tea tree oil plant

Tea Tree Oil Acne Treatment Explained

Published on Mar 19, 2016 in Bath & Body


Bad news for your sweet tooth... sugars and white flour may contribute to acne

Bad news for your sweet tooth… sugars and white flour may contribute to acne

As a young lady just on the cusp of womanhood, you are given fair warning that in the not-too-distant-future, you will start getting breakouts like nobody’s business. Well, what no one tells you is that for some of us unlucky souls, our bodies never quite get the memo that it’s been a decade or two (or three!) since our teens, and we still get the occasional pizza face.

When I tell you that I’d tried it all before stumbling across tea tree oil acne treatment, I literally mean that I’d tried everything — and then some! Accutane, prescription topical medications, antibiotics, cutting out white sugar from my life entirely (RIP home-baked chocolate chip cookies with my afternoon tea)… I had actually reached a loss as to what to do. There are a number of components that factor into why our skin refuses to behave: genetics, hormones, environment, diet, etc. but what remains the same across the board is an overwhelming desire to treat the issue and be able to leave the house confidently, without needing a face full of concealer. I diligently washed my face with the gentlest, chemical-free cleanser morning and night, made sure not to touch my face during the day, and even changed my pillowcase religiously so as not to have natural oils from my hair and scalp touch my precious, delicate facial skin. I can’t even begin to tell you how many hours I’ve spent waiting at the office of this dermatologist or that one, consulting about this skincare brand or that one. It goes to show that only after you’ve seemingly exhausted every possibility, does a solution finally present itself to you in a form you’d never even have thought to consider.

Tea Tree Oil for Oily Skin

The Tea Tree Plant

The Tea Tree Plant

I was picking up supplies for my best friend’s bridal shower, and needed to grab a few essentials for myself while I was already at the store. I chanced upon a bottle of tea tree shampoo, and thought it might be a good investment for my oily scalp and hair (yup, that’s right – my oily problem doesn’t end with my skin; I really won the lottery on that front!). Well, that shampoo was a hit, so I started researching more about this “tea tree oil” which I knew very little about. I figured, if it could work such miracles for the oily hair I’ve been battling for years, what other wonders does this little essential oil hold?! And wouldn’t you know it, but using tea tree oil for acne has been scientifically as well as anecdotally demonstrated to work.

Tea tree oil uses are a hot topic in beauty and skincare these days, but many people are uninformed about its history as well as what it can actually do for you. Aboriginal Australians have been using tea tree oil for generations, and researchers in that same country have supported the fact that this essential oil can work just as well at treating acne as the top drugstore remedy, benzoyl peroxide. Plus, using a natural substance such as tea tree (instead of the harsh chemicals found in many prescription and over-the-counter topical creams) means that the acne-healing properties won’t come with the high price of drying out and damaging your skin. Many folks even use Tea Tree Oil for Oil Pulling!

Tea tree oil works wonderfully in small doses, but be careful not to overdo it, since if used too much it can dry out the skin and create a vicious cycle where the skin over-produces its own oils to make up for this dryness. Tea oil also makes the skin more sensitive to UV rays, so stay out of the sun – and if you must be exposed, be extra careful about sunscreen and wearing a hat (something we hope you’ve already been doing!). If used in the correct dosage, tea tree oil won’t remove the skin’s needed natural oils, nor will it cause any further damage.

Don't be afraid of putting oil on your face

Don’t be afraid of putting oil on your face

For best use, Australian tea tree oil can be mixed and used in conjunction with other oils. Some of the other most popular essential oils include lemongrass, jojoba, peppermint, argan, evening primrose, and lavender essential oil. Whatever oils you end up selecting, take this mixture and apply it directly to pimples. Just a tiny dab will be potent enough to penetrate and disinfect the pores; unblock sebaceous glands; and dry out pimples, blemishes, whiteheads, blackheads, and other imperfections in the skin. To get the best results, leave the oil on overnight, or at minimum for several hours. For some people, it works better to use the tree tree oil in a face mask, rather than applying it directly as a spot treatment to the pimples. A few drops of this oil can be mixed with green clay powder and water, applied to the face, and left on for 10-20 minutes before rinsing off.

Still not sold? Well, just know that tea tree oil serves the additional function of being a gentle and effective makeup remover. It also has natural antiseptic, antifungal, anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, and antioxidant properties. Translation: whatever is wrong with your skin, tea tree oil can help solve your issues! This is truly the stuff which dreams are made of.

Success After Using Tea Tree Oil for Acne

This product serves double-duty, as tea tree oil for hair is just as effective as using the oil for the face. Since tea tree oil is moisturizing without leaving behind a greasy residue, it is the perfect solution for keeping the hair and scalp refreshed. Applying just a dab to your roots and tresses will strengthen hair and help it grow, while bringing back color and shine. Following it up with a tea tree oil conditioner can be lifesaver for dry/damaged hair.

In the few months between discovering tea tree oil right before my friend’s bridal shower, till the time I was a bridesmaid at her wedding, my face (and hair!) underwent a total transformation. I’d been dreading the thought of all those cameras on her big day, but my newly smooth, matte, pimple-free complexion required only the lightest touch of concealer, not the layers upon layers of makeup I’d been forced to wear in the past to camouflage my bad skin. All my friends wanted to know was who did my makeup and how they managed to get my skin so shine-free, and now that the secret’s out – shout it from the rooftops! Tea tree oil works wonders.