Tea Tree Oil: A Potent Natural Health Aid

| Modified on Aug 12, 2016

Tea Tree Oil is not the best known natural remedy, but its popularity is skyrocketing! This natural product extracted from the leaves of Australia's Tea Trea is full of potent natural antibiotics and ingredients to control pathogens of all kinds, from big bugs to small. Be warned, however, that this is potent stuff and can cause damage to skin and other tissues if used undiluted and without care.

This essential oil has tremendous antimicrobial properties and is all the more popular these days as it seems to be effective at killing off the MRSA virus, at least on surfaces. Against dandruff, head lice, mites, and scabies it has also been proven effective.

NB: Tea Tree Oil is for topical use only and is not to be swallowed. A small percentage of people also seem to be allergic to topical application of the oil.

Natural Cures: Tea Tree oil is said to be good for acne and general skin care, including treatment of fungal infections such as ringworm and athlete's foot. People also use tea tree oil for herpes outbreaks.


2 User Reviews
5 star (2) 

Posted by Dana (Atlanta, Ga) on 08/08/2009

My 9 year old son experienced cellulitis for the second time in less than a year as the result of a bug bite (spiders we think). At any rate, unable to get the prescription for an antibiotic filled until the morning, I went to this website. I placed a few drops of tea tree oil onto a cotton swab. I applied it to his very swollen and inflammed leg, along with a water soaked cotton ball (so the tea tree would not burn). I then applied an ice pack and gave him an over the counter anti-flammatory. By morning, the inflammation was gone, he was able to move his leg with less diffulty and the redness also subsided.

The Tea Tree worked awesome. Because of the severity of his cellulitis I still gave him the antibiotic, but cut the treatment time in half. Going forward, on any bites I will immediately treat with tea tree oil.

Thanks Earth Clinic

Replied by Deesone808
(Las Vegas, Nevada)

I've been battling cellulitis on my leg and arm (both on my left side) for a month now... Hospitalized twice for IV treatment, even home IV for a week. My cellulitis has cleared after my last week of antibiotics, except for my dark patches on my arm. With the suggestion of my aunt, she said to apply TTO to help scarring... I did apply it to my infections & to my astonishment, my cellulitis was back! I had only applied it to both my left and right (bc of where my PICC line), but not to my leg. Seriously, I can't be going thru this again. My leg is fine, but my arms exploded w/ the infection again... Ugh! I called my ID dr n he put my oral antibiotics again... I'm freaking out. I have my follow up w/ my dr next weds. In the mean time I'll be taking my oral ab n benadryl my dr ordered. I need some advice, can anyone HELP me... Can anyone please tell me why this is happening again?I need some answers...

Replied by Carly
(Seattle, Wa - Usa)

Hi Deesone... That cellulitis is some scary stuff. Absoulutely keep taking whatever the doctor prescribes, but also look into vitamin C mega dosing.

Look up "Linus Pauling / vitamin C" on a search engine. I would take 4-6 grams of C a day if I were in your shoes. (Cutting back if you get diaharea so as to not wash the antibiotics out of your system too fast).

Just a thought. Good luck to you.

Replied by Ginger
(Manistique, Michigan, Usa)

We have had several cases of cellulitis in our household over the last year, presumably from spider bites. The first one was on my teenager's wrist. I took her to the doctor and she was given an antibiotic. Although it went away, I would have preferred she not be on antibiotics.

Next case was on my husband's cheek near his nose. We first noticed it at 4 pm on a Friday and didn't want to go the emergency room, so I looked to EC. The bite was so angry looking so I hit it with a 3-fold process of polysporin, tea tree oil, and a little sprinkle of turmeric on a bandaid. We kept it bandaged with the mixture at night; during the day, I just applied the mixture and kept it open to the air. By Monday, it was gone, but his face was a bit burned from the turmeric. Next time, I knew not to apply the turmeric as it was too strong.

This past week, both teenagers had cellulitis, again possibly from bites, so this time I only used the polysporin and tea tree oil. Having ointment on at all times, covering with bandaid whenever possible.

Cellulitis was entirely cleared up in four days in all cases.

Replied by Kelly
(Catawissa, Mo)

If you are all suffering w/ spider bites or bites of some type causing such serious cellulitis, why not dust your house w/ diamateous earth to kill the spider and or bugs. This stuff works FANTASTIC, is cheap, and above all safe!


3 User Reviews
5 star (3) 

Posted by Shannon (Stillwater, OK) on 04/21/2008

I have been battling perioral dermatitis for about 6 months. I went to a dermatologist and was put on minocycline, which did clear it up. After 3 months of taking the medication, my doctor put me on doxycycline, due to concerns about negative side effects of long term use of minocycline. I could not tolerate the doxycycline, it made me nauseous and just made me feel weird, so I quit taking it and decided to look for a natural treatment. I found this website and began using a combination of remedies. I began taking pro-biotics, and evening primrose oil. I began washing my face with apple cider vinegar and baking soda. I also used evening primrose oil topically on the area of dermatitis. It seemed to be ok, until I got a cold. The area of dermatitis is around my nose, and blowing my nose constantly while I had the cold irritated it. The dermatitis began to spread.

I found a post somewhere about using tea tree oil. I had an old jar of Desert Essence Tea Tree ointment, so I began using it. I have used it for 4 days now, keeping the area covered constantly with the ointment, and the dermatitis is almost gone! It looks as good as it did when I was on minocycline. I think the probiotics and evening primrose capsules that I am taking may be helping too, but the tea tree oil was my "magic bullet." I have noticed that when I drink alcohol, the area becomes more inflamed. I'm not sure if this is due to dehydration, or the destruction of healthy bacteria in the intestinal tract.

I want to mention too that I have been under a great amount of stress, trying to finish grad school,and the dermatitis appeared during this time. I really believe stress and unhealthy eating habits/drinking alcohol contributed to the problem.

I hope this helps someone else out there. I love this website!

Replied by Pik

I was diagnosed with Rosacea and given Rosex Gel which didn't work. Then another doc said I had perioral dermatitis which would take months to clear and gave me minocyclin (potentially for 3 months!) Alarmed by this prospect, I googled and came across this site and read about how Tea Tree Oil has helped some people with Perioral Dermatitis. Lo and behold! A few days into the treatment and my red pimply spots stopped spreading and began drying out. It looked bad because the skin of the affected areas was very dry and flaking off in large pieces by a week later, I was cured!! Now what is left is slight hyperpigmentation (scarring due to the pimples?) but barely noticeable. Thank you to all who posted this fantastic cure.

Replied by Taylor
(Nashville, Tennessee)

I was recently diagnosed with perioral dermatitis by a dermatologist. It seemed to come out of nowhere, and was just around my mouth area next to my chin. My doctor gave me 1 month antibiotics, which has been tearing my stomach up. I had been on the antobiotics for about 10 days when I became angry that I hadnt seen any results, in fact, it looked worse.

A co-worker suggested I try tea tree oil as her daughter suffered from POD too. Four days later, my POD is about 85% gone!!!! No new bumps have formed since using the tea tree oil.

Since tea tree oil is VERY potent, it is recommended to dilute the oil. I diluted it with water by moistening a cotton pad with water, squeezing out the excess, placing about 2-3 drops of oil on the pad, and then adding a few more drops of water. I then pressed the pad on my affected areas 2-3 times a day. It started drying up immediately!

I even used a drop of straight tea tree oil on a huge pimple that I got (due to the stress of the POD), and the bump completely vanished within 12 hours!

I am now convinced that some of the best remedies are all natural!

General Feedback

Posted by Rjkp (Brigham City, Utah) on 05/05/2012

FYI.. The scientific name of tea tree oil is melaleuca alternifoia. Hope this is helpful.


1 User Review
5 star (1) 

Posted by Claudia (Los Angeles, CA) on 02/17/2008

Tea tree oil really helps me to prevent herpes outbreaks. When i feel the infected area starting to become itchy, which is a symptom for me that i'll be having an outbreak, i apply tea tree oil 2 to 3 times during the day. This prevents any sores from appearing.

Replied by Gary D
(Brisbane, Queensland, Australia)

With tea tree oil it depends what concentration you use. For Herpes it is best if you swab it on using a cotton bud and at 50 - 100% pure and when the sores are there.

NOTE* It is going to sting like crazy so have a fan ready and sit in front of it so it dries quickly.

If you swab it 4 times a day for 3 days, I have seen where herpes has not returned. if you do not sit in front of a fan, be prepared to run around for 30 sec or so until the stinging goes away, but the result is worth it.. I did see older men put a couple of drops in the bath to stop heat and rashes. So it seems like it is good for lesions.


1 User Review
5 star (1) 

Posted by Tina (Indianapolis, IN) on 12/28/2007

I was Diagnosed with hidradenitis July 06' I have had terrible breakouts in the groin area from my bikini area to my anal area. I have tried everything to stop the breakouts, even bathing 3 or more times a day nothing has worked. Recently I went to a local natural food store and read a natural remedy book were it stated Tea Tree oil, pure tea tree oil will take out the staph from boils and soothe the pain. I tried it several times so far so good. It has a scent of eucalyptus and the same drying action like alcohol. So far it works

How to Apply Tea Tree Oil

Posted by Dorothy Myles (Colchester) on 08/12/2016

Tea tree oil has been very good for thick toenails in a very short time. Can I use it neat on the nails? The bottle says it needs a carrier oil but not what for. Your website suggests just to paint it on, from the bottle??

How to Apply Tea Tree Oil
Posted by Ashley (Albuquerque) on 09/03/2013

How to apply tea tree oil: I take a q tip and dip it in the oil then apply directly on the area needed. Always use a new or clean q tip befor dipping in the oil to prevent contaminating the tea tree oil with any germs. You can wet the q tip with water first if you have sensitive skin.

Insect Bites

1 User Review
5 star (1) 

Posted by Lisa (Coto De Caza, Ca) on 10/12/2009

My daughter woke up one morning with a few bug bits (most likely spider bites) that itched and were swollen. We put a little tea tree oil on it and the itching stopped very quickly. The next day the bites were completely gone. A few days later I had a bug bite that itched like crazy, so I tried the tea tree oil on it and it worked great.

Jock Itch

4 User Reviews
5 star (4) 

Posted by Jamie (Cebu, Philippines) on 10/02/2007

It's a miracle i must say. Been suffering from jock itch for years. Tried oral meds, ointment, soap ..name it but nothing had worked.The itching go away for some time then it keeps coming back.Feeling so hopeless i just accepted the fact that this cannot be cured until i encounter this website.I tried Tea Tree oil and applied on the infected area...with only ONE application..WOW no more itch...I cant believe that theres still hope for jock itch case.More power to this website...i love this website.

Replied by Keisha
(Baguio, Philippines)

may I ask where you bought tea tree oil here in the philippines?

Jock Itch
Posted by Sally (Washington, USA) on 04/12/2007

Well, let's see if I can describe this without being too unladylike. I had some kind of terrible itching "down there" which I think first started out as the result of an abrasion that wasn't healing properly, and then got worse because of a reaction to the ultra cheap toilet paper at work. This was getting worse over the course of several weeks.

I got some relief from colloidal silver applied topically. I did that for a couple of days and it was helping. Then I mixed some colloidal silver and some tea tree oil with some aloe vera gel, and applied that, it was way too strong, but even though it had a warm sensation and I wanted to rinse most of it off right away it gave immediate and lasting relief from the itching. The next day I took some of the too-strong mixture and diluted it in some unscented lotion (Nature's Gate brand, very mild). I have been using that for a couple of days after showering and it is amazing how effective it is. No more itching and everything is healing nicely. Worked great. Hope this helps someone, I sure love this web site, trying to tell others about it too. Thanks!

Replied by Mikem
(Vancouver, Washington)

My gf and me use full strength tea tree oil and i have used it on my jock itch that i have had for the last 15yrs and nothing has worked and believe you me i have tried everything on the shelf and this is the only stuff that works, i apply about 2 drops on both sides twice and day and it's allmost gone for real. We also use it to just strengthen our immune system and rub it on our necks and face because it is absorbs quick into the bloodstream. I used it on this boil i had behind my ear and within a week of applying it 3 times a day it's gone and it was about 2 inches in diameter. I have used it on skin tags and had a few get dark and fall off so it does work very well.We love this stuff

Replied by Steve
(Roanoke, Virginia, Usa)

Just wanted to add to this thread, I too had a troublesome spot "down there" about the size of a quarter that simply would not go away. After applying slightly diluted (olive oil) TTO the itching stopped. Three days later a very thin layer of skin peeled away from the spot itself (the surrounding skin was unaffected) revealing fresh new skin underneath. The itch has not returned. Thank you Earth Clinic!


3 User Reviews
5 star (3) 

Posted by Julie (Los Angeles, CA) on 11/27/2007

Tea tree oil can help rosacea. Not sure if it can erradicate it completely, but it does help kill off the adult mites. You need to use it religiously, every day. (I use it several times a day!) Since the demodex mites keep reproducing you need to keep applying TTO to keep the next generation from growing into adults. For example, if you only apply it one time, say, you may kill some for that day but the lifecycle of these stubborn mites is about 15-20 days. Also, try not to wear foundation makeup during this time, you need to get this out of your skin! Also, don't "feed" the mites by applying any nutritional things such as coconut oil, and other vitamin-rich lotions. I'm still doing research but this is the best natural way I have found so far. Try it!

Replied by Cami
(Lw, Fl)

Hello. I would like to know how long you used the tea tree oil for??? Did you dilute it, or just apply it 100% natural??? I believe I have demodex mites, and I really want to get rid of them. Thank you!

Posted by Jessie (Houma, Louisiana) on 08/15/2007

I read a suggestion about using tea tree oil to help with rosacea, so I tried it. I'd used it occasionally for pimples, but I had never tried putting it all over my face. It worked like a charm! I still have a little redness which can't be helped because of the summer heat, but I haven't had any break-outs and my face looks much better than it did using the expensive creams.

Posted by Caroline (Keller, Texas) on 05/28/2007

I am shocked and amazed after thousands of dollars spent on TCA peels, medicated creams and Dr. prescribed Retin A etc,.that I find Tea Tree oil to be an overnight wonder (Literally) for the treatment of my Rosacea. All my redness was gone after 2 nights of applying the oil directly all over my face. Acne and redness is completely gone!! This stuff is awesome! Got mine at Sprouts health food store. I highly recommend to anyone suffering from acne or acne rosacea.

Skin Tags

5 User Reviews
5 star (4) 
4 star (1) 

Posted by Barbara (Concord, California) on 10/23/2009

I had a skin tag right at the corner of my mouth. Not only was it ugly, it hurt and was impossible to ignore. I couldn't get my health care provider to pony up to pay to remove it (it is apparently considered a cosmetic procedure, even if it was causing me physical pain, that's a WHOLE OTHER topic) - after finding this website, I decided to be brave. I applied undiluted Tea Tree oil to the tag, and within 2 days the tag had turned to a blister, and after 2 weeks, the tag was COMPLETELY GONE. I am completely sold on this stuff, its a miracle. Note: I think straight tea tree oil was a bit harsh, because it made the area really sore. However, there is no scar or anything left of the tag.

Skin Tags
Posted by Pam (Waukon, IA) on 11/20/2007

I have skin tags around my neck line that I used tea tree oil on. I think I overdid the oil as my skin turned red like a burn and is sore. I shouldn't have soaked a cotton ball and taped it to the area. Maybe just dabbing the skin tag with a Q-tip every so often would have been more than enough. I'm scared to use it again now. Does anyone know of this happening to anyone before?

Replied by Shoshieko
(Union City, GA)

Your skin was turning red because you were using a high concentration of tea tree oil. Dilute it by putting a couple of drops in olive oil. Five to 10% is the amount of tea tree oil needed.

Replied by Sunny
(San Francisco, Ca)

I had an uncomfortable skin tag on my neck. It was irritated. A skin doctor wasn't worried about it being cancerous (my mom has had melonoma). So I decided to use my cure-all Tea tree oil. I put a dab on in the morning undiluted. It, over a week or so, became red and crusty. I kept applying the tea tree. Sometimes two times a day. The crusty part would fall off and new fresh skin would be under. I kept it up and eventually one time the crusty scab fell off and there was nothing underneath it. Voila! It has never been back.

Replied by Carolyn
(Hobbs, Nm, Usa)

What is a skin tag? Is it like a big brown flat mole? Thanks, Carolyn

Replied by Gsabrae
(Springfield, Mo)

I read the review for skin tags and Tea Tree oil, I bougt 100% Tea Tree oil. My intention was to apply the oil to a skin tag that had developed underneath my right eye. I applied the oil 3 times a day for 7 days. Day 1, I see the skin tage is shrinking! Day 2, it is even smaller, Day 3, the tag is itching, growing smaller darkening, Day 4, same thing even more! Day 5, I was absent mindly scratching and itch on my face the skin tag fell off! I was awed, rush to a mirror and it was gone! Tree Tea oil, pure for me does take away skin tags. This tag had been on my face for two years and no matter what I used, it was still there. I. Then began to use it on skin tags that were developing (3) and they are almost gone.

So I began to use it on dark spots on my nose from wearing glasses for 40 years and they are diminishing also! I am absolutely blown away! It gets better... I have adult acne, and yes, you guessed it! They are going away also! Some of the pimples have been on my face for almost a year! Is Tea Tree oil a component of the fountain of youth? I do not know, what I DO know is that skin problems that I have spent hundreds of dollars in during my lifetime disappear and leave me looking less aged, with almost flawless skin and I love it! Pure Tea Tree oil is volatile, do not apply it to your face without adequate ventalation. Do not apply it and go to bed, it will irritate your eyes and nose, apply it at least 20 minutes prior to bedtime. This stuff work amazingly well.

Replied by Nicole
(Brussels, Belgium)

So I recently bought tea trea oil the other day, and was applying it directly to my spots. It was working great, and you could already see the positive effects. However, one night I didn't have a mirror, so I applied it with a cotton swab all over my chin area. The next morning I woke up it was stained a reddish brownish color, and the whole area is horribly dry. I realize now that I should've diluted it, but when will the stain go away?

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