Powerful Black Drawing Salve

two tins of black drawing salve

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Ever had a splinter that was just out of reach of the tweezers? We’ve got an easy answer to help: drawing salve.

A drawing salve is an herbal medicine that has its roots in the Amish community. Ingredients like clay and charcoal can physically draw things out of the body. It can help pull out splinters & other foreign substances, stingers, toxins, soothe bites, and blemishes. 

It’s a great addition to your first aid kit. I mixed up a batch today because we’re leaving on a camping trip tomorrow with the grands. We’re bound to have a few splinters and other misadventures during our trip. But that’s not the only thing it’s good for. Ever have a stubborn blemish or an ingrown hair that’s driving you crazy? Yes, this drawing salve will come to your rescue. 

What’s in a drawing salve?

ingredients of black drawing salve

The two main drawing ingredients in our black drawing salve are activated charcoal, and bentonite clay. Activated charcoal is well known for its effectiveness in pulling out and absorbing toxins and poisons. Bentonite clay is powerful at both cleansing and drawing out infections and toxins. it also enhances the drawing action of the activated charcoal.

The main base oil in the salve is calendula infused olive oil. Calendula infused oil is one of my favorite bases for skin salve because calendula offers so many skin benefits. Check out this post to learn more

mason jar with calendula olive oil

Jojoba oil is a great addition, though it’s actually not an oil; it’s a wax. Jojoba oil is actually a liquid wax that is extracted from the plant’s seeds. According to Siphon Draw Apothecary, “This is one of the only plant oils that chemically resembles the natural oils on our skin.  It is such a close match that it’s hard to tell them apart. There are also some forms of vitamin E in it and they eliminate free radicals which means it helps fight signs of aging.

Jojoba oil is antimicrobial (fights germs), antifungal (fights fungus), and naturally moisturizing. Plus, it is deeply hydrating which is something you definitely need if you live in the desert. It easily absorbs into your skin and helps soothe and soften it at the same time.”

I like to add some essential oils as well. There are many great options. Oils like tea tree, lavender, pettigrain, and frankincense can help with infection fighting and wound healing.

black drawing salve

So how do you use it?

Clean and dry the area that needs the salve. Apply a generous amount of drawing salve and cover with a bandage. Be sure to clean away any extra salve.  Leave on several hours – overnight is ideal.  When you’re ready, carefully remove bandage, salve, and anything the salve has drawn out. Repeat if necessary.

This is a great salve! But be warned: Charcoal stains. Be aware of this and take precautions like covering with bandages so you don’t ruin clothes or sheets. It’s amazing stuff though, so totally worth it!

two tins of drawing salve
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Black Drawing Salve

Simple to make salve will be ready to use before you know it. You'll be all set the next time you're dealing with a splinter or sting
Keyword: bentonite clay, calendula, diy, essential oils, first aid, salve


  • cup calendula infused oil
  • 2 teaspoons beeswax pellets
  • 3 teaspoons activated charcoal
  • 3 teaspoons bentonite clay
  • 40 drops essential oil – use any combination of the following: tea tree, lavender, pettitgrain, frankincense, helichrysum, palmarosa, or yarrow


  • comine infused olive oil, jojoba oil, and beeswax in double boiler (I use a fancy pyrex measuring cup in a saucepan with water) until melted.
  • Remove from heat and stir in charcoal and clay. Be sure to mix thoroughly
  • Add in essential oils
  • Pour into jars or tins and allow to sit until cool and set.
    The salve will keep for at least 6 months. We’ve used it for up to a year. I tend to make smallish batches of this so it gets used up before too long. 

Looking for more DIYs?

Settle: a calming soap with calendula

Settle into bedtime with this calming soap If you’re looking for a fairly simple soap to make that is packed with skin soothing ingredients —

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