Making an Herb-Infused Oil

An herb-infused oil is an extraction of herbs in oil. This is one of the simplest preparations for beginners and experienced herbalists alike. You can use herb-infused oils for cooking and homemade skin-care products, from bath soaks to body scrubs, body oils, skin serums, soap making and more. Herb-infused oils can be used for all sorts of preparations, they are a great way to begin your herbal craft-making journey.

Herb-Infused Oil Methods

There are multiple ways of making an herb-infused oil. This can be via a solar infusion, where you infuse the carrier oil in herbs on a sunny windowsill and let the heat of the sun lightly extract the herbs in oil. Another method is by infusing the oil in a dark and cool cupboard for a month, this is usually advised for oils and herbs that oxidise under heat. These 2 methods involve a slow and long extraction over the course of 1 to 2 months. If you are looking for faster results, you can infuse your oil via a double boiler method for 4 to 8 hours, or in a very lightly heated oven, infusing the oil overnight.

For this journal entry we will be sharing the folk method and the quick double-boiler method for herb-infused oils.

What you’ll need:

  • a jar
  • mortar & pestle
  • carrier oil(s) of choice (ie. jojoba, sweet almond, olive oil, grapeseed, fractionated coconut or evening primrose oil, etc…)
  • herb(s) of choice
  • strainer and/or cheesecloth

Folk Method

The folk method involves infusing the herbs in oil under a sunny windowsill or dark cupboard over the course of 1 to 2 months. For oils that oxidise under heat (such as rosehip and olive oil) it is best to infuse the preparation in a dark cupboard. Otherwise, harness the sun’s heat to lightly infuse the herbs in oil. You can add tocopherol vitamin E to protect the oil from oxidisation, simply add 0.1% to 0.5% of tocopherol vitamin E.

Base Recipe

  • 1 litre jar
  • 1 part herb(s) of choice
  • 2 parts carrier oil(s) of choice

When you combine 2 or more herbs and/or oils with each other, this can synergise the preparation to strengthen the individual components with each other. You can either synergise the preparation by infusing multiple herbs and oils in one jar, or infusing the herbs in oil individually, then combining the strained oils after the infusion process.


1. Grind the herb(s) in a mortar and pestle to activate the volatile aromas.

2. Place the herb(s) in a sterilised jar, top it off with the carrier oil of choice.

3. Close the lid and shake thoroughly between your hands to fully macerate the herbs in oil.

4. Label the name and date of your preparation.

5. Place the herbs in a dark cupboard or sunny windowsill over the course of 1 to 2 months. Shake every day or so to thoroughly combine.

When it’s ready:

  • Strain the oil through a cheesecloth and/or strainer.
  • Press the herbs with a spoon to squeeze out any liquid in the herbs.
  • Discard the herbs in your food waste. Bottle the oil infusion, label with botanical names and date.
  • Depending on the shelf life of your oil, store the preparation in a cupboard for 6 months to 1 year or more.
  • You can now use your oil for cooking and skin-care preparations.

Quick Double-Boiler Method

This quick method is great if you are looking for fast results and you’re short on time, or simply impatient to wait a whole month. It involves using a makeshift double boiler method, which is so simple and efficient.

Base Recipe

  • 1 litre jar
  • 1 part herb(s) of choice
  • 2 parts carrier oil(s) of choice


1. Prepare a double boiler: place a heatproof jar in the middle of a stainless steel pot

2. Fill the pot with around 2-3 inches of water. The jar should stand firmly at the centre of the pot. Make sure water never enters the jar.

3. Pour the oil and herbs inside the heatproof jar.

4. Very lightly heat the preparation for 4-8 hours. It is advised to heat this preparation at the lowest temperature possible to prevent any oxidisation.

5. After 4-8 hours, strain the oil.

6. Bottle, label and store in a cool and dark cupboard. Use as needed in your skin-care, body-care or cooking preparations.

Pro tips:

  • Use dried herbs to prevent rancidity. Some herbs, such as St.John's Wort are best infused fresh. In this case, add 0.1%-0.5% tocopherol vitamin E to prevent rancidity.
  • If herbs don't sink down to the bottom of the jar eventually, and are exposed, floating at the very top of the jar, you might notice mould or decay- if this is the case, simply scoop the herbs out of the jar.
  • Shake the jar daily to thoroughly macerate the herbs.
  • Some herbs are harder to macerate in oil and are best prepared in alcohol or glycerin extraction. Always research before-hand to be certain of which solvent to use for extraction.


Best Herbs for Oil Infusions




St. John's Wort










and more, way more!

Let us know what you end up crafting!

Comment below to share your herbal crafts with us, or take a picture of your preparation and tag us on instagram! @AlkamiCare #AlkamiCraft

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