Comfrey, the name comes from the Latin “con firma” meaning “with strength” due to this herb’s incredible capacity to heal wounds and broken bones. Its scientific name is Symphytum from the Greek “sympyo” meaning grow together and “phyton” meaning plant. Also known as knitbone, boneset, bruisewort, among many other names, comfrey has been cultivated since ancient times and used medicinally for speeding up recovery. Comfrey is also anti-inflammatory, pain relieving, reduces swelling, and is best suited for healing bruises, sprains, strains, fractures, and relieving arthritis pain. This herb has been extensively researched and its effectiveness proven. That is why it is so beneficial to apply a comfrey salve directly to the injured area.
White willow bark contains salicin, a chemical compound similar to aspirin. In the body it is metabolized to salicylic acid which is known to relieve pain. We can also get salicylic acid in our diet by eating a wide variety of fruits and vegetables and in particular adding cumin to season our food. White willow bark is an effective analgesic and especially beneficial for arthritis pain.
Horsetail is an excellent source of silica which is necessary for the body to repair bone tissue. Silica helps to fix calcium meaning that more calcium can be stored for stronger bones and tendons.
St. John’s Wort has a rich concentration of antioxidant and anti-inflammatory compounds which help soothe muscle and joint pain. St. John’s Wort also increases circulation of oxygenated blood to the skin cells to help stimulate repair and speed wound healing.
I make all my salves in small batches using the folk method, meaning I don’t use measuring tools. I love this salve and if you want to make your own, here’s what to do: find a jar with an air tight lid. Gather together the comfrey (leaf and root, I prefer to powder it), white willow bark, horsetail, and St. John’s wort. It is up to you to decide how much of each herb to place in the jar (if you can’t decide just do equal parts). I like to make my salves very potent, so I usually end up filling the jar about 3/4 full with herb. Then pour your preferred high quality oil (sweet almond, apricot, sunflower, olive, etc.) over the herbs to nearly the top of the jar, seal tight, and shake! Shaking the jar agitates the herbs so that they infuse into the oil. Shaking the jar also adds your good juju to the mix which is important when you’re making medicine. Let the jar sit in a window for at least two weeks, shaking the jar every day. Let the herbs know you’re thinking about them. Like this:
When it’s time, strain the herbs from the oil (if you’ve used any powdered herbs, make sure you use muslin or a piece of fabric so you won’t have any grittiness in the final product). In a double boiler, melt your shea butter and beeswax into the strained oil. (Lately I have been doing equal parts shea butter and oil plus about a tablespoon of beeswax. Add more beeswax for a firmer salve and remember the freezer test: put a little salve on a spoon and pop it in the freezer to test for desired consistency. Once everything has melted, remove from heat, allow to cool slightly, then add desired essential oils. My strong bone salve features rosemary, peppermint, and wintergreen, all of which are known for their pain relieving qualities.
Once everything is combined pour into clean jars, allow to cool completely, and bada bing bada boom, you have your very own strong bone salve! Ready for use! For bones, ligaments, tendons, muscles, and bruises. Helps to alleviate swelling, speed recovery, relieve pain, and soothe arthritis. Enjoy!