared among friends as a beautiful and powerful way to heal skin ailments like psoriasis, eczema, severely dry or chapped skin, helping to soothe the area and relieve the pain and inflammation associated with these conditions (even cracked nipples). It's also reputed to have antibacterial and antimicrobial powers, as as well as a host of other benefits. It isn't all that common, and I loved that I could simply make my own, giant jar, for the same price that a teeny tiny bottle on Amazon would cost. Plus, I knew I could add a few drops of powerful healing oil to boost the therapeutic properties.
It was super simple, and a ton of fun.
TOOLS + MATERIALS
sterilized mason jar + lid, large enough to hold the mL of carrier oil you'll be using
4 oz homegrown organic calendula flower heads, fully bloomed, picked in full sun
if you have to buy them, ensure they're organic
a sunny window
a kitchen scale (or you can wing it!)
Harvest full bloom Calendula (Marigold) flowers in FULL SUN ☼
While this may seem like a trivial step, the timing of harvesting a plant absolutely affects the oil's therapeutic properties. (1) (2) So, full bloom, full sun it is. Collect 4oz. of plant material for every 600mL carrier oil. Pick a bit more than you think you'll need.
I weighed my flower tops to ensure I had enough raw material for the carrier oil.
After collecting a bunch of flower tops, weight them to ensure you've got a bit more than you need. Remove the green stems from the petals. You can re-weigh them if you want, but I didn't. Recipes are general guides for the most part, not exact science. Unless it's baking, and then, count me out ☺
What a beautiful circle of pure organic, calendula petals ❤
Macerate, or bruise, the petals. (I know, a little sad face!) I used the back of a knife and beat 'em up a little bit. You want to be able to see the marks. (This is the same technique chefs use to release more flavour from the fresh herbs they use - thanks for the tip Jamie Oliver!)
Add your macerated petals to a sterilized mason jar. I boiled mine in hot water for a few minutes.
You can see the colouring from the calendulas on my hands. Looks like I got bruised too 😢
Add your carrier oil(s) to your mason jar. Secure the lid, and place in a sunny window. Give the jar a good swish + swirl every day or two. It will be ready in 2 to 4 weeks. I waited about 3. You'll be able to tell when it's ready by the colour and aroma. If it starts to smell a bit 'off' to you, remove lid and place it loosely on top. This will prevent dust from getting in but also allow air to escape for the final few days. It get's bubbly!
When you feel your beautiful infused oil is ready, drain and filter the oil. You can discard the calendula petals or compost them. I haven't thought of a great way to use them yet. Any suggestions? I used a cheese cloth to strain my mixture. A regular kitchen one might be ok if it's fine enough. I liked the cheese cloth because I could squeeze the excess and get as much of this beautiful brew as possible.
You can store your homemade, organic calendula oil in a mason jar in a dark place for years. I share this with family and friends when they need some skin healing help. I love to add Frankincense, Lavender and Sandalwood to any skin healing blend. They all provide different healing benefits and really boost up the superpowers of this incredible infused carrier oil.
I'd love to hear your experiences and stories about making homemade, infused oils!
❤ Mel, xo
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* All statements are my own, not endorsed by any organization or institution.
** Please take care to note: I'm not a health care practitioner. I'm simply sharing the experiences and results I've had on my personal, natural health and healing journey. You should always consult a trusted health care practitioner for advice specific to your body, well being, and needs.