Tea Tree oil is one of the healthiest essential oils. It is used in numerous beauty products including face washes, body lotions, soaps and shampoos. The oil is loaded with antiseptic, antibacterial, antifungal, antiviral and antiandrogenic properties along with being a natural moisturizer and healer. Because of its medical properties it is also used in treating wounds, burns, infections and respiratory problems. But its most popular use is in hair treatments. From dandruff to hair-fall control to lice removal, tea tree oil is like a go-to mantra for every hair problem you’ve ever had. The best part about using tea tree oil is that it can be used on any type, texture or style of hair.
What Is Tea Tree Oil?
Tea tree oil is a volatile oil that is extracted from the narrow leaves of a tea tree, which is scientifically known as Melaleuca Alternifolia. It is a native of Australia and is found in its Southeast Queensland and New South Wales regions.
What Can It Do?
When applied properly it can do wonders for your hair. Some of them are listed here:
Grow Healthy, Long Hair
The oil can get you the dreamy, long hair you’ve always wanted. Instead of working along the length of your hair, it works on the root of the problem, literally, by nourishing the roots and unclogging hair follicles and pores. Regular use of the oil helps to curb hair loss and encourage hair growth. In no time, you can watch your hair grow thicker, shinier and prettier.
Apart from causing constant itching and embarrassment, dandruff comes in the way of your healthy hair growth. tea tree oil’s antifungal and antibacterial qualities fight dandruff while the essential oil prevents your scalp from flaking by keeping it moisturized and your hair conditioned. So, even if you do not want to grow your hair long, you still have a good use for tea tree oil.
Ease Itchy Scalp
An itchy scalp may not always be caused by dandruff. There may be a fungal infection or an allergic reaction causing the scalp to be prickly. Again, tea tree oil can come to your rescue. Even for more serious problems like scalp eczema, scalp folliculitis or scalp psoriasis, tea tree oil can be used in their treatment.
Get Rid of Lice
Head lice are an annoying and embarrassing problem that is not as uncommon as you may think. While kids may fall prey to it more often, a lot of adults have complained about it too. Tea tree oil can not only kill lice but also destroy their eggs and curb their growth. Using the oil regularly can help you stay away from this irksome problem permanently.
Moisturize Your Scalp
Sometimes a simple condition like dry scalp can lead to several problems like hair fall, lifeless, dull and unruly hair. Keep your scalp moisturized and healthy at all times with this oil. This will also help in healthy hair growth.
Remove Excess Oil
Tea tree oil does not only help people with dry hair. If you suffer quite the opposite – excessively oily hair – this natural oil can help. It controls excess oil production, which often tends to clog your pores. Open pores mean better hair growth and thicker looking, bouncy hair!
How Can You Use It?
For thousands of years, tea tree oil has been a favorite among home remedies for curing hair and scalp problems. Several ways of using the oil have evolved. Read on to know some of the top five most effective ones, which are also easier to apply.
1. With a Carrier Oil
This is the most popular way of using tea tree oil. Simply dilute the oil by mixing it with a regular hair oil and massage gently for 5 to 10 minutes. Only a few drops of tea tree oil are enough to make a good solution. After the massage, cover your hair with a towel and leave it for another 10 minutes, before washing it off. Repeat the process 2-3 times a week.
For a deeper effect, warm the carrier oil before mixing the tea tree oil drops and massage with the warm mixture before it cools down. Leave it for 30 minutes. You can choose from a variety of carrier oils like almond oil, coconut oil, rosemary oil or lavender oil, depending on what qualities you desire in the carrier oil.
2. As a Spray
If you do not have the time or the skill to massage your hair, use it as a spray. Add a few drops of tea tree oil to water and put it in a spray bottle. A good measurement could be five drops of oil for every ounce of water. Spray your hair with the solution when you are getting ready in the morning and let it do its work all day long.
3. In a Shampoo
A more effective way to fight dandruff is to use it in your shampoo. Add about 10-12 drops of the oil in your regular shampoo and massage on wet hair. For the oil to work its magic let it sit for at least five minutes before you rinse it off.
4. After the Shampoo
For a lasting effect of tea tree oil, use it directly after you’ve washed your hair. Towel-dry your hair after the shampoo (you may use conditioner as well) and then take a few drops of the oil in your palm and massage your scalp gently. Slowly work your way along the length of your hair for a holistic impact.
5. With Peppermint and Olive Oil
This is a highly effective solution for itchy scalp, but it is also very strong and is only advisable to be used once a week. Take three drops of tea tree oil as well as peppermint oil along with a tablespoon of olive oil (preferably, extra-virgin) and mix it in a cup of lukewarm water. Apply the mixture on your hair after washing with your regular shampoo. Massage your roots well for 5-10 minutes and then wash it off thoroughly.
How to Remove Lice with Tea Tree Oil?
While fighting dandruff and dry scalp is quite easy with the regular use of tea tree oil, killing lice may be a bit tricky. They are stubborn parasites and need a little more potent solution to get eliminated. So, here’s what you can do – mix 3-4 drops of tea tree oil with the same quantity of lavender essential oil in a bowl. Add a little extra virgin olive oil and pour it all in a few tablespoons of mild shampoo. Mix it well and massage your scalp gently with the solution. Leave the shampoo on your head for half an hour. Wash your hair thoroughly and condition it well. Now, towel-dry your hair and then use a lice comb to comb away the dead lice and nits from your hair. Depending on the severity of the problem, use the solution as often as you want in a week.
Tea tree oil is so loaded with healing qualities that it can be used for almost every hair problem. But it is important to understand that it is a very potent essential oil and should always be used in a diluted form. If you have sensitive skin, it may be a good idea to perform a sensitivity test on a small patch of your skin before applying it to your whole scalp. If that works, make it a part of your daily beauty treatment without a second thought. Even for problems like unruly hair, tea tree oil can be pretty useful. Just leave it in your hair overnight and tame your hair the way you want the next morning! Cosmologists and dermatologists have sworn by this all-purpose natural oil for generations. It’s time you bid goodbye to bad hair days permanently and say hello to tea tree oil!