A simple recipe for making your own tea tree salve or ointment can provide you with quick relief from insect bites and stings, as well as small cuts, scratches and sores. As a general rule of thumb, use two parts of oil to each part of beeswax.
With the growing interest in environmentally friendly products, and safer products with fewer chemical additives, many people are turning to making their own tea tree salve.
You can make this recipe with little effort, and one batch may be sufficient to last all year. Because of the tea tree oil, it will have antiseptic properties, and because of the beeswax and Olive Oil it won't dry out your skin.
You'll need a double boiler and one or more jars to store the finished salve. You can make the salve with additional oils depending on the qualities you want for the finished product. For instance, you might want to add lavender, lemon, or other essential oils.
If you want a salve that also helps to repel insects, try adding Neem Oil and Lemon Eucalyptus Oil. Lemon Eucalyptus Oil is hard to find in most of the health food stores in my area.
Because it is one of the few oils that has been found to be as effective as DEET in repelling mosquitoes, be sure that you use only pure Lemon Eucalyptus Oil, and not a Eucalyptus Oil scented with Lemon Grass or Lemon Oil. The cheaper lemon scented Eucalyptus Oil does not work as well.
The one drawback is that its effects don't last nearly as long, but it has none of the dangerous side effects or of DEET's toxic properties . DEET has always made my skin feel like it is burning or sunburned, and I usually feel a little ill after using it, so I prefer a more natural alternative when one is available.
Tea Tree Oil Salve
2 ounces Beeswax
4 ounces Sweet Almond Oil or Olive Oil
20 drops Tea Tree Oil
20-40 drops of other oils as desired (optional)
Melt the Beeswax in a double boiler, or place it in a glass Jar, like a canning or mason jar, and fill a pot with water to a depth of an inch or so. Bring the water to a simmer, and when the wax is completely melted, add the Olive Oil.
Remove the wax/ oil mix from the heat, and stir until creamy. As it cools, add the tea tree oil and any other essential oils, again stirring thoroughly.
Pour into your storage jar and cool. If you use a clear glass container, be sure that the mix is stored in a cool dark place, because heat and like can break down essential oils. Do not use plastic containers for any tea tree oil products! Tea Tree Oil passes easily through plastics, and will leave behind only cymene, which are the irritating properties of tea tree oil.