Tea Tree Oil For Cold Sores | How To Use Tea Tree Oil For Cold Sores?

Tea tree oil is indigenous to Australia and its botanical name is “Melaleuca Alternifolia”. Tea tree oil is thus called melaleuca oil sometimes. Tea tree oil comes through the steam distillation process.

Quick Buy – Tea Tree Oil For Cold Sores

Anti-InflammatoryEase pain and inflammation
Anti-microbialKill bacteria & germs
Anti-bacterialRestricts the spread of any infection
Anti-fungalRestricts in fungal growth

Tea tree essential oil is one of the popular and commonly used essential oils for its medicinal and therapeutic properties. It has natural healing properties that help in healing different skin and health conditions.

It has antifungal properties that help in restricting fungal growth (1). Tea tree oil has a fresh woodsy and earthy scent to it.

Tea tree oil has been used since ancient times to treat colds and cough. It has the ability to improve overall health quality. One of the important uses of tea tree oil is seen for treating cold sores.

Cold sores are fever blisters. They are tiny blisters that are filled with yellowish liquid in it. Blisters are caused because of herpes simplex virus. Cold sores can appear anywhere on the body.

Read the below article to find out the effectiveness of tea tree oil in treating cold sores.

Is Tea Tree Oil Effective For Cold Sores?

Tea tree oil is one of the most effective oils for cold sores mainly because of its medicinal properties. It has natural healing properties that naturally heal cold sores very quickly. It reduces the healing time of cold sores.

Tea tree oil is being used in many pharmaceutical products and over-the-counter products designed specifically for cold sores.

Tea tree essential oil has antiseptic properties, antiviral properties, anti-inflammatory properties, and antibacterial properties that help fight against cold sores.

Tea tree oil contains an active compound 1,8- Cineole that helps in reducing swelling, inflammation and pain caused due to cold sores blisters (2). This component is used in many selling and pain reducing ointments as well.

Tea tree oil also contains organic components namely 1-Terpineol and Gamma-Terpinene. Scientific study reveals that these components help in fighting Herpes Simplex Virus (HSV) that causes cold sores (3). These components help reduce cold sores speedily and promotes recovery from blisters. Using such essential oils for blisters can provide soothing relief and aid in the healing process of the affected area.

Another major chemical constituent found in tea tree oil is Terpinolene that helps in restricting bacterial growth. Thus it promotes quick disappearance of cold sores (4).

These components of tea tree oil are also used in many creams to treat cold sore ailments.

How To Use Tea Tree Essential Oil For Cold Sores?

  • Tea tree oil is high in concentration so it is advised that for topical application you should first dilute the tea tree oil with a carrier oil like coconut oil or jojoba oil, etc. by adding a few drops of tea tree oil in carrier oil.
  • Undiluted tea tree oil application can cause skin irritation or inflammation.
  • You can dilute 2 drops of pure tea tree essential oil to 10 to12 drops of carrier oil.
  • Diluted tea tree oil can be applied directly where cold sores appear.
  • For topical application dip a cotton swab in the diluted mixture and apply it directly on the sore or the blister.
  • You can apply this diluted mixture in the morning and if you want you can also apply it at different times throughout the day for quick results.
  • Using tea tree oil will help in reducing the discomfort caused due to cold sores.
  • You can also add tea tree oil in your creams for applying it on cold sores and get relief from different cold sore symptoms.

DIY Essential Oil Blends To Treat Cold Sores Faster

Following are some of the blends that can be used to get faster relief in cold sores

DIY Recipe #1 – Essential Oil Blend For Calming Cold Sores:


  • 5 drops tea tree oil
  • 5 drops lavender essential oil
  • 10 ml coconut oil


  • Take a bowl and mix all the ingredients thoroughly.
  • Take a cotton swab and dip it in this mixture and apply on the cold sores directly.
  • You can apply this blend 3 to 4 times a day until relief is achieved.

DIY Recipe #2 – Essential Oil Blend To Reduce Swelling And Infection In Cold Sores


  • 5 drops of peppermint oil
  • 5 drops of tea tree oil
  • 3 drops of geranium oil
  • 20 ml coconut oil


  • Take a bowl and mix all the essential oils and dilute it with a carrier oil (coconut oil).
  • Use a cotton swab and apply this mixture directly on the affected area.
  • You can store this mixture in a glass bottle or jar.
  • Store it in a cool and dark place.
  • You can apply this mixture 3 to 4 times a day.

You can use any of the above DIY recipes for effective treatment of cold sores. Tea tree oil is considered one of the best essential oils for fever.

Other Essential Oils To Treat Cold Sores

Apart from tea tree oil there are certain other essential oils as well that can be used to treat cold sores. Like,

Peppermint Essential Oil

It contains active ingredients that help fight hsv-1 and hsv-2 and treat herpes infections (5). It has natural cooling properties like menthol in this essential oil that helps relieve pain and calm the cold sores.

Lavender Essential Oil

Lavender oil has anti-inflammatory properties, antiviral properties, that can help reduce cold sore irritation (6).

Clove Oil

Clove oil has antibacterial, antifungal, and natural healing properties that can help offer relief in cold sores. It is proven that clove oil has pain killing components and thus helps treat hsv-1 viruses (7).

Oregano Oil

Oregano oil has antiviral properties that can be used to treat cold sores. Oregano oil is rich in carvacrol compounds that help fight viruses (8).

Must Read: 11 Benefits & Uses of Oregano Essential Oil

Lemon Balm Oil

This is one of the powerful oils that fights herpes viruses. It has the ability to penetrate deeply into the skin and fight herpes cells and get rid of cold sores.

Ginger Oil

Ginger is another ancient oil that has medicinal and therapeutic properties and can treat many different skin ailments. Study proves that ginger oil helps fight cold sore symptoms (9).

Must Read: Benefits & Uses of Ginger Essential Oil

Roman Chamomile Essential Oil

Roman Chamomile oil has antiviral properties that are necessary for treating cold sores. Thus this makes it an effective choice to treat HSV. The use of chamomile oil helps in reducing skin irritation and soreness of the affected area (10).

Eucalyptus Essential Oil

Eucalyptus oil has natural cooling properties that helps in reducing pain, calms the skin and helps you heal from cold sores effectively. It promotes faster healing process (11).

Sandalwood Essential Oil

Sandalwood oil has properties that can help get relief in cold sores. It has antiviral properties that can be used to fight against viruses that cause cold sores.

Thyme Essential Oil

Thyme oil is another major essential oil that can help get relief from cold sores. It has antiviral properties that help treat HSV.

Risk And Precautions

  • Tea tree oil being plant extract has almost negligible risks and side effects. Though below are some potential risks associated with tea tree oil that can be avoided by taking necessary precautions.

  • Avoid using undiluted essential oils topically on cold sores as it can irritate skin. Using tea tree oil directly can also lead to redness, itching or burning sensation, allergic reactions, or swelling.

  • To avoid this it is advised to undertake a patch test before directly applying it on the affected area. If you see any allergic reactions then immediately stop using the oil and consult your doctor.

  • It is not advisable to ingest tea tree oil as it is not considered safe for consumption. Consuming tea tree oil can cause rashes, unsteadiness, confusion, and can lead to inability to walk.

  • Avoid using tea tree oil if you are pregnant or breastfeeding as it can have potential adverse side effects.

  • Ensure to follow preventative measures to reduce the risk caused due to tea tree oil. Using tea tree essential oil is one of the best alternative treatments that people opt for as it is natural.

Key Takeaway

Tea tree oil is commonly used by people to treat their different skin conditions. Tea tree essential oil can help treat cold sores and cold sore symptoms. Tea tree oil is an effective essential oil that can inhibit bacterial and fungal infections. Tea tree oil is one of the natural remedies that cure the outbreak of cold sores.

It has its own natural healing process that promotes faster healing of cold sores. You can use this oil to treat active acne as well. Tea tree oil potency may help treat recurrent cold sores and soothes the affected area.

Frequently Asked Questions

What does tea tree oil do for cold sores?

1. Tea tree oil has antiseptic properties that dry out cold sores. 
2. It has antibacterial properties that help reduce bacterial infection. 
3. Tea tree oil possesses antiviral properties that help fight herpes simplex virus causing cold sores.

How to use tea tree oil for cold sores?

1. With the help of a cotton swab you can directly apply diluted tea tree oil on your cold blisters. 
2. Tea tree oil is high in concentration and so needs to be diluted with a carrier oil before its application.

How to dilute tea tree oil for cold sores?

You can dilute 2 to 3 drops of tea tree essential oil with 12 to 15 drops of carrier oil.

How effective is tea tree oil for cold sores?

1. Tea tree oil is highly effective for cold sores as it has natural healing properties that reduce healing time of cold sores. 
2. It has medicinal properties like anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, antimicrobial, antiviral, antiseptic, and analgesic properties, etc. that helps treat cold sores or blisters.


  • Journal of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy, Volume 48, Issue 3, (2001). Melaleuca alternifolia (tea tree) oil gel (6%) for the treatment of recurrent herpes labialis. https://academic.oup.com/jac/article/48/3/450/736091 
  • Antifungal modes of action of tea tree oil and its two characteristic components against Botrytis cinerea. https://sfamjournals.onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1111/jam.12939 
  • Comparative study on the antiviral activity of selected monoterpenes derived from essential oils. https://www.semanticscholar.org/paper/Comparative-study-on-the-antiviral-activity-of-from-Astani-Reichling/5937fa1665eaba7f084ebfe2d11661a13531fcb8?p2df 
  • Journal of Food and Drug Analysis. Correlations of the components of tea tree oil with its antibacterial effects and skin irritation. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1021949813000082 
  • Phytomedicine. Virucidal effect of peppermint oil on the enveloped viruses herpes simplex virus type 1 and type 2 in vitro. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/13678235/ 
  • Antioxidant, analgesic and anti-inflammatory effects of lavender essential oil. https://www.scielo.br/j/aabc/a/PxSc9T7wm4fXK4KCXrvWwWy/?lang=en 
  • Journal of Dentistry The effect of clove and benzocaine versus placebo as topical anesthetics. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0300571206000248 
  • Antimicrob Agents Chemother. (2007) Susceptibility of Drug-Resistant Clinical Herpes Simplex Virus Type 1 Strains to Essential Oils of Ginger, Thyme, Hyssop, and Sandalwood. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1855548/ 
  • Antimicrob Agents Chemother (2007) Susceptibility of drug-resistant clinical herpes simplex virus type 1 strains to essential oils of ginger, thyme, hyssop, and sandalwood. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/17353250/ 
  • Phytomedicine. Inhibitory effect of essential oils against herpes simplex virus type 2. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0944711307002206 
  • Eucalyptus oil has natural cooling properties that helps in reducing pain, calms the skin and helps you heal from cold sores effectively. https://books.google.co.in/books?hl=en&lr=&id=0dRlDMvlhQ0C&oi=fnd&pg=PA345&dq=Eucalyptus+oil+has+natural+cooling+properties+that+helps+in+reducing+pain,+calms+the+skin+and+helps+you+heal+from+cold+sores+effectively.&ots=rHLEMlc9rI&sig=hemADnu0x-5eqQRqzeQTaQGLFFM&redir_esc=y#v=onepage&q&f=false

2 thoughts on “Tea Tree Oil For Cold Sores | How To Use Tea Tree Oil For Cold Sores?”

  1. I may need your help. I tried many ways but couldn’t solve it, but after reading your article, I think you have a way to help me. I’m looking forward for your reply. Thanks.


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