Aromatherapy: Tea Tree for Beauty and Home

Cleansing Shampoo

An effective cleanser for oily hair prone to dandruff.

50ml unperfumed pH-balanced shampoo
3 drops pure tea tree oil
4 drops pure lemon oil
3 drops pure lavender oil
Add the essential oils to the shampoo base and mix in thoroughly. Shampoo as usual. You'll find that your hair will also be lightly conditioned.

aromatherapy shampoo

Tea Tree Gel for Oily Skin

This anti-inflammatory and gently antiseptic gel blends tea tree oil and aloe vera to soothe and heal oily and spot-prone skin. Ensure that the aloe vera gel you use contains at least 85% of the gel extracted from the aloe plant. Aloe vera gel is quickly absorbed by the skin and does not clog the pores.

30ml aloe vera gel
2 drops pure tea tree oil

For best results, apply the tea tree gel once or twice a day for a month, then take a seven-day break before resuming the treatment. During the 'rest' period, apply a light hypoallergenic moisturiser if desired.

If you wish to use essential oils for long-term treatment, it's important to vary the recipe after three months. Simply swap the tea tree for another suitable pure essential oil such as lavender, rosemary or frankincense. After three months you can resume the tea tree treatment if you wish.

Tea Tree and Peppermint Mask for Congested Skin

This refreshing mask combines cooling peppermint tea and antiseptic tea tree oil with a green clay base to draw out dirt and impurities. If you have a place complexion, the treatment will initially make it look pink and blotchy but don't let this put you off. After about an hour, your skin will appear smoother, tighter and younger-looking. This mask is unsuitable for sensitive skin.

face mask

1 tbsp green clay
peppermint tea bag (or 2tsp dried peppermint tea)
200ml boiling water
1 drop pure tea tree oil

Put the peppermint tea into a teacup, add boiling water an allow to infuse for 10minutes. If using loose peppermint tea, remember to strain it afterwards. Add a few dessertspoons of the warm tea to the green clay and stir vigorously until it forms a paste - if it is too solid add more peppermint tea. Add the tea tree oil and mix in thoroughly.

Apply to freshly cleansed skin. As well as smoothing over your face and neck, it can be applied to the upper chest and shoulder area, which may also be prone to spots. Leave the mask on for 15 minutes, before rinsing off with tepid water. If applied to large areas of skin, it may be easier to rinse it off under a lukewarm shower.

Facial Oil for Dingy City Skin

This revitalising formula improves the circulation and imparts a healthy sheen. It is suitable for all skin types, but should be avoided if you skin is very sensitive.

10ml carrier oil
2 drops tea tree oil
1 drop geranium oil

Add the geranium and tea tree oils to the carrier oil and mix well. Apply as a periodic treatment, once or twice a week in every month. For best results, apply immediately after washing with warm water. The combination of warmth and moisture helps absorption of the oils.

Tea Tree Toothpaste

Tea tree is a wonderful ingredient in toothpaste. It helps keep harmful bacteria at bay, promotes healthy gums and freshens breath. Unflavoured toothpaste is used as the base in the following recipes and can be obtained from most homeopathic suppliers and good chemists.

Hopefully, these recipes will encourage you to experiment with different combinations of oils until you find the flavour you like best. Other beneficial oils for oral hygiene (not included in the recipes) include coriander, lavender, bergamot and clary sage.

Peppermint Flavour
 unflavoured toothpaste
3 drops tea tree oil
3 drops peppermint oil

Put the unflavoured toothpaste into a clean cosmetic jar with a tight-fitting lid. Then add the essential oils and stir them in thoroughly with the handle of a teaspoon. Use the mixture to brush your teeth as usual.

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Mix and match flavour
50ml unflavoured toothpaste
2 drops tea tree oil
2 drops myrrh oil
2 drops lemon oil

Mix as before

Fennel flavour
50ml unflavoured toothpaste
3 drops tea tree oil
3 drops fennel oil

Mix as before

Disinfectant Concentrate

This all-purpose concentrate makes a wonderful non-toxic disinfectant for use in the kitchen and bathroom.

1 tsp tea tree oil
1 tbsp white vinegar

Put the tea tree oil into a dark glass bottle with a vinegar-proof lid. Add the vinegar and shake well to disperse the tea tree oil.

Worktops: put 600ml hot water into a small bowl. Add a squirt of environmentally-friendly washing up liquid and 1/2 tsp of the tea tree concentrate. Swish around to create suds and disperse tea tree oil.

Shower curtains: between washes, spray the curtain with this mould-inhibiting solution: put 200ml water into a plant mister or cosmetic spray bottle, add 4tsp tea tree concentrate and shake well. Spray the curtains twice weekly.