I apologize that this is vague, but again, when you email customer service and get a response from legal counsel, or have a phone call scheduled with their communications lead and the call is controlled by legal, well, it's best to say less. And really, it's not that important when we start to look at what we actually want in our essential oils: top quality, pure oil.

I, too, bought my EOs from piping rock and have had no issues (I have extremely sensitive skin due to being a natural red head). I have not had any reactions and am 100% satisfied with the quality of these oils (I do plan on doing the “test” above). But I was unable to justify paying 100’s of dollars on the “essential” EOs and got them all for about $40 from piping rock. I also use coconut oil for a carrier and recommend EVERYONE to do the same! Coconut oil is “miracle oil” in my book!!
“from what I’ve read” – Just remember that everyone has an agenda – Even the person who wrote what you read. Young Living at least has something to show for what they charge. They own farms around the world, grow everything organically, pay people to hand weed the crops before harvest so they don’t have to use weed killers… they have and operate their own distilleries and labs and have giant warehouses with lots of employees. And yet a bottle of lemon oil still only costs $11. There are groups of people in the Aromatherapy world who dislike Young Living because they follow the French model of aromatherapy and the other groups follow the English and German models. The camps dislike each other and there is so much negativity. The French have shown that if the oil is pure you can ingest it with no problems. The other models have studies and histories of oils harming people but their oils came from the perfume industry and were polluted with synthetics. Most Aromatherapists don’t even know about the different models and are taught from a one-sided view and have a “we are right” attitude and turn their noses up at Young Living because it is MLM. Yet Young Living actually is a wholesale membership club a lot like Sams or Costco. Only 5% of it’s members actually run it like a MLM. Most just join and buy their own oils.
No essential oil retailer carries every single aromatherapy essential oil, so over time you may find yourself buying from several different retailers. When you check the GC/MS reports to determine which retailers have the oil with the constituent profile you want, and then compare price (do not forget shipping), availability, customer support, and any other criterion that is important to you, you will be better able to determine which oils you wish to buy from the various high quality oil suppliers.
I apologize for not responding to the new comments on this post from 2009 and hadn’t realized they had been submitted. Obviously this subject has come up again and people are searching the net looking for answers. Tim, I’ve been working on that blog post; it’s languishing as other priorities have pushed it further down the to-do pile. Tammy, you are right that it is complicated and not an easy task to simplify for the person who has not studied . . . both aromatherapy and the aspects surrounding the essential oil trade. I will get it closer to the top of the list now that I see how desirable this information might be to many of you. Karen, I’m glad you enjoyed our products. My intent is not to “bash” any one company, but I will continue to interject facts as I know them that might be helpful to those I believe are being misled. Danika, you make a very good point that the MLM business model is not necessarily the culprit itself when it comes to unethical business practices. I happen to believe it isn’t the best business model, but that’s another discussion . . . thanks to all of you for taking the time to share your thoughts.
Such great information! I wish I had read the “warning” about diluting EO’s before putting directly on the skin. I purchased some essential lemon oil as I heard it was a a great way to brighten up the skin, clean pores etc. This morning after getting out of the shower, I liberally dabbed some on a cotton ball for that fresh clean feeling. What a mistake! Within seconds my face felt on FIRE, nothing would soothe it, I spread coconut oil on it hoping that would calm it down, I think it made it worse. Then I splashed ice cold water on it which seemed to help, but it took a good 5 minutes for the pain to subside. I was almost afraid to look in the mirror, fearing I would see blistered skin, thankfully all was good, just very red and that too went away. So please, please don’t make this mistakes of using undiluted EO’s and never, never on freshly washed, open pored skin! A very painful lesson to learn.
I have never used either YL or DoTerra and am not affiliated with either company but I have some very serious concerns about the claims made by YL and their representatives, as well as their owner/founder and his moral standing. There are disagreements within the aromatherapy industry as to how oils can and should be used but I know several QUALIFIED aromatherapists and they all advise that NOT all oils should be taken internally or applied undiluted directly to the skin.

You sound so anti-DoTerra that you lose all credibility. You sound like you’ve invested so much in time and effort in bashing DoTerra, that you’d keep bashing them no matter what research was done on their oils. I don’t really care what your background is, you’ve lost all credibility by the way that you’ve vehemently bashed the DoTerra company completely. Do you know what Medical Doctor’s do as research? They try out things, and look at the results. My results in using DoTerra oils compared with other oils is that they have worked better. I haven’t used all the different brands, but out of the ones I’ve used, DoTerra have given me the best results. It’s not unsafe to ingest certain essential oils, at all. It’s like saying that it’s unsafe to ingest tylenol, or ibuprofen. It’s not unsafe when done in the proper quantities. You’re ignorant by denouncing a companies’ product just because of the way that they’ve chosen to market it. By the way, DoTerra has grown into a company with more than 100 million dollars in sales per year in just 6 years, marketing the way that they do. I think they’ve made wise business decisions up to this point by marketing the way that they have. I don’t sell DoTerra, because I’m not interested in doing sales, at all. But, their oils work really well, and I personally have seen great benefits from using them.

What would be more accurate is that the more “pure” the oil is the more caution you should use in internal dose (“consumption”) – which is one of the least effective ways to use essential oils because they are broken down by the liver before absorption into the blood stream. If an oil is closer to a synthetic flavoring, like that used in chewing gum, then it would be deemed safer for consumption. I assume what YL sells as pure for use in consumption is similar to pure synthetic flavoring.
Your bias, and intentional omissions of information, shine through clearly. You say that EO's indicated as GRAS are specifically "not subject to FDA approval for its use as a food additive", and then go on to quote - '"...[A]ny substance that is intentionally added to food is a food additive, that is subject to premarket review and approval by FDA, unless the substance is [GRAS]"'. You say that "The GRAS designation explicitly means the substance is NOT SUBJECT to FDA review." and this is materially UNTRUE and a false representation. I would encourage any reader to go check out the GRAS definition for themselves, directly from the FDA. You can find it here: https://www.fda.gov/Food/IngredientsPackagingLabel... and see clearly how you intentionally stopped your quote short of continuing on where it says "... unless the substance is generally recognized, among QUALIFIED EXPERTS, as having been ADEQUATELY shown TO BE SAFE UNDER THE CONDITIONS OF ITS INTENDED USE..." [EMPHASIS ADDED]. The bottom line is that for a substance to earn a "GRAS" classification, it has to pass through safety determinations that involve scientific procedures and/or a LONG history of safe usage for a tenure of decades. To try to downplay the significance of "GRAS" as if it is meaningless - or worse, to portray it as meaning a substance doesn't fall subject to any requirements - is absolutely misleading and reprehensible on your part. I have no idea what your agenda is, but you really should find another creative outlet because the misinformation you are spreading is egregious.
The potential danger of an essential oil is sometimes relative to its level or grade of purity, and sometimes related to the toxicity of specific chemical components of the oil. Many essential oils are designed exclusively for their aroma-therapeutic quality; these essential oils generally should not be applied directly to the skin in their undiluted or "neat" form. Some can cause severe irritation, provoke an allergic reaction and, over time, prove hepatotoxic.
Thanks for this article! I’m glad that there are balancing voices out there to educate people about what is right and what is wrong. I’ve heard of too many BS from people who don’t do their research before spreading and sharing any advises, and most of them don’t care about the fact that they don’t even have the most basic training or education on aromatherapy! That’s simply irresponsible to me.
It’s very important to keep in mind that the American Food and Drug Administration (FDA) regulates essential oils mainly as cosmetics, NOT as therapeutic supplements, herbs or medications. So if you come across an essential oil company or salesperson who claims their oils can cure certain diseases or mental illnesses, they are violating federal law and can be prosecuted and fined by the US government.

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and does not substitute for diagnosis, prognosis, treatment, prescription, and/or dietary advice from a licensed health professional. Drugs, supplements, and natural remedies may have dangerous side effects. If pregnant or nursing, consult with a qualified provider on an individual basis. Seek immediate help if you are experiencing a medical emergency.
After buying several carrier oils and essential oils on Amazon, I’m now wondering if I’ve wasted my money. It’s just sad that consumers can’t get honest information regarding a product. While not all EO’s and carriers have to be expensive, it’s weeding out the ones that are pure vs. cut/synthetic that’s the hardest. I think this is what turns some newbies off from using EO’s for Therapeutic purposes… they buy an EO expecting a certain result, see none, and then, understandably, think they “just don’t work.”
Not only is there no evidence that any essential oil can help with vision problems, age-related or otherwise, but placing any essential oil “in the eye” is extremely dangerous advice. Almost any undiluted essential oil coming into contact with the ocular membranes will be corrosive, possibly causing scarring of the cornea, and certainly causing significant pain.
Lori, I am relatively new to the essential oils world, but I do remember reading somewhere (check planttherapy.com or edensgarden.com) that essential oils are the pure life essence of the plants from which they are derived. An essential fragrance is often obtained with solvent or alcohol distillation which make the essential fragrance a better choice for making fragrances as they are usually less expensive.
I have to say thank you for this wonderful and informative article. I am new to the world of essential oils. I am now obsessed with the learning process. I just spent $200 on the books you suggested!!I have several friends that do the YL oils and I recommended them to check out the oils I found. The first thing they said to me is they don't say you can't ingest them so they are no good. I contacted the company right away and they got back within the hour telling me in no way do they recommend that without the supervision of a Aroma therapist or doctor. They do have recipes for teas and cooking with the oils but nothing on ingesting them straight. They said no way. I also like them because they get back to me with answerers to every question no matter how small. That is a good company.
You start your article out by bashing on Young Living specifically but later on mention other companies. I suspect you didn't research how other countries utilize EO for this wordy "article". Also, the FDA just approved a few products from YL as "medicine".... Do you know what that means? Do you realize almost all medicine came from plants and herbs to begin with. If someome choices, makes a personal choice to ingest EO after doing their own research who are you going to blame? I agree with another commentor that I've never seen anyone say Take 10 drops or some asinine amount Internally. 1-2 drop per 2 liter. Medicine and prescription drug overdoses have seriously hurt, damaged and killed many more people than natural medicine ever has. Have you visited the Young Living farms? Actually seen how the oils are picked and distilled? Know that the farms and seeds are organic (by at least 10 years if not more). Do you know anyone who actually uses used oils from YL or DT? Do you know where these companies get their ingriedents and why it eould make a difference of Owning the farms versus buying from a third party? Do you look up to big pharma when they make asthma drugs that cause aggression and suicidal ideations in children? Or antidepressants that could cause suicidal or homicidal thoughts in adults? You think the people who get thode side effects shouldn't have any other options? Where does your hate come from? How have you been harmed personally? Please share your agenda instead of scaring people away from a natural alternative.

Thank you so much for the work you put into this . I found it very helpful. I’m just getting the oils and haven’t even purchased anything because I had no idea where to start. I started researching and was shocked at all the brands out there. I want to use a good oil but my funds are limited. I also started making candles and wanted a good brand that will hold the scent all the way to the end of the candle.

In the case of the blue oils we see evidence of oxidation when the blue color becomes green over time. This is due to the degradation of chamazulene, the hydrocarbon responsible for the blue color in things like German chamomile, blue tansy, yarrow, etc. Its for these reasons that I always recommend that people refrigerate any of the blue oils and be sure to always keep a minimum amount of airspace in the bottle that you are storing these oils in so that the “greening” effect will be slowed down. Of course keeping airspace to a minimum is a good practice for all the essential oils but its absolutely crucial for the blue oils and for citrus oils.
On speaking to Karen Menehan and Stanford Erickson, two of your editors, I was told that one role of a publication was to present alternative viewpoints. A fair point in principle, but I have read dozens of editorials, guest and otherwise, and don’t remember a single one that presented opposing views in this way. And, I’m still confused as to how my article was listed as someone else’s.
I did purchase this item from Amazon. It was delivered on September 11th. For some reason, the button to write a review is not there, but I feel that I must do so anyway because I dislike this product that much. No issues with anything but the smell. It smells terrible. I mean TERRIBLE. I've been using vetiver in my essential oil calming spray formula for about 8 months now. The brand that I usually buy was out of stock and I really needed the oil, so I decided to try this one. It smells like old lady perfume (no offense to old ladies). Really, really strong old lady perfume. My house still stinks from the batch I made yesterday. I can't believe how different this smells from my regular brand. And it's not the "every batch/kind is different" reason either. Every single batch I've received from the other manufacturer has smelled the same. The smell of this product is not right at all. Do what you will with this information. I just felt the need to share my opinion. Thanks.
~ The executives/owners have integrity and many years of experience and their ultimate goal is to provide the highest quality essential oils possible to their consumers. Their goal is not to make enormous amounts of money. If they are self-serving in any way it was in creating a company to source and sell the purest oils possible for their own personal use and for their families. Yes, many of them worked for Young Living at some point but they all left of their own volition for personal reasons. Later, after doing other things, they got together and decided they wanted essential oils that were “guaranteed” to be pure because they loved using essential oils and wanted to provide a trusted source for themselves and everyone else.
Danika – you keep saying that “just because Young Living says it’s safe” – we’re not only learning that it’s safe from Young Living – MANY representatives for Young Living have taken it upon themselves to read and educate themselves extensively on the use of EO’s aromatically, topically and internally. Just because you believe that EO’s shouldn’t be used internally (due to your method of training) – doesn’t mean is wrong! For centuries EO’s were used aromatically, topically and INTERNALLY without harmful side effects. I do agree that a level of RESPONSIBILITY needs to used – as with any “medicinal product” – that goes without saying – but to literally sit there and accuse DoTerra or Young Living representatives of being un-educated or willingly harming people – you’re being very ignorant, cruel and narrow-minded.

Finally, if the company’s products are sold through independent sales people, then there will always be some kind of misinformation. Maybe the person who replied to your email was new. People make mistakes! We are human! We need to give people a little more room for human error and not be so quick to judge. Not sure why you are so against this company, or their products., You should really try them, the proof is in the pudding!
The designation of a substance as "GRAS", or "Generally Recognized as Safe" means it is not subject to FDA approval for its use as a food additive. "...[A]ny substance that is intentionally added to food is a food additive, that is subject to premarket review and approval by FDA, unless the substance is [GRAS]". The GRAS designation explicitly means the substance is NOT SUBJECT to FDA review. So while Young Living reps associate the safe ingestion of their oils with FDA approval, the FDA explains why this could not possibly be:
What a great post! I can’t tell how helpful this is and I will use it. I started to copy it, but the color cartridge on my computer is about empty, so I saved it and will copy it later. Thank you so much for all the wonderful information in this post, as well as all the others. I’ll be passing on the information to all my friends and family. I use essential oils, but you’ve put everything into such a concise and usable format that I they can use, too.
After dong much research and reading many reviews. Native American nutritional’s is the choice of most that use essential oils commercially. Do terra is 2nd and young living is right up there. Most professional’s don’t even want to touch young living and other pyramid marketing companies. A friend sells young living so I did get a bottle of valor from her. I have a variety of brands that i found through research just to try them. From what I’ve read, young living and doterra are so expensive because of how they are marketed. Not because they are superior.
FDA regulations state that natural product labeling, including all website claims as well as product label content, cannot legally suggest that a product intended for topical or aromatherapeutic use be taken internally without labeling the product as food. NOW Solutions closely adheres to all federal regulations. See more Essential Oil Food Grade FAQs.
A mucous membrane irritant will produce a heating or drying effect on the mucous membranes of the mouth, eyes, nose, and reproductive organs. It is recommended that mucus membrane irritating essential oils not be used in the bath unless they are adequately diluted in a dispersant such as natural bath gel base, polysorbate or vegetable oil. Bay, clove, cinnamon bark, lemongrass, and thyme ct. thymol essential oils should be avoided in baths completely. Table 5 lists some common essential oils considered to be mucous membrane irritants.
#3. EO’s if diluted properly (not neat) and ONLY certain EO’s are safe for children. Peppermint is not safe until at least 6 years of age, some say older, as it can be a mucous membrane irritant. Eucalyptus has a 1,8-cineole content, its not recommended for children until the age of 10. Very important for childrens safety to do due diligence…these are just a few that come to my mind right of way and why they aren’t safe for children. I know there is plenty of other oils that are safe for children diffused. Once older, then ok for application, diluted in carrier oil. I was told 2-10 years old is when you can start adding more EO’s to your child(ren) library, as they age, you can add more. Of course I know this is hugely a hot topic. It depends on who you ask when you can introduce EO’s to babies and children. I know the MLM say put them neat on babies feet. No ones feet (bottom) will absorb EO’s as we have glands on the bottom of our feet, not pores to absorb the EO’s.
Black bean brownies are a delicious and nutritious twist to a traditional chocolate brownie. You might be nervous about baking with black beans, but don’t be – they have a very mild flavor and are extremely rich, creamy, and full of protein. You can also boost the flavor of your brownie with essential oils such as Peppermint, Wild Orange, Cinnamon, or even Lavender.
Though the solvents are reclaimed by distillation, these absolute oils are not actually re-distilled because the essential oil portions are left intact and not torn apart into constituents during the distillation process. We only offer these two absolute oils due to the rarity and high cost of obtaining steam-distilled rose or jasmine essential oils, which would be many times the price of our absolute products.

Thank you for your thoughtful comment. For you to call this article fair and balanced is a huge compliment to the part of me that writes purely from inspiration. No amount of experience or education in this craft give me any idea how I'd instruct another writer to pull that off while calling out a specific company over and over again hahaha! It's been an intense week, week and a half - well, couple months I guess now, and being called back here to where this all began for me to read the comments from you two ladies is really awesome - a welcome break from brainbusting research and timely reporting on EO related matters. I'll also say it's quite a relief. This gets brutal. Thank you both for taking the time - it keeps me going.
I hear many of your colleagues say the same about offering sound advice for the safer uses of EOs while working for a company that does not. My experience in and intense focus on EO sales and marketing would lead me to conclude that these companies that flat out ignore risks to promote unverifiable benefits aren't just naively overlooking their safer use shortcomings. Money is the only reason for marketing and when profit's the name of the game, you'd best consider not one penny is left to chance.

In mainstream medicine, often called allopathic, rational or Western medicine, doctors use drugs primarily to alleviate symptoms. In this approach, the core problem is seen as the symptoms. The disease symptoms are viewed as the target and locus of treatment and a treatment is chosen to directly address the symptoms on the physical level. Success is measured by the slowing or remission of the disease or by the reduction of symptoms in the body.
The biofilms were carried out using sterile untreated 96-well polyethylene U-bottom plates (IPT) containing the specific medium (Sabouraud for yeast and BHI for bacteria) enriched with 2% sucrose. The EOs and fractions were diluted with propylene glycol (4 mg/mL), transferred to the first well and serial dilutions were performed to reach concentrations ranging from 1.0-0.0048 mg/mL. The 1% Nystatin (Sigma®) and 0.12% chlorhexidine digluconate (Sigma®) solutions were used as antibiotic standard. After this procedure, microbial cells (1.0 × 105 cells/mL for yeasts and 1.0 × 107 cells/mL for bacteria) were added to the wells and the plates were incubated at 36°C for 72 h [22].
The TV commercials, medical journal articles and drug representatives will be trying to educate us about a new, unaffordable vaccine that will somehow be squeezed into an already crowded and potentially deadly group of shots that America’s already at-risk-of-vaccine-injuries infants will now be receiving at their next well-child (perhaps soon to become chronically ill).check-up.
Thank you so much for all of your information that you share. It seems like when I google something about essential oils, I frequently end up on your site. I am new to essential oils and not sure what to expect. It seems like when I use them in lotion, roll-on, or even a eucalyptus steam the scent dissipates relatively quickly. I am not sure if I am not adding enough essential oils, if I am buying lower quality essential oils, or if I am expecting too much. For instance, a 8 oz batch of lotion (I used 30 drops total of essential oil)that I made last week no longer has a scent to it (at least to me). Any insight on this?
For parents whose infants’ brains and bodies are immunologically and developmentally immature, be aware that your children may be forced to suffer untested-for and therefore unacknowledged long term neurological, autoimmune and chronic illness adverse effects. Parents need to be aware that if their infant dies, is sickened or is made chronically ill by vaccine ingredients, they, as protective parents, will be forbidden to sue the guilty drug company (or the doctor that administered them) for appropriate damages.
I had psoriasis for years & kept on getting different creams & lotions from the GP but none of them worked. So 1 day I read up fully on the EO’s I had for cleaning & making face masks. I made myself a blend of oils, carrier oils, butters, vit E & I mixed that with some bees wax to make a balm. I couldn’t believe it within a week it had started to work. I thought I might of just been me getting less stressed so it es going on its own but I’ve since given the blend to 2 friends who suffer from psoriasis badly whom also couldn’t get any help from the GP. Now they both call it a miracle oil & have told me I should sell it. However I would like to do an aromatherapy course first so I could make other blends to help people & I have no idea on selling my products, so I’d have to look into that as well.
The Cedarwood Essential Oil is widely used in commercial soaps, cosmetics, perfumes, and especially in men's colognes. Atlas Cederwood is the most popular variety and has a woody, sweet, scent that is very sharp. The Cedarwood (Chinese) Essential Oil generally has a lower cedrol content than the Atlas, hence it is used more for its fragrance. Also, try our other varieties: Himalayan, Texas, Virginian.
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