This natural skin remedy is prepared from the golden flowers of the calendula plants, which has been used for medicinal purposes since the sixteenth century. To create the calendula ointment, an oil-based infusion is produced from the flower petals and then mixed with a base. This essential oil has wound-healing and anti-inflammatory properties. In addition, it has carotenoids, which can help to regenerate skin cells. As a result, calendula ointment is useful for treating skin wounds and inflammation, as well as frostbite. However, because of oil content, it should not be used for burns. The therapeutic remedy is sold ready-made at natural-health stores or can be prepared at home. To use, apply a thin layer to affected areas o9f the skin several times a day.
Infuse about ½ cup dried, powdered calendula flowers into 1 cup olive oil and soak for 14 days; strain well and refrigerate. (Be sure to buy calendula and not the American marigold Tagetes.) If you would prefer a salve instead, add 1 oz. beeswax to ½ -3/4 cup oil and ½ cup of calendula flowers.
Calendula ointment has two principal effects on skin wounds. First, it act as a natural antibiotic to kill germs, thereby cleaning the wound and helping to prevent infection. Second, it promotes blood-cell growth in regenerating skin tissue, speeding the healing process and helping to minimize thew formation of scars.
Calendula ointment contains volatile constituents, yellow-orange carotenoids and other natural pigments, flavonoids, saponins, alcohols, enzymes and various organic acids. Depending on the manufacturer, store-bought products may contain additional substances.
Treatment of chapped skin and cold sores
Calendula ointment helps moisturize and heal chapped or cracked skin and lips. It may be a particularly effective remedy against as fever blisters, appear on the lips and are caused by a type of herpes virus.
Extra tip : To ensure a ready supply of fresh ointment (card front), simply refrigerate small amounts of the olive-oil infusion-the oil in the ointment without the beeswax and cocoa butter-in covered containers. The oil will keep for more than a year.
Used to speed healing of cuts and scrapes, skin inflammations, frostbite, bruises, sprains, eczema and scars
Methods of administration
- For varicose veins
Gently apply calendula ointment to affected areas twice a day. The ointment promotes blood circulation and helps speed healing.
Warning: To avoid damaging fragile veins, do not rub or massage the ointment into affected areas. Instead, gently spread a thin layer of ointment over the affected sections.
- For bedsores
If you are confined to bed for a long time, sores (decubitus ulcers) often develop, especially in the area of the heels, elbows, collarbone and tailbone. To help them heal, gently rub the ointment into the bedsores several times a day. If necessary, cover the sores with gauze or bandages.
- For nail infections
The ointment's anti-inflammatory and germ-killing actions are very useful for infections of the nail bed. Apply the ointment directly to the affected area several times a day.
Healing of wounds
Calendula ointment may help with:
- Cuts or abrasions that are already scabbed over, but have a light rose-colored border, indicating possible infection.
- Skin wounds that are superficially inflamed.
- Wounds that are discharging pus.
- Painful areas of the skin or lips that are dry, cracked and highly sensitive.
- Athlete's foot or other fungal skin infections.