How to Make Dye for Home Treatments

Medicinal tinctures are concentrated extracts prepared with alcohol and medicinal plants, which allow herbs and their properties to be stored for long periods of time without losing their properties.

Most tinctures are prepared using alcohol, which works by extracting the components of the plant and as a preservative. These tinctures can be purchased at drugstores or health food stores, or can be prepared at home in a homemade way, using good quality alcohol or vodka and dried herbs. 

Step by Step to prepare a Homemade Tincture

How to prepare homemade tincture with vodka

To prepare homemade tinctures it is necessary to use medicinal herb in dry form and good quality vodka, which must be prepared as follows: 

Ingredients: 

  • 200 g of dried herb or herbal mixture. In the case of fresh grass, it must first be dried before being used in the preparation of the tincture; 
  • 1 liter of vodka with 37.5% alcohol percentage. 

Preparation method: 

  1. Sterilize a dark glass jar with a lid. To do this, you must wash the pot thoroughly with hot water and soap, let it dry and put it in the oven for 15 to 20 minutes;
  2. Chop the dried herb well and place in the glass jar, then add the vodka until the herbs are covered;
  3. Stir the mixture well and check that all the herbs are submerged; 
  4. Close the glass jar and let it stand for 3 weeks in a cool and airy place, stirring the mixture once a day;
  5. After 2 weeks, strain the mixture using a cloth coffee strainer or a paper filter;
  6. Put the mixture back into a sterile glass jar, which must be labeled with the date and the list of ingredients used. 

In the preparation of tinctures, only a medicinal herb or a mixture of herbs with medicinal properties can be used, depending on the problem to be treated. 

How to prepare homemade tincture with glycerin

It is also possible to prepare homemade tinctures using glycerin, which must be prepared as follows:

Ingredients: 

  • 200 g of dried herb or herbal mixture. In the case of fresh grass, it must first be dried before being used in the preparation of the tincture; 
  • 800 ml of Glycerin;
  • 20 ml of filtered water. 

Preparation method: 

  1. Mix the glycerin with the water;
  2. Place the chopped dry herb in a sterilized dark glass jar and add the mixture of glycerin and water over the herbs until they are covered; 
  3. Stir the mixture well and check that all herbs are covered;
  4. Close the glass jar and let it stand for 3 weeks in a cool and airy place, stirring the mixture once a day;
  5. After 2 weeks, strain the mixture using a cloth coffee strainer or a paper filter;
  6. Put the mixture back into a sterile glass jar, which must be labeled with the date and the list of ingredients used. 

Tinctures prepared with glycerin generally have a sweeter taste than those prepared with alcohol, and some medicinal plants that can be preserved using this method are peppermint, Lavender, Basil, Elderflower or Melissa, for example.

What they are used for

Dyes have several applications depending on the medicinal plant used in their preparation. Depending on what is intended, tinctures can be used to treat problems such as poor digestion, skin sores, cough, sore throat, stress, insomnia, skin sores, urinary tract infection or toothache, for example. 

Because they are concentrated, tinctures are generally stronger than teas or oil made from medicinal plants and therefore should be used with care and in moderation. 

How to Use Dyes

Tinctures should be taken orally whenever symptoms are present or whenever necessary. The recommended doses depend on the tincture and the herb used, usually taking a few drops or 1 teaspoon of the tincture (5 ml) diluted in a glass of water, 2 to 3 times a day.

In addition, some tinctures such as Arnica or Acacia , for example, can be used to prepare compresses to apply directly to the skin, in which case it is recommended to dilute 1 teaspoon of tincture in 2 cups of water. To apply the tincture under the skin, you must dip a gauze in the mixture and apply over the wound or skin area to be treated for 10 minutes, 3 to 5 times a day. 

The dyes must always be stored in cool and airy places and their shelf life varies between 6 and 12 months

When not to be used

Tinctures for containing alcohol are contraindicated for children, during pregnancy and breastfeeding and also for patients with liver problems or who are taking controlled medication. 

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