Winter Defense: Sage Body Oil Recipe

Traditional healers around the globe have used sage for centuries. If you have  sage growing in your garden, you have an elixir of good health right outside your door. Their soft, gray-green leaves will be at the ready for making this potent, aromatically earthy, warming infused oil.

When massaged into the skin from head to toe on a daily basis, sage-infused oil aids in strengthening the body’s immune system, supporting its defenses against outside invasion of the three main sources of disease: bacteria, viruses, and fungi. The oil conditions the skin, too, keeping it soft, elastic, and healthy.




• 1 ½ cup DRIED or 3 cups freshly wilted sage leaves
• 3 cups extra-virgin olive, soybean, or almond base oil
• vitamin E oil

Equipment: 2-quart saucepan or double boiler, stirring utensil, candy or yogurt thermometer, strainer, fine filter, funnel, plastic or glass storage containers

Prep time: 4 hours

Yield: Approximately 2 ½ cups


1. If you’re using freshly wilted sage leaves, first cut or tear the slightly leathery leaves into small pieces to expose more surface area to the oil.

2. Combine the leaves and base oil in a 2-quart saucepan or double boiler and stir thoroughly to blend. The mixture should look like a thick, pale green herbal soup.

3. Bring the mixture to just shy of a simmer, between 125 and 135 degrees Fahrenheit.

4. Do not let the oil actually simmer — it will degrade the quality of your infused oil. Do not put the lid on the pot.

5. Allow the herb to macerate in the oil over low heat for 4 hours. Check the temperature every 30 minutes or so with a thermometer and adjust the heat accordingly. If you’re using a double boiler, add more water to the bottom pot as necessary, so it doesn’t dry out.

6. Stir the infusing mixture at least every 30 minutes or so, as the herb bits tend to settle to the bottom. After 4 hours, remove the pan from the heat and allow to cool for 15 minutes.

7. While the oil is still warm, carefully strain it through a fine-mesh strainer lined with a fine filter such as muslin — or, preferably, a paper coffee filter — then strain again if necessary to remove all debris. Squeeze the herbs to extract as much of the precious oil as possible. Discard the marc.

8. Add the vitamin E oil and stir to blend. The resulting infused oil blend will be a rich medium to dark green in color, depending on which base oil you chose. Pour the finished oil into storage containers, then cap, label, and

9. Store in a dark cabinet.

Storage: Store at room temperature, away from heat and light; use within 1 year

Application: Once daily

Application Instructions: For maximum benefit, massage this infused oil into slightly damp, warm skin — fresh from the shower or bath. Apply daily for at least a month prior to cold and flu season, and continue to use it throughout the winter.

Bonus Sage oil makes a terrific diaper rash preventive and is wonderful added to salves and balms to help heal minor skin afflictions, respiratory infections, and dry, rough skin on the feet, elbows, and knees.


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