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Tea Tree Oil (Acne)

For nearly a decade, the Melaleuca oil (also known as tea tree oil) has been used as a medicine because of its suggested antifungal and antibiotic effect. As such it is thought to have a positive effect in tackling the bacteria that causes acne.

Level of evidence: B

In patients with mild-to-moderate acne, a 5% topical tea tree oil gel compared with a placebo treatment both applied daily for 45 days showed, that the tea tree oil significantly reduced both the number of total acne lesions and the acne severity1. In another study, the efficacy, tolerability and acceptability of a tea tree oil gel and face wash were investigated in people with mild to moderate facial acne. After ending the 12 weeks study results showed, that the use of the tea tree oil products significantly improved mild to moderate acne, and that the products were well tolerated2.

The concentration of an ingredient is important for its efficacy, and therefore products containing the same ingredient may not necessarily have the same effect as in the studies mentioned above.

Updated: July 2017

References

1Indian J Dermatol Venereol Leprol. 2007

2Australas J Dermatol. 2017