Quick guide to recognizing pure essential oil and quality suppliers of essential oils for clinical aromatherapy.
Hi, again! It has been a hot minute, BUT I am taking an aromatherapy class in college with semester so I should have some goods to share!
There are no government regulations for essential oil quality in the U.S, so consideration needs to be made to determine if the company has created their own high standards and accreditation or if they are using generic terms to cover impurities. Some of these terms and titles may include, “fragrance oil,” “nature identical oil,” or “perfume oil”. These titles are vague and unreliable; they are likely referring to mixes of chemicals, fillers, and in part, essential oils. Other more professional sounding terms, that still mean nothing in themselves since there is no regulation, are titles like “therapeutic grade” or “aromatherapy grade.
If a vendor says the oil is “pure” then start to look deeper into their products. They are showing that they at least have some understanding about essential oils. If their oils are not mixed with fillers, look at what color bottles the oils are in and what size they sell them in. Sellers that understand the delicate quality of pure essential oils will sell them in small, glass, sealed, dark colored bottles.
Other things to consider when purchasing essential oils for clinical aromatherapy, is the vendors business practice transparency and education. How long have they been in business? Are they educated on the subject? Do they openly provide information about the processing of their oils and quality control? Have they set their own standards to create some standard of quality?
Contact the company or vendor with questions; this will help you determine if they are knowledgeable on the topic and how they handle business. Observe if there are price variations; they should reflect the varying cost of production from more accessible and less accessible plant resources. Consider how long the oils have been in stock. If it is not a high yield company products may be in stock for long periods of time. Even though a case could be made that essential oils do not “go bad” they do oxidize, diminishing their aroma and therapeutic value over time.
For quality control, only buy essential oils that have the botanical name, the country it is from, and method used for extraction, listed for each product. Oils that only have the common name (Lavender for instance) do not indicate what variation of that plant it is (Lavandula angustifolia or Lavandula officinalis). The different variations have different therapeutic properties, so this is important information for essential oil vendors to provide.
If possible, obtain small samples of oils before making a bigger perchance. This will enable you to smell and handle the oils. If the company primarily sells to food & beverage or perfumery industry they may not offer small samples. It may be preferable not to perchance from these companies anyway, since they may have removed or added constituents since the goals of their consumers are very different from an individual looking to use oils for therapeutic use.
Some tips of the trade folks, hope you enjoyed! If you would like a more in-depth article please go to
Robbins, W., How to buy essential oils. Retrieved from https://www.aromaweb.com/articles/howtobuyessentialoils.asp