Lana Farson, M.S., L.Ac., Licensed Acupuncturist and Herbalist

Herbal Steams: healing skin, lungs & nose

Herbal Steams are often used for cleaning and healing the skin, lungs and nose.  Which herbs should be used for the steam will be determined based on the case.  Some cases are helped by steaming 2-3 times per day.

cooking pot

1)  Soak herbs in 3 cups of water for 10 – 20 minutes in a large stainless or non-metal pot.  I usually break the herbs up into smaller pieces as I am adding them to the water that they will soak in, as helps to release their properties.  Soaking the herbs in water is important because it will allow the plant substances to begin to soften and break down so that when boiled they are ready to release their medicine.

2) Bring herbs to a boil and reduce to a high simmer for 15-20 minutes with lid on.  Remove pan from heat, and place pan onto a heatproof surface on a table (cutting board).

3) Test the heat of the steam carefully with your hand before exposing the face, in order to avoid steam burn.  Breathe in the vapor while covering head with a towel to trap the steam.  As the steam cools, lower head downward.

4) It is possible to save the water and herbs in the refrigerator and to boil them again within a 24-36 hour period.  When re-heating the herbs, bring them to a boil and then remove from heat after 20-30 seconds.  The effectiveness of these herbs will reduce greatly after 36 hours.

One Comment

  1. Liz Spurlock says:

    I did this once with a very small amount of tea tree oil when I was congested. It worked well, maybe too well. I would do it again but with a different herb. Suggestions?

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