All You Need to Know About Tea Tree Essential Oils

Tea Tree Essential Oil

Botanical Name: Melaleuca alternifolia

Places of Origin: Australia

Extraction Method: Steam distilled

Plant Part: Leaf

Aroma: Menthol, Herbal

Consistency: Thin

Tea Tree Essential Oil has a medium-
strength fresh and herbaceous aroma
presenting a top-middle fragrance note.

Tea Tree Essential Oil

With its distinct herbaceous aroma, Tea Tree Essential Oil used to have a reputation as a “hippie oil,” but Tea Tree, or Melaleuca, was around long before the Summer of Love. This Swiss Army Knife of essential oils actually boasts a number of compounds that can assist with fighting certain viruses, bacteria, and fungi.

That’s why people have taken advantage of the Tea Tree plant’s Essential Oil and its anti-inflammatory and antiseptic abilities for hundreds of years. Australia’s indigenous aboriginal population has long used Tea Tree oil to help fight infections. In fact, studies on the antiseptic properties of Melaleuca began to emerge in the 1920s, and during World War II, the Australian government put Tree Tree oil in medical packs to treat soldiers on the battlefield.

Then, during the 1970s and 1980s, commercial operations in New South Wales began to cultivate large quantities of the oil from the plant species Melaleuca alternifolia. The Tea Tree oil industry has since grown to include several other plant species that produce the oil. Melaleuca leucadendra, found in Egypt, Malaysia, and Vietnam; and Melaleuca quinquenervia, found in the United States, both contribute to the growing market of the essential oil. In addition, producers often use water distillation to effectively produce similar oils from the plants Melaleuca dissitiflora and Melaleuca linariifolia.

What’s the big deal about Tea Tree Essential Oil?

Since Tea Tree Essential Oil is so darned versatile, our team at Rocky Mountain Oils has added it to many of our kits, including our Mom’s Essential Starter, our Summer Skin Kit, and our Purification and Wellness kits.

Tea Tree Essential Oil has a medium-strength fresh and herbaceous aroma that presents a top-middle fragrance note. With its fresh, medicinal, and herbaceous aroma, Tea Tree Essential Oil is the go-to choice for body, mind, spirit, and home wellness. Here are just a few of the numerous ways you can employ Tea Tree Essential Oil:

  • Tea Tree Oil for Skin Care

    If you peruse the skin care aisle, you’ll often find Tea Tree oil as a remedy for blemishes and acne. In fact, several studies, including this one published in 2015, show how effective Tea Tree oil can be for treating acne, especially with the oil’s anti-inflammatory properties. And, unlike other blemish treatments like benzoyl peroxide, Tea Tree is gentler on the skin, meaning it won’t leave your skin itchy, flaky, burning, or dry.

    When properly diluted with a carrier oil, Tea Tree Essential Oil also works great as a makeup remover. Its soothing properties also help with other skin conditions, including eczema, psoriasis, bug bites, dry cuticles, sunburns, and chapped skin. Before using the oil, just test it on a small patch of skin to make sure it won’t cause any irritation.

  • Tea Tree Oil for Hair Care

    Knock out dandruff by massaging a Tea Tree oil shampoo into your scalp. Not only does the oil soothe dry skin, but it also moisturizes the scalp to reduce itching and flaking. The antifungal properties in the oil also appear to significantly improve the annoying condition, according to a 2002 study.

    Another reason to use Tea Tree oil, particularly if you have school-aged children, is to repel lice. Several studies, like this one from the Parasitology Research , conclude that Tea Tree can effectively kill lice at certain stages of life. Since there is some research supporting the claim that Tea tree oil may effectively repel lice, you can try spritzing it on hair to make your hair shiny and keep bugs at bay.

  • Tea Tree Oil as an Antifungal, Antibacterial, and Antiseptic

    Tea tree oil’s sharp scent helps fight odor. There’s also evidence that Tea Tree oil can tackle nail fungus, and relieve burning, itching, and inflammation.

  • Tea Tree Oil as a Household Cleaner

    Add a few drops of Tea Tree oil to laundry detergent to neutralize odors. Spray on shower curtains, in your dishwasher, or around the toilet to prevent mold from growing. Tea Tree’s antimicrobial properties make it a perfect all-purpose cleanser.

  • A Few Other Uses for Tea Tree Oil:
    • Helps calm nerves.
    • Soothes sore and overworked muscles.
    • Opens up the sinuses with its sharp scent.
    • Deters insects indoors and outside.

What is the best way to use Tea Tree Essential Oil?

There are numerous ways to employ the power of Tea Tree Essential Oil. Here are a few of our favorites:

  • Diffuse the oil to help purify the home.
  • Add Tea Tree oil to any DIY cleaning product to kill germs.
  • Blend Tea Tree oil into your favorite carrier oil, moisturizer, or shampoo for hair and skin applications.
  • Inhale the aroma directly from the bottle, or add a few drops to a cotton ball and breathe the aroma to help open up the sinuses.

Which oils blend well with Tea Tree Essential Oil?

Tea Tree Essential Oil Recipes

Soothing Foot Soak

Mix oils and water together in a large bowl. Add sea salts, and soak your feet for 20 minutes.

Laundry Deodorizer
  • 3 drops Tea Tree oil

Simply add the oil into powder or liquid detergent for fresh-smelling laundry.

Skin Care Blend
  • 5 drops Tea Tree Essential Oil
  • 1 tablespoon Fractionated Coconut Oil Combine both ingredients and massage onto blemished skin.
Lice Repellent Spray

Combine all ingredients in a spray bottle and shake well. Spritz hair daily.

What’s the difference between Tea Tree and Niaouli?

Think of Niaouli as a close relative of Tea Tree Essential Oil. Niaouli (Melaleuca) Essential Oil (Melaleuca quinquenervia) is also commonly known as Broad-Leaved Paperbark, Paperbark Tea Tree, and Punk Tree. While Niaouli and Tea Tree are very similar, here are few things that set these two oils apart:

  • Niaouli has a medium-strength sharp, slightly sweet, and citrusy aroma that presents a middle fragrance note. Its scent is sweeter and more medicinal smelling than Tea Tree Essential Oil.
  • Niaouli is stronger when used for respiratory treatment for adults.
  • You should not use Niaouli on children under 10.

Is Tea Tree Essential Oil Safe

Tea Tree is safe for children ages 2 and up when properly diluted; however, it is best to test the oil on a small patch of skin to test for possible skin sensitivity. Tea Tree Essential Oil may not be suitable for those with sensitive skin types. As always, apply with a carrier oil for topical application Click here for dilution rates.

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