I recently read that the essential oil market is predicted to reach $39.5 billion dollars and I am so happy these little bottles are growing in popularity but I have to be honest, I'm a little scared. I personally believe whenever grimy companies see an opportunity, or see a growing market, some will scam us for profit. Being newbies in this essential oil market we may just become targets. Which is why I decided to finally write this article, I am praying that it will offer insight to some oil loving newbies, so please share it and share your opinions down below so we can help the community out.
What are essential oils?
For those who don't know, essential oils aka EOs are one example of natural ways you can support your healthy journey. They can be used as a natural alternative to a wide range of things such as fragrances, topical treatments, and even hair oils. You typically see them associated with terms such as Aromatherapy, Organic, and Natural.
They Tried Us For Years
Nina Pop Williams- Youtuber
Y'all know if they can slap the word "natural" on it they will try to and then of course mark up the price.
Essential oils are the oils extracted from flowers, bark, leaves, fruit etc. Mostly women purchase them, but of course other people also purchase and use them. From looking at the ads and the facebook groups I do believe they market to mostly white women in their 30s, stay at home moms, or health conscious women. I could talk on and on about my views on this one-sided industry but I will save that for a different article. Today we are just focusing on finding what to look for in brands we trust so we don't get scammed by these companies promoting essential oil products.
Now y'all know back in the day our grandparents or older people in our lives could come up with some natural remedies to our problems, and at some point we started relying on the created for us options that were put in the stores for our convenience. I think it's room for both! But we all have had moments of questioning and side eyeing their wild natural remedies.
Now that essential oils are growing in popularity I have seen the same skepticism and that's okay I was the same way. Which is what led me down a rabbit hole of ongoing research, trying to really understand what the heck are these bottles and what's going on inside of them.
Who regulates Essential Oils In The US
Did you know that there are no real regulations defining essential oils? Those who are like me, who have tried natural remedies know this isn't very surprising because most of the world still side-eyes natural things and will trust more of the store bought options. But what is a shock to me, is that a lot of the terms used by essential oil companies and independent contractors are just marketing terms, not state regulated terms.
The FDA has no regulatory definition for essential oils and doesn't seem to have any real regulations defining natural or organic for cosmetics. However, they do send out warning letters to companies that word their products as being cures, treatments, healing benefits etc. That's why you would notice a lot of essential oil promoters including myself try really hard to use words like "support" or "may help" because nobody wants those kinds of problems.
The government also doesn't have a formal definition for natural. Which is why I am concerned about the future of the essential oil market. With so much being left up to companies, and the integrity of them can these people be trusted? We also have to remember a lot of the most popular essential oils brands are MLM essential oil brands, and we know most people are just repeating what their upline has told them. I am not being shade, random fact, when I first started creating content four years ago, I was one of them.
Is It Money In Promoting Essential Oils
Of course it is money that can be made in selling essential oils and that's why so many companies including some dollar trees have started to offer it. Think about it, so many people are trying to be healthier and live healthier lives. I promoted Melaleuca essential oils for a while, and later My Daily Choice until I saw the behind the scenes mess that just didn't sit well with my spirit or my brand at the time. If you want to learn more about that experience from a business perspective let me know and I will share it. But for now, I will just give a glimpse into how these companies and people promote essential oils.
For those who do not know Melaleuca is an online shopping club that offers a membership to their customers, and people can promote that membership and earn a commission from it. You also have to buy a certain amount of products every month and on the months you miss the company will send out your back up order.
You're probably wondering, were they any good? When I made the decision to promote those products, everything I shared was true. I loved the products and still do, if you're curious I have a ton of videos of me talking about them and sharing reviews of different things I was trying and using at the time. But I talked about these products like they were the only natural shopping club that could be trusted and I see other people doing this with their companies and products too. Everyone wants to believe their company has the best products, best qualities and best deals. But they are not!
Everyone has their preferences but be for real, it is other really good products out there as well, trust me, yours is not the only one. I know, because I have purchased and made some myself. The only thing I regret is in the beginning, I was just buying oils repeating what my upline taught me and I should have done my own research sooner. But I am grateful, because I wouldn't know all I know now about essential oils if I didn't get caught up in a membership that required me to purchase so many of them. If you are someone currently in this situation, I created an essential oil dictionary to help newbies learn what the different oils smell like, how it can be used, and some of the possible beneficial properties the oils may offer.
I was single at the time, no kids, and barely was home. So I spent most of my membership months buying way too many essential oils, a few cleaning products, and promoting them. Since I had a background in marketing and teaching it just made sense. I joined the groups and teams thinking I would become more educated on the company products, and it was a bunch of fluff. They were all about the money and I left! I am not judging them, I want people to be able to earn a living and be in a position to start a natural business with little to no investment all while getting people back to nature, it's literally what I stand for, but most of these companies are too focused on that. It should be about the people and our health not about creating down lines and meeting quotas, and how can they possibly have our health in mind if they aren't even educated on the products themselves?
I know that some people reading this might be a network marketer, so I feel compelled to mention, it is not everyone. Also, it is money to be made in network marking companies and we already see the essential oil market is growing so it is space for you to grow your business. Maybe not fast money like they want you to believe, but it is profitable. However, don't be apart of the problem, and don't be so blinded by the enticing profit opportunities that you become a grimy little scammer. I want you to take time to educate yourself on these products so you won't just be lying about the ingredients in products, posting fake promises and dangerous ideas. I'm really passionate about this, so if you need help with marketing your natural business check out the business tab on this website or send me a message.
Lastly, beware that most of these companies lock you in. Once you become a seller, they have rules and lawyers. You can't just think you're going to build your audience, use their websites, and then leave to join another company without them coming for you especially if you have built that audience of buyers by promoting their products. So keep that in mind when deciding if this is the business route you want to take. The essential oil market definitely needs good educated people of all shades, sizes and colors, so it is room for you.
What Marketing Jargon To Avoid?
Now that I'm off my tiny soapbox, let's really ruffle some feathers lol. I know I am about to have the industry in a frenzy, and this is totally my opinion. After researching this topic I am left with a question, if it is no industry standards in the essential oil market, then what the heck is "Therapeutic-Grade"? 100% Pure?
I'm convinced therapeutic grade just simply means it's intended for therapeutic use because otherwise it could be classified as a drug according to the FDA. This is my opinion of course, but think about it, it's the only thing that makes sense. But people in this industry love to say how their "best quality essential oil" is "therapeutic-grade" and that is why the price is the price. How do we know?
Another thing to be aware of, is when people claim your essential oil didn't work, because of your brand of choice. Essential oils do not work on everybody and they are not all created equal. Yes I have had success using essential oils to fight colds, pimples, anxiety, bacteria in the home etc. and yes the brand quality was important, but that doesn't mean that is a definite sign it will work for you. Their have been times when I had to use a store bought brand because I couldn't afford the more expensive brands and sometimes it was a fake oil, but it has been times I had success with the less popular brands from the store.
In this market it makes sense to promote the oil you are affiliated with. So that's why we as consumers must do our own research. Let me give you an example of what I mean, rose water is really popular right? I have heard people recommend a specific brand of rose oil because it has a floral scent and a ton of benefits, but because of research which I share more about in my Ebook "Help Me Learn More About Essential Oils" I also know that Geranium which is way cheaper also has similar benefits and is also a floral scent. To avoid getting a gazillion oils and not know the variety of ways they can be used, I recommend grabbing a copy of my Ebook it could save you time and money. As a thank you for taking time to read and share this article, here is a pop gift for you, use code "Bonus25" at checkout.
If It's No Industry Standard How Do I Avoid Being Scammed?
Please don't think this means you can go get any random oil, quality is still very important. Because, some essential oils are extracted from plants and fruit and many plants contain toxic irritating materials. Which is why it is very important that you look for organic brands or brands that don't use pesticides or other chemicals on the plants they are using to make the essential oils. Finding labels that say 100% pure, could possibly help with that, but from my understanding that just means it is free of these things but the term is not regulated either.
Word of mouth also helps, there are plenty of essential oil reviews out there, of course make sure it's not just fluff. But seeing what people are saying even helps me discover brands that I should stay far away from. The USDA is something else I look for. I know they have had problems in the past, so it's not the only thing I look for, but they are getting better.
This year I noticed the USDA is starting to crack down on organic fraud, so I personally look for USDA organic certification labels, in hopes that I am getting a pretty good essential oil. Especially if I am buying an unfamiliar essential oil brand from the store or amazon, it gives me a little more peace knowing it might be a quality brand.
The ones that say USDA approved, have gone through testing and methods and have to meet their standards to get the stamp of approval. Other helpful things I look for is, making sure which ever oil brand I choose, has only one ingredient and that is the plant, which includes the latin name of it.
Essential Oil Brands
Because I started this journey when I was unemployed, spending hundred of dollars on oils wasn't an option, I had to learn about budget friendly brands, and even though I now work and run a business online I still stand on going natural on a budget. Although I have strayed away from most MLM brands, I still love Melaleuca brand "Pure" but they are not certified organic.
I have also tried several smaller brands, but I have only returned to a few. One in particular is Plant Therapy. I also found an affiliate link, so I will attach it here if you are interested and keep in mind if you purchase using the link I may earn a small commission, so thank you for that. Plant Therapy is a certified organic brand, they were certified through a company called Ecocert, from my understanding this is a USDA accredited certification agency.
Why is this important to say? If I remember right, it has to be like 70% organic to say certified organic. This certification process goes through multiple testing and steps to even get accredited so I appreciate that. However, like several companies everything on the site is not organic. Also, some products are through a third party according to the website.
Guru Nandas essential oils is another company I have tried. They claim they are using plants directly from farm to bottle with no middle man. You can find these in some Walmart stores and on Amazon. I have only tried these in my diffuser not topically, and I have also tried their mouthwash which uses clove essential oil. So far I am really starting to like their products.
Last but not least, Revive has been gaining traction as being a really good brand as well, they have some USDA certified organic essential oils. I love the price of these oils, wish I seen them sooner, but you can find them on Amazon.
Make sure which ever oil brand you choose
- It has the Latin name of the plant printed on the bottle
- The company is knowledgeable of where the plants have came from even if it's a third party
- That it is in a dark glass bottle
So what do we do with all this information? Pay attention, don't fall for the fake marketing terms, and do your research for yourself. Don't allow marketers to make the choices for you, make them for yourselves. You got this!
I hope this article clearly explained what I look for when purchasing essential oils to avoid getting scammed with fake essential oils and marked up prices and what you can look for too. So naturals tell me, which essential oil brand are you using currently and why?