While nature can be quite amazing, there are very little natural wonders that are as versatile as tea tree oil(aka melaleuca). The oil can be used to ease skin issues, to cure health problems, and even ward off bugs. It’s used in many different products and is not hard to find;It’s just a grocery store trip away from being in your medicine cabinet. For those unfamiliar with the plant or its oil, here’s a list of how it can be used and how it works.
Tea tree oil’s germ-fighting properties are what makes it able to cure acne and fungal infections. Its chemicals may also reduce allergic skin reactions. If you can’t stand the smell, which funnily enough is what some people love so much about the cure-all, there are plenty of products out there that include tea tree oil as an ingredient but mask its odor.
HBS Tip: On its own tea tree oil can cause a burning sensation on the skin. Instead of dousing your face in it to get rid of acne, apply some onto a q-tip and focus on the problem area. For fungal infections, it’s fine to soak your feet but you can also use a spray or rub it on a concentrated area.
In addition to acne and fungal infections, tea tree oil can aid in curing a slew of other infections. For instance, it is known to help combat lice, scabies, athlete’s foot, ringworm, vaginal infections, herpes labialis, infections of the mouth and nose, and ear infections.
Aches and Pains
Tea tree oil can be used topically as a local antiseptic for cuts and abrasions, for burns, insect bites and stings, and boils, and can ease the pain from toothaches and sore throats. Add about 15 drops to a bath and it will reduce inflammation and ease sore muscles.
Some people add the oil to bath water to treat a cough, bronchial congestion, and pulmonary inflammation. Others put a few droplets(4-5) in a bowl of steaming water then lean over it and breathe it in for a few minutes to combat a head cold.
Bugs can’t stand the smell of tea tree oil so it’s a great way to ward them off. Mix some with some water in a spray bottle and spray any entry points to your home to keep them out. You can also spray yourself with the mixture to keep bugs off of you which is especially useful when you have to be outdoors for long periods of time.
Bad breath and sweat don’t have anything on tea tree oil. Gargle with a cup of water and a drop of the oil to get rid of bacteria. Deodorants with tea tree oil are more effective, too, because of its bacteria-fighting powers. Plus, a dash of tea tree oil in your trash, can eliminate unwanted odors as well.
Around the House
Almost anything you can think of that requires cleaning, can be freshened up with the oil. You can use tea tree oil to clean and prevent mildew(soak the affected area for a few minutes before wiping). When mixed with water and distilled white vinegar, it becomes disinfectant for your counter tops. By adding about 15-20 drops of tea tree oil to an empty dryer and running it on the hot cycle, you’ll be rid of any bacteria and odor that may be negatively affecting the quality of your clothes.