Black salve ointments and remedies have been used since the 1880s for a variety of ailments including cancers, boils, acne and other skin conditions. The "drawing" properties of black salves are often the reasons for their use; black salve is believed to draw out impurities from the skin, eliminating the harmful substances within.
About Black Salve
Black salves are typically made from bloodroot, herbs and zinc chloride. The amounts of these ingredients can vary widely from manufacturer to manufacturer. Use caution when selecting a black salve, and always get medical advice. Black salves with more than 40% zinc chloride can skin corrosion and tissue damage.
Black salve can be packaged in tubes, jars, or other containers, and homemade preparations can also be used. Take caution when concocting these remedies, and be sure to follow recipe instructions precisely.
Applying Black Salve
To apply black salve to a boil, use fingers to apply. Place an even coat over the boil, covering it completely. Spread it over the boil in a thin layer, making sure to cake the paste lightly over the entire area. However, be careful not to apply black salve to large areas of the body; instead, use black salve only in small increments. Too much salve can be corrosive to the skin and toxic to the system.
After applying salve, place a bandage over the affected area and wait for the drawing properties to begin working. A tingling sensation will occur within 24 hours. Remove salve with alcohol or hydrogen peroxide each day, and apply a new coat for 10 to 14 days.