Many people who suffer from acne are put off by all of the harsh chemicals used to treat acne. They can smell strange, and cause irritation to skin, and for all that they also tend to be expensive. If you’re looking for a more natural, less harsh treatment for acne that won’t empty your wallet, you should consider tea tree oil.
What is Tea Tree Oil?
Tea tree oil is an essential oil that is found in Narrow-leaved Tea-trees. It smells like camphor, and is clear. People in Australia, the native location of the tree, had been using it for medicinal purposes for years before it became commercially popular. Tea tree oil has been used successfully to fight viruses, infections, and bacteria.
How Tea Tree Oil fight acne?
The reason it is such a popular medication for acne treatment is that it has antimicrobial properties, and appears to kill the bacteria on skin that contribute to acne. Acne occurs when a pore becomes clogged with dead skin cells or oil produced by the skin. Once this occurs, bacteria becomes trapped inside the clogged pore. This causes swelling, and more swelling and redness occurs when white blood cells attack the bacteria trapped in the pore. By attacking these bacteria, tea tree oil can reduce occurrences of acne breakouts.
Tea tree oil also acts as a toner, especially on oily skin. Tea tree oil reduces the current amount of oil on the surface of the skin, which can help cut down on the amount of pores clogged by oil, thus preventing acne from even forming.
How do I use Tea Tree Oil?
You should never use pure tea tree oil on the skin, it should be diluted to about a five to ten percent concentration. You can mix this yourself by combining 9 parts water to one part tea tree oil. You can use aloe vera, rather than water to dilute the tea tree oil, if you have sensitive skin. Start out with a lower concentration until you can be sure that your skin will not dry out, and increase the concentration over time. People with dry, or sensitive skin, may want to start out by using it once a day, and then after skin adjusts, using it in the morning and evening. Tea tree oil if used to often, or in a mixture that is too strong, can cause irritation, redness, and drying of the skin. To combat these issues if they develop, an oil free moisturizer is recommended. Tea tree oil also can work as a spot treatment, using a slightly stronger concentration of tea tree oil, apply to problem areas using a q-tip.
Will Tea Tree Oil Work for Me?
More than likely, yes. While tea tree oil has not had as many studies done as other acne medications, all of the tests that have been done show that tea tree oil works comparably to benzoyl peroxide. The advantages of using tea tree oil is that it is less expensive than most acne treatments, it is less harsh, and it is completely natural.