Ugh. This is a tough one. I think they’re extremely overpriced. For example, 1/2 oz of bergamot YLEO is $32.50 and 1/2 oz of certified organic bergamot EO at Mountain Rose Herbs is $14.50. I see that YLEOs are “kosher certified,” which really doesn’t mean much of anything (as all plants and vegetables are automatically kosher and nothing special happens or is avoided that “makes” them kosher).
I’m going to put it out there that the short-term use of some essential oils in a therapeutic setting and prescribed by a qualified practitioner, is safe. For example, if I am undertaking an anti-candida protocol with a patient, I may use products which have essential oils in them such as oregano to help to reduce the fungal overgrowth. However, I weigh up the use of these oils and use it carefully in combination with probiotics and other supplements so that it does not do more harm than good.
Since we are not chemists, nor do we have the resources or equipment to evaluate the chemical purity of the essential oils, we stuck with methods of evaluation available to the average consumer. Out of the nearly 40 different essential oil companies researched we were able to narrow down the list to a total of seven reputable companies by using the parameters listed above in our section ‘What to look for when purchasing essential oils.’
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The worst deception is when poor companies use synthetic fragrances mixed into vegetable oil and pass it off as true essential oil. This is where the real danger to your health can come: the National Academy of Sciences reported that the 95 percent of synthetic fragrances come from petroleum and have the potential to cause cancer, birth defects, central nervous system disorders and allergic reactions.
The pinecone has, for centuries, been associated with the pineal gland and spiritual expansion.  The cone can be seen in Vatican City, as well as in ancient art from many cultures, and generally is said to symbolize spiritual enlightenment, divine wisdom and immortality.  These essences are excellent for meditation, amplifying intention or prayer, and for brain balance and health.
This is where DoTerra RADICALLY differs: A vast majority of their oils are safe for ingesting. The reason is because they are Certified Pure Theraputic Grade Essential Oils (CPTG). The oil industry has been very unregulated for a long time – in fact, the FDA only requires oil companies to put 10% oil in a bottle and then they can put anything else in that they want (kind of like how perfume companies can get away with putting phthalates in their chemical cocktails). DoTerra has a very strict standard, and as many people state, they can tell this almost immediately with how powerful they smell.
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.

Haluka is among a growing number of people turning up with chemical burns, allergic reactions, respiratory issues, and other side effects from the popular fragrant plant extracts. In the past year alone, U.S. retail sales of essential oils soared 14% to $133 million -- up from $55 million in 2015 -- according to market research firm SPINS. That’s not including tens of millions in sales from multilevel marketers who bypass retail shelves and sell directly to people via independent distributors.
In my article I explain why “such terms as pharmaceutical grade, therapeutic grade or food grade have no meaning in relation to the quality of essential oils for aromatherapy.” But, at the end of the article, you inserted a box, with: Read about therapeutic grade essential oils in “Powerful Tools in A Small Bottle”, by Dawn-Mari Yurkovic at www.massagemag.com/powerfultools. OK, I can take a hint, even if it’s thrust in my face.
Hi Linda! Just wanted to let you know that NAN oils are amazing! I have been using them for quite awhile and there is no comparison to any health store oils or most online. It’s fortunate that there is so much info out there today about EO’s as I bought the book that’s listed, “The Compete Book of Essential Oils and Aromatherapy” when it came out in 1991! That was before I even knew about the internet! Just a few things to keep in mind: NANs kits are a large collection and also 15mm, that’s why they seem so expensive. You can always buy just what you want, even in a 5mm. Nice size to try if your unsure. Also, do your OWN research instead of listening to sales pitches from paid representatives. A high percentage are gullible parrots. But to each their own. Just keep reading about EOs as you can never learn enough! I almost actually hate to bring this up, just remember I am NOT paid for indorsing – Read the articles in her blog, “wholenewmom”, about comparing EO companies. She really spells out differences between a lot of the well-known companies & what to look for in any. It’s Very informative! And I was blown away at the conclusion. Good Luck and Be Well!

No, don’t use it on your skin without diluting it. You can mix a drop or two into your moisturizer or into an oil like olive or coconut. Also, for acne and blackheads you also need to look at toxins in the other products you are using and make sure you are exfoliating several times a week. A green clay mask will also help pull toxins out of the skin. Just using rosemary oil without looking at the root causes of acne and blackheads will only go so far.
Thank you for all you are doing to educate all of us about essential oils. My question is this: I noticed earlier in this thread that one of your recommended sources of essential oils was a company called Appalachian Valley in Maryland. But I noticed later on that when you listed your recommended suppliers, Appalachian Valley is not on the list. Did you leave them off of your newer list for any particular reason? I would like to get some oils from them, but when I saw that your new list didn’t include them, I wondered whether I should rethink my potential purchase. So, does Appalachan Valley still pass muster, or no?

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.


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Inside the living plant, essential oils serve several purposes, one of which is defense. Acting like the plant’s immune system, the oils help it fight off fungus or bacterial infection, and protect it from insects and animals. Another purpose is reproduction; the pleasing aromas attract pollinating insects like bees and butterflies. We’re not the only animals who like the smell of flowers.
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.
HOWEVER, I am bombarded on all sides by YL folks (or doTerra folks, etc.) who emphatically state that I will be poisoning my body if I use anyone else’s oils TOPICALLY or INTERNALLY–even if these smaller companies claim high, organic, rigidly tested standards. I am no chemist or scientist and I am at the mercy of believing (or not believing) what all these essential oil companies tell me.
doTerra is not an ethical company, if it was, they wouldn’t propogate lies for profit… The “CTPG” that you refer to is NOT a “certification” for EO’s, as they would have you believe. It is a “Registered Trademark”, signified by the little circled R behind the “CTPG”… There are many other things of which I could address, but that is for another day.
We found that boswellic acids contents depended on hydrodistillation duration and temperature (Table? 2). Essential oils prepared from longer distillation time and higher distillation temperature contained greater amounts of boswellic acids. For example, boswellic acids contents in Fractions III (19.6%) and IV (30.1%) were higher than those detected in Fraction I (0.9%) or II (0.8%) essential oil.

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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?
5mL Lavender Essential Oils; 5mL Sweet Orange Essential Oils; 5mL Tea Tree Essential Oils; 5mL Eucalyptus Essential Oils; 5mL Lemongrass Essential Oils; 5mL Peppermint Essential Oils; 5mL Bergamot Essential Oils; 5mL Frankincense Essential Oils; 5mL Lemon Essential Oils; 5mL Rosemary Essential Oils; 5mL Cinnamon Essential Oils; 5mL Ylang-Ylang Essential Oils
There is a big difference between “Certified Organic” and “organic”. To be certified there are regulations, inspections, GMP, ISO 9000 and more. Once the seal is broken on a drum by anyone not certified in the chain of custody, the oil then becomes “organic” and no longer can the term “certified” be used. In another words, if the grower releases the material as “Certified Organic” the distiller, the bottler, the manufacturer, etc who takes possession of the material after that all must be “certified” as well or the chain of custody is broken. Most essential oil companies at this time are not certified by the USDA and therefore are falsely claiming they are selling “Certified Organic” materials when in fact they are breaking the chain of custody requirements. Therapists are now paying a premium for organic oils with the implied assurance the oil they are buying is pure and high quality. Without analytical data to back up the “pure” claim on the label, “organic” may become trivialized like “natural” has become.
Clary sage is the essential oil that is most widely used to treat vision problems. It is placed in the eye, so advice from an optometrist is important before use. Clary sage is used as a cleanser for the eyes. It can also be used to clear eye sight due to foggy vision or an injury to the eyes. Clary sage can also be used to brighten the eyes and improve vision. Finally, it can have beneficial results for people with eye issues related to aging.”
Partly true. If an essential oil is distilled at too high a temperature, too low a temperature, or for too long, this *can* increase the concentration of toxic components or artifacts. But to say that *any* improperly distilled component is toxic is simply not true. Toxicity is not determined by whether a substance is a genuine essential oil constituent. Toxic constituents can also be formed during normal distillation, hydrocyanic acid (“cyanide”) being the classic example – in bitter almond oil.
Try 5-10 drops of essential oil into ½-1 cup of emulsifier or salt, then stir that mixture into your warm bath water. Soak and relax for as long or as short as you wish as the oils penetrate your skin and stimulate your senses. Be aware that the overuse of essential oils in the bath can cause irritation, so choose only the mild and soothing extracts, and be smart.

Dermal sensitization is a type of allergic reaction. It occurs on first exposure to a substance, but on this occasion, the noticeable effect on the skin will be slight or absent. However, subsequent exposure to the same material, or to a similar one with which there is cross-sensitization, produces a severe inflammatory reaction brought about by cells of the immune system (T-lymphocytes).7 The reaction will be represented on the skin as blotchy or redness, which may be painful to some individuals.
Many essential oils are produced from seeds, berries and beans, among them: Argan Oil (Moroccan Oil), Cardamon Seed, Carrot Seed, Celery Seed, Coffee (Absolute), Coriander Seed (pictured), Cucumber Seed, Cumin Seed, Dill Seed, Foraha, Grapefruit Seed Oil, Sweet Fennel, Juniper Berry (Drome Valley), Litsea Cubeba, Parsley Seed, Rosehip Seed, Nutmeg, Sugandha kokila (White Cinnamon), and Vanilla.
To answer your question I am going to make a suggestion – buy an oil from the grocery or drug store that your daughter in law has in stock from YL, arrange a time to go over to her home and smell the 2 bottles. As silly as it sounds you will be able to tell a difference just in the smell. And yes, you get what you pay for. Many grocery and drug store brands are 2nd, 3rd, even 5th and 6th distillations of the product, are often diluted with carrier, and are not as pure as YL or DoTerra. Both of those companies use the 1st distillation which is the most pure. As for carrier oils you can use coconut, grape seed, sweet almond, jojoba, olive, or even boring old vegetable oil.
"When you smell an essential oil," says Tony Ferrari, Ph.D. in chemistry, "its constituents bind to receptor sites in the nose, which read the aroma molecules and send signals through the olfactory nerve to the limbic system and amygdala in the brain. There are more than 5,000 chemical compounds that make up commonly used oils, each of which binds in a different way to different receptors, so their effects can vary widely."

When you compare the environmental impact of growing feed corn, thousands of TONs are grown by a single farm just to feed a few cows. Estimates of what we grow so we can eat beef or drink milk are as follows: 2800 lbs of corn to get a single cow to slaughter weight of approx 12-1300 lbs. Or, in the case of hay being fed to milkers, it takes 28 lbs of 88% dry matter to feed one 1200 lb lactating cow a day or 3.2 tons for one herd of 200 cows a day! And most feed corn is grown using pesticides, herbicides, and fertilizer along with regular watering during periods of low precipitation. I’m no expert but my guess is that as long as essential oils do not become a “priority” industry with outrageous claims, we are only enjoying what the planet has to offer in a sustainable level. Buy more local vegetables/fruits, eat organic, and consume less meat and you will be helping the environment much more that the average US citizen does. 😉
I happily only use Young Living Essential Oils! Not that there aren’t other ethical companies that produce a superior product that produces amazing therapeutic results, I am sure there are– for me, my alignment is with YL. I completely trust the oils the I put in and on my body, undiluted a lot of the time, by the way. 🙂 Also, the direct marketing/business plan is an awesome one, sound, powerful and effective. Do some research, check ’em out, see what works for you. Good luck!
I first began studying aromatherapy in the 90s. Thankfully, I never got caught up with particular MLM companies that make marketing claims and promote practices that I find concerning and unsafe. I was avoiding these companies for other reasons and did not realize until I had inquired with NAHA's president at the time, Kelly Holland Azzaro, that the term "therapeutic grade" was apparently coined by one MLM in particular.
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"When you smell an essential oil," says Tony Ferrari, Ph.D. in chemistry, "its constituents bind to receptor sites in the nose, which read the aroma molecules and send signals through the olfactory nerve to the limbic system and amygdala in the brain. There are more than 5,000 chemical compounds that make up commonly used oils, each of which binds in a different way to different receptors, so their effects can vary widely."
Thanks so much for your article. I am having a huge issue battling against the whole “therapeutic grade” malarky put out by several big name companies. It seems even though it is a subjective title, and many other similar titles like it are in fact trade marked, that somehow people just buy into the idea that it MUST mean the oils are better. I am a huge proponent of high quality oils and knowing the company, their standards, distillation processes etc. But these empty titles really drive me nuts! Thanks for your writings!
I love essential oils! I use NOW Oils because they are affordable and easy to find. I think Young Living and DoTerra are over priced marketing scams. I tell everyone I use NOW. I have great success using the more reasonable priced oils and they even make some of their own blends. Highly recommend but everyone needs to find what brand works for them.
I put this section here so that you can see the different brands of essential oils that I have used. This is not my list of essential oils to go buy. I make it clear who MY personal favorite essential oil company is, but as I stated before, using your own judgment and doing your research is very important in finding the company that you personally want to stand behind.
5mL Lavender Essential Oils; 5mL Sweet Orange Essential Oils; 5mL Tea Tree Essential Oils; 5mL Eucalyptus Essential Oils; 5mL Lemongrass Essential Oils; 5mL Peppermint Essential Oils; 5mL Bergamot Essential Oils; 5mL Frankincense Essential Oils; 5mL Lemon Essential Oils; 5mL Rosemary Essential Oils; 5mL Cinnamon Essential Oils; 5mL Ylang-Ylang Essential Oils
Balsam of Peru, an essential oil derived from the Myroxylon, is used in food and drink for flavoring, in perfumes and toiletries for fragrance, and in medicine and pharmaceutical items for healing properties.[33][unreliable source?] However, a number of national and international surveys have identified Balsam of Peru as being in the "top five" allergens most commonly causing patch test allergic reactions in people referred to dermatology clinics.[34][35][36]
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