Tea Tree Oil: Is It Safe to Leave It in Your Hair Overnight?

Tea tree oil, a common choice among hair oil enthusiasts worldwide, has numerous benefits for maintaining hair and scalp health. (1)(2) It’s a prized possession found in the hair care cupboards of countless individuals.

While this oil has gained a whole lot of attention, there’s often confusion regarding the proper way to use it. A common question is whether leaving tea tree oil in the hair overnight is okay or not.

The answer is quite straightforward. According to experts, it’s perfectly fine to let tea tree oil work its magic in your hair overnight, but with one important precaution – dilution with a carrier oil. (3)(4)

Leaving undiluted tea tree oil in your hair, even for a short duration, is discouraged. However, when properly diluted with a carrier oil, tea tree oil can be left in your hair overnight without any concerns.

Dilution of tea tree oil is the practice of mixing it with a carrier oil such as coconut oil or almond oil before using it on your hair. The typical way of diluting tea tree oil is by adding 10-12 drops of carrier oil to every 1-2 drops of tea tree oil. 

Take a look into the details of applying tea tree oil to the hair overnight.

After thoughtfully diluting tea tree oil with a nourishing carrier oil, you can safely leave the mixture in your hair overnight, which is even beneficial.

However, it’s essential to recognize that there’s a rare chance of experiencing some less favorable effects when allowing diluted tea tree oil to work its magic on your hair throughout the night.

Here are the pros of leaving tea tree oil in your hair overnight after diluting it.

Letting tea tree oil sit on your hair, after dilution with a carrier oil, for extended hours or overnight can give it a lot of time to work its magic. This means your hair will have a lot of time to absorb the oil and will be left deeply conditioned.

Applying oil to your hair can be a messy process that can hinder your daily plans. After oiling the hair, the strands can be too weighed down to be styled, which is why many people do not like to step outside with an oily head.

So, oiling at night after your day is over is a good idea. Plus, washing your hair in the morning after leaving it overnight leaves you with perfectly hydrated hair for a good hair day.

Here are the cons of leaving tea tree oil in your hair overnight after diluting it.

People who have scalp sensitivity may experience scalp irritation or redness if they leave tea tree oil in their hair overnight even after diluting it, according to dermatologists.

So, you need to make sure your scalp does not get inflamed with extended application of hair oils.

Letting tea tree oil in your hair overnight after dilution is not a problem. However, if you get too lazy to wash it the next morning, you may end up having the oil in your hair for more than 24 hours, which can make the hair feel heavy and brittle.

If you sleep alone and don’t mind the scent of the oil, leaving tea tree oil in your hair overnight after dilution is not a problem.

However, if you sleep with someone who might get disturbed by the potent aroma of tea tree oil, then letting it stay in your hair overnight may not be a good idea.

Follow these steps to leave tree oil in your hair overnight with no worries:

  1. Dilute tea tree oil with your chosen carrier oil. The perfect ratio is 10-12 drops of carrier oil for every 1-2 drops of tea tree oil. You have a variety of carrier oils to choose from, including coconut oil, jojoba oil, almond oil, and sunflower oil.
  2. Gently massage your expertly blended mixture into your hair. Ensure even distribution without going overboard.
  3. To prevent any oil transfer onto your pillows or bedsheets, cover your head with a head wrap or a trusty shower cap.
  4. Leave it overnight.
  5. Wash it off the next morning

The amount of oil you need depends upon your hair length and volume. Generally, 3-6 drops with the appropriate amounts of carrier oil can be enough.

Leaving tea tree oil in hair overnight once or twice a week is enough depending upon the oiliness or dryness of your scalp.

One of the most common questions that pop up in using tea tree oil is whether you can let it stay in your hair overnight. The answer is a “yes,” but there’s a catch.

Experts unanimously advise that, when using tea tree oil on your hair overnight, it must be properly diluted with a carrier oil. This is a critical step, not to be skipped, especially when topically applying essential oils such as tea tree oil.