Updated: Mar 4, 2019
Making herb infused oils is very easy to do and can yield an herbal oil suitable for making both useful salves and a tasty salad dressing!
Making an infused herbal oil can be as simple as adding oil to your plant material and letting it sit for a few weeks; very similar to making an herbal tincture - see my previous Basic Tincture Making post.
For a longer, very good explanation, check out this Mountain Rose blog post:
Please note, an infused herbal oil is not the same thing as an essential oil.
1. An infused oil can be easily made at home. An essential oil requires extraction using chemicals or hot steam. There are several sites that give ideas for how you can do this at home. I tried it once when I grew lots of lavender. Waaaay too much work in my opinion for a very little bit of oil. Not something that qualifies as folk herbalism in my opinion!
2. An infused oil uses very little plant material as compared to an essential oil that requires large quantities for a small amount of oil. 10,000 roses are necessary for 1 small bottle of essential oil. Ouch.
3. Infused oils are typically used externally, but can be taken internally without incident. Most essential oils are for external use only and can be fatally poisonous if taken internally in quantity. Essential oils typically need to be very diluted for external use to avoid irritating your skin and may cause allergic reactions, both to the user and to others who are exposed to the scent.
You may be able to tell I prefer using infused herbal oils as I can make and control exactly what it going into them and its final quality. However, essential oils are used w