As you can see, the choice for the right essential oil brand can be very convoluted. There are so many brands on the market, it can be hard to sift through the duds to find the right ones. The key is taking a step back and listening to what the companies are saying. You should also make sure to read the labels, your essential oil label should say 100% pure and not “blend” or “with jojoba/almond” as that means they are already diluted and not just pure essential oil. According to The East-West School For Herbal and Aromatic Studies, some of the qualities that you want to look for in an essential oil supplier are:
“This study is a re-analysis of Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) data pertaining to the relationship of autism incidence and the age at which children got their first measles-mumps-rubella (MMR) vaccine. Statistically significant relationships were observed when African-American males were considered separately while looking at those individuals who were vaccinated prior to and after a 36-month age cut-off. CDC officials observed very similar relationships as early as November 2001, but failed to report them in their final publication. In addition, a relationship is seen when specifically considering children who received a diagnosis of autism without mental retardation. Although this was reported in the original 2004 paper, it was not discussed, nor was any follow-up study conducted. Preliminary results also suggest the possibility of a synergism between thimerosal exposure and MMR timing leading to a greater risk of autism.”

THE NEW AGE OF ESSENTIAL OILS. Feel the transformation with our standardized, 100% ISO certified, and Medicinal Oil Association approved essential oils. Essential oils are the power of mother nature in the palm of your hand. Only the purest of sources can give you an abundance of natural healing phytochemicals. Only ZEVA brings you the pure medicinal power of Mother Nature, giving you a truly unique experience that you won’t find from any other source. You’ll feel the difference with true medicinal grade essential oils from ZEVA- the new age of essential oils.ZEVA Oils are the only ISO Certified and USA Medicinal Oil Association Certified Essential Oil. There is nothing else like it. We ensure 100% potency and purity. Undiluted, ZERO Toxicity.


Thank you so much for this. I am being bombarded by doterra reps right now. I believe in essential oils but dislike mlm companies because they are so overpriced to pay down tge food line. I do have a few purchased from some others you have mentioned above and some not. Now I have a good place to start to build my own kits and feel confudent it will be a good oil. Thank you again.
Ok I don’t usually make comments on articles but I just had to on this one. To the author: I’m sorry but this blog is poorly researched and full of errors. If you are going to put out information that people take as truth or at the very least as suggestions because they like you, you need to know what you are talking about. I highly suggest you take this blog down, re research essential oils and rewrite one that is accurate.
The good news is that the guessing work will be gone in the next few years. Gary Young, founder of Young Living has been asked by the FDA to set up a standards for the United States. So it will not matter what the customer service or distributors say as we will be able to refer to the FDA classify the oil. This will make the true pure oils to stand up and be noticed but also for safety for our health to take the purest of the pure oils for our medicines!
Developing essential oil standards for essential oil therapy/aromatherapy has been discussed in several circles over the years, but because of cost of administration, setting up labs, certifying them and the analysis cost all by itself, it has turned out to be an overwhelming task and cost that only a well-organized and well funded organization could handle. But, an organizational attempt to deal with the analytical and administrative challenge for self-regulation would be desirable before essential oil therapy/aromatherapy looses its “therapy” from an overdose of bad oils.
“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.
I’m sensitive to many sources and when my acupuncturist applied peppermint oil to an aching shoulder it sent me right into orbit. Anxiety and blood pressure were out of control for several days. I have always been able to eat peppermint with no problem but the oil while applied to the skin was way too intense. Now just the scent of it sets me off. Be careful.
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.
Samantha has a popular health and fitness blog called Jacked on the Beanstalk where she shares her secrets to success, including fitness, meal plans coaching and why she decided to adopt a vegan lifestyle and how it has helped her become so successful. Samantha was awarded her pro card in July 2014 after winning first place in the overall bikini title at the 2014 INBF South Western Natural Championships in Austin Texas. This put her on the map as the first-ever VEGAN WNBF bikini pro.
It’s not just the purity of the essential oils that determine if an essential oils should be used internally. Even unadulterated, organic & wildcrafted essential oils shouldn’t be used internally unless you’ve been evaluated by a health care practitioner trained at an appropriate clinical level. According to the Association for International Aromatherapy, “An appropriate level of training must include chemistry, anatomy, diagnostics, physiology, formulation guidelines and safety issues regarding each specific internal route (oral, vaginal or rectal).” Just doing so because Young Living said it’s ok doesn’t make it ok. You need to talk to someone who has evaluated you specifically, AND has clinical aromatherapy training.
Aura Cacia essential oils are packaged in amber glass bottles, which ensures that light does not disrupt the oils’ integrity and individual properties. The essential oil products are also 100% pure, not containing any additional bases, fillers, or additives. While not all of their oils are certified organic, they do have some certified organic oils in their line-up. If organic is important to you, shop for those specific product and look out for the correct “certified organic” label.

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.

Peppermint supports healthy gut function and normal digestion, she says, and can be used topically to soothe sore muscles. "It's important to note that peppermint is a 'hot' oil, which means it needs to be diluted before applying to your skin," said Dunaway. "Before applying it topically, peppermint oil should be diluted with a carrier oil like coconut oil."

The essential oil should be labeled with the common name and its Latin one. Remember the example above about chamomile? “The presence of the Latin name of the plant on the label is an added assurance of what you are getting,” says Dr. Burke. There may be few standards for essential oil quality but there are standards set by the Federal Trade Commission about what a company can put on a label. “If you put ‘chamomile’ on the label, you can sell either German Chamomile (Matricaria chamomilla) or Roman Chamomile (Anthemis nobillis). If you put ‘matricaria chamomilla’ on the label, you must be selling exactly that,” says Dr. Burke.
ISO stands for ‘International Organization for Standardization’. The "9001:2015" designation is the ISO specified ‘Standard’ (benchmark) under which the Quality Management System is certified for a organization/company (in question). Since 2015, Herbs Village has employed a quality system meeting the requirements of ISO 9001:2015 ‘Quality Standards’ for set custom packaging of essential oils and other allied products in their offered range of products.
I am confused on your list of EOs to avoid while nursing or pregnant. Many of these oils I have never heard being issues. I use Lemon oil regularly and ginger as well, as a nursing mother. Could you perhaps list effects of each oil for breastfeeding mothers ? I know peppermint reduces production but confused on most of the others…. you listed ” Aniseed, cedarwood, chamomile, cinnamon, clary sage, clove, ginger, jasmine, lemon, nutmeg, rosemary, sage” I use several on this list currently and was about to put in a YL order for clary sage
The Aromatherapist generally desires to use the whole, naturally balanced, pure, natural oil. Pure essential oils may contain trace constituents, which may not as yet have been detected or identified which make up the totality of the oil. These would not be present in a reconstructed or synthetically produced oil. It is perhaps best to trust that nature will provide the correct balance. We are, after all, dealing with the soul of the plant, and who among us can reconstruct such a thing?
Hi there! I love your blog! I’m trying to find some information about using essential oils in homemade remineralizing toothpaste. My two year old uses this toothpaste and I’ve been adding the OraWellness Brushing Blend (a mix of several EOs in a base of sweet almond oil) to it. I was interested in also adding orange oil for flavor so I tried googling its safety for children. There’s so much conflicting advice about ingesting EOs and he does swallow the toothpaste almost every time. :/ Thoughts
I hope this helps to clarify doTERRA’s official position on the matter. In summary, d?TERRA has not and does not claim any certification, registration or approval of its essential oils by the FDA, AFNOR, ISO, or any other regulatory body. We do believe that the CTPG standard supports d?TERRA’s effort to bring to market only the most pure essential oils.
Thank yo so much for crating such a FINE description of how to approach/evaluate/use essential oils! Nicely done! I have been studying essential oils as a soul-level healing modality for about 5 years. I’m never without a sense of awe and wonder regarding the power of the plant at it’s essence…it’s oil. I will take baths with epsom salt and essential oils. The best way to do that is to put the epsom salt in a cup, add your drops of essential oil, let it sit for a few minutes, then dump it in your bath water. The salt helps to capture and diffuse the oil so that it doesn’t sit on the water like an oil slick. The hot water can also help to express the scent in a powerful way, so use your drops sparingly if you aren’t wanting to be overwhelmed by the scent. With genuine, highly crafted essential oils, the homeopathic rule of less is more powerful is the way to go, in my opinion and experience.
I found this on pinterest so thanks for sharing! I personally love essential oils! I use Butterfly express oils and love them! I’ve been getting foot zones and using EOs. It has really helped! I really liked what the lady that does these explained to me about using Butterfly EOs. She said that the man who trained her to do foot zones used Younger Living oils at first and then started using Butterfly’s EOs because he felt they were more sincere in getting EOs out for all to use. I’m told that these EOs have different energies and I feel that this company truly wants all to experience all that they have to offer. I hope that this helps!
“d?TERRA’s CPTG Certified Pure Therapeutic Grade® quality standard is more rigorous, yet very different in nature and function than the ISO monographs for aromatic extracts. This statement, however, should not be interpreted that AFNOR or the ISO has a standard for “therapeutic grade” essential oils or that any essential oil product has AFNOR or ISO certification or approval. They do not certify brands nor do they grade essential oils as therapeutic, grade-A, premium, etc. The ISO monographs for essential oils are not comparable nor serve the same quality control function as the d?TERRA CPTG standard.”
There exists so many conflicting opinions touted as facts on the internet that they overshadow our friend of science, PubMed. I’m sure you’ve experienced the same eye-crossing results on Dr. Google when searching for something relating to essential oils. Furthermore, I was a little disappointed in my friendly database for “essential oils quality.” I found some very diverse finds, shown here. Not exactly what I was looking for. (Remember with any blog, including this one, check the references. If there aren’t any, distinguish between an opinion, experience, and a fact.)
Of course aromatic materials were used in Biblical times for various medicinal, religious and ceremonial purposes but these materials would not have been essential oils, at least not by todays definition of being steam distilled products. This would have been impossible given that steam distillation had not yet even been discovered! Most people attribute the discovery of true steam distillation to a Persian scientist named Avicenna (Ibn Sina) in the 11th century. There was certainly no steam distillation over 2300 years earlier in King Tut’s time. Aromatic products used during these ancient times would have been of a crude solvent extracted nature using fats and pressed oils and the like and would not have been very concentrated (not to mention that extracted products yield very different chemistry than distilled products) and therefore their use cannot really be related to how we should use the steam distilled essential oils of today.
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.
The Young Living Speech you give is completely inaccurate and part of the genius marketing used by YL. Oils that have “do not consume” are protecting themselves from lawsuits, it’s a reasonable label statement. I am an educator at a major US University teaching essential oil studies. I have worked in production and quality control of essential oils.
"Essential oils like lavender and rose can be excellent adjunctive therapy to many health issues like inflammation, pain, and high stress or anxiety levels," Trattner says. "And they can be used as the first line of defense to prevent conditions from developing or worsening. Do I recommend them to my patients? All the time—and I’ve been practicing for over two decades. But they aren’t one-size-fits-all, and they aren’t magic potions, either. If there’s too much pain or you’re facing a severe disease, then it’s time to take something stronger or talk to your doctor to create a cohesive plan of action."
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.
Harriet Hall, MD also known as The SkepDoc, is a retired family physician who writes about pseudoscience and questionable medical practices. She received her BA and MD from the University of Washington, did her internship in the Air Force (the second female ever to do so),  and was the first female graduate of the Air Force family practice residency at Eglin Air Force Base. During a long career as an Air Force physician, she held various positions from flight surgeon to DBMS (Director of Base Medical Services) and did everything from delivering babies to taking the controls of a B-52. She retired with the rank of Colonel.  In 2008 she published her memoirs, Women Aren't Supposed to Fly.
With a fresh zesty scent of citrus and fruity top notes, Grapefruit Essential Oil is popular when scenting facial cleansers and toners. Grapefruit Essential Oil is used in aromatherapy to bring about a cheerful feeling. There is no difference between the quality of the White and Pink varieties, but the Grapefruit Pink Essential Oil is generally considered the sweeter of the two oils. Grapefruit oil is also sometimes added to creams and lotions as a natural toner.
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."
Anyway I started to buy them and telling other people about them. One of my major concerns was the internal injestion of essential oils. Although they take E.O.s in Europe, they are given by practionioners who are educated about their various properties, and therefore understand the complexity of the oils, but also the individual reactions one might have to them. I did mention this to an American doterra person when someone came for a seminar in April, and was fobbed off with an excuse.

There are no Aromatherapy/Essential Oil Therapy standards for essential oils to be used as therapeutic agents. There are standards for essential oils like FCC and ISO, but they are a double-edged sword. These standards do represent, in most cases, reasonable profiles of purity but the other edge is, they can be used by the essential oil industry to “standardize” oils. An essential oil therapy standard may be different and may reflect an overall balance of constituents including those occurring in small amounts. Whereas, standards published by ISO set the percentages of the main constituents only. This leaves the door wide open for concocted oils.
Expressed citrus oils are produced by mechanical separation (cold pressing) of the oil from the peels of various citrus fruits such as orange, grapefruit, tangerine, lemon, lime, petitgrain and bergamot. Expressed citrus oils contain small amounts of naturally occurring nonvolatile residues such as waxes. Expressed citrus oils offer the advantage of cold process which results in an aroma which is identical to fresh citrus peels.
Disclosure: I have chosen not to disclose the company I was in contact with as I don't think it's particularly important. I want to leave it to you to ask the questions and get answers that make sense for you. I am by no means an essential oil expert and so I rely heavily on the decades of experience of the experts that I work with and consulted with for this article.  I am an affiliate of an essential oil company that I trust.  I am not using my affiliate link or naming names in this article as my intention is not to profit off sharing this information but to empower you to really dig in and find your own answers so that you can use oils you trust as part of your healthy life.
I might suggest keeping them in a drawer, a box with a lid or somewhere safe like that. I use them daily…one mix for my pillow cases for whatever I feel like balancing in my “self” overnight. The diffuser on my husbands side of the bed (he has had sinus problems) has detox, immune system builders and things for respiratory relief. He sleeps like a baby now. Also helped him with headaches.

These texts, as well as other sources of scientific information, detail specific physical and chemical properties of a particular oil. A partial list of the components that we analyze include Specific Gravity, Refractive Index, Optical Rotation, Flash Point, Infrared Absorption (as published in FCC), Ultraviolet/Visible Spectroscopy (UV/Vis) for pigment detection, Solubility, Taste/Odor, Color/Appearance, Heavy Metals, and Predominant Active Chemical Components.


There are many popular, quality essential oils, including those that are Certified USDA Organic, therapeutic grade and 100% pure—with no fillers, bases or additives. For example, being Certified USDA Organic is important for some people because the organic certification can be traced back clear to the seed and plant. Every handler of the product must be certified as well. Additionally, no prohibited pesticides or other toxins are used for Certified USDA Organic products.

Let’s re-visit one point – if distillation is too long – this can increase the toxicity of the oil. This is because there will be a greater concentration of low-boiling fractions, and sometimes these include relatively toxic substances. Yet how often have I heard that commercial distilleries “shorten” distillation times for profit reasons? That genuine, therapeutic grade essential oils have to be distilled for longer, in order to extract all the important trace constituents?

To find a therapeutic grade essential oil you will need to know its latin name and find it back on the bottle. The bottle also needs to have the name and address of the aupplier and a batch number. It is really not advised to use less than therapeutic grade in any skin, beauty or healthcare products as you are so much more likely to get adverse effects.

The oils from Marshalls you mentioned stated they are for aromatherapy. These are fragrance oils and probably NO T pure. That’s why they are so much cheaper 🙂 and they are just for enjoying the scent vs. therapeutic benefits. I would not recommend applying them to your skin in any way but the DoTerra oils you bought can be applied once mixed with coconut oil (fractionated will not harden in cool temps), sweet almond oil, argan oil or even olive oil. Any oil you choose should be labeled organic of course
“If you want to make a difference to people who are being fed a bunch a garbage by a narcissistic EO messiah…”, it makes me question whether the negative things you say about Young Living and the quality of their oils has any true basis, or if you have unresolved anger over your former relationship with Young Living which leads to your bashing the company and their products.

Diffusion: This is the healthiest, safest and most effective method of use. The fragrances from essential oils that are detected through your sense of smell actually have profound effects on your body, mood and behavior. When the oils are diffused into the air the healing properties of the essences enter your body through your nose while you appreciate the pleasant smell. The best way to achieve these benefits is by using an essential oil diffuser. We reviewed these diffusers in-depth and found the Smiley Daisy to be the best.
I would like to start using EO in my home now that I am a mom and have become a lot more aware of the harsh chemicals in all of my cleaning supplies, beauty products and air fresheners. I am currently EBF and know that there are certain EO that I should avoid. Does this mean I shouldn’t be exposed to them at all or that I should not use them topically?
So, what’s your take on companies like Young Living Oil, which basically give me the vibe of “our oil is the only true and pure one out there”. I’m not sold on the idea, and don’t know that I’ll be purchasing anything other than their Thieves blend, when it comes to EOs for my soaps, lotions, and salves. I know you’re mainly addressing aromatherapy and massage here, but would the same principles apply to homemade healthcare products, as well?
Very simply, you want to read on the label — or information page for every oil — the true Latin name of the plant from which the oil was extracted, as well as the country from which the plant was harvested. Some companies will go further and tell you the method of extraction, the farming quality and also the chemical family of the oil. Plus seeing the batch number on the bottle helps you match it with its testing.
Hi, I was wondering if anybody knows where I can get Korres organic essential oils. I bought a lavender and a geranium last year on vacation in Greece but it seems that they’re only sold there. I can’t find them anywhere on the internet which seems really odd. The quality was amazing and I really want to try the others and restock on the lavender and geranium. Please help!
Contrary to what several essential oil companies recommend, the oils generally should not be swallowed, Power says. The body absorbs more this way, boosting the chance that they will interact with medications or cause an allergic or toxic reaction. Even continued exposure to small amounts (a few drops a day in a water bottle) can lead to fatigue and headaches. Taking in larger amounts of certain oils -- like tea tree oil, wintergreen, and camphor -- can lead to throat swelling, a racing heart, vomiting, and even seizures, says the Tennessee Poison Center, which saw the number of toxic essential oil exposures double from 2011 to 2015.
I looked into the proprietary claim a little further and there really isn't much to it. Pure oil is pure oil. You would see the compounds of plant matter and maybe the location of origin. That's pretty much it. The best oils on the planet, each specific one, typically comes from only a few locations, with each region having distillers that work with a specific plant. I sent the following email last year in response to their request for the non-disclosure in exchange for lab results, and their request to know how they were going to be used.

This whole topic and the comments are just wild! I actually had to chuckle. I recently became a certified aromatherapist, and enjoy giving treatments, with good results (I myself even feel good after giving a treatment). I won’t even say what oils I use because I see it’s a no-win situation here (I will say that I don’t sell any oils). Anyone who claims expertise and prefers either Young Living or doTERRA is bashed then for using/buying what they like (why wouldn’t you buy/sell/use what you think works?) Anyone who points out the flaws in MLM or the “certification” process is bashed (but no government certification even exists, and MLM is just another business technique). Anyone supporting either doTERRA or Young Living against each other is bashed (lot of mystery about THAT one!). Anyone who shares any opinion at all is quickly rounded upon, haha! Well, it seems the bottom line is this: in our culture, we have all been more or less steeped in the allopathic, scientific model of medicine. We want mathematical, statistical and replicable proofs of any and every method or product used for health. That just can’t happen with the use of essential oils. What did people do before the “scientific method”? They learned what worked by trial and error, observation and sharing of information. They didn’t die off; they managed to stay healthy enough to continue to populate the world, that’s for sure. The greatest boon to the allopathic medical field was (re) learning about bacteria (and very reluctantly at that). The “scientific” method and allopathic medicine has been responsible for a lot of pain, suffering, and deaths, but we don’t hear much about that because they are the ones in charge right now. “Natural” or “alternative” healing is giving them a run for their money because people are becoming more aware of the flaws in the scientific, allopathic, FDA approved, graded and statistically “proven” methods of medical practice. We will never be able to get government backing of alternative treatments like EO’s, because their most basic components are non-replicative ingredients. For instance, every batch of EO’s can come from plants in different areas, during different seasons, etc., which will STILL produce effective, but not replicable batches. The very definition of “natural” includes something that hasn’t been “scientifically” modified and manipulated to the point where it is just like every other “batch.” But people have been using EO’s for thousands of years with positive effects. And if you’re going to complain about money-grubbing, consider the fact that health care in the US is 17% of the national GDP! The allopathic medicine industry needs SICK people, so consider that when you feel the need to demand FDA approval for anything. FDA approval is no guarantee of safety-just do a little research on the interesting history of drugs and health/surgical products that are now being bombarded with lawsuits, have been responsible for deaths, have had to be recalled or have mysteriously NOT been pulled when actual approval has never been completed. I personally question exactly what their approval means-pay offs, pressure from Big Pharma, political/business favors? And don’t tell me it doesn’t happen! Providers of alternative treatments don’t need sick people because much of their practice involves health MAINTENANCE. So, FDA supporters, give it a rest. Supporters of holistic, natural, etc. treatments, don’t bother trying to win over the “scientific” minded people because you are wasting your time, unless one of them shows up at your door needing your help (which you know does happen). The argument is often actually an emotional/cultural/ego thing. Follow whatever path gets you where you’re going. Sometimes we find that our paths cross and we need each other.

The oils from Marshalls you mentioned stated they are for aromatherapy. These are fragrance oils and probably NO T pure. That’s why they are so much cheaper 🙂 and they are just for enjoying the scent vs. therapeutic benefits. I would not recommend applying them to your skin in any way but the DoTerra oils you bought can be applied once mixed with coconut oil (fractionated will not harden in cool temps), sweet almond oil, argan oil or even olive oil. Any oil you choose should be labeled organic of course


Tomato Leaves are toxic, never ingest them or use for skincare products. Strictly aromatic purposes are okay, like candles, however, Tomato Leaf EO or Absolute is very expensive for such a venture. The fresh leaves loose their wonderful aroma once dried, I tried it already 🙂 Best choice will be a fragrance oil if you want to really capture that smell, I know…not natural, but these are the facts. Good luck!

GuruNanda sources 100% Pure & Natural Essential Oils From Farm to You® Nothing added, nothing removed. If you purchase an oil from our website and don't love it, we'll happily refund you for the cost of the product and state tax. If you purchase a Gurunanda essential oil from a retail store, we can replace it with a different essential oil for you! - No Questions Asked!
×