The Ultimate Guide to Tea Tree Oil

Tea tree oil, also known as melaleuca oil, is one of the most popular essential oils. It is derived from the leaves of the tea tree (melaleuca alternifolia) which is native to Australia. Historically tea tree oil has been used by the Australian Aboriginal people since ancient times. Now in modern times it has been scientifically studied to prove its medicinal benefits are true. Here is your ultimate guide to tea tree oil including its characteristics, what you can treat with it, and methods for use.

The Ultimate Guide to Tea Tree Oil Characteristics and Uses

Characteristics of Tea Tree Oil

Antiviral – effective against viruses
Antifungal – treats and prevents fungal infection
Antibacterial – treats and prevents bacterial infection
Immuno-stimulant – activates or increases the activity of the immune system
Anti-infectious – stops the spread and kills infection
Anti-inflammatory – reduces inflammation
Antiseptic – eliminates the microorganisms that cause some disease
Parasiticidal – destroys parasites

Safety Considerations

Tea tree oil is one of the few essential oils that is usually considered safe to use undiluted. It is non-toxic and generally non-irritant as well. There is always some risk of sensitivity, however, so try just a small drop first if you’ve never used it before.

Uses of Tea Tree Oil


You can apply tea tree oil directly to affected area once or twice a day. You can also add a few drops of tea tree oil to other products such as lotions or shampoo.

Abscesses Diaper rash*
Acne Herpes
Athlete’s Foot Infected wounds
Blisters Insect bites
Burns Oily skin
Cold sores Veruccae
Dandruff Warts

*dilute before use on infants

Respiratory System

You can breathe in tea tree oil through vaporization by using a diffuser, putting a few drops of tea tree oil onto your pillow, or the Buddha’s breath method with your hands. You can also do a steam inhalation by putting 5 drops into a bowl of hot water then placing your head over the bowl with a towel covering everything.

Asthma Sinusitis
Bronchitis Tuberculosis
Catarrh – build up of mucus or phlegm Whooping Cough

Immune System

Vaporization and steam inhalation, as described above, will work for these. You can also add 5-10 drops into bath water. It may also be beneficial to massage into the neck, chest, and soles of the feet.

Colds Flu
Fever Infectious Illnesses

Health and Beauty Products

Tea tree oil is an excellent and versatile ingredient to add to nearly any homemade health or beauty product.

Aftershave Germicides
Deodorants Soaps
Disinfectants Toothpastes
Gargles  Cleaners

Do you use tea tree oil? What do you treat with it?

Resource: The Encyclopedia of Essential Oils by Julia Lawless

Also, I’m going to be back on Periscope today, Tuesday the 16th, at about 5:00 PST. I will be going through making my homemade toothpaste, as mentioned above. Search Heartful Habits to find me and tune in live!

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15 Comment

  1. Reply
    Deborah @ Confessions of a mother runner
    February 21, 2016 at 1:51 pm

    I don’t know much about essential oils and this was really informative thanks for sharing

    1. Reply
      February 21, 2016 at 4:02 pm

      I definitely recommend them. You can search my essential oils tag if you want more information for how to use lots of others as well.

  2. Reply
    February 21, 2016 at 3:30 pm

    I have a big bottle of tea tree oil and I like to use it for acne and a few drops in my scalp for dandruff. I love it. #sundaybloghop

    1. Reply
      February 21, 2016 at 4:03 pm

      oOo, I’d like to try it for dandruff but I haven’t yet. How do you spread it over your scalp? Do you find it makes your hair greasy at all?

  3. Reply
    February 21, 2016 at 5:53 pm

    Tea tree oil is so amazing! I always put it in my diaper wipe solution.

    You should come link up at our Bloggers Spotlight party, we pin everything to our group board and have two separate link-ups, one for posts and one devoted to pins so you get even more exposure!

    1. Reply
      February 22, 2016 at 11:54 am

      That’s awesome! Oh, cool. Thanks for inviting me, I’ll have to check it out.

  4. Reply
    February 21, 2016 at 9:26 pm

    I love tea tree oil! Great stuff!

    1. Reply
      February 22, 2016 at 11:54 am


  5. Reply
    February 21, 2016 at 11:43 pm

    What a great post! I’ll be pinning this for sure, as I love tea tree oil, but didn’t know it was good for soooo many things!! Thank you!

    1. Reply
      February 22, 2016 at 11:54 am

      Yes, it’s so versatile! I’m glad you’ll have some new uses for it.

  6. Reply
    Sarah @ Pretty Simple Ideas
    February 23, 2016 at 3:53 pm

    I love tea tree oil and my favorite is to definitely use it to spot clear acne! I’ve also gargled with it to treat sore throats.

    1. Reply
      February 23, 2016 at 4:04 pm

      I use it twice daily on my acne as well. I haven’t tried gargling it before though, I’ll do that the next time I get a sore throat. Thanks for the suggestion!

  7. Reply
    February 28, 2016 at 12:22 pm

    I have just been hearing about how helpful tea tree oil is for athletes foot! I love to use natural remedies. Thanks for sharing at the Thursday Favorite Things blog hop.


    1. Reply
      February 28, 2016 at 8:45 pm

      It is definitely versatile. Every time I have a skin issue my first response is almost always to put tea tree oil on it, and it always seems to help.

  8. Reply
    Kim Cunningham
    February 29, 2016 at 3:30 pm

    Great uses!

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