I know that I promised, several weeks ago, that I would be blogging about budget measures we can all use in this economy.
Those posts are coming, I promise, and this is just the kind of thing I'll be posting about...not buying what you can make yourself.
This post and recipe is a little different, however, because I researched this lotion and made it for my friend Gina to use after her radiation treatments. Now my father-in-law is starting radiation treatments and I am making it for him as well.
Calendula is known for its healing properties for burns and severe rashes, among many other uses. I read about it shortly after my friend Gina was diagnosed, and decided the least I could do was to make some natural products for her to use to hopefully help her side effects. I made some anti-bacterial balm and gave it to her to use on rashes she developed during chemo. I also made calendula lotion, which she is now using for her radiation burns. She said she keeps a bottle in her car (in Ohio) which is nice and cold so she can apply it just after her treatment.
You can read about calendula here -- it's a great herb to have around and I plan to put some in my garden this year.
I made some more calendula lotion this evening, but I had a difficult time tracking down my handwritten recipe, so I thought I better post it for safe keeping (sad but true). I also made some calendula-infused sterile water so both Gina and my father-in-law can use it for compresses at home. My father-in-law is having radiation on his spine (and his name is Paul if you can keep him in your prayers).
I purchased my dried calendula petals at a local health food store, and some of the other products as well. I also have some other resources for some of the ingredients and if you can't find them, leave a comment and I'll send a few suggestions.
I used a kitchen scale to make this lotion, as well as an immersion blender or regular blender. For my first batch I used the food processor and I don't feel it emulsified as well. This time I used the immersion blender and I think it worked better. You can get an inexpensive kitchen scale (at amazon or a local department/grocery store) as well as an immersion blender. I use my immersion blender a lot, as well as my scale and they are worth the money, especially if you can make products for home a lot less -- most ingredients cost so much less than the products you buy in the store and the time commitment is not only free, but minimal.
If you need lotion for radiation burns, eczema, diaper rash, this is a great product. I use it for just plain old dry skin as well.
6.5 ounces calendula infused oil
(I used apricot kernel oil the first time, but avocado this time because it has greater healing properties for skin)
I used this link for learning how to infuse the oil, as well as the sterile calendula infused water for compresses. It's not difficult.
1.5 oz. melted cocoa butter
1.5 oz melted coconut oil
2 t. vitamin E oil
2 t. beeswax pellets (melt after measuring)
3 oz. distilled water (MUST be distilled water or lotion could spoil quickly)
In the jar of the blender (or a large -- one quart -- glass jar if using immersion blender) place infused oil, melted cocoa butter, coconut oil and vitamin E oil. Add melted beeswax. Start blender on low or immersion blender (if you are using an immersion blender you will need a helper to pour the water). Slowly drizzle in the distilled water until it is all incorporated. Mixture should be nice and creamy but not terribly thick.