You may recall Missy talking about essential oils recently. I had been intrigued by them for awhile, but didn’t really have any knowledge about them. She shared her enthusiasm about them, but it wasn’t until I tried them firsthand that I was sold. I was in a really grumpy mood one day so Missy told me to come over and borrow one of her diffusers to diffuse an oil blend called “Joy.” Amazingly, I was able to focus and have a much better afternoon while diffusing this in my office. My first oil order was placed the next day!
Once I started to get into oils, one of the first things I sought out were oils that were helpful for troubled skin. My skin often still thinks I am half my age, and it’s made worse from sweating at the gym. The oil that comes up repeatedly for helping skin concerns is tea tree oil. In fact, you even find tea tree oil in many commercial acne lines. I was very excited to be given a bottle of Apothecary Extracts 100% Pure Australian Tea Tree Oil to try and review. (Stay tuned, there is also a bottle to be given away to one of YOU!!)
So what’s so great about tea tree oil? It has a lot of great uses, but in a nutshell, if it is skin issue this is probably your oil! As I mentioned, it naturally fights acne. I use it directly on my breakouts, but some may find the oil too harsh when applied directly to the skin. If so it can be diluted. Once great suggestion I found was to mix a couple drops of tea tree oil into a few teaspoons of aloe vera gel to create a treatment “gel.” Another option is to simply add a drop or two of tea tree oil to your regular moisturizer and mix it up in your hands before applying.
Tea tree oil can also help to treat conditions such as cold sores, psoriasis, warts, dandruff, toenail fungus and lice. I am semi-paranoid about getting toenail fungus (even though I have never had it…) in the summer months because I know it thrives in warm, sweaty environments (like inside my running shoes on a long, hot run). I am planning to start using tea tree oil on my feet preventatively after hot runs this year. In researching tea tree oil, I found it can also be used preventatively for head lice. (Another thing I have never had but my head itches just thinking about it!) Many sources I found suggest mixing a couple drops in with your regular shampoo. The oil repels the lice. So easy!
According to WebMD, tea tree oil can also be “used topically as a local antiseptic for cuts and abrasions, burns, insect bite and stings.”
The disinfecting properties in tea tree oil can also come in handy making cleaning products. I have not tried this yet, but have found several recipes for bathroom cleaners, general household cleaners and detergents.
You may recall from earlier this year that I have been trying to make many of my own beauty products. Some have come out better than others, but one of my very favorites uses tea tree oil.
All Natural Homemade Shaving Cream
4 Tbsp solid shea butter
3 Tbsp coconut oil
2 Tbsp sweet almond oil
10-12 drops pure tea tree oil
Directions: Melt the shea butter and coconut oil on low heat. The original recipe calls for using a double boiler, but I have been using a glass bowl placed in hot water. Stir occasionally until completely melted and then remove from heat.
Add almond oil and tea tree oil. Stir thoroughly.
Place the bowl in the fridge and let the mix harden. I have found this takes 2-3 hours. Remove from the fridge and use a hand-held electric mixer to whip the mixture until it looks like frosting.
Transfer to an airtight container. I use mason jars.
Of all the things I have made, this is one of my favorites. It is very luxurious. It is so moisturizing that after using you can see the water bead up on your skin. I try to make double or triple batches of this now so that it lasts quite awhile.
Would YOU like to try tea tree oil? What would you be most likely to use it for? The great folks at Apothecary Extracts 100% Pure Australian Tea Tree Oil are giving away a bottle to one lucky reader. This would be a great time to mention that this bottle is huge. It is 4 ounces (if you have ever bought oils you will know this is big!) and they estimate it will last about a year! Please note that since this product is distributed via Amazon, you MUST have an Amazon.com account in order to claim your prize.