A monoterpene alcohol that is most often associated with Tea Tree (Melaleuca) oil, terpinen-4-ol has been shown to have a wide range of benefits when used aromatically or applied topically. Published ranges suggest that it comprises up to 48% of the chemical composition of Tea Tree oil and is also found in high concentrations in Marjoram essential oil (up to 55%). Recent research suggests terpinen-4-ol may support healthy joint function, skin and hair health, proper immune system function.* Terpinen-4-ol even possesses topical cleansing properties.
One of the most common ways to use Marjoram oil is as part of a soothing massage. Research suggests that this property is due to its high concentration of terpinen-4-ol. Experimental research has demonstrated that terpinen-4-ol has soothing properties.1-3 To take advantage of this property, try applying Marjoram oil to the body before and after exercising or to the back of the neck after a long day at work.
The skin and hair supporting benefits of Melaleuca are well known. The natives of Australia have used it to soothe minor skin irritations and maintain healthy hair for centuries. Modern research has revealed that these properties are due to its high concentration of terpinen-4-ol. Clinical and experimental research suggests that terpinen-4-ol can be beneficial to the skin when applied topically.4,5 Another study found that it may be effective at reducing the appearance of skin blemishes.6 Furthermore, research has shown that it may promote clear, healthy-looking skin.7,8 To experience the skin, scalp, and hair health supporting properties of terpinen-4-ol, apply Melaleuca oil topically to skin daily or add a few drops to your shampoo.
Experimental research suggests that when taken internally, terpinen-4-ol may help to support healthy immune system function and response.9-11* For a daily boost to your immune system, substitute Marjoram essential oil in your next recipe that calls for dried marjoram or add a drop of Melaleuca essential oil to a glass of water each morning.
Terpinen-4-ol has even shown to be effective in oral applications. According to experimental research, terpinen-4-ol may help to keep the teeth, gums, and mouth looking clean and healthy.12,13 For an quick mouth rinse, add one to two drops of Melaleuca essential oil to a glass of water and gargle before or after brushing teeth.
Melaleuca has been used as a panacea by Australian aborigines for centuries, and modern research has discovered that one of the secrets behind its health-benefitting properties may be its rich concentration of monoterpene alcohol terpinen-4-ol. Whether used aromatically, topically, or orally, terpinen-4-ol containing essential oils offer a wealth of benefits.