If you have ever conducted an online search for skincare products, you have undoubtedly come across page after page mentioning tea tree oil. Blogs and websites across the web tell you over and over again how it can help quickly treat a wide variety of conditions and ailments … but does it really work?
In order to decide whether or not tea tree oil is worth all the hype, you must first understand what it is and why there are so many health claims attached to it. Tea tree oil is an essential oil that comes from a tree scientifically classified as Melaleuca Alternifolia. That’s the Narrow-Leaved Paperbark or Tea Tree to you and me. It has a very distinct odor that is difficult to describe, but is present because of the wonderful healing qualities the oil delivers.
The aroma is almost menthol in nature, without smelling like the traditional mint scents you have encountered before. Tea tree oil is always pale in color, and may be clear or a light yellow, sometimes even slightly green. This “miracle oil” offers many antimicrobial benefits and is an essential oil because of its unique and special natural chemical makeup.
The antimicrobial and antifungal benefits of tea tree oil are the reasons it gets so many mentions when it comes to effectively treating various skin conditions. Fortunately, these claims have proven true for most tea tree oil users.
Sometimes it is easy to dismiss claims you see online because often the information is presented in an extremely biased manner. We all know that manufacturers go overboard when trying to sell their products. But the great news is that tea tree oil does have medicinal benefits.
How Do I Use Tea Tree Oil?
Tea tree oil is very powerful. It is typically sold in diluted versions that are safe for topical applications. If you do purchase pure tea tree oil it is important to dilute it with water or another carrier oil prior to applying it to your skin. When purchased in its pure form, you will receive instructions that tell you just how you should dilute the product.
Just remember that, even in small quantities, tea tree oil is very powerful. When using for the first time, go slowly. Apply a small amount to see if you develop a sensitivity to it. Fortunately, since tea tree oil is naturally occurring, if you experience any negative reaction it is usually very minimal in impact. This is another reason to follow any dilution instructions carefully.
Tea Tree Oil for Acne Treatment or Prevention
Follow these steps to benefit from the natural antimicrobial benefits tea oil provides for the acne sufferer.
1. Cleanse your skin with a mild cleanser.
2. When the oil is diluted and ready for topical application, apply a small amount to a cotton ball and gently wipe it over your face. Be careful not to get it near your eyes or mouth.
3. That’s it. If you experience dry skin, you may want to let the tea tree oil dry and follow up with a very light moisturizer. Or you could apply a small amount of hydrating skin oil such as Jojoba.
4. Repeat this twice a day and you should start seeing results quickly.
Tea Tree Oil Soothes Itchy Skin, Insect Bites And Sunburn
Simply follow the directions discussed above to treat bothersome insect bites, overexposure to the sun and itchy, cracked or dry skin. As long as you carefully clean the area to be treated first, there is no need to rinse the infected area after applying the tea tree oil. Incredibly, relief from sunburn and the sting of an insect bite takes place almost immediately.
What Else Can Tea Tree Oil Be Used For?
Truly a “jack of all trades”, tea tree is an effective natural treatment for skin infections, rashes, warts and skin tags. It is often times used effectively to treat psoriasis and ringworm, and when added to your shampoo helps prevent lice. A couple of drops in your pet’s bed keeps fleas away, and this natural antiseptic is perfect for treating small cuts.
A low-cost, natural treatment for so many problems and ailments, tea tree oil can be found at some specialty shops, and purchased conveniently through multiple online retailers.