Have you noticed these pretty purple flowers popping up in lawns and grass verges? It’s called Prunella Vulgaris, and is also known as Self-heal, or all heal. It’s old common names included sicklewort, hook heal and carpenter’s herb. It flowers throughout early summer, and early Autumn.
As the name suggests, it has a huge range of uses in herbal medicine and has uses ranging from the treatment of flu to cuts and wounds. It has also been shown to be effective in the treatment of outbreaks of herpes.
Self-heal was abundant in my garden this summer, and I used it to make a flower essence, which is an ingredient in my Pure Bliss Essence Mist, which is available from my shop, Bliss Botanicals. The flower essence is good for self healing (again, as the name suggests!), motivation, inner direction and transformation.
I also harvested some flowers, on the Full Moon just after midsummer, and made a self-heal infused oil. There are two ways to do this, a hot infusion, which I talked about recently in my post about Frankincense, and a cold infusion, which is what I used in this instance. To make a cold infusion of self heal, you simply harvest the flowers and put them into a glass jar, cover with olive oil, and leave on a sunny windowsill for around four weeks. After the colour has gone from the flowers, strain off the plant material by pouring into bottles over a muslin cloth.
I ended up with quite a large quantity of self heal oil, so I thought I’d use some to make a cream, and mix it with some of my favourite herbs and aromatherapy oils, calendula and lavender.
50ml Self Heal Infused Oil
15g wax (I usually use plant based waxes for my remedies, but today I happened to have some beeswax to hand, so this is what I used, plant based waxes would also work just as well)
50ml calendula infusion. To make this I added a few teaspoons of calendula flowers to a tea strainer in a mug of hot water.
10 drops lavender oil
Saucepan of hot water
Put the self heal infused oil along with the wax into the pyrex jug and set on the stove in a saucepan of hot water over a medium heat, until the wax has melted into the oil.
Meanwhile, make up your calendula infusion using hot water and dried calendula flowers.
When the wax has melted, use the thermometer to make sure that the oil and wax mixture, and the calendula infusion are roughly the same temperature.
Then, pour both the oil and wax mixture, and the calendula infusion into a large bowl or jug and add the lavender oil.
Using your electric whisk, mix the ingredients together until you have a smooth cream. Pour into your jars, label, and store in a cool place.
The result is a beautiful, thick moisturising cream which will be brilliant for sore and chapped hands in the coming winter months. If you don’t have any self heal oil, then you could just use plain olive oil, or purchase some calendula infused oil perhaps. The cream would also be good to use as a healing cream for cuts or sores.
I made this cream last week, and at the weekend my toddler managed to dive headfirst into the coffee table, as toddlers are so good at doing. He had quite a red looking bump coming up on his head, so I applied some of the Self Heal cream, and it had calmed down so much by the next day. So this is a very handy cream to have if you have a bump prone toddler around the house!
This recipe is adapted from one of my favourite books about Herbalism, Hedgerow Medicine by Julie Bruton-Seal and Matthew Seal.
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