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Here are more tea tree oil tips: Tea tree oil health benefits require proper storage of the melaleuca alternifolia oil. Tea tree oil is remarkably stable if protected from prolonged exposure to high temperatures and especially from the damaging effects of light. Studies have shown that terpinen-4-ol, the primary antiseptic therapeutic agent in tea tree oil is rapidly oxidized and rendered inert in the presence of light. Additionally, para-cymene levels (a potent skin irritant) increase dramatically as other beneficial principles, such as terpinene and terpinolene, are oxidized and degraded. Thus, tea tree oil must be packaged in protective amber glass bottles or opaque containers.