A tincture is made up of a concentrated herbal liquid. Tinctures are unique in that they are able to concentrate as well as preserve the main properties of the herb. This allows tinctures to be longer lasting and more effective. Typically, tinctures that are comprised of an alcohol base have a longer shelf life and are able to be used for up to three years.
Tinctures can be made with alcohol, vinegar, honey, or glycerine. The following supplies are needed to make a tincture:
- A pint size glass jar that has a lid
- Herbs of your choosing
- Alcohol that is at least 80 proof (or you may choose to use glycerine or vinegar)
Alcohol based tinctures are typically the most simple to make. You can use a variety of herbs in tinctures. After you have chosen the herbs you are going to use, you should fill the glass jar half-way full with the dried herbs. Make sure that you do not pack down the herbs when placing them in the glass jar. Afterward, pour enough boiling water over the herbs to make them damp. Next, fill the jar with alcohol and stir to combine the ingredients. Finally, you should put the lid on the glass jar very tightly. Keep in mind that the tincture should be stored in a dry and cool place. You also need to shake the tincture jar every day or so for three weeks (minimum) to six months. After three weeks (or however long you choose to let the tincture sit), strain the herbs with a cloth (i.e., cheesecloth) and store the liquid tincture in a bottle or in a glass jar. Bottles can be purchased that have a liquid dropper. These types of bottles are ideal for storing and using herbal tinctures.
Have you ever made or used a tincture?