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Friday, April 11, 2014

Home Made Nappy/Diaper Change Salve

This is a perfect salve for nappy change times and cradle cap and one you'll want to pin. It is made simply from the garden using the super healing properties of common plantain. Used with calendula, another wonderful skin healing herb also found commonly in most gardens and chamomile incorporating the anti-inflammatory properties, this salve will soothe, nourish, heal, cool and promote soft healthy skin.

Gather fresh leaves of plantain before the energy of the plant goes into seed head production. After dew has dried is the best time as the herbs need to be absolutely dry before they go into the oil or you risk rot in your infusion. 
The leaves can be simply bruised/crushed and placed straight onto bites, stings, rashes or sunburn as an immediate remedy making it an excellent first aid.

Place the leaves along with the calendula flower heads and chamomile flowers into a large glass jar and cover with olive oil. Place somewhere warm, my kitchen bench catching the last of the Indian summer warmth is perfect, and turn gently from time to time to make sure the oil is mixing through the herbs. Leave for a month to infuse.

After a month of infusion, strain well through filter paper or a cloth lined strainer.
Measure the amount of infused oil and grate 10% in beeswax.
For instance if you have 800ml of infused oil, grate 80g of beeswax. This gives a nice manageable set to the salve but it melts so readily when applied to warm skin.
On a very low heat gentle combine the oil and grated beeswax till melted. 
Remove from heat. At this point I also add a few drops of vitamin E oil to extend the preservation.
Pour into clean glass jars or pots and cover straight away and leave to set.
Label and date.
A great gift for new babies.

Best practice is to use a clean stick or spatula every time but that is not entirely practical at nappy change time. We simply use our right hand for wiping and cleaning and then our left hand to take a single scoop from the pot thus keeping it from contamination. You wouldn't want to wipe a bottom and then transfer that back into the pot.
28/06/14 - We had a salve making session at our Living Better With Less group this month and you can find additional information in the link here from some general Q&A that came up.


  1. I have been looking for a salve recipe! Not for nappy rash, but I will use the general idea, thanks for sharing!

  2. Thanks for the recipe, Tanya. Hope your daughter and you are enjoying the new bundle of joy!

  3. How I'd love to sit down and visit with you over a cup of tea - you have a wealth of interesting information!

  4. I never used anything on my daughter's bum other than cloth diapers and lots of nakey-butt* time. But, I think I'm going to try this for all the rashes and dings we're getting working around the yard this spring. I scraped ton of burr comb from the hive yesterday, so I have some lovely fresh wax to use for this!
    *Scientific term for spending time sans diaper

    1. "nakey-butt" love it Kat! Maybe I should start a scientific terms column on the side bar! There is also some scientific sense in what you say too....urea is used in more than half the cream/moisturising preparations and certainly it is common in and prominent in all those heel repair creams. Urea was also advised for other foot fungal problems and soldiers in the trenches would use their pee to good advantage.

  5. I make a similar salve but add lavandula officinalis oil and comfrey in too. It's brilliant for chapped lips to sore botts and we all love it. The lavender also promotes sleep and I love putting it on my lips just before bed so I slip off to dreamland smelling it. Nothing like knowing there are zero nasties being put on such a sensitive area and such sensitive skin of such little people too.


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