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Our Guide To Healing Acne With Tea Tree Oil
From the outside, tea tree oil appears like nothing more than an earthy-smelling liquid. But in reality, it’s an all-natural, non-irritating and affordable acne-fighting weapon. And unlike most natural ingredients, tea tree oil comes armed with scientific trials to support the impressive acne-fighting claims.
According to a study conducted by the University Of Iran, tea tree oil face wash and gel “significantly improved mild to moderate acne” over a 12 week trial. Such research places it in the same league as other common breakout-banishing active ingredients like salicylic acid and benzoyl peroxide – only minus the dryness and irritation.
Don’t believe the science? Ok, let’s bring in the big guns: A celeb recommendation.
Speaking to Allure, Meghan Markle dubbed the native Australian ingredient as her “little cure-all”.
“The one thing I cannot live without when I’m travelling is a small container of tea tree oil,” said the Duchess of Sussex.
What is tea tree oil?
Tea tree oil is an antimicrobial agent, AKA it kills or inhibits the growth of bacteria and fungal infections. But the benefits of tea tree oil are hardly new news. Indigenous Australians have been using the anti-inflammatory ingredient for centuries, extracting it from the leaves of an Australian Narrow-Leaf Paperbark tree and inhaling the oil as a treatment for coughs and applying it topically for skin and wound healing. And due to its non-comedogenic build, tea tree oil makes the perfect candidate for soothing acne-prone skin.
What are the benefits of using tea tree oil on acne-prone skin?
Tea tree oil plays a prominent role in the reduction of all six types of pimples, from the surface level whiteheads and pustules, to the deeper, angrier red cysts.
It’s scientifically proven to prevent future breakouts by utilising its antibacterial properties to kill acne-causing bacteria such as p.acnes and staph, while the anti-inflammatory benefits reduce the swelling and redness of pre-existing breakouts.
What is the most effective way to use tea tree oil?
Head into any chemist and you’ll find tea tree-infused products in the form of moisturisers, toners, cleansers or just as a concentrated vial of essential oil (in which case apply with a cotton ball to areas of concern).
It’s effective enough for use on its own and gentle enough to complement existing acne-fighting products; use it to heal active congestion and prevent future breakouts.
Our most loved tea tree oil products:
The Body Shop Tea Tree Oil
The Body Shop’s Tea Tree Oil is a concentrated spot treatment diluted with cooling lemon oil to prevent over-drying and irritation.
“This tea tree oil is legit my favourite go to for blemishes and pimples. Every time I get a problem area, I apply it straight away (2 times a day, in the morning and at night) and they either shrink or disappear or they will give me a nice whitehead to naughtily pop.” - AimeeLeaBeauty
$9 at The Body Shop
A’kin Australian Tea Tree Oil Detoxifying Face Sheet Mask
Crafted from biodegradable, lightweight and 100 per cent eucalyptus fibre, A’kin’s Australian Tea Tree Oil Detoxifying Face Sheet Mask works to detoxify, clarify and refresh congested, irritated skin.
“The smell of teat tree oil is refreshing. the mask has plenty of serum I applied the excess serum on my neck and a bit on my hands too. Overall it's a good eco-friendly natural refreshing sheet mask” - Merrydreams
$7.99 at Priceline
Australian Creams Tea Tree Cream
Soothe acne with the moisturising, non-greasy Australian Creams Tea Tree Cream. With no added perfumes, this bacteria-banishing moisturiser is the perfect solution for sensitive skin types to banish their breakouts.
$8.95 at Superpharmacy.com.au
Do you use tea tree oil in your skin care routine? If not, will you try it?