If you love the healing feel of chest rub, this DIY vapor rub recipe is going to be your new favorite thing to reach for in cold and flu season. This soothing tincture has essential oils that can help you feel better faster—here’s how to make a batch of your own.
Isn’t cold and flu season the worst? Your body is aching and stuffy, trying to rid your body of bad viruses and bacteria. Rather than take a bunch of medications that can also be harsh on the body, I opt for natural solutions.
This chest rub is a natural way to relieve chest pain and feel good about what’s going on your body. It is similar to what you find at the pharmacy, but it’s a homemade recipe that has natural ingredients that you know and can pronounce.
Prepare for Cold and Flu Season
Although I wash my hands frequently and spend a lot of time indoors, every now and then I get a pretty rotten cold that puts me out of commission for a few days. While I do enjoy watching about 20 movies in a row (give or take), I do need a little bit of relief from the aches and pain that comes from a bad cold or flu.
Every year, I always do a quick inventory of my herbal medicine cabinet. It’s important to make sure I am well stocked and prepared BEFORE the cold and flu season begins. There is nothing worse than running out of the things that make you feel good while you’re feeling bad!
While I was doing my usual check, I really missed having a vapor rub for my chest. I didn’t want to purchase one as I always aim to make the natural versions of pretty much everything (check out the Natural Skincare Series for more natural recipes). I thought that making my own diy vapor rub might be just what the doctor ordered and tried a couple variations until I came up with this perfect replica!
The essential oils in this all-natural chest rub work wonders as a decongestant, so the next time you are so stuffed up that you can’t breathe, reach for a tin of this and rub it on your chest, under your nose, and/or on your feet (being sick is a great excuse to demand foot rubs from your loved ones).
The Power of Simple Ingredients
Like most products sold at the pharmacy, there are a lot of ingredients in commercial vapor rubs that I can’t even pronounce. The base of most recipes is typically petroleum based and often list camphor as an ingredient (a synthetic derived from turpentine and menthol oil). I don’t know about you, but I don’t want those ingredients anywhere near my skin!
To start off this recipe, I knew I needed a good base. The olive and coconut oils work to deeply moisturize skin, which is often dry if you’re spending your sick days indoors where the air is made drier by artificial heating systems.
Plus if you have dry, painful skin under your nose from scratchy tissues, rubbing a dab of this on can help to relieve the discomfort. Coconut oil also has natural antibacterial and anti-fungal properties, which can only help when you’re fighting a cold.
Perfect Blend of Essential Oils
Due to the menthol in peppermint, it is cooling and soothing in addition to being antibacterial and anti-inflammatory.
Eucalyptus is antimicrobial and acts as an excellent expectorant, perfect for the lungs.
Rosemary has many antioxidant properties and is also an anti-inflammatory.
And last but not least, lavender is a well-known calming oil that can help to soothe and promote sleep.
Keep in mind that essential oils are powerful and not regulated like drugs are. Please use common sense with any recipe and know that “natural” doesn’t necessarily mean “gentle.”
This recipe is homemade and works well for me and my family, but you should always test it on yourself before covering your whole body! You may have a reaction.
Also, this recipe is for adults only, as some of the essential oils are not recommended for children.
Homemade Chest Vapor Rub Recipe
This chest rub recipe is an absolute savior during the cold and flu season. I put it on morning, afternoon, and night to get some relief for my nose and lungs. Since it’s all-natural, you don’t have to worry about overdoing it and can reapply multiple times during the day. You’ll notice the effect it has on your sinuses even as you’re making it!
This recipe makes 3 x 4 oz tins.
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- 1 cup coconut oil
- 3/4 cup grated beeswax
- 35 drops eucalyptus essential oil
- 30 drops mint essential oil
- 15 drops lavender essential oil
- 15 drops rosemary essential oil
Melt the oils and wax over a double boiler or in a Turkish coffee pot on the stove. Be sure to stir it constantly and do not overheat. It should just melt, not cook.
Add in your essential oils. Once mixed, pour the oil into metal tins and let set. Re-melt to add more essential oils if you want it a bit stronger.
Rub balm on your chest to help soothe congestion and cough. While designed for the chest, you can also rub it under your nose for a stuffy nose and sore skin from scratchy tissues.
I also like to rub it on my feet (or have someone else do it)—the foot massage and tingling from the essential oils will feel good and distract you from your cold while the strong scent helps to ease congestion.
More Posts to Read:
- Herbal Remedies to Add to Your Herbal Medicine Cabinet
- DIY Hand Sanitizer Spray (Alcohol Based)
- Manuka Honey Lozenges
- Sage Candy for Sore Throats
All-Natural Chest Vapor Rub Recipe
- Double boiler or Turkish coffee pot
- 4 oz tins
- Melt the oils and wax over a double boiler or in a Turkish coffee pot on the stove. Be sure to stir it constantly and do not overheat. It should just melt,not cook.
- Add in your essential oils.
- Pour into metal tins and let set.
- Re-melt to add more essential oils if you want it a bit stronger.
- Rub balm on your chest to help soothe congestion and cough, under your nose for a stuffy nose and sore skin from scratchy tissues, or on feet.