Name derivation and uses

The ancient Romans called coltsfoot tussilago meaning “cough plant,” which is what it has primarily been used for throughout history. Most herbalists recommended smoking coltsfoot for problems of the lungs and claimed that this use does not injure the lungs like regular tobacco. In Paris, apothecaries hung the coltsfoot flower on their doors as an emblem. In Scotland, they used the fuzz from the seeded flower as pillow stuffing.

Externally, it has been very popular to crush the leaves and roots and apply on areas where people are suffering from welts, hives, inflammations, burns, and itching.


The high content of silica is essential for connective tissue health and makes coltsfoot an excellent ingredient in skin and hair care products, particularly in products for dry and damaged skin and hair. (To read more on silica, see horsetail).


The calcium content could also add to the reason it is so effective, as calcium with vitamin C is said to help form new collagen fibers as well as help keep wrinkles away by keeping the skin firm.

I personally have had great success using coltsfoot. I use it in my moisturizing cream for dry skin, my astringent, and my lotion for normal and combination skin. I have had many rave reviews for all of these products.

Chemical constituents: Silica, tannins, phytosterol, cystine, dihydride alcohol, faradial mucilage, alkaloid, saponins, zinc, potassium, calcium, and amorphous glucoside.

Caution: There is medical controversy regarding the safety of this herb.

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