Saturday, September 11, 2010

Panacea's Hair Salve

Panacea, Goddess of Healing by *violscraper on deviantART

Panacea was a minor goddess in Greek mythology but her name survives today as a term used for a cure-all or remedy for all ills or diseases. Panacea means "heal-all" and the goddess personified healing through herbs. In the Middle Ages, the name was applied to a mythical herb supposed to possess a cure-all quality. Some herbs that have been considered panaceas include mistletoe, yarrow, and valerian. She is also the inspiration for one of NightBlooming's products, our Panacea's Hair Salve.

The History of Panacea's Hair Salve

In the past customers have asked me what brought about the hair salve.  Obviously there's a world of leave-in conditioners, oils and butters out there, so what did Panacea's Hair Salve offer that these did not?

Perhaps the best place to start was the inspiration for the product.  Due to overdying and general terrible treatment my once hip-length had shattered to just barely past my shoulderblades.  Each stroke of the brush would send tiny bits of broken hair fluttering downwards.  It was dry, brittle, broken, and many thought beyond hope.  I was facing the very harsh reality that I might have to cut off all my hair and start over.

I tried oils, but they didn't work, leaving the ends of my hair feeling greasy and crunchy.  Commercial leave-ins were full of silicone and made my hair feel like plastic doll's hair, while butters were too thick, weighing my hair down.  Working with what I knew of herbal medicine and hair structure I started to look at what hair really needed- it needed moisture, protection, and not to be coated in chemicals.  After much experimenting I hit upon the salve offered in the store and was so impressed with its result I named it after Panacea, for really, it had to be something of a cure-all to bring my hair back from the brink as it did.

Which Salve is Right for Me?

The second most-common question I'm asked about Panacea's Hair Salve is which version to use, the Vegan or the Traditional blend.  Each has their benefits, outside of one obviously being free of all animal products.

The Traditional Panacea's Hair Salve is slightly darker in color than the vegan, more of a warm cream color than pure white.  It works well on all hair types, but seems to be preferred by customers who have medium to thick strands of hair that tends to be prone to dryness. The scent of this salve is a bit more incense-like than the vegan blend, more subtle and dusky. The only non-vegan ingredient in this salve is honey, so some vegans whose beliefs permit the use of it can also enjoy this blend!

The Vegan Salve also works well on all hair types, but customer feedback indicates that it is most preferred by those with very fine strands of hair that is prone to splitting.  This salve is bright white in color and the citrus notes in the scent seem brighter and clearer than in the traditional salve.


Really, though, the best way is to try each!  NightBlooming offers sample sizes so you don't have to invest in a whole tub.  Try them one at a time or even blended together to see what you like best!  The sample tubs are also great for tossing in a bag for when you travel.

How do I use Panacea's Hair Salve?

The best way to use the salve is on slightly damp hair.  It can be used on dry hair, but it really seems to spread better in hair that's been washed and towel-dried.  First, comb out your hair, gently!  Then, take a tiny smidge of hair salve (I recommend a pea-sized amount for waist-length hair of average thickness) and then rub it between the palms until it's melted.  Then, starting at the ends, pat your hands together over your hair, working upwards.  Once you get to the nape of the neck, smooth your hands down the length of your hair.  Repeat until your hands feel mostly clean of salve.

If you'd like to do a deep treatment, follow the same instructions, but really slather on the salve, then put it up under a shower cap or a plastic bag for an hour or two, then wash, rinse and condition as normal.

What else is Panacea's Salve Good for?

Customers have reported using it as a cuticle treatment, on dry cracked heels, as a body lotion, a lip balm, and even simply as perfume!

What does it smell like?

I've heard it compared to the Amortentia love potion in Harry Potter, it smells a bit different to each person!  Mostly, though, it smells a bit like incense with a few floral and citrus notes and has been compared to the smell of Nag Champa or High Mass with a crush of orange blossoms.

What do customers have to say about Panacea's Hair Salve?

Fantastic things!  Check out some of their comments:

 " Nightblooming's Vegan Panacea Salve is simply the best thing I have ever used in my hair. Ever. (And I am a product addict.) It is a great pre-wash deep treatment. I apply it to my length after washing. Then I apply some more the following day (or just after my hair is dry) for light oiling. Coconut oil is great, but is is just not as versatile. Panacea salve rarely makes my hair greasy (unless I intentionally apply it as a DT). As others have said, it smells nice, too."
"...the scent is intoxicating! but my hair loves it, it leaves it soft and not heavy or oily, i use it as my styling stuff after a shower, put it in damp hair and i use it between washings to freshen up and soften the ends and it never gets heavy, AND if i rub a little on my neck or hands, it helps me sleep , it smells so good, i am not exaggerating! it does also help my skin as well!! its just, a panacea!!!"
 "I've been using some of my friend's panacea and I am absolutely in love with this stuff! I can't even describe how miraculous it is. I've seriously tried countless methods and products, commercial and natural, and this is the only thing that consistently improves the quality of my hair every single time I use it. It tames my halo and flyaways and makes my ends soft and shiny, which is not an easy task considering my hair type! "
" I really love this. For some reason the scent of this one lingers in my hair much longer than the regular. I feel like I am spoiling my hair when I use it! Works especially well when applied before braiding or bunning."
"This smells so good and I love putting it on my ends and seeing and feeling how good it make my hair feel. My hair is hip-length right now, but I just cut off four inches of dry, dead ends so my hair is shorter than it usually is. I'm trying to keep my ends moisturized and nourished so that they remain healthy enough to grow those four inches without ending up dry, thinned out. This hair salve will help me achieve that.  "
"Very deep conditioner, only the tiniest bit is needed. It leaves my hair a very nice, smooth texture without weighing down my natural waves and curls. The scent is divine and I have been using it for a cuticle cream as well."

Have any questions or comments?

Please ask!  Let us know what you think :)  We love hearing from our customers!


  1. I adore this salve for my hair and skin, and i like both versions of it! they do smell a little different to me, and they are both lovely and relaxing..i even rub it on my excema hands and the smell is relaxing enough to help me sleep!! its like Amortencia potion, it smells different to everyone, to me it is light and earthy with a touch of citrus to it. i use it on my damp hair ends and betwen washed to help with frizzies and the smell keeps my hair feeling fresh, and the texture fluffs and is almost a styling creme..panacea for certain!

  2. Hi my daughter recommended your products Night Blooming Panacea Winter Hair Salve and Triple Moon drops for my hair condition. I have seborrhea dermatitis and my derm dr recommended I put a scalp on my hair once a week and shampoo afterwards. I need something to put on my hair during the week to keep my scalp and hair moisturized. I have tried everything. I need some advice on what to do during the week to keep my hair healthy. I used your products before but didn't give them enough time to do the job. I need some advice. Thank you!

  3. Hello hello! I think what would work best is a deep treatment with the salve before you shower, and the a little bit of the Triple Moon Oil rubbed into your scalp afterwards :) The salve is a bit rich to leave on your scalp, but using it before a shower will both moisturize the scalp and keep it from being overstripped in the shower. The oils and essential oils in the Triple Moon Oil will then help sooth your seborrhea dermatitis and keep the moisture in your scalp :)