When I first began my healthy living journey over 6 years ago, the last thing I expected to encounter was division among those in natural living circles.
In particular, I’ve witnessed otherwise meek and mild mamas tear each other apart over essential oils.
My sisters, this should not be!
My introduction to essential oils
I started using essential oils about four years ago. I remember my doula mentioning that they would aid in pain relief and relaxation during childbirth.
“Essential oils? What are those?” I asked.
According to Wikepedia, essential oils are:
“a concentrated hydrophobic liquid containing volatile aroma compounds from plants.”
I soon learned that these powerful plant compounds could indeed aid in relaxation and pain relief–and so much more.
Back then, even the cheapest brand of oils were a sacrifice for our family to purchase. We were living on a low income, so I made those oils stretch for as long as possible.
I only used them when I felt absolutely necessary–although they quickly became one of my favorite items in my natural remedies arsenal.
When I was gifted with my first bottle of thieves oil, I made it last an entire year.
From toddlerhood, my three girls have known to stretch out their legs and lift their feet in the air when Mommy pulls out her oils before bedtime. We do not use them every day, but when one of them has the slightest cold or other ailment, out they come.
Indeed, our middle is currently getting over walking pneumonia, so I rubbed each of the girls’ chests down with a diluted blend of respiratory-strenthening oils tonight before I put them in bed–and I rubbed their feet with a diluted immune-boosting blend of oils.
I credit oils with helping us get over the ugly, no-good Norovirus a few years back, for keeping me from getting a stomach virus when the rest of my family fell ill and for even recently removing an in-grown hair which had grown into a sizable swollen lump on my armpit. (Sorry for the grossness!)
It wasn’t until I had been using oils for about a year or so when I began to hear whispers of the brand wars.
There are, you see, two major companies–which I will not name here–who are at big odds with each other.
Supposedly one company did another wrong.
Supposedly one has superior oils (to not just its biggest competition but to all other oils brands).
Supposedly there are lawsuits and lies and deception all around.
I’ve seen ladies get so wrapped up in these essential oils brand wars that it’s pushed me to never want to have anything to do with properly endorsing either brand.
In all actuality, I use oils from both brands–and from other smaller brands as well.
You see, I don’t place my loyalty in brands. I place it in people.
When I do purchase from one of the major brands, I have certain representatives whom I will give my patronage. (One of them is currently a site sponsor. I have chosen to work with her since she is not pushy and truly seems to want to help others.)
Essential Oils are Big Business
As other bloggers and oils representatives have watched my blog grow over the past couple years, I’ve had several requests to sign up to sell oils. I’ve even had some mention: “Look how large your following is! You could be making big money by selling oils under me!”
(They would also make money off of my platform then, right?)
But I refuse to sell oils myself. It’s just not what this site is all about. I want to create a community that is all about grace-filled, natural living–for those who can afford the higher-end oils, and for those who can’t.
And if I sold the bigger named oils myself, I know that some of you couldn’t buy them.
Some of the oils companies make recommendations for daily use of oils.
It’s just something I personally cannot do.
Because those of you who need to make a bottle of oil stretch out for an entire year would feel defeated if I were to tell you that the only path to healing was to use it every day.
For those who can afford the higher-end oils, I say: “Go for it!”
In fact, because I am able to work out a trade with our site sponsor, I am able to use mostly name brand oils now myself. I love them. For me personally, I love the convenience of the pre-mixed essential oils blends that these companies offer.
But I would not be using them if I were still living on a low income. I would be purchasing more cost effective brands and making my own blends.
And I will not stand for oils representatives or bloggers or anyone who shames the mother who has to make a choice between feeding her children or rubbing oils on their feet.
Tummies must be filled first.
And as far as natural healing goes? There are many, many natural remedies. Oils are just one. And ultimately? God is the Great Healer–with oils or without.
Education is Key
So what is the grace-filled answer to the essential oils wars?
I do not expect to begin a revolution here, but I do hope to make you think:
Before bashing another oils brand, do your own research.
Brand representatives are trained, yes, and some seek out more in-depth training via aromatherapy courses and the like, but do not uphold what your brand representative says as gospel truth. They have a knowledge base, but you are ultimately responsible for your own health choices. Don’t just make them lightly.
Read for yourself. Review the results of independent testings. Take an essential oils course.
There are many opinions and even varying schools of thoughts on the safety of essential oils, the need for proper dilution, topical and oral use of oils, and the list could go on.
Educate yourself from a wide range of sources–until you are able to objectively draw your own conclusions about essential oils.