What is Tea Tree Oil?
Tea tree oil is the plant extract made from the Melaleuca Alternifolia tree found in Australia. The tree has narrow leaves and is smallest of the tea tree family and bears purple or yellow flowers. The name, tea tree, is given to it because it was used as a herbal tea by the natives.
People would prepare tea using the leaves of the tea tree. The aboriginals of Australia have long known the benefits of this plant and have used it for centuries. Recently scientific research has found that this plant can be used in lots of other ways.
Tea tree oil is produced by water or steam distillation process. The leaves and twigs of the plant are the raw material required to make tea tree essential oil. The distillation process gives a pale green or yellow liquid. The aroma of this oil is fresh, spicy and warm.
Here are some unique facts about the tea tree plant which have been discovered through scientific research:
- It produces an unusually strong oil
- Tea tree oil is very active against infectious organisms and germs
- Tea tree oil can kill most bacteria, viruses and fungi
- It stimulates the body’s natural immune response and helps fight off infection naturally
- Tea tree oil has antiseptic, antiviral, anti-inflammatory, and anti-infectious effects
- It can be used as a balsamic, expectorant, fungicidal and immune-stimulant
Tea tree oil blends well with rosemary, pine, lavender, oakmoss, geranium, and spice oils such as nutmeg and clove.
How to Use Tea Tree Oil
Tea tree essential oil is volatile and cannot be used in its pure form. It must be diluted using other oils such as apricot kernel oil, jojoba or avocado. These oils are more viscous and nourishing. The emphasis is on helping the skin heal naturally. When applying tea tree oil to your skin use gentle circular movements to make sure the oil is absorbed properly. Do not drag the delicate areas of the face. You can mix a few drops of tea tree oil to a bland lotion or cream or even add it to a face mask. DIY face masks which include clay, honey or oatmeal can also be used. Along with essential oils mix in the pulp of fruits to create a great detoxifying face mask.
Reasons Tea Tree Oil is the Best Essential Oil for Skin Care
1. It can be used to get rid of acne
If you are looking for an effective home remedy for acne, look no further than tea tree oil. Tea tree oil is just as effective as benzyl peroxide, the leading anti-acne remedy in pharmacies. And the additional benefit is that it is completely natural and healthy. To make a strong anti-acne solution, mix 20 to 40 drops of witch hazel and 2 to 3 drops of tea tree oil. Apply to the skin once a day using a cotton swab.
This is quite a strong remedy, don’t overuse it or your skin will become more oily. Stay out of the sun when you have tea tree oil applied to your skin. Essential oils make your more sensitive to the sun’s UV rays.
2. It makes a great makeup remover
Tea tree oil can easily remove makeup and dirt from your face. Make your own tea tree oil makeup remover by mixing 10 drops of tea tree oil with a quarter cup of canola oil. Pour the mixture in a sterilized glass jar and close the lid. Shake the jar until mixed well and store it in a cool and dark place. When you want to use it, pour out a few drops onto a cotton ball and gently sweep over your face, it will dislodge dirt and all your makeup. Rinse well with warm water and apply your usual toner.
3. Tea tree oil can be a great skin moisturizer
Tea tree oil mixed with honey can make an excellent moisturizer which nourishes the skin while fighting off bacteria.
4. Regular tea tree oil baths will help combat body acne
You can also treat body acne by using a body wash which contains tea tree oil and argan oil. Tea tree oil baths will ease skin irritations and will also help with joint pain. Add a few drops of the oil to a warm bath.
5. The best cuticle softener
When combined with nourishing oils, tea tree oil softens cuticles and protects nails against fungal infections. Make your own cuticle cream using this recipe.
- 1 tablespoon of jojoba oil
- 1 tablespoon of avocado oil
- 10 drops tea tree essential oil
- 10 drops lavender essential oil
Preparation and Application
Pour the avocado and jojoba oil in a small glass jar. Add in the tea tree oil and lavender oil. Cover the jar and shake until mixed well. Before using the mixture shake again to mix the oils because essential oils tend to concentrate on one spot. Massage onto your nail bed and cuticles to keep them soft and prevent splitting.
1. Tea tree oil soothes sores
Any sores of minor infections can be treated with tea tree oil. Its antiseptic properties will heal the skin and get rid of the infection. Do not use around the mouth or eye areas.
2. Tea tree oil eliminates toenail fungus
Tea tree oil is as effective at treating toenail fungus as prescription creams. Apply 2 drops of tea tree oil to the infected area twice a day. Only apply to the nail area, avoid the skin because pure tea tree oil can irritate the skin.
3. Tea tree oil can get rid of athlete’s foot
Tea tree oil is also an effective athlete’s foot treatment because it has antifungal properties. It helps relieve itching, burning, inflammation and scaling. To create a remedy simply add a few drops of tea tree oil to 1 tablespoon of witch hazel. Apply with a cotton swab about two to times a day. Try to keep the usage to a minimum, and only use once a day. However, you may increase the frequency if you see no side effects such as rashes.
4. Tea tree oil can help treat chicken pox sores
Chicken pox sores can be treated with tea tree oil. Mix the oil with olive oil and apply directly to the sores with a cotton swab. When used two to three times a day it relieves itchiness and swelling.
5. Tea tree oil helps reduce cold sores
Apply tea tree oil directly on the cold sores using a Qtip. About three to four times a day is the recommended frequency of use. Be sure you don’t get the oil into your mouth because ingesting tea tree oil has toxic effects.
6. Tea tree oil can help relieve psoriasis
Dilute tea tree oil with olive oil and apply on the area where you have psoriasis patches. The itchiness will go away and the plaques will soften. Mild cases of psoriasis can easily be cured this way.
7. Tea tree oils treats boils
Tea tree oil is effective against antibiotic resistant staph infections. Just dab on a little oil on the boil once or twice a day.
8. It can help you get rid of stubborn dandruff
Tea tree oil cures dandruff which pharmaceutical products cannot treat. You don’t have to buy a special tea tree oil shampoo, simply add in a few drops of tea tree oil to your regular shampoo. Use as normal and you will see dandruff disappear after a few washes. Use a nourishing oil such as olive or almond to protect your hair.
More Reasons to Love Tea Tree Oil
- It acts as an anti-infectious, antiseptic, and anti-inflammatory compound.
- Tea tree oil stimulates the body’s immune system and helps fight off infections from viruses and bacteria.
- It has an expectorant and balsamic effect and can be used in lots of medicine
- Tea tree oil is does not irritate and is a non-toxic all-natural oil.
- It is added to everyday cosmetics and consumer products such as soaps, deodorants, aftershaves and colognes because of its fresh scent and antibacterial effect.
- It is a powerful antifungal which can treat skin conditions such as acne, athlete’s foot, and blisters.
- Tea tree oil is a must-have in an all-natural first aid kit. It is useful for treating infected wounds, insect bites, rashes and burns.
- Tea tree oil also helps manage respiratory conditions such as colds, asthma, whooping cough, sinusitis, and bronchitis.
- It increases the bacteria killing ability of disinfectants and germicides.
- You can combine it with a number of ingredients and create healing DIY beauty treatments (check out some of the suggested recipes below)
Orange Essential Oil Hydration
This recipe uses orange essential oil and olive oil. Both of these ingredients are good at hydrating your lips. Several things damage your lips and cause them to crack and get dull. You can use this mixture to bring back the lost moisture and restore vitality to your skin.
Here is what you will need:
- Olive oil—4 tablespoons
- Beeswax—1 tablespoon
- Orange essential oil—4 to 5 drops
Preparation and Application Advice
Microwave the beeswax and olive oil until melted. You can grate the beeswax to make the melting process go a little faster. Once the wax has melted, add in the orange essential oil and stir until blended. Pour into a small glass jar and let cool. Use it like a regular lip salve or lip gloss.
Oil Banishing Clay and Tea Tree Mask
Summer heat can make oily skin feel sticky and dirty, your complexion looks greasy and dull. Many people will notice that they get more blackheads in summers. This clay mask will absorb oil, draw out impurities and detoxify your face. Once all the toxins are removed from your face you will have clear, tightened and toned skin.
Here is what you will need
- Bentonite clay powder—1 tablespoon
- Purified water—2 tablespoons
- Tea tree essential oil—2 drops
Preparation and Application
Mix the clay and water and stir to form a paste. The consistency should be similar to a dense face mask. Add more water as needed. Add in the tea tree oil. Apply to face avoiding the eye area, leave on for 15 minutes until dry. Rinse off with lukewarm water and splash with cold water once the mask is removed. The cold water will help seal off your pores.
These reasons are just a few out of the hundreds of benefits proven by scientific studies. Tea tree oil is a miracle of nature and can be used for a myriad of treatments.