Mullein Leaf Infused Oil

Mullein leaf infused oil is a traditional herbal preparation that has been valued for its wide range of potential health benefits. This simple oil infusion captures the inherent therapeutic qualities of mullein leaves and flowers, making them easily accessible for topical use.

What is Mullein Leaf Infused Oil?

Mullein leaf infused oil is made by steeping mullein leaves and/or flowers in a carrier oil for an extended period. This allows the medicinal compounds of the mullein plant to gradually infuse into the oil, creating a preparation that can be applied topically.

The most common method is to fill a glass jar with freshly picked mullein leaves and/or flowers, then cover them completely with a carrier oil like olive oil. The jar is then sealed and left to infuse in a cool, dark place for 4-6 weeks. Over time, the oil will take on a rich green hue and the aromatic qualities of mullein.

Once strained, the vivid green mullein oil can be transferred into storage containers. Dark glass bottles are ideal for preventing light degradation. When properly stored in a cool environment, mullein leaf infused oil can remain potent for up to a year.

Why Use Mullein Leaf Oil?

Mullein leaf and flower oil has natural anti-inflammatory, demulcent, emollient, and astringent properties. For centuries, mullein oil preparations have been valued around the world for helping to:

  • Soothe skin irritations and burns
  • Moisturize dry, chapped, or cracked skin
  • Calm coughs and sore throats
  • Clear nasal and chest congestion
  • Relieve earaches and ear infections
  • Speed recovery from respiratory illnesses
  • Reduce swelling and redness

Modern research has confirmed many of the traditional uses of mullein. Studies indicate that mullein leaf extract has antibacterial and antimicrobial activities against certain strains of bacteria that commonly infect the:

  • Respiratory tract
  • Ears
  • Skin wounds

The oil’s anti-inflammatory effects help reduce swelling and discomfort associated with ear infections, sore joint conditions, and skin conditions like eczema.

Mullein oil also contains compounds like flavonoids, glycosides, and mucilage that fight inflammation and soothe irritated tissues. These natural compounds are what give mullein oil its incredible healing potential!

Top 6 Uses for Mullein Leaf Infused Oil

Here are some of the top ways mullein leaf infused oil is used to harness the plant’s natural therapeutic benefits:

1. Earache Relief

Drops of mullein oil in the ears may provide welcome relief for ear pain and ear infections. The oil’s anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial properties help reduce infection while the emollient oils soothe ear canal irritation.

To use: Apply 2-3 drops of warm mullein oil into the problematic ear. Repeat 2-3 times daily until symptoms subside.

2. Soothe Skin Irritations

Rubbing mullein oil on areas of dry, inflamed, or irritated skin can help restore smoothness and reduce discomfort. The oil’s natural anti-inflammatory and demulcent compounds reduce redness and swelling while moisturizing the skin.

To use: Apply a thin layer of mullein oil to affected areas 2-3 times per day. Avoid using mullein oil on open wounds.

3. Clear Chest and Sinus Congestion

Mullein oil makes an excellent chest rub or massage oil for relieving congestion and coughs. Its emollient oils loosen mucus buildup while the anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial actions help open airways.

To use: Massage mullein oil on chest, back, and throat area. Combine with eucalyptus or menthol oils for added decongestant benefits.

4. Soothe Coughs

The emollient oils in mullein leaf infused oil coat and soothe dry, irritated throats. The mild sedative and anti-inflammatory actions of mullein may also help suppress coughs.

To use: Swallow 1 teaspoon mullein oil straight or mixed with honey, as needed for cough relief.

5. Moisturize Skin

The oils infused in mullein leaf oil help counter dryness by restoring moisture to the skin. Regular application keeps skin supple and replenished.

To use: After bathing, massage mullein oil over entire body while the skin is still damp. Focus on extremely dry areas like hands, heels, elbows, and knees.

6. Hair Conditioning Treatment

A few drops of mullein leaf infused oil applied to the ends of the hair helps restore luster and manageability to dry, damaged hair. The emollient oils smooth the hair cuticle and add shine.

To use: Work 2-4 drops of mullein oil through ends of damp hair after shampooing. Allow to soak in for 5-10 minutes before rinsing out.

How to Make Mullein Leaf Infused Oil at Home

Making DIY mullein leaf infused oil at home is simple. Here are step-by-step instructions:

Ingredients

  • 1 cup freshly picked mullein leaves and/or flowers
  • 1 cup carrier oil (olive oil, grapeseed oil, almond oil, etc.)
  • 1 pint glass jar with lid

Instructions

  1. Harvest mullein leaves and/or flowers in spring or summer when plants are in full bloom.
  2. Rinse mullein gently to remove dirt and debris. Dry thoroughly with paper towels or allow to air dry for several hours.
  3. Fill a clean, dry glass pint jar with tightly packed mullein leaves and/or flowers.
  4. Pour carrier oil of choice over mullein plant matter until completely submerged. Stir with a clean spoon or chopstick to release any trapped air bubbles.
  5. Seal the jar tightly and place in a cool, dark location. Shake the jar daily for 4-6 weeks to ensure thorough infusion.
  6. After 4-6 weeks, strain oil through a cheesecloth lined sieve into a storage container. Squeeze plant material to extract all possible oil.
  7. Compost the strained mullein leaves and flowers.
  8. Store finished mullein leaf infused oil in a dark glass bottle in a cool cabinet. Use within 1 year for maximum potency.

Be sure to label bottles with the ingredient and date prepared. Never ingest essential oils not intended for internal use. Perform a skin patch test before topical use to check for allergic reactions.

Choosing the Best Carrier Oils for Extracting Mullein’s Benefits

The carrier oil you select as the base for your mullein infusion will impact the properties of the finished oil. Here are some of the best oils to use to draw out mullein’s therapeutic qualities:

Olive Oil – The most classic choice. Olive oil has a rich, full-bodied texture that infuses easily with mullein. Its high concentration of anti-inflammatory oleocanthal makes it an excellent base for respiratory and joint formulations.

Sweet Almond Oil – This light, well-absorbed oil allows mullein’s emollient properties to really shine through. Almond oil’s high vitamin E content also acts as a natural preservative.

Grapeseed Oil – Another light option that won’t overpower mullein’s aroma. Grapeseed absorbs quickly without a greasy feel. Its mild flavor makes it ideal for swallowing mullein oil to soothe coughs or earaches.

Sunflower Oil – High in skin-nourishing vitamins and minerals like vitamin E, zinc, and selenium. Has a light consistency and high smoke point perfect for massage oils and chest rubs.

Jojoba Oil – Not technically an oil, but a liquid plant wax. Jojoba mimics the skin’s natural oils which makes it easily absorbed. A good choice for facial or body moisturizing oils.

Hemp Seed Oil – Dense in nutrients and anti-inflammatory compounds to complement mullein. Provides deep moisturization without clogging pores, great for all skin types. Has a strong nutty aroma.

Experiment with different oil bases to find the texture and absorption rate you prefer. Always choose high-quality, food-grade oils when making herbal infused oils.

Appearance, Scent, and Texture

Mullein leaf infused oil takes on distinct characteristics based on the plant material and oils used.

Color – Fresh mullein flower infused oils have a vivid golden yellow to amber color. Oils made with just leaves are darker grassy green. Over time, heat and light will cause fading.

Scent – A sweet, earthy, herbal aroma. Hints of honey when made with flowers. More robust and grassy with leaf oil. Fading scent indicates age.

Texture – Depends on carrier oil, but generally a smooth, creamy consistency. Absorbs well without greasy residue. Thicker than watery essential oils. Leaves a light emollient film on the skin.

Adding other herbs like garlic, St. John’s wort, or calendula flowers will alter the oil’s therapeutic properties. But straight mullein leaf oil retains the pure essence of this beneficial plant.

Is Mullein Oil Safe?

Mullein leaf infused oil is very safe for most people when used topically or for short-term ingestion. No serious side effects have been reported. However, as with any herbal preparation, caution is warranted:

  • Conduct a patch test before extensive use to check for allergic reactions or skin sensitivity. Apply a dime size amount of oil on inner arm and monitor for redness, itching, or rash over 24 hours.
  • Avoid getting mullein oil in eyes as it can blur vision and be irritating. Flush eyes with water if contact occurs.
  • Don’t apply to open wounds or broken skin. The oil creates a protective barrier for intact skin but may increase risk of infection on broken skin.
  • If swallowing mullein oil, use the smallest effective dose needed and do not exceed recommended serving sizes.
  • Discontinue use if any signs of adverse reaction occur like digestive upset, dizziness, or breathing problems.
  • Mullein oil is not recommended for children, pregnant/nursing women except under medical supervision due to lack of safety studies.

Conduct thorough research and consult an integrative medicine practitioner before using herbal oils to treat health conditions. But as part of a holistic wellness routine, mullein leaf infused oil is generally very safe and extremely versatile!

Complementary Herbs and Essential Oils to Enhance Mullein Leaf Oil

While mullein leaf oil shines on its own, combining it with other synergistic herbs can enhance the therapeutic effects:

  • Garlic oil – Boosts antimicrobial action, great for ear and respiratory infections
  • Calendula oil – Soothing anti-inflammatory, prevents infection, repairs skin
  • Chamomile oil – Relaxing antispasmodic, aids insomnia, calms coughs
  • Eucalyptus essential oil – Decongestant and antibacterial for stuffy nose/chests
  • Lavender essential oil – Calming analgesic for earaches, burns, headaches
  • Rosemary essential oil – Improves circulation, stimulates hair growth, boosts mental clarity

A few drops of complementary essentials oils can be added after the oil infusion is complete. This provides the flexibility to customize mullein oil blends for specific needs.

Incorporating Mullein Leaf Oil into Herbal Remedies

Beyond direct topical use, mullein leaf infused oil can be a stellar ingredient in:

Respiratory Salves – Combine with beeswax to create a soothing balm for congested lungs and stuffy noses. Spread on chest or rub under nose.

Ear Drops – Excellent replacement for synthetic ear drops to fight infections. Combine with St. John’s wort oil and lavender essential oil for enhanced efficacy.

Skin Salves – Mix with calendula oil and plantain oil to create an ultra-soothing salve for cuts, burns, rashes, hemorrhoids, and eczema.

Chest Rubs – Blend with eucalyptus, menthol, and camphor oils for an easy DIY vapor rub to clear congestion.

Massage Oils – For sore muscles and arthritic joints, blend with St. John’s wort, arnica, turmeric, and ginger oils.

Hair Products – Add to shampoos, masks, and styling products to moisturize, soften, detangle, and add shine to hair.

Vapor Therapy – Add a few drops to a diffuser or bowl of hot water. Inhale the aromatic steam to open clogged airways.

An Herbal Infusion Alternative – Mullein Leaf Tea

In addition to infused oil, mullein leaves and flowers can be made into a therapeutic herbal infusion. Mullein tea provides an internal complement to topical use of the oil.

To make mullein tea:

  • Steep 1-2 teaspoons dried mullein leaves/flowers in 1 cup just-boiled water for 15-30 minutes
  • Strain tea through a fine mesh sieve into a cup.

Mullein tea has a pleasant, earthy taste. The infusion can be enjoyed up to 3 times daily for respiratory, immune, and gastrointestinal support. It’s an excellent expectorant to clear excess mucus and soothe coughs.

The antibacterial action of mullein tea may also help speed recovery from illnesses like bronchitis, flu, and even urinary tract infections. Some find mullein leaf tea soothing to occasional digestive upset or insomnia as well.

Final Thoughts

Mullein leaf infused oil is one of the simplest ways to harness the plant’s antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory, demulcent, emollient, and astringent properties. This traditional folk remedy has withstood the test of time as an effective natural treatment for earaches, skin irritations, cough/congestion, and dryness.

By infusing the leaves and flowers in quality carrier oils, mullein’s therapeutic compounds are extracted and made easily accessible for topical use. The oil’s versatility makes it useful in a wide range of herbal preparations from salves to vapor rubs to hair products. It also has an excellent safety profile when used appropriately.

As modern medicine returns to ancient practices, time-honored herbal infusions like mullein oil are regaining popularity. Integrating this traditional European botanical into your natural health regimen provides access to mullein’s wealth of potential benefits.