Can Tea Tree Help Get Rid of Dandruff?
By Kathy Sadowski, MS in Aromatherapy, Registered Aromatherapist, LMT
There can be multiple causes of dandruff: too much oil production, skin that is too dry, a yeast infection from a fungus called Malassezia, or a sensitive reaction to harsh hair product ingredients. Tea tree oil could be effective in reducing dandruff; more human research is warranted.
Try these two tea tree dandruff recipes to help reduce embarrassing and itchy dandruff.
Tea Tree Pre Shampoo Treatment Recipe
- 1 ounce of jojoba oil
- 10 drops of tea tree oil
Instructions – Wear gloves. Mix the jojoba and tea tree together in a small container. Massage into hair. Careful not to get in eyes. Put a plastic bag or towel over hair and wait about an hour before rinsing out.
Tea Tree Rinse Recipe
- 1 ounce of apple cider vinegar
- 5 drops of tea tree oil
- 1 half of a lemon’s squeezed juice
Instructions – Wear gloves. Combine the three ingredients into a small container. Wash hair with shampoo. Use this recipe to rinse hair after shampooing. Pour onto head, massage in, and rinse out. Careful not to get into eyes.
Tea Tree Dandruff Recipe Research
- The 5% tea tree oil shampoo group showed reduced dandruff. From: Satchell, A. C., Saurajen, A., Bell, C., & Barnetson, R. S. (2002). Treatment of dandruff with 5% tea tree oil shampoo. Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology, 47(6), 852-855.
- Antimicrobial activity of tea tree oil against Malassezia species was assessed. From: Hammer, K. A., Carson, C. F., & Riley, T. V. (2000). In vitro activities of ketoconazole, econazole, miconazole, and Melaleuca alternifolia (tea tree) oil against Malassezia species. Antimicrobial agents and chemotherapy, 44(2), 467-469.
- Oregano, spearmint, lavender, and sage essential oils and the constituents of carvacrol and thymol exhibited antifungal properties against the human pathogens Malassezia furfur, Trichophyton rubrum, and Trichosporon beigelii. From: Adam, K., Sivropoulou, A., Kokkini, S., Lanaras, T., & Arsenakis, M. (1998). Antifungal activities of Origanum vulgare subsp. hirtum, Mentha spicata, Lavandula angustifolia, and Salvia fruticosa essential oils against human pathogenic fungi. Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, 46(5), 1739-1745.
- Tea tree oil was effective against human candida species in vitro. From: Mandras, N., Scalas, D., Roana, J., Banche, G., D’Amico, F., Allizond, V., … & Tullio, V. (2017). Comparative effect of tea tree oil and anidulafungin on human polymorphonuclear leukocytes functions against Candida krusei. In 45° Congresso nazionale della Società Italiana di Microbiologia(pp. 119-119). Società Italiana di Microbiologia (SIM).
- Lemon essential oil was effective in vitro against a variety of human dermal fungi. From: Jain, N., & Sharma, M. (2017). Evaluation of Citrus lemon Essential Oil for its Chemical and Biological Properties Against Fungi Causing Dermatophytic Infection in Human Beings. Analytical Chemistry Letters, 7(3), 402-409.
- Tea tree was effective in vitro against dandruff fungi. From: Naveen, S., Karthika, S., Sentila, R., Mahenthiran, R., & Michael, A. (2017). In-vitro evaluation of herbal and chemical agents in the management of dandruff. Journal of Microbiology and Biotechnology Research, 2(6), 916-921.
- This article provided a thorough review of medicinal uses of tea tree oil. Carson, C. F., Hammer, K. A., & Riley, T. V. (2006). Melaleuca alternifolia (tea tree) oil: a review of antimicrobial and other medicinal properties. Clinical microbiology reviews, 19(1), 50-62.
- Connealy, L. E. Apple Cider Vinegar Benefits. Link: https://www.newportnaturalhealth.com/2017/04/apple-cider-vinegar-benefits/
By: Kathy Sadowski
This categorized compilation of research articles does not necessarily imply that there are adequate results to demonstrate safe and/or effective human use. These statements are not meant to diagnose, treat, or cure any diseases. The information at this page has not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. Consult a Doctor before using herbs and essential oils if you have medical conditions, are taking medications, or have questions.