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I have been using tea tree oil for several years now to keep my skin clear. However, I recently discovered 10 more uses for tea tree oil that I can’t wait to try!
Tea Tree essential oil, also known as Melaleuca or Melaleuca Alternifolia oil, is native to Australia. It is one of the most widely used and extensively researched essential oils.
It’s the perfect oil to have on hand for its purifying and cleansing abilities. It has a medium-strength aroma that is crisp and earthy and can be used in a variety of ways from diffusing to help clean the air in your home to using on your skin to soothe irritations.
Before we get to the many uses of tea tree oil, here is a bit of the science behind it!
If you would like to purchase tea tree oil click here: Plant Therapy.
The Science Behind Tea Tree Oil
The major active component of tea tree oil is terpinen-4-ol. Terpinen-4-ol is what gives tea tree oil its antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties (source) and its antibacterial properties (source).
Remarkably, tea tree oil also has anticancer effects in various types of cancer cells (source).
According to the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) guidelines, when purchasing tea tree oil the concentrations of terpinen-4-ol should be more than 30%, while that of 1,8-cineole should be less than 15% (source).
How to Store Tea Tree Oil
The composition of tea tree oil may change considerably during storage. Light, heat, exposure to air, and moisture all affect oil stability. Therefore, you should store tea tree oil (and all essential oils) in dark, cool, dry conditions, preferably in a container that holds little air.
Most essential oils are sold in bottles that are made of amber-colored glass due to the fact that UV rays from light have a much harder time making their way through darker colors.
If you make your own blends or switch your oils to a different container, it’s recommended that the container is either amber or cobalt blue or one that comes with a cover that blocks the light. It is best not to store essential oils in clear glass bottles unless you are keeping them in an essential oil case and the oils are only exposed to light for a short period of time.
How to Purchase Tea Tree Oil
It’s important that you use quality oils that are not compromised by added synthetics, contaminants, or cheap fillers.
This is because essential oils that are not high-quality can cause issues like irritation and allergies. And the essential oils won’t produce the benefit as you would expect.
The three brands that I trust and use are Plant Therapy, Young Living, and REVIVE.
Tea Tree Oil Safety
Tea tree oil is safe to use directly on your skin. However, I would recommend that when you first use any oil, including tea tree oil, that you dilute it or use a very small to check for irritation and/or allergic reactions. It’s also important to dilute oil for children.
Below is a dilution guide to easily determine how many drops of oil are recommended by age level.
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Uses for Tea Tree Oil
Tea tree oil is a versatile oil that can be used for everything from skin care to home cleaning solutions. Here are the top 11 uses that you can try today!
Personal Uses for Tea Tree Oil
1. Healthy, Clear Skin.
I have used tea tree oil for years to keep my skin clear. Tea Tree oil eliminates blemishes and helps maintain healthy-looking skin. In addition, it has fewer side effects and causes less dryness as compared to benzoyl peroxide, a common treatment for acne (source).
How to Use: To use as a refreshing toner, add 10 to 15 drops of tea tree oil to a 12oz bottle of witch hazel. Put the cap on and shake well. I love Thayers Alcohol-Free Cucumber Witch Hazel Facial Toner with Aloe Vera because it soothes your skin while removing excess oil.
As a spot treatment, add one drop of tea tree oil to a cotton swab and dab the spot you’d like to treat.
Tea tree oil is effective in decreasing the levels of oral bacteria and halitosis (bad breath). It may also be helpful for the treatment of gingivitis (source). It does not reduce plaque, however, so make sure to brush well using a fluoride-free toothpaste.
How to Use: Pour 1 cup of filtered water into an 8oz dark glass bottle. Add 6 drops of tea tree essential oil and 6 drops peppermint essential oil. Shake to mix. Swish a small amount in your mouth and gargle (for fresh breath). Do not swallow. You can use tea tree oil mixed with water, however, it does have a strong flavor. So, I would recommend adding the peppermint oil until you get used to the taste.
3. Healthy Hair and Scalp
Tea tree oil can help you to maintain healthy-looking hair and scalp. Using small amounts of tea tree oil down the shaft of the hair will help prevent the buildup of chemicals and dead skin. This keeps your hair healthy and moisturized. It is also an effective treatment for dandruff (source).
Note: To help prevent dandruff, make sure you are using a shampoo free of sulfates and parabens. Verb Hydrating Shampoo & Conditioner Duo is my favorite.
How to Use: Add 2-3 drops of Tea Tree oil to your favorite shampoo a few times a week to help maintain a healthy-looking scalp. You could also mix the tea tree oil with a carrier oil like Coconut oil or Olive oil and massage it for 10 to 15 minutes onto the scalp. Wash your hair normally and repeat as needed.
4. Lice Treatment
No one wants to think about lice, but if you or your kids get lice, tea tree oil is there to help. Tea tree oil has insecticidal properties that help in providing relief from hair lice. The oil also prevents lice eggs from getting attached to hair and scalp.
How to Use: Mix 7 to 8 drops with a tablespoon of carrier oil and leave it in your hair overnight. Wear a shower cap to allow better absorption into the hair. In the morning, remove the shower cap and comb with a fine comb 5 to 6 times before washing off with a hair cleanser.
5. Hand Sanitizer
Tea tree oil has been proven to kill viruses, bacteria, mold, and fungi. So, one of the valuable uses for tea tree oil is that it makes a great ingredient in a DIY hand sanitizer
6. Freshen Up Your Feet and Beat Foot Fungus
Due to it’s antifungal and antiseptic benefits, tea tree oil is also an effective treatment for nail fungus and foot odor. Results of a 1994 study found that tea tree oil is equally as effective as the antifungal clotrimazole (Desenex) in treating fungal toenail infections.
In addition, since bacteria or fungus is often times the culprit behind foot odor, a little soak with tea tree oil can help freshen up your feet! Besides, who doesn’t love a soothing foot soak?
How to Use: For a soothing foot soak, fill a large bowl or basin with warm water. Add 6 drops of tea tree oil and 4 drops of lavender essential oil (lavender is optional, but it smells great). Add 1 cup of sea salt or Epsom salt and stir until well mixed. Soak your feet for 15 minutes or more.
To apply tea tree oil to a specific area, use a cotton swab to apply it and allow it to dry. Or, place a cotton ball soaked in tea tree oil on the affected area for a few minutes.
To freshen stinky feet, mix together 1/4 cup of vodka or rubbing alcohol and 3-4 drops of tea tree essential oil. Put the lid on your bottle and shake. To use simply spray on feet before putting on socks or shoes. You can also spray this directly into shoes.
7. Natural Mosquito Repellent
I’ll definitely be using tea tree oil this summer as a mosquito and insect repellent. I can’t stand the smell of the store-bought versions and most contain harmful ingredients that I’d like to avoid.
Luckily, lab and field testing results have shown that tea tree oil is an effective insect repellent. In fact, tea tree oil is as effective at repelling mosquitoes, bush fly, and biting midges as a synthetic-based commercial repellent (source).
How to Use: Add the following to a glass spray bottle: 30 drops tea tree oil, 1/4 cup water, 1/4 cup witch hazel. Shake before each time you apply. You could also add in a few drops of citronella essential oil to repel ticks and other insects.
Household Uses for Tea Tree Oil
8. Household Cleaner
Tea tree oil is also great to use as a household cleaner. Using a spray made with essential oils is a great way to avoid the harmful chemicals typically found in household cleaners at retail stores.
How to Use: For an effective all-purpose cleaner, add 10 drops of tea tree oil and 1/2 cup of white vinegar to a glass spray bottle. Add 1/4 cup of water and shake well. You could also add 4 drops of lemon essential oil for a citrus scent. Shake before use, spray onto surfaces, then wipe with a cloth.
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9. Freshen Your Home
Diffusing tea tree oil can help to freshen your entire home. This is one of the most commonly used oils for eliminating musky odors.
How to Use: Add 3 drops of tea tree oil and 2 drops of lemon essential oil to a diffuser filled with filtered water.
10. Clean Your Washing Machine
Tea tree oil can dissolve and remove odor-causing residue that can occur in your washing machine. It will leave your washer smelling clean and fresh!
How to Use: If you want to freshen up your washing machine, add 10 to 15 drops of tea tree oil and 1 cup of white vinegar to the empty drum and run it on the hot cycle (or clean basket cycle) to get rid of any bacteria and odor.
11. Freshen Dryer Loads
If you’ve accidentally left your laundry in the washer too long it may have a musty scent. I know I have forgotten to switch my laundry over on more than one occasion. Luckily, tea tree oil can refresh your laundry when added to the dryer!
How to Use: Apply a few drops of Tea Tree oil directly on dryer balls to add a refreshing scent to clothes, sheets, and towels.
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Native to Australia, tea tree oil has many purifying and cleansing abilities, making it a great option for topical, diffusion, and household use. There are so many uses for tea tree oil, which makes it a great oil to have in every home.
What is your favorite use for tea tree oil? Let me know in the comments!
Next Steps to Switch to All Natural Products
Are you thinking of switching to all natural products? Check out this guide to easily switch to all natural products for your home and personal use. Making the switch doesn’t have to be expensive or complicated. And every single switch you make can truly have a big impact on your health and well-being.