Tea tree Oil is one of the few essential oils that can be used directly on the skin but, like other creams and lotions, it must always be used sparingly and, if necessary you should build up tolerance by using it only once a day.
Tea tree oil can be used neat on the skin but some people find that it is hard to tolerate and can cause the redness you describe. You can help relieve this by applying plenty of oil-free moisturiser to the area. Keep applying it until the skin has ‘mopped up’ as much as it can (this may mean applying it five or six times in a day).
There is evidence that tea tree oil can be useful in acne and compares well with benzoyl peroxide in some studies. However, the only study that had enough patients in it to be significant used a 5% strength, which wasn’t as good as 5% benzoyl peroxide. Slightly stronger concentrations may well be worth using but they would be no better than the treatments already available from your doctor.
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