When I (Emma) was a kid every mom had a little white jar with a pale green lid in her medicine cabinet. It was the mysterious “black magic cream” and those moms spread it liberally on infected cuts, boils, and even splinters.
I haven’t seen that little black jar in decades but I recently discovered that the same ointment is commercially available online and in pharmacies like CVS. A warning, it took my CVS several weeks to get their Ichthammol Ointment in stock, in spite of running a two-for-one ad. It works just as well as that magical little white jar.
For those of you who are a bit more adventurous you may want to make your own. I have not tested this recipe from wellnessmama.com but if you do, please let us know what you think!
Black Drawing Salve Recipe
- 3 Tablespoons of comfrey, calendula and plantain infused olive oil (see instructions below)
- 2 tablespoons Shea butter
- 2 Tablespoons of coconut oil
- 2 Tablespoons Beeswax
- 1 teaspoon Vitamin E oil
- 2 tablespoons Activated Charcoal Powder
- 2 Tablespoons Kaolin Clay
- 1 Tablespoon honey
- 20 drops (or more) Lavender Essential Oil
- Before making the salve, it is important to infuse olive oil with comfrey, calendula and plantain. You will need 1 tablespoon of each of the herbs, finely powdered in a food processor or blender, and ½ cup olive oil. It can be infused in one of these two ways:
- Powder the herbs and place in a small jar. Pour oil over the herbs. Leave in jar for 3-4 weeks, shaking daily, and then strain through a cheesecloth for use.
- Heat the herbs and olive oil in a double boiler. Leave on low/medium heat for about an hour until oil gets strong smelling and darker. Strain through cheesecloth for use.
- Personally, I keep a big jar of olive oil with plantain, comfrey and calendula in my herb cabinet and let it constantly infuse for use in salves and lotions. When the oil is used, I discard the herbs and begin the process again.
- Combine infused olive oil, shea butter, coconut oil, beeswax, vitamin E oil and honey in a glass jar in a small pan of water. Heat the water to a simmer and carefully stir mixture in the jar until all ingredients are melted.
- Remove from heat and add activated charcoal, kaolin clay, and lavender essential oil and mix well.
- Quickly pour in to small jars or tins and let sit until hardened (several hours).
- Store in airtight container and use as needed on cuts, splinters, etc.
How to Use Black Salve
Make sure area has been cleaned well. Put a generous amount of black salve on the wound or splinter and cover with gauze or a large bandaid.
Leave at least a few hours or overnight to allow it to draw out the infection or object. Some things (like glass… in my experience) may take a day or two and several applications to draw out an object. This salve is a wonderful natural remedy but it is not a replacement for medical care when needed. Consult a doctor before using if you have any health conditions or concerns.