10 Most Effective Essential Oils for Ringworm You Should Try for Sure!

Updated on February 10th, 2020
essential oils for ringworm

Whether due to pollution or unhealthy lifestyles, many people are affected by various skin infections and conditions every day. This could manifest in various forms but if you notice that there is a red ring that has formed on any part of your body, it could be an indicator that you are affected by ringworm.

Contrary to what its name suggests, a worm does not cause it. The ringworm is an infection in the skin and scalp caused by fungi. It is transmitted either through skin-to-skin contact or by touching an animal or object infected with ringworm. It is also known as tinea. Thankfully, this condition is curable if one makes use of the essential oils for ringworm.

Forms, Symptoms, and Causes of Ringworm


There are many forms of ringworm. They depend on the part of the body that the ringworm manifests in. They are the following

  • The skin on the body
  • The scalp
  • The feet
  • The groin
  • The butt (Anal ringworm)

Also, ringworm also affects cats (feline ringworm) who may then transfer the infection to other animals/humans who pet them.

[Also Read: Treat Ringworm Using Naturally]


Symptoms vary according to the part of the body the ringworm is in, but the following are some of the more general symptoms of ringworm, regardless of where it occurs:

  • A rash/rashes with ring/rings
  • Red skin outside the ring
  • Itchiness
  • Flaky skin
  • Hair loss around the area

[Read: Natural Methods to Stop Itching]


As stated earlier, ringworm is the result of fungi infection and can affect other animals or humans. Therefore, any warm or moist area which is favorable for the growth of fungi, like communal showers and locker rooms are the highest risk factors for getting infected with ringworm.

What Essential Oils are good for Ringworm?

Following are the top ten essential oils that are widely known home remedies to help a person get rid of ringworm.

1. Tea Tree Oil for Ringworm

tea tree oil for ringworm

Tea Tree Oil is an excellent natural remedy for ringworm due to its antifungal properties(1).

Why one should use Tea tree Oil for Ringworm?

Tea tree oil can be an effective remedy for ringworm. Tea tree oil contains antifungal as well as antibacterial, antiviral and antiprotozoal abilities. It is also non-toxic and thus is safe to use externally.

How to use Tea Tree Oil for Ringworm?

  • Take a few drops of the oil in your palms.
  • Apply the tea tree oil directly to the affected area.

2. Rosemary Oil for Ringworm

Apart from being a flavoring agent, the rosemary oil is well-known for its wide range of health benefits.

Why one should use rosemary oil for Ringworm?

The rosemary oil has anti-inflammatory and soothing properties which helps in reducing pain. It also stimulates hair growth which is lost due to ringworm condition. It is also known to boost the immune system and make it stronger.

How to use rosemary oil for Ringworm?

  • Take a clean cotton swab
  • Pour some oil on it and apply to the affected area.

[Read: Health Benefits of Rosemary Tea]

3. Oregano Oil for Ringworm

oregano oil for ringworm

Oregano oil is not only a popular choice for cooking oil, but it is also known for its healing properties(2).

Why one should use Oregano Oil for Ringworm?

Due to the presence of two active antibacterial agents carvacrol and thymol, which fight many kinds of microbial infections, oregano helps in reducing ringworm a lot. It is especially useful for healing fungus in the foot.

How to use Oregano Oil for Ringworm?

  • Add few drops of this oil
  • Mix olive oil with it
  • Apply to the area of concern

4. Nutmeg Oil for Ringworm

The nutmeg oil is obtained through nutmegs and is a volatile oil. It has a pleasant smell and is widely used in the kitchen.

Why one should use Nutmeg Oil for Ringworm?

The nutmeg has soothing and healing properties like other oils. It can reduce swellings, pains, and cramps. It can also improve blood circulation and boost the immune system. Skin infections like ringworm are treated via this oil.

How to use Nutmeg Oil for Ringworm?

  • Clean the affected area
  • Massage the oil onto the affected area gently

5. Lavender Oil for Ringworm

lavender oil for ringworm

Lavender oil is a versatile and universal oil. It is a potent antifungal and antiseptic agent.

Why one should use Lavender Oil for Ringworm?

Lavender oil is known to soothe itching and inflammation. It will not only stop the development of fungi but also kill the fungi that cause the ringworm infection. Also, it will also heal the skin and restore its previous complexion.

How to use Lavender Oil for Ringworm?

  • Take a bucket of lukewarm water
  • Add a few drops of lavender oil in it
  • Bathe with it

[Read: Excellent Benefits of Lavender Oil]

6. Clove Oil for Ringworm

Apart from using the clove oil for toothaches, the oil is widely used for treating skin infections and other conditions as well(3).

Why one should use Clove Oil for Ringworm?

Clove oil is widely used and recommended oil as it is a great antioxidant that prevents further infections. It also has antibacterial properties and can cure skin infections to a great extent

How to use Clove Oil for Ringworm?

  • Clean the affected area
  • Pour the oil on a cotton ball
  • Apply the oil on the affected area through the cotton ball.

7. Eucalyptus Oil for Ringworm

eucalyptus oil for ringworm

Eucalyptus oil is known to have healing effects on the skin. So it is also a frequently used oil for ringworm.

Why one should use Eucalyptus Oil for Ringworm?

Eucalyptus oil is known to be a useful germicide effect on various bacteria, viruses, and fungi. Thus in the case of ringworm, it clears the infection and soothes the skin.

How to use Eucalyptus Oil for Ringworm?

  • Take a cup of water
  • Add some drops of this oil
  • Blend it
  • Apply it to the area of concern

[Read: Eucalyptus Oil Benefits]

8. Peppermint Oil for Ringworm

Peppermint oil is an effective natural treatment for ringworm as it inhibits the growth of fungus.

Why one should use Peppermint Oil for Ringworm?

Peppermint, by its very nature, is antibacterial and antifungal. So it restricts the growth and also kills the fungi which cause ringworm.

How to use Peppermint Oil for Ringworm?

  • Take a few drops of this oil
  • Add the same amount of coconut oil
  • Mix it
  • Apply to the area of concern

9. Lemongrass Oil for Ringworm

lemongrass oil for ringworm

Lemongrass is a medicinal plant. It boasts of being antibacterial, antifungal, anti-inflammatory as well as antimalarial properties.

Why one should use Lemongrass Oil for Ringworm?

Lemongrass oil is characterized by the presence of compounds like terpenes, aldehydes, ketones, and esters. Lemongrass oil inhibits the ringworm fungi and prevents it from spreading to other areas. Plus it is a natural antiseptic, so it heals wounds faster and prevents further infections. It has no side effects.

How to use Lemongrass Oil for Ringworm?

  • Dilute a few drops of lemongrass oil with one teaspoon of a carrier oil
  • Rub a thin layer of this mix over the ringworm-affected area
  • Repeat it 3-4 times a day.

[Read: Lemongrass Tea Benefits for Health]

10. Thyme Oil for Ringworm

Thyme is a herb which is mostly used for culinary purposes due to its robust aroma. However, it also possesses many medicinal properties.

Why one should use Thyme Oil for Ringworm?

Thyme Oil acts as a potent antifungal agent due to the presence of the compounds of thymol and p-cymene in it. Even 1% of thyme oil is enough to kill ringworm-causing fungi.

How to use Thyme Oil for Ringworm?

  • Dilute a few drops of thyme oil with one teaspoon of carrier oil.
  • Massage the mix on the ringworm affected area using a cotton swab
  • Repeat three times a day.

Other Oils for Ringworm

In addition to the essential oils for ringworm mentioned above, there are some other oils also which offer equally effective results.

1. Coconut Oil for Ringworm

Coconut oil has strong antifungal benefits that can eradicate fungal infections when applied topically. These benefits are due to the presence of lauric acid found in coconut oil.

Why one should use Coconut Oil for Ringworm?

Coconut oil has always been used to help wounds heal faster due to its anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, and moisturizing properties. It also helps to decrease redness and other externally visible symptoms of the ringworm infection.

How to use Coconut Oil for Ringworm?

  • Take a clean cotton swab
  • Pour some oil on it
  • Apply to the desired area

2. Castor Oil for Ringworm

castor oil for ringworm

Castor oil is rich in antifungal properties so that it can heal ringworm patches instantly. It works exceptionally well for scalp ringworms.

Why one should use Castor Oil for Ringworm?

Castor oil aids in the prevention of the spread of the fungus, so it does the job in a very short span of time. It is useful with children, whose is skin is susceptible to catch infections.

How to use Castor Oil for Ringworm?

  • Clean the affected area
  • Apply the oil onto the affected area

[Read: Home Remedies for Bacterial Infections]

3. Neem Oil for Ringworm

Neem is a medicinal plant which is a gift to India. Every part of the plant is used as a medicine for some purpose or the other. There is no ailment that neem is not used as a herbal remedy for. Hence, ringworm is no different.

Why one should use Neem Oil for Ringworm?

Neem oil has strong antimicrobial, antifungal, and insecticidal properties. It is strong enough to disturb the growth patterns of the ringworm-causing fungi. It begins its work in only a matter of minutes.

How to use Neem Oil for Ringworm

  • Clean the affected area
  • Apply two to 3 drops of oil on it and rub politely

Side effects, risks, and precautions

There are two sides to every coin. So, while essential oils are undoubtedly very effective natural treatments for getting rid of ringworm, if not used carefully, they may also bear some side effects. The following are some potential side effects, risks, and precautions to bear in mind while using essential oils to get rid of ringworm:

  1. Make sure to dilute an oil before applying it topically to prevent irritation in the skin as essential oils generally are very strong.
  2. Always perform a quick skin patch test on an unaffected part of the body to ascertain whether the mix of oils is diluted enough to be used on a sensitive ringworm-affected part of the body or not.
  3. If you are already on some other kind of medication for either ringworm or other diseases, please double check whether essential oils are safe to be used along with your medication or not.
  4. Discontinue use of any essential oil if you experience any adverse skin reactions.
  5. Be especially careful before using anything on your children’s skins.

Other natural remedies for ringworm

They say prevention is better than cure. Therefore, the following are some mitigation measures so that you avoid getting infected with a ringworm fungus in the first place:-

  1. Do not share your towels, clothing or other personal items with other people as they are the prime carriers of infection.
  2. If you do share any of the above with others in unavoidable or emergency circumstances, make sure to wash the clothes in hot water with antifungal soap afterward.
  3. Do not wear thick, tight clothing for long periods of time, especially in humid environments to avoid excessive sweating and consequently, give rise to fungi-favorable conditions.
  4. Do not pet or if possible, avoid even being in the same vicinity as animals who are infected with ringworm.
  5. The areas to especially avoid touching in infected animals or humans are bald spots.
  6. Keep your hands as well as shared spaces as spick and span as possible.
  7. Always keep your skin clean and dry.
  8. Immediately after working out or swimming in a public swimming pool, take a shower and put on clean, dry clothes.
  9. Always wear footwear like flip-flops while using public showers like those in gyms or swimming pools.


Having ringworm is a highly unpleasant experience as it causes a lot of itching and irritation in the skin. The red rashes also give a person a bad appearance. However, thankfully, the condition can be cured very quickly, swiftly, and free from any side effects through the use of essential oils which are derived from naturally occurring substances.

Frequently asked questions (FAQs)

1. How long does it take for ringworm to go away?

If left untreated, ringworm can last for several months. With treatment, the skin usually starts clearing up within days, but it can take a week or two for it to heal and disappear properly.

2. Are there any particular food items that I should avoid during ringworm?

Till now there has been no particular evidence to support that ringworm specific to any food item, but it helps to avoid foods containing sugar, refined carbohydrates and mouldy, yeasty or fermented foods, especially loaves of bread, as they are especially conducive to the growth of fungi.

3. What is the difference between eczema and ringworm?

Eczema is a skin infection which also shows skin symptoms quite similar to ringworm. But the main difference between eczema and ringworm is that the cause of eczema is unknown. Ringworm, on the other hand, is strictly caused by fungi.

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