Essential Oils

Essential oils are extremely concentrated oils from distilled plants, herbs, and flowers with medicinal properties. They can be applied topically or diffused into the air to release their beneficial properties. They are the basis of aromatherapy, using aromatic properties to treat disease and promote health. 

It's long been proven that the olfactory senses, or sense of smell, has a huge impact on emotions and many of the smells we like or dislike or based purely on the emotions that particular smell evokes in us. Smells alone can improve moods and well-being. And as it has been repeatedly proved, happiness and positive emotions help your overall health and well-being. 

This would suggest that the smell of essential oils is enough to make using them worthwhile, but there is more to it. Essential oils are distilled from plants and flowers that have healing properties and health benefits. 

Essential oils and aromatherapy are not strong enough to replace medicine altogether. They work to complement and enhance a healthy lifestyle. Perhaps what they tend to do best, or at least what they are used most often for, is help promote relaxation and combat stress. This, in turn, promotes healing. But once you start using them, the world of essential oils opens up and you'll see they can be used for so much more. 

Practical Uses

So far, we've only discussed the uses for essential oils on the body. They can be used for many other things though. Here are ten of many.

Essential oils are a non-toxic way to add scent to soaps and shampoos or cleaners or your living or working spaces. And since they are so concentrated, you only have to use them one or two drops at a time, so they last a long time.

How to Buy

There are so many places to get essential oils, some cheaper than others. Here's what you need to look for.

  • Therapeutic grade - this actually does not mean anything. From my research, there is no such thing as "therapeutic grade" essential oils, and there isn't any legal standard to certify or evaluate this. What it means is that the supplier worked very hard to make sure the oils are pure.
  • Certified Pure Therapeutic Grade - This is a registered trademark phrase that may be misleading. There is no board or committee that determine whether a brand can be certified. There is only one brand that uses this as a personal "internal standard." It's a marketing ploy, nothing more. What it does mean though, is that the oils are carefully filtered and pure, but the only standard is set by the company, not actual regulation standards.
  • Fragrance oil, perfume oil, nature identical oil - these are usually combinations of oils and other chemicals meant to be used as perfume.
  • Storage - Oils should be stored in amber glass. If you buy oils in plastic or with rubber dropper lids, they will pick up chemicals from the container.
  • Sourcing - Locally sourced essential oils are fine, but they aren't ideal. For the most potent oil, you want oils sourced from their native country, where the plant it is distilled from flourishes the best.

The National Association for Holistic Aromatherapy outlines a pretty rigorous set of criteria for what to look for in an essential oil supplier.

According to Jade Shutes of the NAHA, and  you should look for the following in a supplier:

AromaWeb has an even stricter set of criteria.

With so much to look out for, who can you possibly trust?

You!

Do your research. Make sure the people you are learning from are reputable. Are they trying to sell you something? Where did they get their information? 

And once you've read all about it, try an oil and see how you react to it. Try from several different brands and compare them.

Where to Buy

Like I said earlier, do your research. I am still doing my own research, and I will only recommend the companies I have tried myself that I know work well. I have been using doTERRA since I was introduced to essential oils several months ago. I have since begun doing more research and found that they only partially match the criteria that I listed above.

I've had pretty good results from them, and I know many other people who have as well. They are not a small privately owned business, but they maintain a sustainable growing and harvesting process and they test each batch of oil thoroughly and completely by third-party labs. They are sourced from around the world, and they go out of their way to educate the people who sign up with them. 

One of the most important points for me was that the oils smell good. It's no use trying to use aromatherapy if you don't like the aroma. 

The doTERRA community is far-spread and full of people who freely give loads of advice. DoTERRA has online resources, apps, and literature. I've learned so much from them, and whenever I have a question, someone knows the answer.

Furthermore, they offer rewards for ordering and shipping, points that build up and can be cashed in for more oils or other products. Every month they offer a product Once you've signed up, you get an immediate 10% off which builds up over time with their optional Loyalty Rewards Program. I've ordered the bare minimum to stay in the program for about 7 months and now get 20% off each order. And I'm not even selling. I know people who use doTERRA as their main source of income for a whole family.

I am very happy with my experience with doTERRA, but I continue to learn about other companies and will update this page when I've got enough data to include. 

You can sign up to order doTERRA at wholesale prices through me here, or contact me about getting it retail or just to get more information about essential oils.

Sources: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10

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