Tallow Power

by Cari Balbo

Have you ever used tallow on your skin? Tallow, or rendered beef fat, is a phenomenal moisturizer, particularly if it comes from 100% grass-fed cows. I've been using tallow in my personal care regimen for some time now and love how soft and healthy it makes my skin. I combine it with various beneficial-for-the-skin herbs, herbal oils, and powerful essential oils for the highest quality skin conditioners. I source my tallow from local farms here in Maine that raise their cows completely on pasture, with no added grain in their diet, and carefully and slowly render it for Ridge Pond Herbals products. Not only does tallow benefit the skin but it feels good to support Maine agriculture in the process. 

As someone who spent a lot of money in her past on expensive face creams and other products, I have high standards for quality while wanting an effective, simple, and safe moisturizer. When I started making my own bodycare products I continued to buy commercially made face creams because I didn't like how greasy or pore-clogging homemade ones felt. Once I tried tallow, however, I stopped buying face creams and switched to using tallow-based balms and herbal salves on my face. Tallow has properties uniquely similar to our skin making it a great, nourishing moisturizer. It's important to start small when first trying tallow. Apply a small bit with your fingertips and rub in gently but thoroughly. It goes on feeling a little thick but quickly absorbs into the skin. 

Ridge Pond Herbals currently offers three tallow-based products: Herbal Restoration Tallow Face Cream, Comfrey & Lavender Tallow Hand & Face Cream, and "Man Hands" Hand Cream. 

Herbal Restoration Tallow Face Cream is the most complex skin potion we offer. Carefully rendered tallow is combined over low heat with organic lavender, roses, and chickweed (three herbs great for the skin) and left to infuse several days. Once strained, the tallow is then combined with rose-infused extra virgin olive oil and another olive oil infusion made from 10 skin-benefiting herbs. Once the tallow and oils are fully combined and melted, essential oils of frankincense, carrot seed, lavender, and rose otto are added, and the mixture whipped into a creamy mix. 

The scent is fresh and light and while it feels somewhat heavy at first, this cream absorbs quickly, leaving the skin soft and happy. Some people prefer to use tallow-based creams for nighttime and I recommend starting that way. I personally use it day and night. 

Yesterday I whipped up a fresh batch of Comfrey & Lavender Tallow Hand & Face Cream. This cream is wonderfully healing with the addition of comfrey leaf- and root-infused olive oil and lavender essential oil. When whipped up it looks just like a decadent frosting (I even use frosting bags to fill the jars).

The third tallow-based product in the Ridge Pond Herbals line is "Man Hands" Hand Cream. You can read more about this fantastic hand cream for men AND women here

I bring these creams to market every week in Gardiner and every other week in Yarmouth. If you haven't tried tallow on your skin yet, I highly recommend it!