Today, the processors (distillers) of essential oils carefully blend proprietary mixtures of L. angustifolia subspecies and cultivars to produce a combination of true lavender oils that have a more consistent aroma, rather than providing only the low-camphor Reya and Munstead subspecies as specialized perfume ingredients. These other lavender essential oils are as true and pure as the two cultivars used by perfumers, but with four cultivars they provide a wider palette of scent and a more diverse scope of practical application due to their wider range of natural constituents.
The Lime Essential Oil has a fresh, sharp citrusy scent that revitalizes the atmosphere, and is popular in facial cleansers, toners and splashes wherein it acts as an astringent and can be used on oily skin. Key Lime is less sweet and is frequently used in many products, whereas the Tahiti/Persian Lime variety has a uniquely spicy fragrance and is commonly used in aromatherapy.
More importantly, the founders and owners of the companies will have personal relationships with the farmers so they can be certain of what they are getting. There are many tiny, locally operated farms around the world who can’t afford the extremely high costs of organic certification, yet they still practice organic farming which includes: no use of chemical pesticides, herbicides or fertilizers, no genetically modified seeds, and healthy crop rotation to protect the soils. That is what is meant by Unsprayed.
One of the things I like about that group is that the folks who belong to it regularly collect their pennies and have TRULY independent testing done on the brands and “flavors” of oils the group, not just an individual, selects, typically the same oil from three different sources at a time. Someone in the group buys the oils themselves and sends them, along with the fee, to an independent lab outside the US. They have tested both organic and inorganic oils. They have tested all sorts of brands, including doTERRA and Young Living. The results of those tests are posted on her website. GO READ THEM FOR YOURSELVES!

Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy (FTIR) is conducted to ensure the potency and consistent quality of a batch of essential oil. This testing method identifies the structural components of essential oil compounds. In an FTIR scan, infrared light of different frequencies is shined through a sample of essential oil and the amount of light absorbed by the sample is measured. The quality of the sample is determined by comparing the results from an FTIR reading to a historical database with absorption patterns of high quality samples.
Allergens are almost always composed of proteins or polypeptides, which are relatively large molecules. There are no proteins or polypeptides in essential oils. In fact, nitrogen containing compounds are virtually non-existent in essential oils except in occasional trace amounts. Allergens are composed of large molecules. There are no large molecules in volatile or aromatic oils, otherwise they would be neither volatile or aromatic.
I would love to know more about essential oils to avoid concerning environmental impact. Because it takes so much plant material to create a small amount of extract, it would be handy to have a list of oils that come from plants that are endangered or being irresponsibly harvested. I’m having trouble finding a comprehensive list online. Any suggestions?

#1- Therapeutic Grade is just a selling gimmick. If EO’s are pure, they are equal to any other. There are only a few distillery’s so many of the EO’s come from the same distillery then sold under several names. You should always buy from a company that is willing to give you the GC/MS reports regarding the Lot your EO bottle is from. That tells the constituents of the EO and would indicate if adulterated in any way.
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The certification of the management system after DIN EN ISO 9001:2000 proves, that we work with sustainability on quality and efficiency. The ISO 9001:2000 norm contains an obligation for the continuos improvement and a process-oriented approach. The most important objective is the satisfaction of the clients by consequent product management and integrated service.
To be clear, contamination or adulteration - whatever you want to call it - happens. It's happened with almonds, spinach, protein powders, supplements and seemingly daily with processed food. Obviously, we'd hope the brands we know and trust have systems worked out to ensure this doesn't happen. But sometimes it does. The important thing to pay attention to when it does happen is how the company handles it. Do they own it, take responsibility, and put motions in place to improve, telling their customers how they are going to do better? Or do they deny it and start placing blame elsewhere?
The truth is that while indeed the camphor should be low (less than 1%) there is almost always a little bit of camphor in true lavender oil, its basically unavoidable. I have analyzed literally thousands of samples of true lavender oil, including many samples I that have distilled myself and I can tell you, as any other analyst who knows what he is doing will tell you, that if small amounts of camphor are not present then it would be an EXTREMELY unusual exception. Honestly, I cannot even say that I have ever seen a lavender without some small amount of camphor, at least not that I can remember.

The essential oil information provided on AromaWeb is intended for educational purposes only. The references to safety information, constituents and percentages is generalized information. The data is not necessary complete and is not guaranteed to be accurate. The essential oil photos are intended to represent the typical and approximate color of each essential oil. However, essential oil color can vary based on harvesting, distillation, age of the essential oil and other factors. Profiles for several absolutes are included within the directory, and are denoted as such.
Ingesting essential oils for health benefits has been prescribed for centuries by experienced professionals. This process, when administered safely and correctly under supervision, can have profound healing effects on your body with issues like digestion, immune defense and hormonal imbalances. However, ingesting the wrong oils — or even the right oils in the wrong portions — can have disastrous and permanent effects on your internal tissues and overall health, and worst of all, you may not even realize any damage has been done until decades later in your life.
I have spent a lot of time on here debunking the myths put forth by glassy eyed cult followers and over zealous MLM reps and the main stream aromatherapy community loves it when I do this. But turnabout is fair play. Now its time to clear up a myth on the other side of aromatherapy. I see almost daily where people say things like “therapeutic grade” doesn’t exist or there is no such thing as a therapeutic grade standard. But to say there is no such thing as a TG standard is like saying there is no such thing as essential oils.
Most oils do degrade with age due to oxidation but there are some oils, such as sandalwood, vetiver, patchouli, etc. that actually get better with age, at least to a certain point (I am not sure anyone knows what sandalwood looks like after say 5000 years and I am pretty sure well before then the oil would “resinify” and become solid). Its typically the heavier oils that are high in sesquiterpene alcohols that get better with age. However, most oils, especially the citrus oils and the blue oils will degrade with age (at least within human lifetimes). Citrus oils are especially prone to degradation due to the high levels of limonene which oxidizes relatively easily. Even very small amounts of limonene oxide formation can totally destroy the odor of a once good citrus oil. In addition, wax formation in citrus due to monoterpene polymerization is also quite common over time. For this reason its best to go through citrus oils within a year, if possible.
Secondly, if we look at the structure of sclareol shown below we will see that it actually has very little in common with the structure of any of the estrogen molecules, E2 being the one that it would have the most in common with because both are what we would call “diols” meaning there are two alcohol groups. Sclareol is not a steroid but what would have to be termed a diterpene diol, not even remotely close to the necessary steroidal backbone.
Fair for Life goes beyond traditional fair trade by applying fair trade principles also to relevant domestic or regional trade and by requiring ethical working conditions along the entire trade chain. Fair for Life certified products are only handled by companies that demonstrate decent working conditions for all their staff. Fair for Life brand holder companies commit to fair sourcing practices and responsibilities towards their primary producers down the commodity chain. Fair for Life certification of products also confirms traceability of all certified products from production to sales.

I’ve enjoyed reading this site. There is a lot of good information and banter (though some isn’t so friendly, chill guys). I myself have only been using EO’s for a little under two years. Yes, they have changed my life and for the first time I feel empowered and able to be in charge of my own health care. I am healthier now than I’ve been in a very long time. I’m one of those persons who will take the time to check things out. My daughter told me about EO’s and a fairly new company, doTERRA. I wanted to believe all the wonderful things she was telling me, but not without checking out the company and putting the products to the test. At a lot of expense for me I did some investigating. So far I’ve found the company to be sound and based on ethical principles. I checked into the CTPG cirtification and found it to be sound also. Though the company pays for these extensive tests, they themselves do not perform them. It is third party and I believe available for other companies. With how extensive these tests are it may not be cost prohibative for many companies, however. I hope that others will follow suit eventually cause I know there are many very good EO companines out there. I do believe in EO’s now as I’ve had remarkable results for many health concerns and haven’t had to go to the doctor since I’ve been using them. I’m glad there is a standard finally set up (you guys should check out testing, it’s remarkable)that insures complete purity so that I may feel safe using these oils in a variety of ways, including internally. And yes, they are safe in their PUREST form for internal use. Other companies that follow suit will just give me more choices and give doTERRA healthy competition. HEALTHY competition is a good thing in my book. These oils are starting to ease their way into western medicine. The coming together of a variety of health care choices is what’s needed in this country, and it’s about time. Keep up the good work everyone in taking charge of your own health and the health of your families. Let’s hear it for the family!!!!


On speaking to Karen Menehan and Stanford Erickson, two of your editors, I was told that one role of a publication was to present alternative viewpoints. A fair point in principle, but I have read dozens of editorials, guest and otherwise, and don’t remember a single one that presented opposing views in this way. And, I’m still confused as to how my article was listed as someone else’s.
Essential oils are all the rage. You know the ones I’m talking about. In fact, you’ve probably been invited to a product party where little vials with expensive price tags promise a wide range of health benefits. You’ve also heard the stories. Essential oils cure warts and ear infections. They soothe rashes and bellyaches. They reduce fever and fight the common cold. Virtually any ailment you suffer has a corresponding dose of liquid magic.
As for blemishes and other skin irritations, there are plenty of options as well. Tea tree oil is an editor-loved remedy for shriveling up zits in a matter of hours, especially since it's one of the only essential oils (along with lavender) that can safely be applied directly to skin. Dab a few drops on a blemish to zap bacteria and soothe any redness. Got angry, inflammed skin from a sunburn, rosacea, or other sensitivities? Mist on some rosewater or a lavender hydrosol for instant relief. 
Thank you for taking time to answer my questions. I still feel a bit muddled about the subject, and still don’t feel that I have confident, validated proof to stand up to my YL friends and acquaintances, but maybe things will become more clear if I am able to study things out more for myself. There are so many differing opinions out there about how to use essential oils–would be nice to just have some straight, hard facts.

I did a price comparison from various oil companies, including doTerra and Mountain Rose Herbs. The price differences seem to focus primarily on country of origin, followed by whether they were fair trade. doTerra, for example, sells Frankincense from Oman, and the wholesale price for 15ml is almost $70. Mountain Rose sells USA Frankincense at $20 for 15ml. Eden Botanical sells Frankincense from Somalia at $16 for 15ml. Scents of Earth sells Frankincense from Oman at $45 for 10 ml (or $67.50 for 15 ml).
Dr. Robert Pappas says, “There are a lot of companies out there selling essential oils and most of them have no ability (or in many cases no desire) to do the necessary quality control to verify what they are getting from their supplier before they pass it on to their customers.” The GC/MS test determines quality and can show evidence of adulteration, although it is not perfect. Good companies will employ other tests as well like, Organoleptic (sensory tests), or FTIR (Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy).
I was wondering. You said that you should never take essential oils internally. But I’ve always been told that what you can’t tack internally, you shouldn’t put on your skin. The only exception to this rule I can think of would be something that would hurt you digestive system if you swallowed it, but is okay for your body otherwise. Plus some oils are made out of foods, like rosemary, so why cant we eat the oils? Does something bad happen to the oils after processing? If so, then why would you want it on your skin or in the air you breath.
First, their bottles didn’t come with the little plastic dripper caps that cover the mouth of the bottle (aka. orifice reducer), they just had a simple screw cap. Without the orifice reducers you either have to pour the oil out and make a mess or dip an eye dropper into the oil which can potentially contaminate the product if you’re not careful. Plus if oil gets into the little rubber bulb of the eye dropper it can get stuck in there and go bad, further contaminating the oil.
Actually John, that isn’t entirely true. Unlike many products EOs are not required to list everything that is in them. Some grocery and drug store brands of EOs come already diluted only this isn’t mentioned on the bottle. You can unknowingly over dilute your EOs by adding additional carrier because you think the product you have gotten from the drugstore is pure.
question please, enjoyed the article thank you. Business aspect didnt work out, but use doTerra, because i trust their Testers/Scientists, but on the GRAS, if i go uptown, how do i know because it says that, its safe to ingest? doT is costly, so want to know how to answer ? or help others, after reading, all seems a scam in marketing. NOT in any way saying they do not work, they DO, i just want to know on what to trust to ingest, thank you so much, Teresa

So, between their “extra” or more extensive methods of testing, their control over growth and harvest, the use of their own labs and equipment (which Gary Young states are the only instruments in the world that are matched and calibrated to the instruments used at the National Center for Scientific Research in France), YL openly declares that their oils are “therapeutic” grade and no other oils but their own are fully safe to be used neat or internally.

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.


I have been bothered by yeast infections in past yrs(vaginal) knowing that most essential oils have antibacterial properties I did the following; In 1 cup bottled water I put 8 to 10 drops Rosemary essential oil, stirred it up, wet a washcloth with it and bathed the area. I had immeadiate relief from the horrible itching. If it came back do it again..It only took 2 treatments for me. that was a Godsend to me.

I put this section here so that you can see the different brands of essential oils that I have used. This is not my list of essential oils to go buy. I make it clear who MY personal favorite essential oil company is, but as I stated before, using your own judgment and doing your research is very important in finding the company that you personally want to stand behind.


Thank you Holly! I’m happy to see someone stand up and clarify the fact that doTerra does stand behind their oils. To state such a statement of an oil to 100% certified pure therapeutic grade does mean something….especially is you consider using them internally or for cooking. If you are considering using essential oils instead of over the counter drugs, which contain many chemical ingredients (by the way, they use the same plants to create their drugs only they change them chemically and add other things), why not go all the way and eliminate ALL toxic and chemical additions to your body?? My suggestion, do your homework and research! Don’t take someone’s word for it in a comment. Buy a few bottles of the same oil (I hope you’ll consider doTerra) and compare how you feel.
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