Hello, friends! I hope you are all having a restful and warm Sunday. We’ve just returned from church (we were late) and brunch (we were loud), and the kids (plus Andrew) are gearing up for naps. Time for me to plop myself down and write! I shared a peek at a recipe I’ve been using for quite awhile yesterday on Instagram and received so many messages on how to make it. Here you are!
So long story short, Theodore has really dry, sensitive skin, and ever since he was itty bitty, has been experiencing dreadful eczema flair ups now and again. He will go months with not a patch on him and then bam! He’ll have seven. I am sure it has a lot to do with his diet (hey ho gluten, hey ho dairy, hey ho sugar), and some to do with the changing of the weather, but any way you shake it, it’s miserable and has is mama makes me feel so bad for him. I am going to try and start limiting certain foods from his diet and do more gut-related research and see if that makes more of a long-term difference, but in the meantime I made a healing salve for his skin. It is very similar to one I used to make when he was a baby, but this one has more calming ingredients and is much more salve-y in texture, which I like. This time around added some beautiful golden infused calendula oil I have been letting warm on our kitchen window sill for a little over a month. Ideally, I wanted it to go a full six weeks before straining, but because calendula has so many soothing and restorative skin healing properties, I added it to this salve as well. I also added Vitamin E oil, and some roman chamomile essential oil too. The beeswax, grapeseed oil, and cocoa/shea butters create a really wonderful remedy that locks in moisture and heals from the inside out.
One more thing before I share my all-natural and organic recipe…we have tried everything with Theo regarding store-bought Eczema medicines, creams, and sadly, even steroids. Nothing has worked as well as this salve. I am sure we’ve spent somewhere in the ballpark of several hundred dollars trying to heal his poor skin, and in the end I resorted to making my own products based on a lot of reading and researching skin-soothing ingredients. Plants heal!
Ingredients: *all ingredients should be organic
- 1/2 cup grapeseed oil
- 1/2 cup infused calendar oil – or olive oil as a substitute
- 1/2 cup coconut oil
- 1/4 cup Vitamin E oil
- 2 tablespoons beeswax pellets
- 1 tablespoon cocoa butter
- 1 tablespoon shea butter
- 5 drops roman chamomile essential oil
- 5 drops rosemary essential oil
- 5 drops tea tree essential oil
- 5 lavender essential oil
- 5 drops clove essentail oil
- 5 drops eucalyptus essential oil
~makes 2 cups
To prepare, combine all ingredients above, leaving out the essential oils, in a double boiler saucepan. You’ll want a sturdy set specifically for this – look around at thrift stores or secondhand shops to find one! Melt the oils, beeswax, and butters together over medium heat, stirring often. Once everything has melted together, turn off the heat and add the essential oils. You could also add the essential oils into the jar you are storing the salve in if you prefer to do it that way. Just make sure to mix everything after you’ve poured. Once you’ve poured the salve into glass jar(s), set it aside overnight to cool and set. This recipe makes a consistency similar to petroleum jelly which is nice for an all-over application. For a thicker consistency, add 1 additional tablespoon of beeswax pellets to this recipe.
Even if you do not have eczema but has really dry skin in the colder months, this salve is a good one to have on hand. My legs get really dry in the winter, so I’ll be using this as well, especially after hot baths and steam showers! Do you have little ones who suffer from really sensitive skin or eczema? Isn’t it awful? I am curious to know what kind of remedies and/or lifestyle changes have helped, if any? Thank you for your input, and if you have any questions, I am happy to help answer them!
Sara - Hey there! Any adjustments for infants? My babe is 4 months today and I’m not sure it should be as potent for her. Thank you!
Mar - Thanks so much for sharing this! We always struggle with dry/cracked skin in the winter and I haven’t been able to find anything that works. Definitely going to give this a try!
jillian - oh boy…mama of an eczema baby here and i feel your pain! my boy, atticus, had a year-long flare on his back and shoulders 😩 i tried every cream, did serious elimination diets for him AND me since he still nursed. i definitely notice a big time difference when we stay away from a lot of wheat products, dairy in small doses seems fine but what finally cleared it all up was removing EGGS! i miss them terribly and he never seemed to like them much (body wisdom!). it is so hard to avoid in baked goods and breakfasts out, but seeing his skin completely smooth is worth it! i would start with the top 8 allergens and remove one at a time for two weeks at a time. it worked for us and i so hope it does for you to because i know how much it hurts to see that red inflamed skin on your baby 🙁 good luck!
Robin - Have you ever looked up minimalist baker? She bakes mostly gf, vegan (dairy and egg free) dishes. Flax seeds and water can replace eggs.
Robin - Going to get real dorky here, but we have food sensitivities in our house. My girl is lactose intolerant, but we have discovered that sheep and goat dairy is fine with her. Perhaps you can give it a try. Trader Joes has an outstanding goat yogurt that with a bit of maple syrup (only a plain variety), is delicious. We’ve been dairy free, gluten free, the whole nine yards… best to log everything in a journal and try not to be too ocd about the process. I have, after 5 years, finally gotten laid back about it. Good luck!
Anna - I am so grateful to benefit from your knowledge and experience, I will be making this for sure! I also love your everyday face cream. Would you consider adding links for your sources for beeswax, and butters? It would be so helpful and maybe give back a tiny bit to you if they are affiliate links?
Courtney - I get eczema and I use emu oil and it goes away within a day or two. You should look up the benefits of emu oil. It’s pretty amazing stuff.
Nikki - I use a simplified version of your homemade cream and it works wonders on both of my children’s eczema prone skin. I warm sesame oil with dried calendula flowers on the warming unit on my stove for 3-7 days, strain, pour the strained oil back into the pan, then warm on low heat a ratio of 4:1 oil to beeswax pellets, stirring until they dissolve. Then just pour into glass or tin containers. I don’t use essential oils bc everything seems to irritate their skin. This plain recipe is safe for even the youngest baby!
Elizabeth - Hi Amanda,
Thanks for this post which I’m really keen to put into action, I have eczema prone skin which flares then disappears, never having found the reason. I too wonder about the gluten, dairy, sugar effects but eliminating these as a mother of 3 active children and a hungry hubbie isn’t easy. My question, as a Brit living in France, we don’t weigh our ingredients in “cups”, do you know what 1/4 or 1/2 cup measures in other units? Or do you measure in a plain old mug?! Can’t wait to try, thank you for sharing x
Christy - Amanda, as far as gut health- I found a great food based probiotic that has done great things for my son. Definitely limits his flare ups and helps him heal. It is by Garden of Life, Kids Raw Probiotic, I find it on Amazon, and in Sprouts. Good luck!
Shauna - My little girl struggled with eczema as well. We eliminated eggs and dairy from her diet and she hasn’t had a flare up since. Absolutely love your beautiful blog. It inspires me daily.
Michele - What a lovely salve! I wanted to share what has worked for my eczema because I know well the struggle. I endured it for most of my life until I went to just the right dermatologist who let me know that for most people eczema occurs because there is an absence of the protective skin mantle. This acid mantle is what protects the skin from bacteria, and without it the bacteria invades and we get eczema. She recommended Cerave and I am ever so grateful. I never get eczema anymore! It may well be that there are allergies at hand, but this information might be just the help you need :).
Karolina - Hi! I’m so grateful for this recipe. I have suffered for egzema since I was 12 and also have dry, sensitive skin. I’ve tried everything: egzema medicines, creams and steroids, even’ ve been on gluten and dairy free diet. Nothing has worked well. Lately I started using some natural ingredients (shea bitter, coconut oil, bee wax) and it’s fine (egzema still comes up, but my skin isnt that dry). Anyway, good luck with your son!
erin (everything with love) - our daughter’s eczema lessened a bit when we gave her a break from dairy and gluten and added probiotics for six months. never fully healed it, just took away inflammation (it was literally ALL OVER her body). we ended up consulting with Dr. Aron online, who prescribed a mild compound cream, and we also keep her off dairy, do chiropractic, and a nasal spray, because her allergist has had good results with allergies/eczema by clearing up chronic sinus issues. all of that has almost completely healed her skin, she only gets a mild flare around her mouth now and then (i’m sure due to too much of a certain type of food she’s sensitive too, but not fully allergic to). we have a salve just like this we get at a local store, and we love it. she calls it her “special lotion” 🙂
Kirsten - How do you make your calendula oil? Do you just steep calendula flowers in an oil of your choice?
Daniela - I love natural, homemade products. You’ve inspired me to start using natural products to clean our house so I’ve been using some of your recipes. Thank you! I don’t have a useful tip for eczema but my daughter started getting diaper rash when she was almost 12 months and the best remedy has been a homemade cream including many of the ingredients you have listed here. One question I have is, is there a difference between german and roman chamomile?
Katherine - Thanks so much for this recipe! Nothing seems to work on my eczema so I’m excited to try this. How do you infuse your calendula oil, in case we wanted to make some ourselves?
admin - Katherine, to make Calendula Oil follow these steps:
1. fill a jar with organic, dried calendula flowers
2. pour organic olive oil in the jar until it fills it, covering all the flowers.
3. Set the jar in a window sill for a few weeks, preferably 4-6, shaking it every so often.
4. Strain and use!
Eve - Alright! I’m getting everything together to make a double batch of this. Christmas gift anyone? I’m just curious about the essential oils you have chosen. It’s such a neat combination! Chamomile, duh. Lavender, double duh. Rosemary and tea tree, less obvious but I totally get it. Eucalyptus, I only use eucalyptus when anyone is congested or their nose becomes a faucet, so I’m interested! And clove, well, why clove? Did you chose the oils based off their healing properties? I’m assuming yes, since it is a healing salve. Please let us know more. 🙂 It must smell AMAZING. And hey, good luck with your little man, looks like you are on the right path. I would suggest an elimination diet like most of the comments. I have witnessed and heard many good things from cutting out a few of those allergens. In our house dairy is a big culprit!
Sarah ann - Please tell me where you source all your ingredients from and then do you have a bunch of extras… or is there a way to buy just the amounts you need? My little bunny is Rashy and itchy and nothing is working!
Jamie - Can this be made without the coconut oil? My daughter is allergic to coconut.
admin - Jamie, you bet! The coconut oil does help it bind, so I would add a little more beeswax to the recipe instead. xx Amanda
Jamie - Thank you so much!!! Can’t wait to make it again, this time minus the coconut oil.
Julie Wilson - I’m 71, never had eczema in my life before this past late summer. I’m sure I have narrowed it down to an allergic reaction to nightshade vegetables. Including the tiniest bit of spice used. It’s not only unsightly, it’s irritating and can be painful. It’s certainly been eye opening for me personally. I am still working on the diet and finding the right lotion. I look forward to trying your recipe. Thank you for sharing.