Nature has provided us with solutions to many of our everyday health and beauty needs. Many of these plants and flowers and seeds have been used in traditional medicine systems and beauty practices across the world for centuries. Essential oils are extracts of some of these useful plants and plant parts. Their increasing popularity is because of the growing awareness and need for going natural when it comes to our everyday beauty and wellness issues and goals.
Essential oils take care of many of our health and wellness needs. Used properly, these boons of nature are completely natural and hence safer than a chemical or synthetic alternative. Aromatherapy, which is about using the essential oils through their aroma, also helps people to relax, to relieve their physical tiredness and pains and to feel better. It is known to relieve in the case of mental stress, anxiety and depression. Most commonly used among essential oils is Tea Tree Oil, which is not only being used by brands as an ingredient in a tonne of beauty products but is also being used by users at home in home remedies for skin, hair and in diffusing for home fragrance and aromatherapy.
- What is Tea Tree Oil?
- How Does it Work?
- Benefits of Tea Tree Oil
- How to Use Tea Tree Oil
- Precautions While Using Tea Tree Oil
What is Tea Tree Oil?
Tea Tree Oil is a volatile essential oil which is extracted from the leaves of Tea Tree also known as Narrow-leaved Paperbark Tree. Scientific name of Tea Tree Oil is Melaleuca alternifolia, as small tree native of Queensland and New South Wales, Australia. It has got a distinctive odour like that of camphor and the oil’s colour range from pale yellow to colourless.
How Does it Work?
Tea Tree Oil has a high therapeutic value. It is widely used as medicines for treating various skin and health conditions. The main component of Tea Tree oil is Terpinen-4-ol which is known to promote the white blood cells of the body, thus increase immunity and resistance power of your body. Tea Tree Oil has antimicrobial properties which help to fight many infections. It has anti-inflammatory properties as well due to which it is used for treating irritated skin and scalp.
Benefits of Tea Tree Oil
Tea Tree Oil has numerous benefits for skin, hair and nail health. Its antimicrobial property helps to fight against germs and promotes healing of various kinds of infection. Below mentioned are some of its uses and benefits. Since pure essential oils are highly concentrated and potent, Tea Tree oil must be diluted with a suitable medium and in a suitable ratio, before using topically or in other ways.
1. Treat Acne
Tea Tree Oil has anti-inflammatory property due to which it helps in treating acne prone skin. Dilute few drops of tea tree oil to 30-35 drops of witch hazel and with a clean cotton pad apply on the affected area once or twice. But ensure that you do not overuse it as it may tend to dry out your skin and in turn triggering the overproduction of oil which can worsen the condition. If you’re doing through an acne situation, fret not, as acne can be effectively tackled using these home remedies and tips.
2. Improves Skin Quality
Tea Tree Oil has got anti-inflammatory and antioxidants which help to soothe irritated skin and fights the free radicals which cause aging thus giving a healthy and clear skin.
3. Treat Dandruff
Dandruff is the dead cells in the form of white flakes which fall off from the scalp due to dryness. Tea Tree oil is effective in treating dandruff. Due to its anti-inflammatory property, it helps in healing the dryness, itchiness and greasiness of the scalp, thereby reducing dandruff. Mix a few drops of tea tree oil to your shampoo and massage your scalp. Let it remain for 2-3 minutes and wash off. Regular application will help to eradicate dandruff.
4. Prevent Hair fall
Tea tree oil helps to unclog the hair follicles and provides nourishment to the roots, thus preventing hair fall. Tea tree oil also controls excess oil production which inhibits the growth of hair. Mix a few drops of tea tree oil to a carrier oil like coconut oil and use. Gently massage this on your scalp and root to prevent hairfall and dandruff. Leave for half an hour and wash off. Check out these natural tips and remedies to battle hair fall.
5. Remove Skin Irritation
Tea Tree Oil has antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties due to which it has a cool and soothing effect on irritated skin. This oil is known to effectively treat various skin conditions like eczema, psoriasis, pimple, acne, white head and black heads which are caused due to irritated skin. Add a few drops of tea tree oil to 2 tablespoons of coconut oil and massage gently. Coconut oil is highly beneficial for the skin, it gets easily absorbed by the skin and helps in increasing the healing effect.
6. Treat Scalp Quality
Scalp problems are mostly caused due to bacterial and fungal infection. Tea tree oil has antibacterial and antifungal properties due to which it is very effective in treating severe scalp conditions. It helps to sooth the dry and irritated scalp. Mix 6-8 drops of tea tree oil to 2 tablespoons of any carrier oil and applying this mixture after heating it. Massage gently for few minutes and wash off. Regular application helps to maintain a healthy scalp.
If you’re interested in readymade solutions to some of your scalp issues, check out these Top 10 Tea Tree Oil based shampoos for dandruff & dry scalp.
7. Treat Lice
One of the herbal way to treat the unwanted lice in your hair is with tea tree oil. Tea Tree Oil is loaded with antiseptic properties due to which it is very effective in treating various conditions. Add 10 drops of tea tree oil to 70 mL (4-5 tablespoons) of vegetable oil/olive oil and apply on scalp and leave for 2-3 hours and then comb your hair. The dead lice and the nits also come out along when you comb your hair.
8. Fights Skin Infections
Skin infections tend to occur when your skin comes in direct contact with an allergen which causes redness, itchiness, swelling and sometimes severe pain. Tea tree oil is very effective in treating such skin conditions as it has a cooling and soothing effect on the affected area. Mix 10 drops of tea tree oil to 1 tablespoon of olive oil and 1 tablespoon of coconut oil. Apply on the affected part twice a day till the symptoms reduce.
9. Improves Bad Breath
The germs and bacteria from the leftover food causes gum problems, tooth decay and bad breath. Tea tree oil is known to have antibacterial and antiseptic properties due to which it helps to fight many dental problems. Tea tree oil can be diluted with water and a homemade mouthwash is ready. Use it daily twice to get rid of bad breath.
10. Help to heal Wound
Tea Tree Oil helps in speeding up the healing process. It has strong anti-inflammatory properties which help to reduce inflammation and triggers the functioning of white blood cells which are mainly responsible for your body’s defensive mechanism. Thus helps in speedy recovery of wounds. Few drops of tea tree oil can be added to your wound dressing.
How to Use Tea Tree Oil
1. Facial Cleaner
Tea Tree Oil can be used as a facial cleaner for any skin type. Be it be oily, dry or acne prone sensitive skin. Tea Tree Oil helps to moisturize, nourish and rejuvenate the skin cells making the skin look clean and healthy. This oil helps to unclog the blocked pores and remove excess oil from the skin. Thus tea tree oil works great as a facial cleanser.
- Mix few drops of Tea Tree Oil to 2-3 tablespoon of Olive Oil and store it in an airtight container.
- Use as a facial cleanser in the morning and before going to bed.
2. Insect Repellent
Tea Tree oil acts as an excellent natural insect repellent as it has got a distinct smell which helps to keep insects, flies and mosquitoes at bay. It can be helpful in preventing insect-borne diseases. It is also beneficial in treating insect or bug bites. It gives a non-toxic and natural protection against disease causing insects and bugs.
- Apply few drops of tea tree oil mixed with coconut oil on the affected area.
- Alternatively, put 5-8 drops of tea tree oil in a spray bottle filled with water and spray on the affected part.
Tea tree oil is also beneficial in treating body odour. Body giving off the scent or smell that others may find unpleasant is known as body odour. Body odour is caused when the bacteria on the skin breaks the sweat into certain acids. But don’t worry, tea tree oil is there for the rescue. Tea tree oil has an antibacterial property which destroys the bacteria present in the body that is responsible for causing body odour.
- Mix 10-12 drops of tea tree oil with half a cup of coconut oil or witch hazel and half a cup of distilled water.
- Store this mixture in a spray bottle and use when required.
4. Treat Eczema
Tea tree oil has antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties due to which it is very effective in treating various skin diseases. This oil is very effective in treating eczema and psoriasis as it has a cooling effect on dry and irritated skin.
- Add 5 drops of tea tree oil to 1-2 tablespoons of coconut oil
- Mix 5 drops of lavender oil as well.
- Use this mixture on the affected part for relief from eczema and psoriasis.
5. Use as Household Cleaner
Another important benefit of tea tree oil is it’s use as a household cleaner. Tea Tree Oil has got powerful antimicrobial properties which help in combating bacteria and fungus. Hence it can be effectively used in cleaning your house. It can be used for a natural all-purpose cleaning as tea tree oil is natural, safe and versatile.
- Add 10 drops of tea tree oil to a mixture of 2 cups of water and and half a cup of vinegar.
- You can also add a few drops of lavender oil or any other essential for that extra freshness and fragrance in your house.
It can be used as a multipurpose cleaner, but be careful while using on marble or granite as the vinegar may eat up the stone.
6. Improve Hair Quality
Tea Tree Oil helps in improving the hair quality as it help to promote hair growth, cleans the scalp, to get long and thick hair. Tea Tree Oil helps to open up the blocked hair follicles and promote hair growth. Tea Tree Oil strengthens your hair, by nourishing it from root to tip and helps prevent the damage caused by frizz, dandruff, split ends. This oil is also very effective in treating dandruff and lice. This oil has a soothing and calming effect on the dry and itchy scalp and helpful in treating dry and oily scalp as well by maintaining the pH level of the scalp.
- Add 8-10 drops of Tea Tree oil with 2 tablespoons of Jojoba oil.
- Apply twice or thrice a week.
Regular application of this oil will help to moisturize your dry and itchy scalp, increase blood circulation, opens up the clogged pores and thus help in improving the hair quality.
7. Laundry Freshener
Tea Tree Oil is loaded with antibacterial and antifungal properties and it also smells nice. So this oil is being increasingly used for laundry and household cleaning purposes.
- If you feel your laundry is smelling a bit musty then add 10 drops of tea tree oil to your regular detergent.
- Wash your clothes.
Its antibacterial property kills all bacteria, molds or mildew and its unique fragrance freshen up your clothes. You can also clean your carpets, rugs and sport equipments with a mixture of tea tree oil, vinegar and water.
8. Remove Shoe Odor
Some of us really want to get rid of the smell from our feet and shoes at the end of the day, don’t we? The foul odor to the feet is because sweat gland secrete sweat on your feet. Sweat glands secrete sweat to moisturize your skin and to regulate the body temperatures. In hot regions or during exercise you tend to sweat more. Sweat glands of the feet always secrete sweat and when this sweat of your feet is broken down by the bacteria or fungus present on your skin, it gives a bad odour to your feet. This smell can become more and more offensive when it starts to build up. Eg. on your shoes.
- Take half a cup of water and half a cup of white vinegar and add a few drops of tea tree oil to it.
- Mix well and fill the contents in a spray bottle.
- Slightly mist the shoe insoles with after wearing and let it dry. This is very effective in reducing the shoe odor.
9. Remover Makeup
The usual makeup removers that are available in the market are loaded with harmful and toxic chemicals which tends to dry out our skin and can be harmful as well. Which is why more and more people are opting to go natural for most of their daily routines. Using essential oil with any carrier oil can do wonders on your skin as it helps to nourish and moisturize it. Among essential oils, Tea Tree Oil is very beneficial to the skin as it is antibacterial, antifungal and anti-inflammatory, and hence promotes skin health.
- Mix Tea Tree Oil with Coconut Oil
- Apply this mixture as it works best as a makeup remover. It gently moisturizes and nourishes your skin as well.
Read about how Jojoba oil acts as nature’s own makeup remover.
10. Helps to soften dry cuticles
This essential oil is also great for treating dry cuticles. Tea Tree Oil has an antifungal property which helps to fight any fungal infections on nails.
- Mix Tea Tree Oil with carrier oils- jojoba oil and avocado oil which helps to smoothen the cuticles.
- Mix a few drops of lavender oil as well with this mixture and store it in an airtight container.
- Apply on your cuticles and nails to help it to soften and prevent from breaking and splitting.
Precautions While Using Tea Tree Oil
- Tea Tree Oil is generally considered safe on skin. But before using always make sure that it is properly diluted with a carrier oil.
- Tea Tree Oil is only for topical application, if ingested it can have a toxic effect on your body.
- Always do a patch test before directly applying this essential oil on skin. Tea Tree Oil can cause skin irritation or skin sensitization in some cases usually people with sensitive skin.
- Avoid contact with eyes. If it happens, wash your eyes immediately with water.
- People with chronic respiratory issues should avoid using Tea Tree Oil.
- Always check the expiry date of this oil before purchasing it.
- It is always recommended that pregnant women or breastfeeding mothers should use Tea Tree Oil under the guidance of an expert or professionals.
- Always be careful while using Tea Tree Oil through a diffuser in a closed room as it can cause nausea in pregnant women.
- Overdose of tea tree oil can also be harmful.
- Keep out of the reach of children and pets.