You just know when you inhale tea tree oil for the first time that it is going to do you some good. It has that pungent medicinal aroma that you associate with healing.
Tea Tree comes from a small tree native to South Australia. The Aborigines traditionally used it for many illnesses from coughs and sore throats to the antidote to the bite of the Funnel Web Spider. (Allegedly, it is the only known natural cure and grows in the same habitat as that of the Funnel Web, proving that nature always supplies what we need for a healthy life.)
Undoubtedly, it is one of the most useful essential oils you can have in your collection but it’s important that you buy it fresh from a reputable supplier and store in a cool dark place. All essential oils lose their strength as they age but tea tree is known to become slightly irritating as it gets older.
Usually, Tea Tree can be used directly on the skin as in the case of a wound or cold sore but if you know that you have sensitive skin you might want to dilute it a little.
Commonly, people find Tea Tree most useful for some of the conditions mentioned below:
Head lice: Put a few drops in your shampoo bottle. Leave the shampoo on the hair for five minutes before rinsing off.
Dandruff: Use in the same way as for head lice
Athletes Foot: 3-5 drops in a bowl of warm water and soak the feet or add a couple of drops to foot cream and massage into the affected area.
Colds and sore throat: Add 3 drops to the dish of water on an oil burner or 5-10 drops in the bath. In the oil burner, you could also add a drop or two of eucalyptus essential oils to clear the nasal passage.
Cuts and wounds: Put a couple of drops in a small bowl of warm water and bathe the affected area or even use a single drop neat on a small area of skin. Add a drop to your favourite antiseptic ointment to give it an extra boost.
Acne and spots: Try making your own face creams and toners too using plain base creams and spring water.
Mouthwash for bad breath or mouth ulcers (do not drink).
All-purpose anti-bacterial cleaner. (Use a few drops in a spray bottle of vinegar.)