The versatile essential oil tea tree is perhaps best known as an antibiotic. It has been around since ancient times. Some of the best uses of tea tree oil are first aid for sunburn, athlete’s foot, blisters, fungal infections, insect bites and bee stings.
This oil is not anything like the tea that we drink! It shouldn’t be taken as such or swallowed. One of the most effective ways to use it is in an essential oil diffuser.
Tea tree oil is applied to the skin for treatments of skin infections and diseases. It has antimicrobial, antifungal, antiviral and antibacterial properties, which are all highly beneficial for treating skin problems. This oil is extracted from the steam distillation of leaves of an Australian tree known as Melaleuca alternifolia. Its colour varies from pale yellow to almost colourless and transparent. It is also called “The Medicine in a Bottle” by the aboriginal tribes of Australia.
These native aborigines use tea tree oil to heal burns, boils, cuts and rashes. It is also their antiseptic for treating wounds and infections. They have been practising this essential oil for thousands of years now.
How about the tea tree and its effects on the skin and body?
7 Wonderful Ways to Use Tea Tree Oil in Skincare
1. For acne, dark spots, whiteheads, and blackheads
Tea tree oil is proven effective in treating acne, dark spots, whiteheads and blackheads. Put a couple of drops of tea tree oil on some cotton and dab it over the infected areas of your skin. Leave it overnight. This oil efficiently combats the bacteria that cause these skin problems.
You may also look for soaps, and other face washes with pure tea tree oil as the main ingredient. Natural alternatives are always far better than beauty products that contain chemicals and alcohol. Side effects such as skin irritations and swelling are possible but highly unlikely.
Perform a spot test first to be on the safe side. Mix 5 drops of tea tree oil to 2 teaspoons of honey, then rub it onto your skin. Rinse after a few minutes. Be cautious, though, and do not use too much of this oil as it can cause your skin to dry, which may produce more acne.
2. For dry skin
The tea tree is highly beneficial for rejuvenating dry skin.
Use three drops of this oil with two tablespoons of raw honey. Shower or rinse after 30 minutes. Do it regularly to see rapid healing of your dry skin. Watch as it becomes soft, supple and glowing like a baby’s!
3. For psoriasis
As we all know, psoriasis, though not contagious, is a skin disease that causes a great deal of itching, redness and can spread all over the body. And yes, tea trees can be handy at dealing with this type of disease.
Here’s how to apply it:
For psoriasis of the scalp, use three drops of tea tree oil in your shampoo each time you take a shower. Let it sit on the area for 10 minutes before rinsing it off. Similarly, you may buy shampoos that contain tea tree oil in them.
For the face, neck, chest, genitals or body affected by psoriasis, dilute 15 drops of tea tree oil with 30ml of virgin coconut oil. Apply it onto the skin and wash it off after 30 minutes.
Note: Coconut oil also contains antibacterial and antifungal properties hence helps reduce itchiness and swelling.
You may apply tea tree oil directly for the non-sensitive parts like the elbows, knees, arms, nails or fingers. Just take a tiny amount and let it sit for few hours before rinsing. Then, if you don’t feel any side effects, you can leave it overnight and wash it off the next day.
As for psoriasis of the nails, apply a few drops of tea tree oil directly onto the affected part at night, then rinse it off the following day. Make sure the nails are as short as possible to allow full penetration of the oil. Then, continue doing it regularly for 20 days until the psoriasis is gone. This will prevent any possible reoccurrence of the disease. Of course, you need to reduce the dosage and frequency of use as time passes.
4. For eczema
The tea tree oil is good for treating eczema as well. To use it, mix 15 drops of undiluted tea tree oil in a warm water bath. Add three tablespoons of virgin coconut oil. Then soak yourself in the bathtub for an hour. Rinse yourself after. Repeat daily.
If you don’t want to bathe, you may use 20 drops of the oil with half a cup of almond or coconut oil and apply this directly to the area with eczema.
5. For varicose and spider veins
The tea tree oil also helps in reducing the appearance of varicose and spider veins. To do this, rub small amounts of pure tea tree oil directly, where these veins appear 3 to 4 times a day. You may also mix it with aloe vera oil. Tea tree helps relieve the pain and discomforts felt due to these common vein problems.
6. For body odour
Tea tree oil is also helpful in eliminating body odours. Now, isn’t that excellent news? Not only can it treat your skin problems, but it can deal with unwanted smells into the bargain!
Dab a small amount of tea tree oil on your armpits. You may need to wait for your pores to close if you wish to apply the oil after showering.
7. For warts
Wash the area around warts. Put one drop of pure tea tree oil onto warts. Put some tape over warts and leave it for 8 hours or overnight. The following day, remove the tape and wash the area thoroughly.
For genital warts, add a few drops of tea tree oil to aloe vera gel or olive oil as the skin here is sensitive. Then, perform the same procedure as used for other warts.
Be careful not to use any natural or chemical products if you are allergic to any ingredients. Make it a habit to test any products first on your wrist to see if there is any irritation before using them. And read the manufacturers’ instructions to ensure your safety and the effectiveness of any products you choose to use.
Lastly, do consult with your doctor first if you are pregnant or a nursing mother to try tea tree oil. Then, take these simple precautions and enjoy the many benefits of tea tree oil.