My new interest in essential oils quickly became my new confusion with essential oils. There are so many EO companies, making similar statements about their products. Each of these, of course, advertise that “their” essential oils are 100% pure and natural, or even therapeutic grade. I became even more confused when I compared the prices for these seemingly identical essential oils.
How can a company sell their 30mL bottle of pure EO at half the price of another company’s 15mL bottle? They each say 100% pure essential oils, don’t they? How can I decide which company sells the purest and highest grade?
It is at this stage that my education in essential oils began.
Defining the term “100% Pure”
When using the phrase 100% Pure in the world of essential oils, it leads its consumers to believe that a bottle of Lavender EO, for example, contains exactly that: 100% Pure Lavender. Sadly, this is certainly not the case with most companies.
Surprisingly, there are no governing bodies that regulate the quality of the oils, nor the marketing lingo used by the players in this industry. There are no set standards to which all essential oil companies must abide by. But more important, there are no quality controls or inspectors that routinely test the oils found on the market today.
The good news, actually, is that the product information, packaging, and marketing statements employed by these EO companies, do relay all the pertinent and necessary information any consumer needs. To find that top oil that truly is 100% Pure, you only need to be armed with the knowledge of what to look for when purchasing any essential oil.
What to look for in an Essential Oil
As strange as this may sound, the packaging and labeling on the bottle are very important indicators. As a start, the strong chemical compounds found in pure essential oils will breakdown plastics. In turn, this breakdown degrades the quality and effectiveness of the oil. For this reason, all essential oils should therefore be stored in a dark blue or amber glass bottle. This will shield the contents from harmful ultraviolet rays and maintain its purity. A dark, glass bottle, therefore, is a great first indication of the quality and grade of the oil.
As for the label, be sure that both the common and botanical names appear. The listing of both names is a strong indication as to the origin of the country from where the plants where cultivated. In addition, many plants have the same common name. You could potentially end up with the wrong oil, if not for the listing of both names.
The inclusion of a Supplement Facts, Serving Size, or Directions for aromatic, topical and/or internal use, are other important pieces of information. Finally, cautions and/or warnings related to the specific oil, if applicable, should also be found on the label.
As a side note, some essential oils use the words “fragrance oil” or “perfume oil” on the label. This is an indication that the content is not 100% pure, and contains fillers such as synthetic oils or alcohol. These types of oils have no therapeutic or health benefits whatsoever.
The price for quality
It is no secret that to produce one drop of essential oil, EO producers need a huge amount of plant matter. For instance, 27 square feet of lavender plants is required to produce one 15mL bottle. This is true of all essential oils. As a result, the cost to produce a single drop will have a huge impact on the price per bottle, depending on the rarity of the plants needed.
The cost for a pure grade bottle of essential oil can be high due to the production costs associated. On the other hand, it is equally important to guard against essential oils that are lower in price. It stands to reason that if a 30mL bottle, for example, from one company is more that half the price of a smaller bottle from another company, you truly have to ask yourself just how pure the lower priced bottle really is.
It is certainly necessary to mention that one drop of a pure essential oil is very potent and highly concentrated. One drop does go a long way. Be sure to follow the recommended dosages, as more is not necessarily good. To benefit from the health properties of any essential oil, be sure your approach is reasonable and that you understand the usage.
One Final Point
Many evenings were spent in my search for the answer to my oil quest. In conclusion, I was most impressed with the essential oil company I now associate myself with, doTERRA. I am comforted in the fact that the oils produced are subjected to a protocol of tests, such as gas chromatography, mass spectrometry analysis, microbial, chirality and heavy metal testing.
I can identify with their company’s mission statement, as well at their Co-impact Sourcing initiative in Nepal, and Healing Hands Foundation. This company has changed my life on so many levels, and I hope that together, we can impact the world, one drop at a time.
Please share with me how essential oils have impacted your life. I would love to hear from you.