15 Beautiful Uses for Tea Tree Oil

by Bionic Beauty on 28.Jul.2014 · 4 comments

It’s no secret that Tea Tree Oil is fantastic for clearing breakouts but most people don’t realize the versatility of this essential oil. One little bottle of this oil will assist with home cleaning chores, refreshen the air, and provide health benefits such as clearing chest congestion, zapping allergies, and boosting your immune system.

15 Beautiful Uses for Tea Tree Oil - by the Bionic Beauty blog

Background Intel
Tea Tree Oil (TTO), also known as Melaleuca Oil, is an essential oil derived from the Melaleuca tree which is native to parts of Australia and New Zealand. Tea Tree Oil is *not* the same as, or related to, green tea, white tea, or any other teas that you drink. TTO can be toxic if taken by mouth (i.e. swallowed) in large quantities. TTO has excellent antiseptic, anti-fungal, and antimicrobial properties. It also has some mild analgesic (pain reducing) properties.

I’d describe the scent as fresh, woody, herbaceous, and vaguely reminiscent of camphor and eucalyptus. If you have sensitive skin, like me, start with smaller amounts of TTO in the uses I’ve outlined. Tea Tree Oil is mild and I’ve never had a reaction, but everyone’s skin is unique. Start with less until you see how your skin behaves.

Tea Tree Oil Recipes & Tips
For easier reading, this list is roughly grouped by area of the body. Numbers 1 – 6: Face. Number 7: Hair. Numbers 8 – 12: Whole body. Numbers 13 – 15: Miscellaneous goodies.

  1. Clear a Current Breakout: Dab tea tree oil onto the pimple daily to dry it, pull to breakout to the surface, and speed healing.
    • Helpful Hint #1: Use a cotton swab to apply.
    • Helpful Hint #2: Never dip an already used cotton swab into your bottle of oil. You don’t want to contaminate the fresh tea tree oil in the bottle!
  2. Face Wash: Add 10-20 drops of the oil to your bottle of face wash. This functions as a great daily preventative for acne and breakouts.
  3. Facial Toner: Add 10-15 drops of tea tree oil into a bottle of witch hazel for toner. Soak a cotton ball and swipe across face after washing. This gentle, yet super effective, toner helps clear and prevent breakouts, acne and pimples, tighten pores, balance skin’s pH … without drying your skin!
  4. Face Mask: Add two drops of tea tree oil to my DIY Green Clay Face Mask recipe. Helpful Hint: Spend a few extra minutes and read the comments section on that article because there are a ton of extra tips, tricks & recipes submitted by Bionic readers!
  5. Cold Sores: Use a cotton swab to dab TTO onto cold or canker sores twice a day. The tea tree oil will ease the discomfort and speed healing!
  6. Ingrown Hairs: Add a dab of TTO onto the ingrown hair and the surrounding area. Apply 1-2 times per day until the hair comes free.  The tea tree oil will help prevent infection; in addition to drawing the hair to the surface and loosening the follicle.
  7. Correcting Shampoo: Add a drop or two to the dollop of shampoo in your hand & wash like normal. Or mix 10-20 drops into your bottle of shampoo. Smells wonderful and helps clear up dandruff, itchies, or other scalp issues. This mix also puts the kibosh on product buildup without over-drying your hair or scalp!
  8. Body Wash for Acne or Clogged Pores: Pimples, blackheads, and other breakout varieties aren’t limited to your face. Resolve body breakouts by adding 10-15 drops of TTO to a bottle of dandruff shampoo. Shake well to combine. Apply to a shower pouf and gently scrub down your entire body.
    • Helpful Hint #1: For maximum benefit, let the mixture sit on your skin for a few minutes while you shave your legs, deep condition your hair, etc.
    • Helpful Hint #2: Look for a dandruff shampoo that has sulfur or a sulfur derivative listed as one of the main ingredients. Why? Because sulfur is absolutely awesome for clearing acne FAST.
  9. Body and Foot Scrub: Make your own simple, all-natural sugar scrub for your body and feet with this Bionic Beauty created, 3 ingredient recipe!
  10. Refreshing Foot + Leg Scrub: Refresh, soothe, smooth, and moisturize your footsies with this easy-to-make scrub recipe. The ingredients are easy to find- salt or sugar, tea tree oil, peppermint oil, jojoba oil. Swap the jojoba for coconut oil to save some a few dollars.
    • Helpful Hint: I love finding new ways to use my homemade skincare recipes. After a particularly grueling few days, I had shin splints, sore feet, and calf muscles that were beyond locked down.  A few minutes of massaging my feet and legs with this scrub made my legs feel like they’d had a professional massage!
  11. Body Moisturizer and Massage Oil: Mix 5 drops of tea tree oil with a couple of tablespoons of coconut oil. Apply to skin for moisture extraordinaire; or recruit a friend/family member to massage it into your aching muscles.
  12. Bugs Be Gone Repellent: Fill a spritzer bottle with a 50/50 mix of water and witch hazel. Add a couple drops of citronella oil and a couple drops of tea tree oil for an all-natural bug repellent spray.
  13. Mouth Wash + Breath Freshener: Combine 1/4 cup of purified water and 1 drop of tea tree oil. Swish around in your mouth like normal mouthwash. Spit it out. Just like toothpaste: Do. Not. Swallow.
  14. Nail Fungus Treatment: I’ve had great success clearing nail fungus on myself and others using tea tree oil.
    • Method 1: Use a cotton swab to apply the oil directly to all edges of the nail/nail bed. Try to get some up under the free edge of the nail. Treat once per day.
    • Method 2: Add 10-15 drops of TTO to a pan of warm water (just enough water to cover your toes or hands). Soak your hands or feet for about 15 minutes, twice a week. Pat dry with a soft towel. Then air dry the area completely before covering (for example – don’t put on socks or sneakers for at least 30 minutes!).
    • Method 3: Add 15-20 drops of tea tree oil to a bottle of carrier oil. My recommended carrier oils: Jojoba oil, Coconut oil, Grapeseed oil, or Almond oil. Mix well. Apply a bit of the mixture daily to nails, nail bed, and work some under the free edge of the affected nail(s). Treat once a day or a few times per week. Helpful Hint: Get 2 benefits for the price of 1 by slathering on before bed, slip your feet into some cotton socks (or hands in cotton gloves). Treatment is done while you sleep and you’ll have wonderfully moisturized feet/hands!
  15. Aromatherapy: 1 drop lavender oil + 1 drop tea tree oil. Apply to pulse points for relaxation, tension release, and to treat migraine/sinus headaches. Breathe deeply.
    • Feeling under-the-weather? This aromatherapy mix boosts the responses of your immune system which will help you battle off any pesky sick bugs.

Do you have any tips or secrets ways of working Tea Tree Oil into your beauty regimen? And remember, in the wise words of G.I. Joe “Knowing is half the battle” – so don’t be shy. Ask questions and share your knowledge.

Stay bionic and beautiful,
Jami - author and editor of the Bionic Beauty blog

P.S. If you enjoyed this list of goodies, you’ll love “15 Beautiful Uses for Jojoba Oil“!