Elderflower was the go-to complexion enhancer on every dressing table in the past. They are widely used in skincare for their conditioning and skin-lightening, properties which can be handy for reducing freckles and sunburn and for treating greying hair. An infusion of elderflowers can be used for softening cleansers, toners and conditioners for hands, face and body. It is soothing for irritated and inflamed skin and can be used against skin infections, chilblains and chapped hands. Culpeper recommends washing hands with a distillation of elderflower morning and night. It’s also good for sore feet.
Elderflower lotion for rough, chapped hands
4 teaspoons (20g) dried elderflowers
1 cup (225ml) boiling water
1 tablespoon glycerine
Make a strong elderflower infusion by first putting half your elderflowers (2 teaspoons, 10g) into a cup and pouring on the boiling water.
Leave this to infuse for 10 minutes, then strain.
Put the water in a pan and bring to the boil, then pour it over your remaining elderflowers. Leave that to infuse for 10 minutes before straining.
Now you have a strong elderflower infusion.
Combine 3 tablespoons of this infusion with the tablespoon of glycerine. Bottle and shake well to mix.
Smooth into the hands to keep them soft and supple.