Sustainable Sunday [a day late]: Essential Oils: Tea Tree Oil

Essential oils are great for anybody trying to live a more sustainable life because they are so versatile.  One of the most versatile essential oils is melaleuca alternifolia better known as Tea Tree Oil.  TTO, like other essential oils, is all-natural.  It is also antimicrobial, antibacterial, and antifungal.  I also find the smell to be pleasant.

One of the most common things I use TTO for is cleaning products.  Whenever I make my own cleaning products (mostly out of vinegar) I add TTO both for its antibacterial properties as well as to add a natural fragrance to my cleaner.  Just a few drops goes a long way!

TTO can be used to treat several skin conditions as well.  It can be used on ingrown hairs or razor burn.  I don’t have any sensitivity to TTO so it doesn’t bother me to apply it directly to the skin, but I do recommend using a carrier oil (such as coconut oil) if you aren’t sure how your skin will react or have never used it before.  It can be used to treat burn or blisters, cuts, acne and facial blemishes, athlete’s foot, and nail fungus as well.

Two things that I have NOT used TTO for yet, but want to check out are bug repellant and mold removal.  I’ve been researching these things on the Internet.  There are several different recipes, but I’ll share with you what I’ve found to be the most common recommendations:

Bug repellant: 1/2 oz of TTO to 1/2 Cup of coconut oil or olive oil.  Apply topically to your skin before going out.

Mold removal: 2tsp of TTO to 2 Cups of water.  Spray on mold.  Do not rinse.

Leave me a comment and let me know about your own experiences with TTO.  I’ll update you guys on my success using it for a bug repellant and for mold removal.



    1. I like using it in a sugar scrub too! I can’t believe I forgot that. I make mine with sugar, coconut and/or olive oil, and either lavender, peppermint, or tea tree oil depending on what I want at the particular time.


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