Tea tree (Melaleuca Alternifolia) essential oil is the highly concentrated, volatile oil extracted from the leaves of the Melaleuca plant native to Australia. Essential oils have been used for centuries for their medicinal and therapeutic uses. Tea tree essential oil is a multipurpose oil. It is often used in skin care products for its cleansing effects. It can be used to help treat pimples or acne, rashes, toenail fungus, soothe insect bites, and much more.
Tea tree oil is the highly concentrated volatile oil extracted from the Melaleuca plant. "MelaleucaAlternifoliaEssOil" by Itineranttrader - Own work. Licensed under Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons - http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:MelaleucaAlternifoliaEssOil.png#/media/File:MelaleucaAlternifoliaEssOil.png
Tea tree essential oil can be applied with or without a carrier oil, such as coconut oil, sweet almond oil, or grapeseed oil. If you have sensitive skin, or have never used essential oils before, it is advisable to use a carrier oil until you know how it will interact with your skin. It is also advisable to test a small amount of oil on a small area of skin (such as the inside of the wrist) when trying a new oil. If any essential oil irritates your skin, increase the amount of carrier oil in ratio to essential oil, or discontinue topical use if your skin becomes too irritated.
Tea tree oil has antifungal and antibiotic properties. It is a topical antiseptic and can be toxic if enough is ingested. Tea tree oil is one of the most common essential oils and is typically less expensive in comparison to many other essential oils. It can typically be found for purchase in natural food/health stores or online.
The following is a list of uses for tea tree essential oil. This list is not exhaustive or meant to replace advice from your personal doctor or health care provider.
1. Use as a morning facial cleanser to reduce pimples or treat acne. Place one drop of tea tree oil and a small amount of witchhazel on a cotton ball and wipe over the face to clean and tone. Take care to avoid getting into the eyes.
2. Treat a cold sore. Place one drop of tee tree oil directly on the cold sore. One way to help avoid getting oil in the mouth is to place one drop on a cotton swab and then apply to the cold sore. Repeat 1-3 times daily as needed.
3. Use as an antiseptic for small cuts and mild burns. Place one drop of tea tree oil directly on the small cut or burn to cleanse.
Place one drop of tea tree essential oil and witchhazel on a cotton ball and use as a facial cleanser, taking care to avoid getting into the eyes. Image courtesy morguefile
4. Treat ringworm. Clean the area first. Place 2-3 drops of tea tree oil to a cotton swab and cover the entire affected area. Repeat this 2-3 times daily until clear. If your skin becomes irritated with the full strength of the tea tree oil, dilute with a carrier such as coconut oil, which also has antifungal properties.
5. Treat a rash. Apply tea tree oil with a carrier oil to relieve the itchiness and reduce a rash. Re-apply as needed until rash disappears.
6. Treat toenail fungus. Apply a few drops of tea tree oil to the affected toe after showering. Repeat daily until clear.
Use tea tree essential oil to treat toenail fungus. Image courtesy pixabay
7. Get rid of warts. Apply 1 drop of tea tree oil directly on the wart and cover with a bandage. Repeat 1-2 times daily until wart disappears.
8. Cure bad breath. Make a mouthwash with a few drops of tea tree oil in a small glass of water. Swish, gargle, and spit out to kill bad breath.
9. Remove a tick. If you cannot pull the tick out, place one drop of tea tree oil directly on the tick and it will typically detach.
10. Soothe insect bites. Place one drop directly on the bite to soothe and reduce itchiness and swelling.
11. Make a simple all purpose cleaner. Mix 1-2 teaspoons tea tree oil in a spray bottle with water for a quick DIY spray cleaner.
Make a simple DIY all purpose cleaner with tea tree oil. Image courtesy morguefile
12. Freshen laundry. Place 1-2 drops in the wash cycle to freshen and disinfect clothing. Place 1-2 drops on a wool dryer ball to freshen in the dryer. Use one or both tips.
13. Clean cloth diapers. Place 1-3 drops in the wash cycle with ½ to 1 cup white vinegar, ½ cup baking soda, and cloth diaper friendly laundry soap to clean and disinfect the cloth diapers. I used this method for 5 years with great success!
Use tea tree oil in the wash cycle, then hang out to sun-dry to freshen and disinfect laundry. Image courtesy pixabay
14. Repel fleas. Place a few drops in your pets bedding area to repel fleas.
15. Cleans mold. Mix a few drops of tea tree oil with apple cider vinegar, scrub the affected area, and hang out to dry in the sun.
With its versatile uses, tea tree essential oil is a worthwhile addition to your medicine cabinet and household. One 15 ml bottle of tea tree essential oil is typically inexpensive when compared to the many benefits and uses you will get out of it. The bottle may initially seem quite small, but it will last longer than you think, as you only need a few drops at a time of this potent oil.
I successfully treated a white tailed spider bite which was becoming ulcerated with concentrated 100% tea tree oil. The necrotism of flesh from a white tailed spider bite is actually caused by a fungus, which it carries on its fangs. A dab of tea tree oil on the bite area kills the fungus immediately. After a few days a scab forms and soon there is no sign of any bite having occurred. People actually have had legs, fingers etc removed as there was no way of stopping the flesh from dying away, so this is an important cure in Australia, where we have many white tailed spiders. (My own discovery! Joan)