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Choosing the Best Essential Oil Company- Is it Worth the Huge Debate? (Guest Post)

September 18, 2014

Today I am excited to host my sister-in-law, Liz Lalama, on my blog.  Not only is she a great sister-in-law in general, she has been immensely helpful to me as we have each been exploring natural health for the past few years.  It is thanks to her that I learned about the therapeutic and medical benefits of essential oils.  My hope is that her perspective on essential oil marketing and purchasing will be as encouraging to you as it is to me.

Choosing the Best Essential Oil Company – Is it Worth the Huge Debate?

Over the last two years I have become progressively more and more interested in whole person wellness and natural health options. In general, this journey towards “wellness” instead of “health” has been absolutely amazing and a truly positive experience.  The online community has been a wonderful source of knowledge about embarking on this lifestyle change, especially in a culture where our grandmothers can’t or won’t teach us about herbs, nutrition, cooking, and natural cleaning.

And yet, one thing about the natural health community greatly alarms me- its determination to divide itself.  Sometimes it’s chiropractic vs naturopaths. Sometimes it’s whether to use all organic food or only some. Or maybe what kind of oil/fats we should be cooking with.  And finally, the debate that sparked this post: which essential oil company to buy from.

When I first learned about essential oils I had to decide what company to give my business to. At the time I mainly considered the big two (DoTerra and Young Living) because those were the only companies I had heard of. It became immediately obvious to me that people feel very strongly about which oil company is the best. I began to hear accusations and slander on all sides. At the time I believed that it was because I was seeking out information regarding the differences. I didn’t think it was as bad as it seemed. But once I chose a company and began to get involved in the online communities to learn more, I discovered that this debate is alive and well! I also began to hear about additional smaller companies some people used and people were very opinionated about those as well.  Everyone claimed that the company they used was the ONLY reliable source of pure essential oils.  The consciences and integrity of oil owners, representatives, and users were called into question. I’ve heard EO users from one company call other EO users stupid because they weren’t enlightened enough to know which company is best. Many people have implied or even outright declared that others who do not use the right EO company are doing a disservice to their families by not utilizing the best, most safe, most pure EOs. To them, if I really loved my family and cared about the world I would use their company!  Now I know not everyone slings the mud to this extent, but I’ve seen it from many people on ALL sides of the debate.

Not only are these types of arguments inappropriate and offensive, but the debate is making it very difficult for people new to essential oils to join in the community. Frankly, it almost completely turned me off from essential oils in general. This argument is poor PR for everyone involved.  The number of people interested in natural health is already fairly small and essential oil users make up an even smaller subgroup of that. A long time ago this guy named Jesus once said, “A house divided against itself cannot stand”.  Now, I’m 100% sure he was not talking about essential oils, but the principle remains.  Fellow oilers, we will not stand if we continue to fight in this way.  If we continue to care more about what company to use than we do about natural health, we will be divided and we will fall. Why are we, an already marginalized group, making ourselves even more so?

Friends, it’s time to lay down the essential oil company argument and delight in a larger community of people who want to use essential oils to live well.  It’s time to unite and present a cohesive message to those using conventional pharmaceuticals.  Take a step back and recognize that people make decisions for different reasons. Maybe you want to buy oils from a friend, someone you know in person. Maybe finances are really tight and you need to find high quality but affordable oils. Or maybe you want to support the economy in third world countries and would rather buy from a company that sources their oils locally. Maybe it’s your priority for the oils to be tested for purity three times instead of two times.  Maybe you would rather have the amount of control that comes with a “seed to seal” process. Maybe you want only organic plants. Maybe you want to buy in bulk and make your own blends. Wouldn’t it be a shame if someone gave up on oils because of the price, the shipping cost, or disgust with the debate in general?   We all need to recognize that not everyone’s priorities are the same and let everyone make their own decision.  Maybe instead of touting the company we like best, we should be educating people on what their options are (because even I don’t think buying oils from Walmart is a good idea). So, sure, share opinions and educate people, but don’t tell someone there is only one good choice and for goodness’ sake definitely don’t tell them that they are a bad parent if they make the “wrong” one!

Join me and stop the arguments. Stop the division. Stop chasing people away. Respect everyone’s opinion and their right to make choices. Let’s set aside our attitudes and come together as a team.

EO picture

This picture shows the essential oils I have tried so far.  Another company I want to try is Plant Therapy.  I’ve heard great things about them!  If you are new to essential oils, here is a good introduction: http://www.mommypotamus.com/need-talk-essential-oils/ .   -Kate

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