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Yes, essential oil adulteration exists, though this doesn’t always involve synthetic chemicals. One of the most common frauds is to add lavandin oil to lavender oil, though this is not difficult to detect with GC analysis. But, the idea that virtually all essential oils that are sold in health stores are, by definition, adulterated, is baseless. There is no evidence for it, and there never has been any.
Exposure to essential oils may cause a contact dermatitis. Essential oils can be aggressive toward rubbers and plastics, so care must be taken in choosing the correct handling equipment. Glass syringes are often used, but have coarse volumetric graduations. Chemistry syringes are ideal, as they resist essential oils, are long enough to enter deep vessels, and have fine graduations, facilitating quality control. Unlike traditional pipettes, which have difficulty handling viscous fluids, the chemistry syringe, also known as a positive displacement pipette, has a seal and piston arrangement which slides inside the pipette, wiping the essential oil off the pipette wall.
You seem to be a bit touchy about research. I would suggest that you go to PubMed and search for “essential oils.” You will definitely find some scholarly research that has been published on the subject….but not nearly enough. (If you need a comparison, do a search for your favorite pharmaceutical drug). Given that publications are the currency for academic research, this would suggest that there aren’t as many researchers studying these essential oils as you seem to think.
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Whenever the FDA signals that it is ready to grant marketing approval for a new vaccine or drug, the first step for the pharmaceutical company’s marketing department is to promote an “educational” advertising campaign designed to instill fear in parents (and their pediatricians) about the horrible illnesses (albeit previously unknown, benign or rare) that even us doctors hadn’t yet recognized as being significant up until recently, most of us physicians have gone along with the fear-mongering that makes our practices busier while it also makes billions of dollars in profits for some unworthy CEO or Wall Street investment banker, hedge fund manager or mutual fund investor – all at the expense of America’s precious and vulnerable children who are at high risk of being sickened along the way.
It is also sad that these companies sell for such high prices. OMG when I started I thought now way could I do this. My friends were scaring me by saying I am wasting my money and that they are not safe because they were inexpensive. How can they sleep at night with these prices. I shopped and read reviews and found a few wonderful companies that I can afford. I have many now and can also afford trial and error on different blends.
I made a blend for a friend going through chemo treatments she hasn’t been using it long enough for me to know the results yet but I will share it if you want to try it. It’s: lavender, cedarwood, rosemary, Clary sage and cypress 10 drops of each in a2 ounce glass spray bottle and top with distilled water. You can add tea tree, lemon and ginger for itchy scalp if needed. Hope this helps.
Anyone who has read my previous- I use Nature's Gift because I love them, I highly recommend them. They meet all the criteria-(No affiliation/ commissions here- I just trust them and have never had better experiences with any other oils I have used) and I blend all my own oils by hand. I like knowing I am helping people. I often tell people I blend for that they are paying me for my research and knowledge, and not the oils themselves. I offer them for a reasonable price and I'm not out to make money, but make a difference in other people's lives. And who ever's lives I can impact, I do so because THAT is the reward for me. NOT making money. Yes, its nice, but not why I got involved with this in the first place, much like the decision to join the Army. Please form an educated opinion, research until you're exhausted, and by all means attempt to get certified if you want to actually continue to supply others with essential oils and treatments for their ailments.
I have nothing to do with this company. Furthermore, I did not spend much time writing about doTerra – and by the way, the term “bashing” is generally reserved for propaganda, i.e., baseless claims based on no evidence, such as yours. As a health care provider, when I come up against an anti-science claim that could be dangerous for consumers, I do take a good look at the evidence and the claims – and when the opportunity arises, I do let people know what I found.
One unpleasant—but totally effective—parallel you’d find in nature is poison ivy: We react to poison ivy with those awful, itchy-as-all-get-out red bumps because we’re exposed to an active compound in the plant that interacts with our skin. Elizabeth Trattner, M.D., explains that essential oils work differently—but they’re even stronger. "Essential oils can be up to 100 times more potent than the plant itself," she says. "So their effects are visible with just a few drops."
Anjou Top 12 Essential Oils Set is an aromatherapy medicine chest and beauty box in one. Lavender, Sweet Orange, Tea Tree, Eucalyptus, Lemongrass, Peppermint, Bergamot, Frankincense, Lemon, Rosemary, Cinnamon, and Ylang-Ylang Essentials Oils can be used with a carrier oil for soothing, healing skin and hair, digestion, headache and congestion relief, and massage therapy. Used with a diffuser or humidifier, the calming or invigorating fragrances create stress-relieving home and office atmospheres
WRONG. I am NOT a distributor. Not a marketer. Not an advertisement. How cynical Brigitte, that you do not think there are people who exist in this world who actually care about dedicating some simple free time here and there to CARING ABOUT, HELPING OTHERS, and SHARING their experiences. It worked for me. I am not saying it will work for everyone. But I do feel obligated to share my healing experiences after more than 7 years of chronic illness and pain. I make ZERO funds from young living. ZERO ZERO ZERO. I am not a salesperson. I am not a distributor. I purchase for myself and my children and husband. No one receives compensation from young living unless they have people signed up under them which I do NOT NOT NOT and that is a fact that could be proven in a court of law somewhere, unlike much of the dribble that is written here by you. Moreover, I know SEVERAL others like me who order from Young living and have NO interest in selling it and make no money from it. No gimmicks. I have used other oils. I am sharing info about my EXPERIENCE with what has worked best for me in the hopes that others can also do their own research based on my opinion and then make educated choices about what is best for themselves. However, we can clearly see YOUR motives of money money money. Gross! and that is just my OPINION. Not a bought and paid for tribute to “MY’ brand.
Essential oils are not really oils. They do not contain the fatty acids that constitute what we would consider an actual oil. Valerie Gennari Cooksley, author of Aromatherapy: Soothing Remedies to Restore, Rejuvenate and Heal defines essential oils as “highly concentrated plant constituents possessing potent medicinal and cosmetic qualities.” However, I think Stephanie Tourles nailed it in Organic Body Care recipes when she said, “I consider essential oils the life force or the soul of the plant.”
“Many aromatherapists have unfortunately become unwitting victims of a marketing ploy by essential oil traders that advertise ‘approved’ essential oils of ‘therapeutic grade. Let us be quite clear on this – there is no such thing as a ‘therapeutic grade essential oil, and no quality standards for the authentication of essential oils specifically exist in aromatherapy.”
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“Peppermint is an interesting plant in that it yields more oil than most others. As such, large farms and distilleries extract a bunch of oil from the peppermint plant. Smaller farms do a first distillation of peppermint that they sell to oils companies for the highest price. The peppermint is then re-distilled at a higher pressure and higher temperature for a 2nd distill, and the resulting oil is sold for less money to soap companies, and the like, that want a lower cost oil, but still desire a slightly “herby” smell. The plant is then re-distilled one more time at a yet higher temperature and pressure for a 3rd distill, which is sold to companies wanting the candy-cane smelling oil.”
Unsure abt cats, but to DOGS, CITRUS is toxic. So are grapes, so I wouldn’t use grapeseed oil as a carrier, nor avacodo, as it too is toxic to dogs. You’re not supposed to use tea tree oil on them either, but I see it in canine shampoo products periodically. I know Walnuts are also toxic to dogs, so I wouldn’t use walnut carrier oils either. Onions are toxic, so I’d advise against any herbs, etc, that are onion related either. A few drops of Lavender in a water spray bottle, used around dogs bedding area & lightly sprayed on back of dogs head, massaged around ears & neck, is affective to calm them before going to veterinarian, traveling, or other situations where they are nervous & anxious.
I have spent a lot of time on here debunking the myths put forth by glassy eyed cult followers and over zealous MLM reps and the main stream aromatherapy community loves it when I do this. But turnabout is fair play. Now its time to clear up a myth on the other side of aromatherapy. I see almost daily where people say things like “therapeutic grade” doesn’t exist or there is no such thing as a therapeutic grade standard. But to say there is no such thing as a TG standard is like saying there is no such thing as essential oils.
Love this article and your references!! Much appreciated from someone who is new to the aromatherapy world and wanting more information. I hope to understand how to use EO for my family. I signed up with DoTERRA to get training and so far a month in haven’t received much training. So now I look for articles like this…wish I had a friend who was certified in aromatherapy so I can help my whole family understand what to use and how to use it with different problems. Reading articles helps but I definitely get overwhelmed with all the information…anyways love this article! Thanks!!
This post is the second in a weekly, multi-part series on Using Essential Oils. Last week we discussed Basic Essential Oils for Daily Living – how to get started using essential oils in your daily life. Here we will explore considerations to help you choose high quality essential oils. What should you look for? How can you guarantee an essential oil is pure? What does that even mean? What about cost? We invite you to learn how to choose an essential oil here and then join us weekly for additional articles on topics ranging from essential oil safety, using essential oils in herbalism, and carrier oils.
The only way (some) EOs have been used for decades thats recognized by experts as generally safe for consumption is in food. Adding EOs to consumable products is the intended use that earns (some) EOs there GRAS designation. GRAS means the EOs on the GRAS list do not need to be approved by the FDA in order be used as a food ingredient. GRAS oils have been used for years in food preparations and can generally be regarded as safe to continue using them as such. Companies who do adhere to industry standards and guidelines to decide how and how much to use.
I have been bothered by yeast infections in past yrs(vaginal) knowing that most essential oils have antibacterial properties I did the following; In 1 cup bottled water I put 8 to 10 drops Rosemary essential oil, stirred it up, wet a washcloth with it and bathed the area. I had immeadiate relief from the horrible itching. If it came back do it again..It only took 2 treatments for me. that was a Godsend to me.
Hi Clint, the Aura Cacia oregano oil is not solvent extracted. In fact, no essential oils are extracted with solvents. Only absolutes like Jasmine and Rose are solvent extracted, and absolutes are not essential oils. Oregano oil is safe to ingest, so long as you take care to avoid mucous membrane irritation by only taking it in capsules that also contain a vegetable oil.
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Aromatherapy is the practice of using volatile plant oils, including essential oils and their volatile aromatic compounds, for psychological and physical well-being. Aromatherapy, which also goes by “essential oil therapy,” is defined as the art and science of utilizing naturally extracted aromatic essences of plants to “balance, harmonize and promote the health of body, mind and spirit.”
There are 260 single pure essences of the highest vibrational frequencies available. These plant and tree devas help to raise the body’s frequency, facilitating our own healing and raising our own consciousness spiritually, emotionally and physically. The human body’s immune system is truly a healer of self when facilitated and supported with these essentials. Everything we can do to truly support our immune system will bless our physical bodies and denote our spiritual and emotional health as well.
Lavender 40/42 is a blend of Lavenders consisting of Lavandula angustifolia (English Lavender), Lavandula hybrida (Lavandin Grosso), Lavandula latifolia (Spike Lavender), Lavandula stoechas (Topped Lavender), etc. The producer of Lavender 40/42 will select oils distilled from these various Lavender species, blending them together to produce an oil that both meets the 40/42 standard, as well as one that economical, which is the other attraction of Lavender 40/42. As lovers of Lavender know, the cost of Lavender oil can run very high some years. If the harvest of Lavandula angustifolia in Bulgaria or France is 25% less than expected, the price skyrockets, driving up everyone’s costs and eating into all of our profits. Selective blending of these various Lavender species allows for the production of Lavender oil with a cost less affected by an unpredictable fluctuating market.
Thank you so much for this article. I have been a skeptic of the YL craze and worried when I see people applying the oils to their babies and little ones!! It is so hard to find any information on the internet that hasn't been written by YL themselves!! This is a great article; now I need to figure out how to nicely share it with some of my family/ friends.
Just to give anyone interested a typical example analysis, the picture below is of a certified organic lavender that I recently analyzed for a customer. As you can see the peak at 26.435 shows camphor present at 0.25%. Also, if you want peer reviewed literature references showing that camphor should indeed be in lavender, just login to my EO Chemical Reference database and you will see plenty of detailed reports, with journal citations, confirming exactly what I am talking about.
EOs that you are able to ingest have been noted to help the body and are forced through your gut allowing the body to use them differently from EOs that enter your body via the skin. Those that are not recommended for ingestion have been noted to cause irritation to the GI tract and have been noted to have a negative response. An example of this, though slightly unrelated, is marijuana – smoking it vs ingesting it. It enters the lungs and thus the bloodstream while an edible source has to enter your stomach and then the bloodstream. The stomach acts as the buffer just as the lung tissue acts as a buffer but different responses and levels of THC are achieved.
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I just wanted to correct you, when you say that essential oils should not be taken internally. This is one huge difference, and deciding factor for how I select an essential oil. If I can’t eat it, I won’t use it on my skin. Anything your skin contacts, goes to your blood stream. If an oil is unsafe for consumption, you should not use it. Many oils like peppermint, wintergreen, basil, lemon, lavender, clove, etc. are great for problems like headache, nausea, indigestion, pain, flu, and other ailments. One drop under the tongue, or mixed with a teaspoonbof honey is a great way to get fast releif and healing properties to your cells without harm. This is why the brand does matter. The extraction method is very important and has everything to do with the grade of oil in the end result. Not all oils are created equal, that’s for sure. Young Living is the brand I use and trust.
No aromatherapist shall use essential oils for internal ingestion or internal application nor shall any aromatherapist advocate or promote such use of essential oils unless the practicing aromatherapist has medical, naturopathic, herbalist, or similar qualifications and holds an insurance policy which specifically covers the internal application of essential oils. (IFA code of ethics. Simply Essential, No. 11 December 1993)."
Have you ever wondered, “What are the best essential oil brands”? Who should you buy your essential oils from and why? Those are very good questions! There are variations in quality, standards of production, company culture, price, and product selection among many of the popular essential oil brands available today. I want to highlight what sets apart one essential oil company over another, and which ones would be the best essential oil brands to start buying from.
Hello! I enjoyed your post and it was very informative. I tried the construction paper test with my Mountain Rose Herbs oils and there was a residue! Tried with peppermint and with fennel. Sigh. I have ordered my oils from this company for years. Any thoughts? I feel like they are a legit company, no multi-level marketing schemes going on, no president with a shady psychotic past. What to do, what to do???
The following properly diluted essential oils appear to be safe for use during pregnancy: benzoin, bergamot, black pepper, chamomile (German & Roman), clary sage, cypress, eucalyptus, frankincense, geranium, ginger, grapefruit, juniper, lavender, lemon, mandarin, majoram (sweet), neroli, petitgrain, rose, sandalwood, orange (sweet), tea tree, ylang ylang.
Hi there! I know in your list of 21 facts you said these oils should not be ingested…I have heard otherwise about a few specific brands. What were your true thoughts on this? Do you or have you used any oils internally? Or anyoneelse on here maybe? Really wanting to heal from the inside as well as using these topically. Thanks in advance! I’m still pretty new at this so any input or advice would be great!
We’re having a problem at our apartment that we fear may be bedbugs, and I’m following a recipe to make a topical treatment that is supposed to protect me from being bitten–since I’m one of those unlucky 30% who are sensitive to their bites–while we undergo whatever steps necessary to rid the premises of the pests. It calls for six drops each of lemongrass oil and tea tree oil, and 10 each of lavender and thyme, in a quarter cup of almond oil. I’m supposed to apply it before bed, but I’m wondering how safe it is to apply on, say, the face, since the insects target any exposed skin, and that’s one of the few areas I can’t really cover. Any knowledge on the matter would be appreciated.
You’ll often see companies advertising their "therapeutic grade," "aromatherapy grade," or "medicinal grade" oils. Unfortunately for them, no such thing exists. "There is no formally approved grading standard used consistently throughout the essential oil industry," Lortscher says. Simply put, anyone who says that they have therapeutic grade or "certified" essential oils is lying. "That seal is nothing more than a commercial trademark. It isn’t backed by any scientific body."
“Extending”, “cutting” or “stretching” which is diluting an oil with a vegetable oil, an isolate from another, cheaper oil, the whole of another cheaper oil, alcohol or other solvent. An oil extended with vegetable oil will leave a stain if dropped on a piece of paper, although this test works better for clear oils like Rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis), than for darker oils like Patchouli (Pogostemon patchouli). Other forms of adulteration are more difficult to detect without the use of gas chromatography and much experience.
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.
Ordered several from this company. The oils have hardly any smell at all. And are very watery, you try to get out a drop or two and the "oil" just pours out. I should've known by the price that these would be cheap but the reviews were mostly good so I took a chance. Now I regret it. You get what you pay for. Don't bother with these. And the shipping is extremely slow.
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There is some concern about pesticide residues in essential oils, particularly those used therapeutically. For this reason, many practitioners of aromatherapy buy organically produced oils. Not only are pesticides present in trace quantities, but also the oils themselves are used in tiny quantities and usually in high dilutions. Where there is a concern about pesticide residues in food essential oils, such as mint or orange oils, the proper criterion is not solely whether the material is organically produced, but whether it meets the government standards based on actual analysis of its pesticide content.