Monday Health & Wellness: Sore Muscle and Headache Salve |

Monday Health & Wellness: Sore Muscle and Headache Salve

admin December 5, 2011

As we’ve gone through these detox cycles with my husband Ben, he’s had various complaints.  His arsenic detox is finished, but now he’s detoxing mercury.  He was vaccinated as a kid and had mercury fillings, so that’s where mercury came from.  It’s just one reason we don’t vaccinate our kids (yes, thimerosal has been reduced, but actually not eliminated, and vaccines still contain fairly high amounts of aluminum and other toxic substances).

Anyway, this time around, headaches, especially migraines, have been a problem.  While various supplements and chiropractic adjustments helped to ward them off, he’d still get sore muscles in between vists and need some help.  I created this salve, and I use it to massage his neck and shoulders to relieve tension and soothe the headache. It could be used on any sore muscles, though.  It’s especially good for headaches because of the yarrow.

Sore Muscle and Headache Salve


  • 1/2 c. avocado oil (or any edible, safe oil — jojoba, sweet almond, apricot, etc.)
  • 1 tbsp. lavender flowers (dried)
  • 1 tbsp. yarrow (dried)
  • 1 tbsp. arnica flowers (dried)
  • 2 tbsp. bee’s wax


Gather up all your ingredients.


Pour your oil into a medium saucepan.  Add your herbs.


Stir to combine them.  Turn the pan on low heat and allow this to simmer (not boil, keep it very low and warm) and infuse for 2 – 3 hours.


Strain the herbs out of the mixture, reserving the oil and discarding the herbs.


Return the oil to the pan and add the beeswax.  Keeping it on low heat, stir occasionally until the wax has melted.  Pour it into a 4-oz. glass jar (pictured at the top) and put alid on it.  As it cools, it will solidify into a creamy salve.

To use, simply get a little on your fingers and rub into the sore spot. Try the back of the neck, shoulders, and temples if you have a headache.  Massage any tight muscles with this salve. For stubborn headaches, follow up with a hot or cold compress (whichever feels better to you) with a couple drops of clove or peppermint essential oil on it.

Have you ever used a sore muscle and headache salve?

**This post has been entered in Monday Mania at The Healthy Home Economist!**

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  1. Honestly, I just suffer through them if a heating pad doesn't help as I refuse to take OTC pain meds and don't have natural remedies on hand at home. Sadly, I've been getting a lot of headaches lately. I don't know if they're technically migraines or not (never been formally diagnosed but I think I meet many of the diagnostic criteria for them), but they sure do hurt. I am hesitant to get into natural remedies for a couple of reasons. Mostly, I'm nervous about the upfront cost of building my arsenal of naturopathic cures. Also, and this is related to the cost factor, I'm nervous that I'd invest and then they wouldn't work. I'd love to be able to get into this realm of natural living, but I'm apparently too nervous a "Nellie" to do it just yet. Maybe a New Years' resolution to learn more and begin saving up for this is in store for me. 🙂


    • I use to feel the same way. I still do at times now if I try to do to many things at once. I started by picking on thing and doing it. Start small. Work your way into a bigger variety. I started with a herbal tea. Now I capsulate some of my own herbs, and use essential oils. I have not made a salve yet but have found 2 great recipes today this one and a healing salve. I plan to try both.


  2. Great salve recipe! Definitely will try that. From what I've seen with my clients and from everything I've read, it seems the root of most migraines is the liver, so it's not surprising that during times of intense detox (and thus extra work for the liver) that migraines would increase. It's one reason that women have migraines around their cycles- as the liver works to conjugate the increased hormones during that time of the month, it is overburdened (in these folks) and thus a migraine occurs. Taking extra steps to support the liver, and reduce the load – by addressing digestion and blood sugar handling- can help a LOT! Thanks for all that you share with us 🙂


  3. Essential oils of basil and marjoram are great for sore muscles, too.


  4. I was introduced to a healing plant: "The wonder of the world" (or Kalanchoe pinnata) when I had a near migrane headache. One of the thick large leaves was warmed in a microwave and I put it on my forhead for 15 minutes and my headache was gone! It is used for infection, rheumatism, inflamation, kidney stones, eye problems and has other uses. Once you have a leaf, place either side down on soil and more plants will grow up from it. This plant is a God given healing wonder! This is just one link but there are others if you google it. Used in a liquid form also. I am anxious for my little plants to get big and they grow fast!


  5. I was so excited to make this, made my list & went to local co-op. They have lots of bulk spices & such. I found lavender flowers, but they didn’t have the yarrow or arnica flowers. Any suggestions? I have oil, lavender flowers and beeswax???


  6. I was so excited to make this, made my list & went to local co-op. They have lots of bulk spices & such. I found lavender flowers, but they didn’t have the yarrow or arnica flowers. I found both on Amazon, but I certainly don’t need 1 pound bags…. Any suggestions? I have oil, lavender flowers and beeswax???


  7. What do you think about adding peppermint oil to your infusion to help the headaches aromatherapy-wise? I’d also read that rosemary oil is excellent for them as well. Is that too much in one infusion?


  8. Ohhhh. Massage therapist with a love for lavender and arnica…gotta make this one. Thank you.


  9. Love this idea for my kiddos. I really don’t have OTC pain relief for them anymore because of sensitivities to ingredients and they rarely need anything, but when a headache strikes, I like to have something. The last thing I tried was a couple drops each of peppermint and lavender essential oils mixed with a touch of almond oil. My 7 year old loved it and was able to get to sleep and her headache went away. I don’t have very many dried herbs yet though, maybe next time I order from Mountain Rose, I will expand to include these. The kids adore the Wild weed salve from our Naturokit so I’ll bet I could come up with an equivalent for that too. Do you have a healing salve recipe somewhere?


  10. Would you consider allowing me to repost this headache remedy on my website are helping patients us natural whole foods to cure and prevent disease—???? I would certainly cite you and your blog as the authors


  11. Is the yarrow in this recipe yarrow flowers? Thanks!


  12. Headaches/migraines: Years of suffering. Started having them 24 hours/day. For years went through every medication and western medicine thought process available. Also did chiropractic treatments and cranial sacral therapy, these two things helped, but did not cure. My cure, yes cure has been in the mangosteen fruit. I drink the brand Xango, which is highly concentrated. Took two weeks of drinking 6ounces day, it had been at least 7 years. I was getting ready to go on disability, but did not. In my heart of hearts, I do believe the mercury in my teeth is the cause. I plan to start getting the mercury removed, my new year resolution for 2014. I must say, I am a little scared to do it. It frustrates me that people do not know about this juice.


  13. Hi Kate, love your work. 🙂 Do you have any idea what the shelf life would be on this salve?


  14. […] Sore Muscle and Headache Salve features yarrow, along with lavender and […]


  15. […] also take sore muscle and headache salve, especially if we’ll be traveling for a longer period of time.  It’s great for, as […]


  16. […] Sore Muscle Salve — There are a million uses for this.  If you’ve dropped something on your foot (I wouldn’t know anything about that…), if you’ve exercised too much, if you strained something…this can help.  And it lasts indefinitely on the counter so it’s easy to keep around.  A little massage with this and some rest and sore muscles feel better!  It’s also useful for headaches, especially tension headaches. […]


  17. […] got to try this DIY first aid salve.  (It’s one my favorite salves, next to my sore muscle salve, which we use a […]


  18. […] throughout your body and ease achy muscles by soaking in a bath with lavendar flowers or applying a soothing salve. It has also been used to reduce pain after surgery. A group of patients who received oxygen […]


  19. […] Lavender is a super popular herb.  It’s excellent for relaxation and restful sleep, and it also helps with burns and soothing irritated skin.  It can be used in a bath, in creams or salves, and it’s even edible.  Many moms like to have the essential oil around, and some also keep the whole herb (I do).   Lavender buds can be added to rice-filled heating pads for soothing scent — and these can be taken to bed with little ones to help them stay warm at night.  (The heating pads are warmed in the oven or microwave and slowly cool through the night.)  I add it to my headache and sore muscle salve. […]


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Hi, I’m Kate.  I love medical freedom, sharing natural remedies, developing real food recipes, and gentle parenting. My goal is to teach you how to live your life free from Big Pharma, Big Food, and Big Government by learning about herbs, cooking, and sustainable practices.

I’m the author of Natural Remedies for Kids and the owner and lead herbalist at EarthleyI hope you’ll join me on the journey to a free and healthy life!

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