Shampoo made with 5 percent tea tree oil may be used to treat dandruff, hair loss and bacterial and fungal scalp infections. Tea tree oil shampoo clears clogged hair follicles. In its pure form, tea tree oil kills head lice.
Tea tree oil products include shampoo, soap, toothpaste, lip balm, ointment and topical skin cream. Tea tree preparations are used topically to treat scalp problems, vaginal yeast infections, athlete's foot, toenail fungus, minor burns and acne. Tea tree oil may be effective against methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus. It is not an effective herpes treatment.
Tea tree oil is extracted from the leaves of an Australian tree, Melaleuca alternifolia. Tea tree oil is safe to use on scalp and skin, but it should never be taken internally.