Tea tree shampoo, which contains the oil of the tea tree, has become a popular shampoo for its many benefits. The use of tea tree oil for a wide variety of purposes was first common among Australia's aboriginal people. The tea tree oil used in tea tree shampoo is taken from the leaves of the Melaleuca alternifolia plant, which is native to Australia.
Tea tree shampoos made with essential tea tree oils are derived from plants native to the continent of Australia. Tea tree plant benefits were first discovered and used by Australian aborigines as a medicinal inhalant and an antiseptic poultice for wounds. The crushed leaves were used for medicinal purposes, such as to treat colds and sore throats and other ailments. In the 1920s, researchers discovered the tea tree plant and began extracting its oils, after which the commercial tea tree oil and cosmetics industry developed.
Tea tree oil contains over 98 compounds. It is known for its germicidal and antiseptic abilities. Not all tea tree shampoo is safe to use, nor does it have effective amounts of tea tree oils in it, according to the International Aromatherapy and Herb Association. Tea tree shampoos come in various colors, and if organic, are usually clear and smell minty or camphorous, as tea tree oil itself is a clear substance.
Tea tree shampoo is used to treat scalp conditions such as dandruff and to stimulate new hair growth by clearing out old dead skin cells from hair follicles. It has been said that due to the tingly feeling and fresh, minty smell, tea tree shampoo makes a person feel invigorated and energized. For a good shampoo that cleans hair thoroughly and leaves it shiny, tea tree shampoos are often recommended by salons. Tea tree shampoo is also good for controlling head lice.
Tea tree shampoo uses vary. If you have scalp conditions such as dandruff or head lice, tea tree shampoo may benefit you. If you are trying to stimulate hair growth and want to feel refreshed after shampooing, tea tree shampoo might be just the right product for you. Some people recommend using tea tree shampoo for pets. Pets that need skunk smell removed or have excess skin dander may benefit from some form of tea tree shampoo, though it should be diluted first.
Swallowing or ingesting tea tree oil is known to be toxic, however, according to the American Cancer Society. Tea tree oil, shampoo, and other tea tree products should be kept away from children. Tea tree oil has also been known to cause hearing loss when used in the ears, which is a concern and something to be aware of when using these shampoos. Use of tea tree oil on pets should be done with caution. High doses of undiluted tea tree oil should not be used, as they have been reported to cause serious side effects in some animals, notably cats. To help deter fleas on dogs, add one capful of pure tea tree oil to its bottle of pet shampoo.