When you use tea tree oil today, you can be sure that the benefits are backed by science – tea tree oil has had over 600 scientific studies done, making it one of the most researched essential oils!
Tea tree oil contains several healing compounds, including limonene, linalool, cineole and more. The terpinen-4-ol it contains has been proven to destroy microbes and fungi.
Let’s have a look at some of the benefits and uses of this versatile oil:
Tea tree oil is very effective at controlling acne because the terpenes in the oil help to kill the bacteria that can cause acne and inflammation. A study done on acne found that applying topical 5% tea tree oil was an effective treatment for mild to moderate acne.
A simple, homemade acne treatment can be made by mixing 2-3 drops of tea tree oil with 20 drops of witch hazel or water. Apply to acne with clean cotton swabs twice a day.
Acne can often leave scars that never disappear, and store bought scar reducing creams can contain harsh chemicals. Tea tree oil is a much more natural and cost-effective way to help with scar healing and lightening.
For daily scar healing remedies:
• Mix 1 drop of tea tree oil to ½ teaspoon of raw honey. Massage into the scarring and let it dry for at least 15-20 minutes. Rinse off with cool water. • Moringa oil is also good at healing scars, and when mixed with tea tree oil it makes a potent scar healer. Massage 2 drops of tea tree oil combined with a few drops of moringa oil onto the scars.
Tea tree oil is great for drying out blackheads, and the oil penetrates deep into pores to disinfect and unclog them.
For a facial cleanser:
• Wet your face with warm water, and squeeze a small amount of oil-free cleanser into your hand. Add 1 drop of tea tree oil, and massage onto the face, working into a lather. Rinse with cool water, and use a non-pore-blocking moisturizer.
4. For Glowing Skin
Here’s two tea tree oil remedies to help your skin stay fresh and bring out that natural glow:
• After cleansing your face and drying, try this cleansing moisturizer: combine a pea-sized blob of pore-friendly moisturizer with 1 drop of tea tree oil. Massage this blend into your face, and it will hydrate your skin whilst protecting against blackheads. • If you want a natural, effective makeup remover, try this: Get a clean glass jar and add 2 tablespoons of olive oil or jojoba oil. Add 5 drops of tea tree oil and shake well. Use a clean cotton pad or ball dipped into the solution to remove makeup. Rinse with warm water.
As tea tree oil has antiseptic properties, it’s great for treating wounds and preventing infections. Studies have shown that tea tree oil helps to activate white blood cells, which speeds up the healing process. The terpenes in the oil also have antimicrobial properties.
Antiseptic for cuts and scrapes:
• Clean the cut properly. Mix 1-2 drops of tea tree oil with 1 teaspoon on therapeutic grade tamanu oil, and apply to the wound. Cover with a bandage. Repeat 1-2 times daily until the wound scabs over.
Tea tree oil can help soothe the itching, dry skin and rashes of eczema, while the antioxidant properties of the oil promote healing of the damaged skin.
For an Eczema lotion:
• Combine 1 tablespoon of coconut or rosehip oil, 10 drops of tea tree oil, and 10 drops of lavender oil in a clean glass jar. Massages onto the affected areas to help relieve itching and redness. • For a soothing bath, blend 15-20 drops of tea tree oil with 6 teaspoons of almond or olive oil and add to bath water.
There is no cure for psoriasis, but the symptoms can be relieved with tea tree oil. The oil can help to eliminate dry, dead skin cells that build up on the skin, and it helps to relieve itching and redness.
For a healing balm:
• Combine 4 tablespoons of emu oil, 10 drops of lavender oil, and 20 drops of tea tree oil. Shake well, and massage a few drops onto the affected areas 1-2 times a day.
• Give your regular shampoo some antiseptic properties by adding 1-2 drops of tea tree oil every time you wash your hair. This will help to cleanse and soothe your scalp.
If you’ve been bitten by a bug or suffer from dry skin, try tea tree oil with a carrier oil for soothing that itch.
• For ant, mosquitoes and small bug bites, mix 1-2 drops of tea tree oil with coconut oil and rub into the bites for relief.
Tea tree oil is a natural deodorant, with powerful antibacterial properties that help fight body odor.
For a simple tea tree oil deodorant:
• ¼ cup coconut oil • ¼ cup arrow root powder or cornstarch • ¼ cup baking soda • 25-30 drops of tea tree oil
Melt the coconut oil, remove from heat and add the rest of the ingredients. Pour into a glass jar and leave it to set for a few hours, then apply as needed.
10. Fungus, Cold Sores and Warts
Tea tree oil is able to destroy fungus, viruses and bacteria, so is excellent for treating infections such as ringworm, nail fungus, athlete’s foot, warts and cold sores.
11. Nail Fungus
For an effective nail fungus treatment:
• Apply a few drops of undiluted tea tree oil to a cotton swab, and rub on the affected nails. For stubborn infections, mix 2-3 drops of tea tree oil with 2-3 drops oregano oil and apply twice daily.
12. Athlete’s Foot
Research suggests that tea tree oil is a promising alternative to commercial antifungal medications for athlete’s foot.
• Mix 5 drops of neem oil, almond, or coconut oil with 3-5 drops of tea tree oil on a cotton ball. Massage the affected areas with the ball and wear clean, cotton socks. Apply twice daily, always changing to clean socks after application.
Ringworm is a highly contagious fungal infection, and a 2002 study showed that tea tree oil was effective at curing 64% of participants with ringworm after a month of use.
• Dilute 3 drops of tea tree oil with a few drops of carrier oil such as almond oil and apply 2-3 times daily on the affected areas.
Terpinen-4 is a potent antimicrobial in tea tree oil, which helps to control viral growth by drying off the wart so it will fall off naturally.
• Place a drop of pure tea tree oil directly on the wart, and cover with a bandage. Leave overnight, and then remove the bandage in the morning to clean the affected area. At night, repeat the process of adding the oil and using a clean bandage.
15. Help Hair Growth
Tea tree oil helps to unclog hair follicles and provides nourishment to the roots.
Hair massage oil:
• Add a few drops of tea tree oil to a teaspoon of carrier oil like argan or coconut oil. Massage onto the scalp and wrap with a towel. Leave for at least 15 minutes before rinsing out. Repeat 2-3 times weekly for best results.
Tea tree is a great natural remedy for dandruff. It fights the fungus responsible for causing dandruff, conditions the scalp and prevents itching, flaking and inflammation.
• Add a few drops of tea tree oil to your regular shampoo every time you wash your hair. Leave on for at least 3-5 minutes to let the oil soak in before rinsing off.
17. Dry and Itchy Scalp
As well as being annoying, a dry and itchy scalp can lead to hair loss. Tea tree oil can soothe the itchiness and fight dryness.
Add to your conditioner:
• Shampoo with a mild shampoo, and add 2-3 drops of tea tree oil to your conditioner. Mix well and massage into the scalp. Leave for 5 minutes and wash off. Do this every time you condition your hair. • To soothe an itchy scalp, warm 2 tablespoons of coconut oil and add 4 drops of tea tree oil and 4 drops of peppermint oil. Mix well and massage into your scalp.
18. Tea Tree Oil for Cleaning
Tea tree oil, along with baking soda and vinegar are excellent natural cleaning products without the harsh chemicals of commercial cleaning agents.
Multi purpose cleaner:
• Heat 1 cup of hot water and add ¼ cup of vinegar and 5-8 drops of tea tree oil. Use as an all-purpose cleaner on counter tops and the kitchen sink.
• Add 1 teaspoon of tea tree oil to your load of laundry in the wash cycle. The oil kills bacteria and is great for swimwear and soiled clothes. Add a citrus essential oil for an extra burst of scent.
Mold can cause health issues in a house, so prevent mold naturally by killing the mold causing fungus with tea tree oil.
Mold and mildew spray:
• Get an empty spray bottle and add 2 cups of water and 2 teaspoons of tea tree oil. Shake well, and spray on areas that have mold. Leave for a few minutes before wiping off. You can use this spray on shower curtains, the toiler, and in the dishwasher and washing machine.
20. Tea Tree Oil Insecticide
A lot of insect repellents contain DEET, but using tea tree oil is a safe and natural way to control insects.
House pest control:
• Make a solution of a few drops of tea tree oil and water. Wipe down cupboards to keep ants and other pests away. You can also soak cotton balls in tea tree oil and place them around the house in areas that attract insects.
Insect repellent spray:
• Get an 8 oz spray bottle, add ¼ cup of natural witch hazel and fill the rest up with water. Add 15 drops of tea tree oil, 10 drops of peppermint and 10 drops of citronella oil. Shake well, and spray on clothes before going outdoors.
Tea tree oil can remove ticks on humans and animals in a safe and natural way.
• Mix 2-3 drops of tea tree oil with 1-2 drops of a carrier oil such as almond oil and apply directly on the tick. Never use tea tree oil directly at high concentrations on your pets.
One study documented that tea tree oil can potentially kill lice in all stages of their lifecycle – including the eggs.
Other research has shown that combining tea tree and lavender oil was 100% effective in getting rid of lice in children compared to an anti-lice shampoo, which was only 25% effective.
• Add 8 drops of tea tree oil and 8 drops of lavender oil to 2 tablespoons of shampoo. Add 1 teaspoon of neem oil to this mixture and mix well. Shampoo the hair and cover with a shower cap for 10 minutes. Wash, rinse, rub dry and comb with a nit comb.
23. Tea Tree Oil for Plant Health
Tea tree oil has shown that it s can control rotting in fruits such as strawberries, and control early blight disease in tomatoes.
Antifungal plant spray:
• Add 2 cups of water in a spray bottle and 2 tablespoons of tea tree oil. Spray your plants with this solution, and repeat every 4-7 days.
24. Tea Tree Oil for Sore Throat
Tea tree oil can help to bring down the inflammation of a sore throat, and alleviate pain. It’s best to use these homemade remedies when you feel a sore throat starting, so you can stop it turning into a full-blown infection.
• Add 3-4 drops of tea tree oil to a bowl of hot water. Cover your head and the bowl with a towel and breathe in the vapors for at least 10 minutes.
Tea tree oil gargle:
• Add 2-3 drops of tea tree oil to a glass or warm water and stir. Gargle for 20 seconds and spit out. Repeat until all the water is used up. Do this twice a day.
25. Sinus and Congestion
Tea tree oil can destroy bad bacteria that cause colds, congestion and sinus infections. As well as using the steam method above, you can make a chest balm by rubbing almond oil mixed with 2-3 drops of tea tree oil on your chest.
If you add a few drops of tea tree oil with a carrier oil like coconut oil and add it to a warm bath, it can help relieve chest congestion.
Earaches are painful, and can be caused by a fluid buildup or bacterial infection. Tea tree oil can help to provide relief.
• Warm 1 tablespoon of olive oil and put in 3 drops of tea tree oil. Stir well. Lie on your side, and ask someone to gently drop 6-8 drops of this mixture into your ear canal using an eyedropper. Stay lying like that for at least 10 minutes, then drain the oil out using a paper towel to catch the oil drips.
27. Hand Sanitizer
The alcohol in commercial hand sanitizers can be very drying to your skin. Make your own natural and gentle sanitizer with tea tree oil.
Moisturizing hand sanitizer:
• Mix 3 teaspoons of witch hazel and 25-30 drops of tea tree oil in a bowl and stir. Add one cup of aloe vera gel and mix well. Put into a squirt bottle and it’s ready to use.
28. Teeth and Gum Health
An Australian study found that a range of oral bacteria is susceptible to tea tree oil even at a low dilution.
• Make your own mouth rinse by adding 1-2 drops of tea tree oil to a small cup of water. Swish for 30 seconds or so, and then spit out.
You can also add a drop to toothpaste before brushing to prevent oral infections.
An article published in the Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center website states that tea tree oil was found effective against cancer cells in a laboratory setting.
Research published in 2012 also showed that when tea tree oil was used in aromatherapy it helped to reduce anxiety, depression and improve sleep quality of cancer patients.