I have already made a Rosemary salve with coconut oil. An amateurish job by steeping the stems in hot Coconut oil for an hour so. I use it anyway. There are lots of recipes on the Internet.
Next, I'd like to make a peppermint tincture. God, I have a lot of mint. The process takes vodka, Brandy, Everclear or a vegetable glycerin. That part I like.
But making a salve takes time, anywhere from six weeks to a year depending on which instructions you follow: from drying leaves to layering them in oil in the dark. I was impressed by the process, but I don't have that kind of time.
I'm preparing to make a peppermint/sunflower salve. Something I can use that will be good for my joint pain and stiffness. Ever since I was a kid my dad had this liquid mentholatum that was kept in a 10 ounce brown bottle with a white cap. I'm sure it was a tincture.
Before it was shaken, you could see different colors of liquid that were brown, red and orange, like geological layers. That's what made the stuff appear so magical. You had to shake it before applying, making the colors dissolve into one another.
Whenever I had a stiff neck my dad was there with his concoction. He used it sparingly. Applying a dab with his thumb, my dad could work any muscle kink out.
Maybe it was the dad effect. His strong hands finessing my neck muscles and tendons, stretching them out along my shoulders. Eventually, I could move my head normally, and my neck was pain free.
And then when he ran out of tincture, we began using something store bought and less effective. Although the scent was the similar, it just wasn't the same. That's how I remember it, any way.