Thursday, June 5

Homemade Bug Bite Salve

I love this time of year.

Everything around me is growing, blooming and basically coming alive. Unfortunately, that also includes mosquitoes. We've had a lot of rain lately, and thus a ton of those pesky little buzzers have been showing up as soon as the sun starts to set. Years ago, when my oldest attended a daycare and bug repellent was insisted upon, I did some research and came across a product called Badger Balm. We, as a family have been using it ever since. I love it! As with any all natural repellent, it doesn't quite rival it's chemical laden counterparts, but it does a pretty darn good job. As long as you don't mind smelling like lemon and citronella. For the bites we do encounter, I have a really simple to make salve to share with you. It takes about 2 minutes start to finish. 

A few months ago, I took a serious interest in essential oils and finding more natural ways to treat basic ailments. So when my children were all sitting around the table scratching their swollen elbows and knees, I pulled out my copy of "Surviving When Modern Medicine Fails" by Scott Johnson. The book, despite it's extremist title is my favorite go-to for essential oil reference. He suggests using either Lavendar or melaleuca. We have treated minor burns and skin irritations using Lavendar with great success. I decided to try the melaleuca because it's a bit more potent in the skin soothing department. The base of the salve is coconut oil which as antibacterial and anti-fungal components that I felt would serve us better than using an olive oil base. 

So far this slave has worked out great for us. It needs to be reapplied about every two hours until the bite no longer bothers you.

What you need:
4 tablespoons organic coconut oil
1 tablespoon grated beeswax or pastilles
1 tablespoon sweet almond oil
1 vitamin E gel capsule (unless your almond oil has it added already - mine does)
15 drops of Melaleuca or Lavender

In a double boiler or microwave, slowly melt down the coconut oil, beeswax, and almond oil. Only heat it long enough for the wax to disappear. If you decide to use the microwave, heat your ingredients in a glass container for 20 second increments stirring between each 20 seconds. Once you have a clear liquid, stir in the contents of your vitamin E capsule (pierce it with a toothpick and squeeze it into your mixture) and then gently stir in the essential oil. Pour your mixture into a glass or metal container and pop it in the refrigerator until it's set. The end product is shelf stable but super soft to the touch.

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