Topical use: Another effective way to use essential oils is topical application, since essential oils easily penetrate the skin. Once absorbed, they stay in the areas where applied. While essential oils are easily absorbed, using a light massage motion can help increase the blood flow to the area in which essential oils are applied. Likewise, using a carrier oil can also help increase essential oil absorption, especially for dry or flaky skin.
One unfailing principal of science is that of naturally increasing entropy which relates to the 2nd Law of Thermodynamics. All things naturally head towards maximum entropy (disorder). Entropy is inescapable on this earth, and we all know it takes constant energy to fight against this natural degradation of all things. Left alone, things don’t naturally become more ordered over time, we all know this whether or not we are familiar with the term entropy. Entropy is why you cannot create a perpetual motion machine, why your houses naturally get messy over time, why your car engine eventually breaks down, why your body eventually can no longer sustain itself and you die and why the earth must eventually come to an end.
One recent study of 300 patients found that those who breathed a mixture of ginger, spearmint, peppermint, and cardamom had much less nausea after surgery. Other research shows that lavender oil can lower levels of the stress hormone cortisol, and inhaling lemongrass aroma before a stressful event can prevent anxiety. Studies also show that tea tree and oregano oils can fight microbes, making them popular treatments for dandruff and toe fungus. Others can be used as an anti-inflammatory.
I'm also new to EO's, am signed up with YL, but have some definite concerns with their marketing. Thank you for the comprehensive article. Common sense should scream out, "don't ingest the oils!" I get shivers down my spine every time I read a post that states that Mr. YL said something is perfectly safe. Would they drink the Kool-Aid because he said it was safe? Anyway, I'm also thrilled to see your list of trusted oil companies and my favorite is on it. Thanks for your work!
I believe that the reason some (not necessarily all) E.O.’s are not ok to ingest is that some are extracted by means of chemicals as they are difficult to extract otherwise. You can find this out, or SHOULD be able to find this out via the source of your EO’s. Mountain Rose Herbs lists the extraction method and country of origin on each and every EO they sell. I like MRH as they are a local business here in Oregon and I like to support local business. They have also been wonderful about helping answer questions regarding their products, and are wonderful people as I have met them personally while picking up my orders. (NOT affiliated, just a huge fan!)
Thanks for your well researched and well written article. I am new to using essential oils for use in handmade bath and body products. I have friends who are all very into the Young Living and DoTerra oils and blather on about all the fab things about EOs (including using them internally). They also have been trying to get me to sign up to be a distribution rep to buy and use their oils in my bath products. As a scientist myself, I was highly skeptical about these claims (that's how I found your article). I believe in the whole "if it sounds too good to be true it probably is" and after doing my research, these MLMs are full of you know what. On top of it, their cost is outrageous when quality EOs are available for less cost and without having to buy a membership.
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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Hi, danelle. I have a daughter name danielle, but anyway, I’m marilyn. I love your post. I am a EO user for 3 yrs now. Learning more and more about this world of EO’s and loving them. I too, suffer now with degenerative problems and excruciating pain at time. My question, did u have a daily routine and what oils were u using. I’m trying to get away from conventional meds unless extreme situations. EO’s are absolutely amazing! Thank you.
Founded in 2007, NATRUE is a Brussels based international non-profit association committed to promoting and protecting Natural and Organic Cosmetics worldwide. The NATRUE Label allowsconsumers to identify authentic Natural and Organic Cosmetics wherever they are. It is based on strict criteria publically available on the NATRUE website. Each product carrying the NATRUE Label has undergone an independent certification process carried out by third party certification bodies.

Ron Guba points out that toxicity during pregnancy is almost exclusively due to pregnant women taking large, toxic doses of essential oils, notably pennyroyal (rich in the ketone, pulegone, which is metabolized to the highly toxic furan epoxide, menthofuron) and parsley seed (rich in the dimethyl ether, apiol) in an attempt to abort the fetus.13 And Battaglia shares this insight: “the judicious use of essential oils together with appropriate forms of massage by a skilled therapist can help ease the discomforts of pregnancy and provide a sense of nurturing that will comfort the mother at times she is likely to be feeling rather fragile.”14

Another point to consider is what benefits you hope to gain by taking this supplement, researching those effects against other readily available supplements and natural alternatives, and comparing prices. Remember, these are MARKETING companies - they could literally apply their sales structure to any item - they chose essential oils - and nothing would change because their essential function is to sell items - any item - to make money. While your bottom line is well-being, there's is money. You already know they're recommending unsafe uses to increase the quantity of EOs they sell, and there's no harm shopping around for high quality certified organic and responsibly wildcrafted or fair-trade certified supplements and remedies - many of which you can pluck for yourself on a sunny summer day for free. It's fun, and that to me is what using natural remedies is all about.
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“Fractioning” or re-distilling which takes place at low pressure and can isolate certain constituents or produce, for instance, a terpeneless oil. Some terpenes oxidize rapidly, which changes the aroma, longevity and solubility of the oil. One should take care when encountering these terpeneless oils because the natural synergy of the oil has been changed. It now has a higher percentage of the other constituents.

The global essential oil market is expected to reach 11.7 billion by 2022. There is a danger in the mass popularity of essential oils and not just because of the way in which they are being used (or in many cases, overused), or that they are being sold widely by people whose only training is from  the companies that stand to profit directly off mass consumption of these oils.  There is also the impact this production is having on the environment.
Multi-Level Marketing businesses (MLM's) broadly range from business-casual to brainwashing. The former is comprised of the recent explosion of popular home-based businesses, like Thirty-One, Tastefully Simple, etc. The latter is an all-encompassing system designed to control how you think, what you feel, and what you say. I say this as a sales and marketing professional with over 15 years of experience having direct experience working for this type of intense MLM business, and it is no exaggeration.

I live in Australia and am currently studying full-time for my Diploma of Aromatherapy. Originally, it was Young Living Oils that initiated my love of essential oils and this lead to me to study. My diploma course is fully accredited and recognised by both government and health insurance organisations and obviously has no affiliation with any particular essential oil company.


I was wondering if you had any blends you recommend for his bottom? He has has staph before as well. I have researched a LOT and soo many pages referrals to the brand Young living primarily, their RC blend, lemongrass, and Theives Oils to help kill bacteria. However, there are so many indepented distributors.. I have no idea what I am reading is real or just another marketing scam….. so my question is if you heard of that particular brand? or better yet own any?
So you can see from this profile that the maximum amount of Camphor we will allow is 0.5%! A synthetic extract of Lavender called Lavandin contains 5-11% camphor and therefore may not be supportive of certain skin applications because of the camphor level. A truly pure lavender is excellent for the skin so if an oil matched the above phytochemical criteria, it can be called “Medicinal Grade”!
(An example of how you are cunningly led through a sales conversation with an MLM rep is broken down for you in this article I wrote a couple years ago on "How to Compose an Engaging Script", a step-by-step guide on how to talk to someone to land that sale! Keep an ear out for some of these key methods the next time you talk to anyone trying to sell you something they didn't produce themselves.)
I have enjoyed reading the continued conversation on this thread. Thank you, Lindalu for your comment about YL not training their people in aromatherapy–but just their version. I have been frustrated about the same thing, as I am beginning to realize that there are a bunch of rookies all around me (myself included), that are almost mindlessly using YL essential oils–even in potentially harmful ways–without having a clue as to what makes them tick!
A reputable company will test the oil to meet the standard of the plant species. “Ideally, purchase your oil from a company or manufacturer who performs gas chromatography and mass spectrometry testing,” says Dr. Axe. This kind of testing measures the mass within the oil samples and identifies the compounds. Read the company’s website or call the customer service line to find out about its testing before you purchase the essentials oils.
According to the criteria previously mentioned, the oils from A. gratissima (AG), C. articulatus (CA), C. sativum (CS), L. sidoides (LS) and M. glomerata (MG) were fractionated and the fractions were submitted to antimicrobial assays. The MIC/MBC/MFC results from crude oils (EO) and fractions are shown in Table 3. The highest inhibitory and bactericidal effects presented by the fractions were observed for F2LS (Fraction 2 from L. sidoides) against F. nucleatum and S. mitis and for F1CA (fraction 1 from C. articulatus) and F4AG (fraction 4 from A. gratissima) against P. gingivalis and S. sanguis, respectively. However, all the fractions presented similar or lower activity than the crude oil against the microorganisms suggesting a synergistic action from the compounds present in crude oil.
There is also an argument from YL distributors that their oils come from the best crops in the world. As they grow their own crops and only use their own, not sure how they can claim it’s unarguably the best in the world. Every crop is different. Only sampling every crop, every batch would support that claim. Anyway, I am not a qualified aromatherapist either but my research suggests that YL oils and their advice might be best to avoid.
Those like myself involved in related holistic fields leave those kinds of diagnoses and preparations to producers who must adhere to their industry's self-regulatory safety standards and have the proper training to perform this service, like studies in anatomy, biology, pharmacology, physiology, pharmakonetics, and industry-related ethics and safety.

Thank you for all this info. While a patient in the hospital, I would sprinkle a mix of lavender, eucalyptus, and peppermint oils in my pillow. It helped with my headaches and allowed me to relax. The nurses kept coming into my room just to inhale the wonderful scents. They took such great care of me that, after I was discharged, i went home and made 50 bottles of the same mixtures in cobalt blue bottles with roller balls. They loved them so much! They use them at home and at work. Being a nurse myself, I understand what they go through on a daily bases and how much these oils will benefit them. Even one of my doctors took several bottles I’ve made to give to patients!
Most eucalyptus oil on the market is produced from the leaves of Eucalyptus globulus. Steam-distilled eucalyptus oil is used throughout Asia, Africa, Latin America and South America as a primary cleaning/disinfecting agent added to soaped mop and countertop cleaning solutions; it also possesses insect and limited vermin control properties.[38] Note, however, there are hundreds of species of eucalyptus, and perhaps some dozens are used to various extents as sources of essential oils. Not only do the products of different species differ greatly in characteristics and effects, but also the products of the very same tree can vary grossly.[39]
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