Tea tree oil is extracted from the leaves of Melaleuca alternifolia. It appears colorless to light yellow liquid with a green and fresh camphor-like odor. Tea tree oil contains more than 98 compounds, of which 6 chemical types are different from those of plant oil. They include 4-terpineol, terpinolene and 1,8-cineole. Among them, the chemical type of 4-terpineol is the specification for commercial, and its main components can play an anti-inflammatory, disinfect and other medicinal effects. Tea tree oil is widely used in cosmetics and skin cleansing products. Its medicinal efficacy is especially suitable for officinal cosmetic ingredients. According to relevant research, tea tree oil has an obvious curative effect on skin problems such as dandruff, hemorrhoids and herpes.
- Terpinen-4-ol is the major TTO component responsible for antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties
- A second component 1,8-cineole, is likely responsible for most allergies in TTO products. Adverse reactions to TTO diminish with minimization of 1,8-cineole content.
In commercial production, TTO is prepared as a terpinen-4-ol chemotype.