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Is Tea Tree Oil The Answer To Your Acne?


Are you looking for effective acne treatment? If so, then you may have heard about tea tree oil’s beneficial effects on your skin. This essential oil can be used in the form of an acne spot treatment, which can be especially helpful if you struggle with cystic acne. 

However, before you start slathering tea tree oil all over your face, it’s important to know more about its properties and how they can benefit your skin health in the long run.

Keep reading to learn more about tea tree oil and the possible side effects that come with using it.

Is Tea Tree Oil The Answer To Your Acne?

What is Tea Tree Oil?

Tea tree oil is a natural essential oil obtained from Melaleuca alternifolia, which is also known as the native tea tree. It is distilled using steam and requires temperatures between 176°C and 210°C (350°F to 410°F). 

Some people use tea tree oil for acne, but how does Tea Tree Oil Work? First of all, it’s important to understand that tea tree oil works differently than other acne treatments.

Most treatments work by drying out your skin or killing bacteria on your skin's surface. Tea tree oil works by affecting your body's hormones in such a way that it slows down sebum production and reduces inflammation of your hair follicles.

This helps reduce the redness and swelling of pimples, making them easier to manage.

How does it Work?

Tea tree oil works in much of the same way as benzoyl peroxide, salicylic acid, sulfur, and resorcinol. However, it differs from these medications because tea tree oil is much gentler and not as likely to cause dryness or redness.

You apply it topically over your skin and once it's absorbed, you may feel a bit of a warming sensation over your blemishes, this is due to some minor irritation you'll experience when using tea tree oil for acne, however, there are plenty of skin types that are compatible with tea tree oil without experiencing side effects such as dryness or excessive redness.


How can you use it for your skin?

You can use tea tree oil in a few different ways, you can either buy a pure essential oil of tea tree or you can buy one of many different brands that contain tea tree extract and other ingredients, including soaps, shampoos, lotions, and cleansers, one common use for tea tree oil is as an acne treatment.

According to research from 2009, when applied topically to skin with acne, 5% tea tree oil gel was found to be just as effective as 10% benzoyl peroxide gel at reducing acne lesions by over 50 percent after four weeks of use.

Another study published in 2002 found that 6.6% topical tea tree oil was able to reduce both inflamed and non-inflamed acne lesions in just 12 days.


Can you use it with other products/therapies?

Some people with sensitive skin have reported adverse reactions to tea tree oil, in particular those undergoing anti-acne chemical peels. While not everyone has problems using tea tree oil and other acne treatments at once, it’s better to be safe than sorry.

Consult your dermatologist about whether or not you can safely use tea tree oil with whatever products or therapies you’re currently using for acne.

If that’s not an option, try mixing a small amount of tea tree oil with either aloe vera gel or a benzoyl peroxide cream (such as 10% BP) before applying your usual treatment to dilute it further while still maximizing its effectiveness.


How much should I use?

When using tea tree oil for acne, it’s important to go slow. Some people experience skin irritation when using tea tree oil on their face, so it’s best to start off by only applying a few drops to affected areas.

If you have sensitive skin, dilute two or three drops of tea tree oil with one tablespoon of aloe vera gel (or other hydrating facial product). Over time, work your way up to full strength and then experiment with different concentrations, adding five or six drops of rosehip seed oil can also help balance out skin while reducing inflammation and redness. Always use a carrier oil if mixing tea tree oil with other ingredients.


What other treatments/products can I combine with tea tree oil.

Tea tree oil is best used topically on your skin, and since it has anti-bacterial properties it can help with your acne. But to effectively kill bacteria and reduce inflammation, you should also make sure that your diet includes lots of fruits and vegetables so that you get enough vitamins and minerals.

There are also other ways to get rid of acne such as oatmeal facials or exfoliating creams. If you really want to treat your acne properly you should use multiple products such as tea tree oil, natural face scrubs or lotions, and a healthy diet for good overall health.

Remember that having clear skin is something many people struggle with their entire lives, so don’t beat yourself up if it takes some time for these methods to work.


While tea tree oil is a naturally occurring, skin-friendly substance, it has only been proven to be effective as an acne treatment in mild cases.

It's not worth spending money on unless you have sensitive skin and occasional breakouts, if you have moderate to severe acne with larger pimples (cysts), you'll want to invest in a stronger treatment.

Still, if you're looking for a natural cure that's cheap and easy to find, and your face isn't terribly damaged, give tea tree oil a try! Though its benefits haven't been confirmed through research or clinical studies, there is evidence that tea tree oil can help treat mild cases of acne, especially when used in conjunction with benzoyl peroxide.


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