Making your own salve is especially rewarding when you can harvest many of the ingredients you need straight from the garden. And that includes a homemade salve for wrinkles.
This article discusses which components are recommended to make an effective salve for wrinkles. It also provides a shortlist of some common garden plants (and a few substitutions) that have been studied for their anti-aging abilities, as well as a 2-step recipe for a homemade salve for wrinkles.
Components In a Homemade Salve for Wrinkles
When researching herbs for your own homemade wrinkle salve, there are certain nutrients and minerals that you should consider incorporating into your remedy for their anti-aging properties. Below are 5 essential components:
- Vitamin C increases the skin’s elasticity. It also plays a large role in repairing sun-damaged skin and lightening sunspots.
- Anti-Oxidants protect the skin from free radicals which cause damage to cells during the natural oxidation processes.
- Zinc acts as a protective barrier against free radicals so that collagen production isn’t impacted.
- Copper is a building block for creating proteins and collagen for your skin. Interestingly, it also plays a key role in removing damaged cells as well. It binds to enzymes that increase the elasticity of your skin by tightening, softening, and toning your skin.
- Collagen stimulating compounds can be found in a large variety of plants and is essential for plump, wrinkle-free skin.
So now that we know what to look for, we can consider some plants with these attributes.
Common Plants With Anti-Aging Properties
Weeds, leaves, and seeds found in the garden can all be used to make an herbal infused oil, which, when combined with beeswax and essential oils, make a smooth, nourishing salve to reduce the appearance of wrinkles.
Below is a list of plants from the garden and other ingredients that you can use to make your own homemade salve for wrinkles. These include;
|Nettles||contain plenty of silica and vitamin C as well as other trace minerals that promote healthy skin. They are also strong anti-oxidants and are common in many anti-aging creams.|
|Calendula||is widely used in many facial products to stimulate collagen production and increase blood flow. It is also an anti-oxidant and a great source of vitamin C.|
|Plantain||also known as Plantago, is common in anti-aging products thanks to its proven ability to stimulate collagen production and maintain your skin's elasticity. It is also an anti-oxidant and has a reasonable amount of vitamin C.|
|Dandelion||is a common digestive, but when used topically, research has found that it helps to hydrate the skin at the same time as promoting collagen production. The leaves and flowers can assist with treating sun-damaged skin, while the roots help to generate new cells.|
|Geranium||has been shown to increase cell production, including collagen, and like many of the other herbs on this list, it’s an anti-oxidant. It can also help to treat varicose veins.|
|Pomegranate seeds||are high in vitamin C and antioxidants and can reduce the appearance of sunspots. They have plenty of compounds that improve the condition of your skin as well.|
|Burdock root||can protect the elasticity of your skin which can reduce wrinkles. It also has a relatively decent concentration of copper, and trace amounts of vitamin C and zinc.|
|Ginger||is high in vitamin C and antioxidants and contains some zinc and copper as well. It increases circulation which promotes healthy skin.|
|Chinese date tree||grows vigorously in my garden, so I have dried some of the seeds to add to my salve. Chinese date extracts are very common in many anti-aging products thanks to their high levels of antioxidants, vitamin C, and other nutrients and minerals which support skin cell regeneration. The seeds need to be thoroughly scrubbed to remove any remaining flesh since even dried fruit can have around 10 –15% moisture content remaining in them.|
|Sage||is effective at removing oil from the skin and tightening pores as a strong astringent. It has powerful anti-bacterial, anti-inflammatory, and anti-oxidant properties and it’s regularly used in anti-aging products thanks to its ability to stimulate blood circulation, regenerate healthy cells, treat varicose veins and reduce the appearance of both broken capillaries and sun damage.|
|Shea butter, coconut oil, and cocoa butter||are all common in anti-aging creams because of their high concentrations of fatty acids which help to soften your skin. They also have a large variety of vitamins that increase circulation, cell growth, and your skin's elasticity.|
|Olive oil||is high in antioxidants and can protect your skin after UV exposure.|
There has been an enormous amount of research into the use of plants in the production of anti-aging remedies. This means that you can be really creative with your homemade salve for wrinkles, and if you don’t have access to any of the suggested herbs on the list above, then you can easily substitute it with its essential oil, or any of the herbs below;
- Aloe Vera studies showed a promising result for reducing the appearance of wrinkles.
- Lemon is packed with anti-oxidants and can lighten sunspots. It also has stacks of vitamin C to protect the elasticity of your skin. Essential oil is the best way to add lemon to a salve to ensure no water or moisture is introduced to it.
- Pennywort helps your body to produce collagen and improves the strength and texture of your skin. It also increases circulation.
- Horsetail can be invasive but it’s often found along watercourses and damp areas. Studies found that a 5 – 10% concentration of horsetail extract was enough to heal wounds and regenerate skin due to the high amount of silica present. Like many herbs, it is also an anti-oxidant.
- Green tea is full of compounds that repair sun-damaged skin and help to reduce the signs of aging, including anti-oxidants, minerals,s, and vitamins. Black tea has similar properties, but will potentially stain the skin.
- Witch hazel has the ability to tighten pores and control oily skin, however, it shouldn’t be used by people with dry skin.
- Comfrey root is another strong antioxidant that is also high in vitamin C, with traces of copper, zinc, and other crucial minerals for collagen and skin cell production.
Recipe For a Homemade Salve for Wrinkles
- 10 – 12 g of shea butter
- 10 – 12 g of cocoa butter
- 10 – 12 g of coconut oil
- 10 – 12 g of olive oil
- 5 – 6 g of beeswax
- ½ – 1 tablespoon of each herb listed above
- A few drops of essential oil
These amounts make approximately 30 – 40 grams of salve, which fills a 50cc cosmetics jar.
Making this salve is a 2-step process, which is outlined below.
Step 1: Make an Herbal Infused Oil
- Scoop the shea butter, coconut oil, and cocoa butter into a glass jar.
- Add the olive oil.
- Melt the butter and oil by sitting the jar in a pot of warm water (approximately 100 °F).
- Add the dried herbs listed above, screw the lid on tightly and shake. Ideally, all of the plant material should be immersed in the oil.
- Allow the herbs to infuse into the warm oil for at least 3 hours (the longer the better). I re-heat the pot of water and give the jar a shake every 20 minutes.
- Strain the oil. Now your herbal infused oil is ready for step 2.
Step 2: Make a Salve
- Pour 30 – 40 grams of infused oil from step 1 into a small jar, and set the jar in the pot of warm water again (maximum 150 °F).
- Add approximately 5 – 6 grams of beeswax and stir until it has melted.
- Test the consistency with a cold spoon. If you aren’t happy with it, then add more butter and oil to make it softer, or more beeswax to harden the salve.
- Add a few drops of some beneficial essential oils and stir. In my case, I have chosen sandalwood, basil, and lavender for their anti-oxidant properties.
- Remove the jar from the warm water and allow it to cool to set.
Apply your garden-sourced, homemade salve as part of your daily routine to reduce the signs of wrinkles.
Learn From My Mistakes
I must not have cleaned the date seeds thoroughly enough, since my first attempt at the infused oil resulted in a small amount of foam forming on the surface of the oil (see photo below).
This foam is an indication that moisture (and possibly other impurities) has accidentally been incorporated into the infused oil, probably in the form of some dried flesh still stuck to the seeds.
If this happens, there are 3 options;
- Start the infusion again without the culprit (in my case, the dates), or
- Start the infusion again, but make sure any dried seeds have been scrupulously scrubbed of any remaining flesh.
- Add a preserving agent to the salve. Unfortunately, there isn’t really a 100% effective, garden-sourced preserving agent, strictly Many plant-based products can minimize the likelihood of mold and fungi growing, but a preserving agent practically guarantees it. You could add some vinegar or citric acid as a way to increase the shelf life, but this would introduce more water into the salve while not completely solving the problem. If you intend to buy a preserving agent, look for something with both benzyl alcohol and sorbic acid – this will treat both the bacteria as well as the fungi.
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