Essential oils are a very hard industry to know if what you paid for really contains what you paid for. With new brands appearing often on shelves, and on websites like Amazon, it can be hard to know if you are buying the real item, or trash that at best is a waste of money and at worse, could actually hurt you physically (and not just in your wallet). (For example, in a link at the end of the post to Dr. Papas, cheap knock-offs are often sold in grocery and drug stores that if consumed can and will hurt you!)
In our post about questionable practices and advice, we have been asked what are the brands we trust by readers many times. And that it can a loaded question. I don’t sell essential oils, but rather use them. However, if one sells oils, this can lead to a bias. It isn’t to say it will happen, but it can, particularly with MLM companies. There is as well a mind-set that all your oils must come from the same company. They don’t need to. Mix and match. Compare oils from various brands and note the differences in aroma and the oil itself. One brand of lavender may be the wrong aroma to you, and brand 4 may be pleasant to you. Stretching your variety is a good thing.
Price is not the determining factor for a high-end product. A quality oil can be ‘reasonably’ affordable. For example, a standard bottle of Frankincense can vary by brand vastly in price, for a standard .5 ounce bottle.
- Aura Cacia: $29.82
- dōTERRA: $93.00 retail/$69.75 “wholesale”
- Mt. Rose Herbs: $37.50
- Young Living: $99.34 retail/$75.50 “wholesale”
It’s easy to assume that the more expensive brands (nearly 2/3 more in price for retail!) must be higher quality. They are not though. The difference is that dōTERRA and Young Living promote internal ingestion of essential oils, where the other brands do not (hence insurance costs go up). dōTERRA and Young Living also have a higher price, so as to pay their independent sellers an income on the sales.
Mt. Rose Herbs you must order online, and Aura Cacia, while easy to find in stores, is rather fuddy-duddy packaging. It isn’t trendy to say the least. However, if there was one brand I trusted most: it is Aura Cacia. And in the end, that is what matters.
Our go-to brands:
Now Foods (Note: I use these in cleaning products. While they are a decent product, they are on the low-end of what I prefer to use.)
As for the MLM companies, I have used both dōTERRA and Young Living oils. While both are fine oils, and come back with decent test results, what I don’t like is the heavily pushed lifestyle and price. If you like them, then by all means use them! I have certain oils I order because it’s hard to source from other places, and so on. I do like their oils, however, not the many other lifestyle items that are sold. If you plan on buying a lot of oils in your first year, buying a wholesale membership can be worth it, if you like the oils.
*I follow Dr. Robert Pappas research and also his posts at Essential Oil University, as he tests oils independently to see if they are counterfeit. His posts are a good read, and it’s fascinating to see how much crap is pushed out there.