Herbal Spotlight: Arnica {+ an Arnica Balm Recipe}

Herbal Spotlight: Arnica {+ an Arnica Balm Recipe}

I started using arnica after a local tattoo artist requested a tattoo salve and handed me a list of ingredients (Healing Balm is my version of that tattoo salve). Arnica was one of those ingredients. I read up on the herb and realized that my ointments had been missing out on some great properties that arnica offers.


Arnica Montana is a yellow flowering herb that is often used for treating bruises, sprains and muscle pain. After pulling over 300+ pounds of RV paneling on my leg and foot, I had many huge (and quite impressive) bruises.

Normally, my bruises last forever, but not so after applying arnica balm. The bruises quickly faded, and were gone much faster than my typical bruise. Ok, I was slightly disappointed because those bruises were garnering some fun reactions. 😉

Fun fact: when I was little I really wanted a black eye because I thought they were so cool.

Pain Relief

One testimonial that I received about my healing balm was that it quickly relieved pain. I attribute that to the small amount of arnica used because arnica is known for its pain-relieving abilities. It works. Fast! I’ve used it for quick relief on bruises, scratches and burns.


Herbal Medicine (and many other sources) advises to only use arnica on skin that unbroken, meaning for bruises, pain or sprains. However, I do add a small amount of arnica to healing ointments that I apply to scratches and the like and have not experienced any adverse effects .

Do not take internally, unless it is in the homeopathic form, as it can cause dizziness, tremors and heart irregularities.

Arnica Balm Recipe

Arnica Balm Recipe for Bumps, Sprains and Bruises

  • 4 oz shea butter
  • 3 oz coconut oil (after herbs have steeped, add enough coconut oil back in to get 7  oz again)
  • 1 T dried calendula petals, packed tightly (calendula is known for its anti-inflammatory and healing properties)
  • 1 T dried arnica, packed tightly
  • 1 T candelilla or bees wax
  • 1/8 t vitamin e oil
  • 5 drops tea tree essential oil
  • 5 drops lavender essential oil

Turn your oven on to 200 degrees. When it’s warmed up all the way, turn it off. While it’s warming, melt the coconut oil and the shea butter in a pan on your stove top. Add the herbs and move the pan into the oven. Let it steep there for at least 4 hours.

Strain the herbs then measure the oil. Add coconut oil until it equals 7 oz. again.

Warm the infused oil up on the stove top and add the wax, stir until melted. Remove from heat and stir in the essential oils and vitamin e.

Store in a labeled jar in a cool place. Use for bumps, bruises and other painful boo-boos.

Do you use arnica?


  1. Tracy says

    I have a question about the coconut oil in this recipe… do you use the regular 76 degree stuff or the fractionated, which is liquid at room temperature? I’ve gotta try this!

  2. Doreen says

    Hiya as a complete beginner can you tell me please what the abbreviation T stands for . Doreen xx

  3. says

    Very nice! I have my whole right arm sleeved and left and have been making my own salves and antibacterial washes for years. my tatts haven’t looked so vibrant and skin looks very healthy……arnica is some good stuff but i fee it is too potent for me….i usually stick with Helichrysum, Hyssop, Myrrh, Moringa Oil, and Kukui oil…..

  4. Sue says

    What is the shelf life of this balm? I am eager to make it. Thank you very much for the recipe.

  5. Amy says

    Should I try to find the herb, Arnica, itself or would the essential oil work in the same way?

  6. Dawn Dillon says

    Hello, can I purchase this from you already made and have shipped to me immediately? I have a recent injury to my hand and could seriously use this salve. My current situation though doesn’t keep me in any one place longer than a week, which means I would need this sent to me right away through priority mail, so I have it in time. Please let me know directly right away at Music4lifenluv @gmail.com without the space of course, thank you!

  7. T. says

    Hi. I really appreciate your recipe. Any chance you have it in a video such as YouTube. I learn mych easier visually. Thanks!


  1. […] Arnica balm – I have a confession. I like bruises. I think they’re cool. I even wanted a black eye as a kid. (Ok, obviously I didn’t think about how I would have to get that). But when I accidentally pulled over several sheets of RV paneling onto my leg, I figured I needed to do something about the bruises or they’d be there for a long, long time. Enter arnica balm. Arnica montana is great for relieving pain and helps bruises heal very quickly. Here’s a simple recipe for arnica balm. […]

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