Aren’t all essential oils the same?
Sadly, they are not. Not at all.
The quality and efficacy of an essential oil will depend mostly on the production process and dozens of little details throughout an oil’s journey from plant to bottle. Even tiny factors, like the type of soil or the time of day that the plants are harvested, can drastically impact the quality of an essential oil. These elements directly impact the oil’s chemistry.
Purity & potency starts from the very beginning with who is growing the plant. One reason why I love DoTerra is because of their Co-Impact Sourcing. They are not only ensuring purity and potency of the plant and oil itself but also positively impacting the farmers and the community in which these native plant grows. See how, in Kenya, women’s lives are changing thanks to Co-impact Sourcing!
Most essential oil producers have their own methods and processes for producing essential oils. This is NOT a place to cut corners. If corners are cut, they oil may be a lower quality due to things like adulteration or contamination. The difference is clear from both the aroma and the therapeutic benefits of the oil when you use it.
It’s REALLY fascinating and amazing stuff to learn about exactly WHY all the little factors matter, and how they affect the oils. If you want to get into the science of it, check out this article!
You can see these little differences by comparing a bottle of Certified Pure Therapeutic Grade essential oils from doTERRA, to another company’s same essential oil. Do you notice a difference?
Why is it important to use pure essential oils?
When it comes to using essential oils, purity is possibly the MOST important part. When an essential oil isn’t pure, it has the potential to expose the body to germs, adulterants, or other undesirable things like heavy metals. If an essential oil contains contaminants, it can lead to unwanted effects like irritation and even sickness.
Even if you’re just smelling an impure essential oil, it is still going into your body.
Think about all the things that we put on and into our bodies. Do you want to put impure things on your body? This is what could be happening if you are not using pure oils.
Next time you’re in the store, look at essential oil bottles on the shelves and read their directions. Typically, they say ‘For aromatic use only”. If you’re unable to put these oils ON or your body, why is it okay to put them in the air and inhale them? Even though there are three ways to use essential oils, the oils all are still entering our body through one way or another.
I don’t know about you, but I only want to put pure things into my body.
Using pure essential oils allows you to get the maximum benefits that the oil has to offer. If an essential oil is pure and free from contaminants, it will be safe to use (when the appropriate application methods are observed), and will provide the desired benefits.
Not only do pure essential oils give you peace of mind that your body will be protected from unwanted additives, but you will also find the oils to be more effective and useful.
How do I know if an essential oil is pure?
Unfortunately, there is no standard or regulation that ensures essential oil quality. This leaves essential oil companies to regulate themselves when it comes to making pure, safe oils. Companies are not required to list the ingredients, leaving out any additive used to adulterate the oil.
Some companies sell the oil, but list the ingredient as ‘Fragrance’…??? Ummm, WHATT?!?!?!
It is up to the company to make sure that the proper measures are taken to create pure essential oils. While skipping important quality control steps during the production process might save money or time, it will result in impure and lower quality oils in the end. This is why it is so vitally important to educate yourself on what you are using.
In order to decide whether or not the essential oils you are using are pure, you will need to do a little research about the essential oil company you are buying from. Responsible essential oil companies will provide information about their testing measures and any processes that they use to protect the potency and purity of an essential oil before it is approved for final consumer use. Don’t be afraid to reach out to the company and ask them your questions!
For example, doTERRA uses a process called the CPTG Certified Pure Therapeutic Grade® testing process to ensure that each doTERRA essential oil is free from contaminants and safe for use. The CPTG® testing process includes several rounds of testing to make sure that no undesirable elements can be found in the essential oils, and that they are safe to be packaged and sold for customer use. The main goal of the CPTG testing process is to verify the potency and ensure the purity of each essential oil that doTERRA produces.
Transparency is also important, especially when it comes to testing for purity. To see the specific test results of any doTERRA single oil, check out Source to You. There you will be able to input your Quality ID found on the bottom of the bottle to get a PDF of the test results.
Before you purchase and use an essential oil, do your own research to see what kind of testing methods the company uses to ensure purity. By educating yourself, you’ll be able to protect your family by only using potent, effective, and pure essential oils.
After you begin using and knowing pure oils, it can sometimes be easy to detect impure oils. I checked out an oil my colleague was using in her diffuser. It was in a bigger bottle, but looked legit enough. The ingredients listen peppermint, bergamot & rosemary essential oils, claiming to be 100% therapeutic grade. When I opened the bottle to smell the blend, all I could smell was alcohol. I knew immediately that this was not 100% pure and could only guess about the quality of oils based on that it was adulterated (added alcohol to dilute the oils) and was not something I wanted to use or even inhale. Luckily I was able to return to my CPTG diffused office and educate my colleague about the importance of purity & potency of essential oils.
Want to know more about purity? Check out these resources:
Video on the CPTG difference: https://www.doterra.com/US/en/cptg-difference-cody-beaumont
13 studies on efficacy & potency of many of doTERRA’s essential oils: https://www.doterra.com/US/en/media-press-releases-research-release-most-tested
The Art of Selecting Therapeutic Essential Oils: https://www.doterra.com/US/en/brochures-magazines-living-fall-2013-the-art-of-selecting-therapeutic-essential-oils)
Research news on doterra’s science blog: https://www.doterra.com/US/en/blog/science-research-news