Tea Tree Oil is a refreshing essential oil that is perfect if you are looking to improve your hair health or to create a soothing fragrance for your home. In aromatherapy this is perfect to help with stress and aid restful sleep, without having an overpowering fragrance. This can also be used as a bug repellent or a natural hand sanitizer due to its antibacterial properties.
History of Tea Tree Oil
Tea Tree Oil has been used for decades, originally making its debut in the early 1900's to treat bacterial infections and small wounds. Originating in Australia, the oil quickly spread to be used in other parts of the world by the late 70's, and Australian natives swore by its healing properties. A powerful antiseptic, with a strong, refreshing smell - Tea Tree Oil has been used over the years either in modern beauty products, or as a standalone ointment for the skin and hair. This is one of the few oils that is toxic when ingested, and there have been questions around the veracity of its health benefits.
It shouldn’t be confused with other common tea plants - which can be used to make drinks and used in cooking. It’s botanical name is Melaleuca alternifolia, and is native to eastern Australia. Grown in swampy, moisture rich soil, the plant is difficult to grow indoors due to it constantly needing the sun - which is probably why it thrives in the Aussie heat!
So, why has Tea Tree Oil survived through history and is so popular?
Despite questions around its benefits, there is no doubt that Tea Tree Oil is incredibly versatile and can be used for multiple things. Whether it’s creating a cleaning product for the home, repelling bugs, or helping keep head lice at bay - Tea Tree Oil really is the jack of all trades. It’s popularity can also be attested to its availability and price, as you can access pure oil, or products containing the oil at a fairly affordable rate.
Tea Tree Oil can also be used in aromatherapy, and complements a number of other essential oils on the market so you can create beautiful blends with minimal effort. The powerful properties of Tea Tree Oil means that it can also help to fight off germs when used in an electric diffuser or in a homemade spray! In summary, even though the oil has received some ‘bad’ press in the past, it is still loved by many and used in cosmetics, skincare and ‘all natural’ products on the market.
Extracting Tea Tree Oil
Extracting Tea Tree Oil is most commonly achieved through steam distillation, which involves using steam to lift the oil from the plant, and then skimming the oil solution from the water once it has condensed. This method is also used for Lavender Oil and other essential oils where the plant or flower is delicate, and cold-pressing can be considered as a less effective way to yield the oil!
Can I make Tea Tree Oil at home?
The Tea Tree plant grows in hot conditions, with soil that is rich in moisture and minerals. Thus, in colder countries - it would be harder to grow the plant and make homemade oil from it. Furthermore, if you were to grow the plant, you would need to rent a small distiller (or buy one online) to create Tea Tree Oil, as making it from an alcohol base is unpopular due to the small amount of oil that you would yield. Unless you are completely set on making the oil at home, your best bet would be to purchase the oil online rather than going through the hassle of making the oil in the comfort of your own home. However, if you live in perfect conditions to grow the plant and already have access to a distiller, it may be a fun experiment to try making Tea Tree Oil at home, especially if you have had success with making other essential oils in the past! It’s completely down to personal preference, budget flexibility and the weather conditions in which you live in.
What do you think about Tea Tree Oil? Is it a staple in your collection? We’d love to hear your thoughts (as well as how else you have extracted it at home) so feel free to submit it to the Essentially Yours team!
Can I make Tea Tree Oil at home?
The Tea Tree plant grows in hot conditions, with soil that is rich in moisture and minerals. Thus, in colder countries - it would be harder to grow the plant and make homemade oil from it. Furthermore, if you were to grow the plant, you would need to rent a small distiller (or buy one online) to create Tea Tree Oil, as making it from an alcohol base is unpopular due to the small amount of oil that you would yield. Unless you are completely set on making the oil at home, your best bet would be to purchase the oil online rather than going through the hassle of making the oil at home. However, if you live in perfect conditions to grow the plant and already have access to a distiller, it may be a fun experiment to try making Tea Tree Oil at home, especially if you have had success with making other essential oils in the past! It’s completely down to personal preference, budget flexibility and the weather conditions in which you live in.
What do you think about Tea Tree Oil? Is it a staple in your collection? We’d love to hear your thoughts (particularly if you have extracted it at home) so feel free to submit it to the Essentially Yours team!
Tea Tree Oil Varieties
Tea Tree Oil Varieties
There are over 250 types of Tea Tree plant, with its botanical name being Melaleuca! As this plant originates from Australia, you can assume that if you live in Australia, you will most likely have more access to a variety of Tea Tree oils in comparison to other parts of the world. Tea Tree Oil as a whole should never be ingested, and can actually cause you harm even in small amounts. It is also recommended to not be used on young children because of this, so if you have young children in the household don’t leave your Tea Tree Oil lying around!
So, how do I know which variety of Basil Oil I should be using?
There isn’t a huge difference in outcome when using different varieties of Basil Oil, aside from the scent may be slightly different. Where the oil is so versatile, you’ll find that it can be used from beauty, to aromatherapy and all the way to cleaning in the home. What we recommend is researching what you want to achieve with your Basil Oil and seeing what others are saying about each variety.
Please note that a lot of the benefits of Basil Oil can often be specific to one person, so take the reviews as anecdotal and not factual. As a rule of thumb, we love Sweet Basil Oil because it is commonly found, it’s versatile, and most importantly it’s affordable! It blends beautifully with a number of other essential oils on the market, and can be used to make many DIY products in the home such as soap, sprays and of course to be used in aromatherapy.
What is your favourite variety of Basil Oil? We love hearing your stories. Feel free to submit yours to the Essentially Yours team today!
So, how do I know which variety of Tea Tree Oil I should use?
Unlike other oils which may have different effects depending on the variety, there is very little information out there to suggest that one particular variety of Tea Tree Oil is more effective than the other. What you can look out for, though, is the concentration of the oil. Some Tea Tree oils on the market may be weaker than others depending on what it is used for. For example, some topical Tea Tree oils may only be a 10-15% concentration so as not to irritate the skin.
Finally, research is key. Everybody’s skin and hair can react differently to an essential oil, so looking online for the correct brand and strength of Tea Tree Oil is the best way to do it! Due to the fact that this oil is notorious for being strong, we recommend doing a patch test if you are creating a blend for your skin, and if you have struggled with skin conditions previously, consult with a dermatologist before applying an oil topically to the skin!
What is your favourite variety of Tea Tree Oil? We love hearing your stories. Feel free to submit yours to the Essentially Yours team today!
Benefits of Tea Tree Oil
Tea Tree Oil made its commercial debut in the 1900's, originating in Australia and popularly being used to treat wounds and bacterial infections. It is a powerful antiseptic and has been used in commercial beauty products as well as alternative medicinal practices. It is one of the few essential oils on the market that is highly toxic when ingested, however topically it can be used to repel bugs, improve scalp health and so much more! Today, Tea Tree Oil is found in ‘healing’ and ‘soothing’ commercial moisturisers, as well as cleansers and spot treatments.
So, what are the benefits of Tea Tree Oil?
Can repel insects
Tea Tree Oil is a powerful essential oil that can be used to repel insects and bugs, meaning that for those who regularly travel or reside in areas with mosquitoes and other bugs that target humans, can use the oil topically as a natural remedy to fight against bites!
Neutralise body odor
The oil can be used as a natural deodorant, which can be great for those who don’t like using deodorants with harsh chemicals, or have allergic reactions to commercial products.
The antiseptic properties in Tea Tree Oil can help with minor cuts and scrapes, and can be handy to have on you if you are travelling, hiking or have young children that are prone to accidents!
Can fight acne
Tea Tree Oil is used commercially in a lot of beauty products, and can successfully reduce acne and soothe painful pimples that can form as whiteheads or under the skin.
Natural household cleaner
Like other essential oils on the market, Tea Tree Oil can work with vinegar and hot water well to create a powerful cleaning agent that can be used all over the home.
Please note that the benefits of essential oils vary from person to person, and what may work for one person may not work for you - particularly if the research to support the claim is anecdotal. If you are on medication for skin conditions or healthcare reasons, always consult with a doctor/dermatologist/healthcare professional before applying essential oils in any capacity.
Uses of Tea Tree Oil
Tea Tree Oil is considered a ‘modern’ oil as it was first discovered in the 1900's and rose to prominence in the 70's. Originating in Australia, the strong, fresh and herby smell of Tea Tree Oil has been used in alternative medicine, as well as beauty products and aromatherapy. It is one of the few oils that is highly toxic when ingested, but topically it has a number of benefits including repelling bugs, cleaning small grazes and wounds, as well as reducing acne and dandruff.
So, what can I use Tea Tree Oil for?
In aromatherapy Tea Tree Oil is used either on its own or combined with other essential oils to create powerful blends that can boost the immune system, reduce stress and instil a feeling of tranquility. The cooling and herby scent of Tea Tree Oil is therapeutic in itself, and is a popular oil for aromatherapists to reach for because of this.
Not only is the oil widely used as an ingredient in skincare products, but on its own Tea Tree Oil packs a punch! This mighty oil can be applied topically on acne prone areas to help fight breakouts and soothe painful spots that can cause scarring if picked/touched continuously
Hair masks/scalp treatments
If you are struggling with excess oil, or you have dandruff, Tea Tree Oil can fight both of these things. Creating a hair mask with a carrier oil such as Coconut Oil can help to nourish the hair with the right oils, whilst keeping your scalp clean and free from excess skin and dirt that comes with dandruff.
Apply a few drops onto your ankles and other areas where bites occur, and keep insects and bugs at bay!
Tea Tree Oil doesn’t just smell refreshing, it also combats bacteria and works as a pretty tough household cleaner. Combine with vinegar and hot water, and you have a perfect all-purpose spray that can be used to clean all parts of your home.
Treat athlete's foot
Due to its antimicrobial and antibacterial properties, you can use Tea Tree Oil on its own to treat athlete's foot, just apply topically on a daily basis and wait to see the results. Please note that you should not apply the oil on cracked, bleeding or broken skin.
Scent the home
Whether it’s through an electric diffuser, or creating your own candle or room spray, Tea Tree Oil really exudes an uplifting scent that can refresh any room in the house.
Blends well with
Here at Essentially Yours we love sharing our tips, tricks and knowledge with you so you can get the most out of your essential oil collection. Whether it’s understanding the history of an oil or brushing up on the latest blends - our website has all the information you’ll need! In this blog we are specifically going to talk about Tea Tree Oil and which other oils it blends well with. So, if you want to learn more - keep reading!
Nourishing and silky, Jojoba Oil is excellent for those who have acne prone skin due to its natural makeup. The properties of Jojoba Oil are likened to your skin's natural oils, meaning that if oil usually breaks you out - have no fear! A few drops of tea tree mixed in with Jojoba Oil can create an excellent spot treatment or facial oil that can be used to keep acne at bay.BUY NOW
Nourishing and moisturising, coconut and tea tree work beautifully together to create hair masks, homemade soaps and massage oils that can be used on your scalp or your body. Our favourite is a coconut and tea tree mask for overnight use. Just apply to your hair, massage into your scalp and leave overnight. Wash away the next morning and you’ll see that after continued use your scalp health will have improved, and your natural oils will have balanced!BUY NOW
The woody, herbaceous scent of pine mixed with the freshness of tea tree works well if you are looking to create a strong household cleaner or an air freshener!