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Fighting Mold Naturally with 5 Essential Oils

by BrianReeves
can essential oils remove mold

Essential Oils and Mold

The potency of pure essential oils reveals a non-toxic and natural method of fighting mold. Mold growth and exposure may be inhibited with these natural plant compounds. There are numerous studies showing the effectiveness of certain essential oils assisting in mold and fungus issues, as well as supporting immune function to aid in recovery from toxic mold exposure.

The oils listed below are some of the most useful oils in dealing with mold. Always remember that to successfully prevent mold from returning, any leaks or humidity issues must be resolved. Mold on porous material, such as drywall, must be cut out and replaced. Please consider hiring a professional mold remediator to remove mold, especially if the area affected is greater than 10 square feet and if anyone living in the residence has a compromised immune system or health concerns.


5 Essential Oils to Treat Mold


Oregano essential oil is one of the most potent essential oils. This oil has been used for centuries for cleansing and immune-enhancing benefits. Oregano essential oil, along with cinnamon, thyme, and cumin oils inhibited the production of aflatoxin by aspergillus fungus. Oregano oil is a wonderful purifying agent and immune booster.


Thyme essential oil is one of the primary oils suggested for mold. Thyme has been used for everything from Candida albicans to people struggling with mold infections. Thyme is a powerhouse of an oil. This oil can also have a cleansing and purifying effect for the skin.


Cinnamon oil has been shown to be one of the strongest oils for use in battling mold. In a test done on four essential oils, cinnamon showed the best inhibitory effect against mold growing on food. Wax papers with a 6% solution of cinnamon oil used on breads constrained mold growth by 96%. Another study by the International Journal of Food Microbiology  showed that a combination of essential oils, including cinnamon oil, suppressed bacterial growth for 60 days. The study suggests that cinnamon oil could be considered an alternative to other food preservatives.

This essential oil contains strong cleansing and immune enhancing properties as well.


Clove essential oil is great for dealing with fungal growth. Clove is a powerful antioxidant that can help ward off free radicals and maintain a healthy immune system.

Cloves are derived from an evergreen tree native to Indonesia. The flower buds are often used as a spice. The essential oil of clove has been used medicinally in Chinese and Indian medicine and herbalism as a painkiller for dentistry.

The famous Aspergillus niger (also known as black mold) is especially sensitive to clove oil. This suggests promising effectiveness in cleaning molds on hard (non-porous) surfaces.

Cloves have been shown to put an end to Candida growth in the mouth and intestine. A study found that clove “had a fast killing effect on yeast cells.”

Tea Tree

Another helpful essential oil, this oil can be an effective source for naturally treating small mold issues on surfaces and fabrics. Tea tree essential oil is a powerful natural anti-fungal that is often used in nontoxic cleaning solutions, and can also be beneficial in dealing with mold and mildew smells.

If you need to kill mold or mildew on clothing, or to eliminate a musty odor, simply add a few drops of tea tree oil to the wash cycle. This will also help kill mildew buildup in the washer and can be used to rinse and refresh clothing that was left in the machine too long.

If you have a small mold area to clean you can mix 1 tsp tea tree oil with 1 cup of water and put in a spray bottle. Once you have determined that the mold contamination is safe to clean yourself, you can spray this formula on the problem area, let it soak for awhile, and then carefully wipe clean. If you are cleaning a porous surface you may not want to dilute with water as this may feed the mold growth. Test a small area to make sure it does not damage the item. This should kill most spores and prevent the mold from returning. If you have a water issue or leak, you will want to make sure to get it fixed so that you do not have the same issue return.



Please use caution as many of these oils are skin irritants and should always be diluted and used with care. Do not get them near your eyes.


Krystle Reeves assists in managing MoldBlogger.com, a website dedicated to providing a place to share and receive information that will better allow individuals to fight and conquer toxic mold and the consequences of mold exposure, and also blogs at Where the Green Things Grow where she shares her adventures and challenges while homesteading off-grid.


DISCLOSURE: This post may contain affiliate links, including Amazon.com. It allows us to recommend products at no extra cost to you and enables this free content to continue.

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Chrissy Mann February 4, 2015 - 6:10 am

Essential oils do not treat mycotoxins or dead mold effectively. Therefore recommending them is misleading if a person believes that they will solve a mold contamination issue using them. Mycotoxins and dead mold create a worst problem environmentally than mold and mold spores. Essential oils are wonderful in many ways but as far as effectively remediating poisonous toxic materials from mold contamination, it’s a wash.

krystle February 4, 2015 - 9:48 am

Hi Crissy,

Would you say that using essential oils to kill mold on small non-porous surfaces is a wash? Or using them personally to help with symptoms of mold exposure in the body? I completely agree that large contaminations and certain situations should not be approached using essential oils. In the article I stated “Always remember that to successfully prevent mold from returning, any leaks or humidity issues must be resolved. Mold on porous material, such as drywall, must be cut out and replaced. Please consider hiring a professional mold remediator to remove mold, especially if the area affected is greater than 10 square feet and if anyone living in the residence has a compromised immune system or health concerns.” This is something I am currently learning about and using for my own mold concerns. I’ve been encouraged by the research I’ve read thus far, and the effectiveness with my own use of essential oils.

Chrissy Mann February 5, 2015 - 8:45 am

Hi Krystal,
Thank you for your response and for your questions in regards to the use of essential oils to manage and treat mold issues.
Yes, as you have stated, essential oils and DEAD MOLD are an issue that need to be addressed. Essential oils will not treat or manage dead mold or mycotoxins. There are many opinions out there. As to date, I am not aware of any clinical trials that prove the absolute effectiveness in using essential oils to treat mold contamination. There are always mycotoxins and dead mold that must be treated in order to assure a proper and complete remediation when managing ‘toxic’ mold. As far as using essential oils for the body, I’d like to refer you to the author of the book, ‘Are You Moldy’, Lori Tondini. She uses certain essential oils and has incorporated additional protocol which has led her to had great success recovering from years of mold related illnesses. If you would like to contact me personally, my phone number is listed on our website, http://www.moldremedy.biz.

krystle February 5, 2015 - 11:17 am

Thanks for the info! I’ll look into the dead mold and mycotoxin issue more! I have Lori Tondini’s book and read it awhile ago… I need to go back and check out her use of essential oils for mold in the body!

Chrissy Mann February 6, 2015 - 11:53 am

Hi Krystle,
If you are looking for something to use internally to treat/manage mold contaminants, my product of choice is ASEA. http://www.theremedy.teamasea.com is a website where you can download videos that will explain this remarkable product and the technology behind it. In the words of many physicians, it is the greatest scientific and medical discovery ever. This product removes fungi, bacteria, viruses, heavy metals and chemicals at the cellular level. Then it replaces, replenishes, restores and regenerates cells. It breaks the blood brain barrier as well. The other consideration would be ozone chelation therapy.

Alana June 28, 2017 - 4:14 am

So what about the 20 cases studis in Nature’s Mold Rx by Edward and Jacquelyn Close? Their studis show that high grade therapeutic essential oils clean and kill better than commercial products.

Mary Ann October 3, 2017 - 8:14 am

Just moved from Irma-impacted SWFL to Ohio — we were told in Naples to use a mixture of vinegar and peroxide to kill the mold. Bleach will remove stains only. Also, Thieves oil/cleaner is supposed to effectively kill the mold, etc. I’ve got a 1965 dresser with mold on the back panels that I’m trying to save. Sprayed with Thieves this morning and will douse with vinegar and peroxide next. Then, try some of these other oils or maybe even the sealant (although toxic, I’m sure) they use on floors before laying carpet. I also heard, for households, etc., that the sprays used for pet stains works wonders on mold.

What Do You Do If You've Been Exposed to Black Mold? - BodyQuirks October 9, 2018 - 11:28 am

[…] Essential Oils: There are many ways to get rid of mold and one way is by using essential oils. Oregano, Thyme, Cinnamon, Clove, and Tea Tree oil are all helpful in eliminating existing mold and all of which, except Tea Tree oil, can be taken internally to boost the immune system and eliminate mold, fungus, and bacteria that may be negatively impacting the body. Tea Tree oil is best used by using a ratio of 1 teaspoon of the essential oil to 1 cup of water in a spray bottle to get rid of visable mold and mildew. We carry these oils and more by the Snow Lotus and DoTerra brands. […]

Mary Damon November 5, 2018 - 4:13 pm

I had a roof leak and a kitchen sink leak. Repairs were made in plumbing, roof was repaired and new shingles installed. The water-damaged part of the dining room wall was removed, then treated with thyme oil “fogging”. This was done in September and early October. The problem is that I still smell the thyme oil. I think it is on the walls ( which I am washing with a degreaser). I seem to be able to smell it on my skin, and feel oiliness on my face. I’m worried about it being Much Too Much Thyme Oil in the air, the air vents, the walls, ceilings, floors…..even though most everything has been cleaned. Two questions: (1) Is this dangerous to my health? (I’m 75). (2) Any suggestions about “clean-up”?

Lisa March 31, 2019 - 11:22 am

Thankyou for the advice on this page!

Firstly, instead of placing my wet leather gardening steel-toe-cap work-boots in a canvas breathable bag for the winter- i put them in tight plastic last October. So when I came to use them a few weeks ago they STANK and were covered in all sorts of mold.

I swapped out the plastic bags in a cold damp potting shed for a hot light and dry greenhouse for a week until they had stopped smelling then I took them indoors next to a drying 24hr radiator for another week. Then dunked them in a bath of natural body-wash and gave them a good soak and scrub inside and out. Let them dry for a week.

So today I pulled out an old tin of dubbin which is nearly finished and found this page here to see how I might use my essential oils to finish any reproductive properties of what was growing on and inside them. I have cinnamon bark and clove essential oils in a christmas set plus cinnamon leaf so I dripped generously into the dubbin with each of these and added lemon essential oil which is antimicrobial for good measure. I rubbed the mixture on generously and am leaving them to soad.

It smells lovely! This is the sort of expensive item that you cant just shell out for every year.. so I will come back in some months and update on whether the problem came back.

Thanks again for the advice.

Regards, Lisa

carole bucher September 11, 2019 - 9:19 pm

You should include your references in your writing. Otherwise you really don’t have credibility.

Dave December 8, 2019 - 11:21 pm

While doing research on oils vs. mold, I discovered that this “Carole Bucher” goes from site to site posting the same deriding comments questioning credibility. She obviously has enough time on her hands to do this, yet NOT enough time to find some actual source studies to satisfy her curiosity??? Yeah, I’m not buying your volitional doubt, “Carole.”

Truth is there is a medical monopoly in this country and around the world. To get “official approval” of any treatment means shelling out millions in studies – which no one will do for a NATURAL product that can’t be exclusively patented to recoup the money. This sets up a system in which ONLY synthetic drugs can and will get an official “seal of approval” from the medical monopoly, who are getting paid handsomely from the drug companies to do it. The whole system is corrupt from the ground up.

Add to this the absolute TRAVESTY that drug companies intentionally seek out FOLK REMEDIES to synthesize – while paying propagandists to stir up fear and doubt about folk remedies – while concocting synthetic versions with much worse side effects. This is all well documented in books and film. The whole system is a sham, and we should be up in arms about it.

Instead, we have to listen to idiots like Carole Bucher throw darts at essential oils which are virtually non-toxic, while a quarter million people die each year from officially sanctioned prescription drugs.

Hey Carole, do me a favor – get lost.

Joanne Robinson January 11, 2020 - 6:06 am

I tried clove oil on the black mould in my bedroom on the ceiling and only a month later I’m doing it again but this time it’s spread! Any recommendations or tips did I do something wrong in order to spread it!?

Thank youuuu

Jennifer Spencer November 13, 2023 - 2:34 pm

I had to get a mold remediation company to come out for a water leak in a closet. They removed everything they could that was moldy and removable, and then used a high speed brush to remove all other surface mold while spraying with – you guessed it – industrial strength thyme oil. I left the area open for a month to be sure the problem was really gone before closing back up, and no problems. No mold returned. So, yes thyme works, and the remediation company chose it because it works. But as noted above, you do have to remove all the old and dead mold too.


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