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Lavender & Tea Tree Oils As Potential Endocrine Disruptors


Gynecomastia Puberty


In January, 2007, the New England Journal of Medicine published a study by Henley et al linking lavender and/or tea tree oil to prepubertal gynecomastia (enlarged breast tissue) in boys. Since that time, several industry experts have presented evidence that lavender and tea tree oils cannot be linked to prepubertal gynecomastia. It is NAHA's position that until proven otherwise, these oils are safe for use as long as NAHA's Safety Guidelines such as proper dilution are followed.

In partnership with NAHA, the Franklin School of Integrative Health Sciences’ Research Department led a 3-part research project to investigate the proposed link between lavender and tea tree essential oils and endocrine disrupting outcomes, including prepubertal gynecomastia.


"This study provides evidence that lavender essential oil and tea tree essential oil are safe ingredients in formulations for personal care products for use in children. The prevalence of endocrine disorders among children exposed to these ingredients is consistent with the general population and the proposed links between these ingredients and endocrine disruption cannot be substantiated in epidemiological studies” (Hawkins et al).

Works Cited:

Hawkins, J., Hires, C., Dunne, E., & Keenan, L. (2022). Prevalence of endocrine disorders among children exposed to Lavender Essential Oil and Tea Tree Essential Oils. International Journal of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine, 9(2), 117-124. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ijpam.2021.10.001


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