Types Of Essential Oils
Not all essential oils are made the same. This is the number one thing to know about essential oils, and it’s extremely important for consumer safety. First, many farming practices include pesticides, herbicides, and chemical fertilizers that alter the chemistry of essential oils. Second, there are different types of essential oils.
Learn the difference, and why it’s important!
Types of Essential Oils
AUTHENTIC – 100% pure
These are 100% pure essential oils with no added synthetics or other species of oils.
MANIPULATED – 100% pure + Manipulation
These are pure essential oils that are manipulated to make the essential oil smell better and less earthy. This is a process of taking away molecules or adding other species to enhance the aroma. Rose is a commonly manipulated essential oil in which Geranium or Palmarosa is added to enhance the aroma.
PERFUME – Pure + Synthetic
There is a percentage of pure & then a percentage of synthetic that is added to enhance the smell of the oil i.e. to make lavender smell more like “lavender” or peppermint smell more “minty”. Or, as in the example above, synthetic geraniol is added to the rose.
SYNTHETIC – these are 100% synthetic and not essential oils at all.
They don’t even come from a plant, but are manufactured in a lab. There are no regulations when it comes to essential oils, so a person can use the term “essential oil” even when it’s not one at all. Synthetics are extremely dangerous as they can cause severe adverse reactions.
Know Your Farmer
Know your farmer. Know your supplier. In light of the different kinds of oils, knowing where your essential oils come from is extremely important. Make sure you can verify that a real plant is being grown and distilled, and verify the distillation and testing process.
What I Use
In my professional opinion, authentic essential oils are the only essential oils that should be used. The aromatherapy world cannot decide on whether ingestion is a safe practice, and if that’s something you choose to do, quality then becomes extremely important. You do not want to ingest additives and synthetics. When you choose to use a cheap essential oil with uncertain sources, you increase the risk of adverse reactions. Or the product simply doesn’t work as effectively. I feel like a broken record, but I just can’t stress this enough: Quality is extremely important!
For the last 14 years, I’ve chosen to use Young Living oils. I’ve been to the farms, my family has participated in harvest, I’ve seen the distilleries. Young Living essential oils are authentic and the blends of essential oils are also authentic. Authentic oils are expensive to cultivate, so very few companies actually use these.
As a side note, you may have read about “therapeutic-grade essential oils,” even on this blog, likely. However, there’s really no such thing. That term is often used to help you understand we’re not talking about manipulated, perfume or synthetic oils, but there’s no grading system or regulation system available for essential oils. This is exactly why quality is important.
Will you be re-thinking which essential oil you use?