Fake Essential Oils - How to Know Yours Are Real

Fake Essential Oils - How to Know Yours Are Real

Did you know that fake essential oils are out there that do more harm than good?  It is important to know if you have real essential oils or fake.

Essential oils are becoming more popular as more people look for natural remedies and healthy ways to freshen the air at home or in the office. Where there is a growing market of consumers ready to buy, you will unfortunately find an influx of scammers as well. The essential oil market is no exception, so you have to consider the quality of every essential oil that you use. 

The Danger of Fake Essential Oils

The problem with fake essential oils is that you don’t what’s really in them. The label says one thing, but you’re often getting something else entirely. The manufacturers have only one concern, and it isn’t your health or safety. They use the cheapest ingredients possible to replicate the scent and texture of authentic oils in a lab. Instead of a natural oil extracted from a useful plant, you’re getting a bottle of chemicals with none of the health benefits that come from that plant.  

At best, fake essential oils just won’t deliver the results that you expect. At their worst, some may cause irritation when placed on your skin and may even put you at risk for burns and serious medical conditions. If you use essential oils to treat eczema, dandruff, acne, or other conditions that require direct application to your skin, you could make the problem worse rather than seeing results. If you ingest fake oils, there’s a chance that you’re consuming toxic compounds that could collect in your system over time.

How to Spot FAKE Essential Oils

Those warnings about fake essential oils aren’t designed to scare you. We simply want to inform you of the dangers. We also want to help you tell the difference between the fake essential oils and the real oils, which is sometimes easy and sometimes more challenging. It depends how far the manufacturer went to understand essential oils and create believable knockoffs.

Step One: Analyze the brand.

If you already have oils and you want to make sure that they’re authentic and pure, you can do this as step three. If you’re in the market for new essential oils, then look at the manufacturer’s name first. Search online to make sure that they have an established brand, answering the following questions:

  • How long have they been in business?
  • Do they only sell essential oils, or do is this just one product of many?
  • Do they have an informative website that talks about their commitment to purity, safe handling, and what process are used to make their oils?
  • Can you find a full mailing address and phone number for the company?

You will find many essential oils sold through online marketplaces that don’t specify a brand name and come in bottles with homemade labels. You never know how pure these oils are or whether they’re naturally extracted or made in a lab. It’s best to stick to established brands known for producing trustworthy products.

Companies committed to making only essential oils and related products are your best option. Stores that stock a variety of products from different brand names will require a lot of research on your part because investigating each oil offered is essential.

Step Two: Look at the bottle.

Real essential oils go bad when exposed to light, so they are always contained in dark brown or blue bottles. These bottles are always glass because many oils will eat through plastic or the chemicals from the plastic can get into the oil.

Real essential oil bottles are also small because you only need a little oil to get big results. Large bottles of real oil would also be more expensive than most people could afford to pay, so don’t think that you’re getting a deal when you see a large plastic bottle. Also, don’t fall for decorative bottles that are pretty but are not suitable for maintaining the integrity of real essential oil.

Finally, look at the name given to the oil. You want to find oils that give the Latin version of the name as well as the common name. There are different types of many oils, and you want to know exactly what you’re getting. Many fake oils will only list the most common oil name.

Legitimate oils will almost always include the following information in addition to the Latin name:

  • Ingredients
  • Origin country
  • Expiration date
  • Batch number
  • Storage information

Pay attention to wording on the label as well. For instance, “orange oil” may not be as pure as “orange essential oil.” Many fakes will leave off “essential.” Most authentic oils will also include a statement regarding purity.

Step Three: Smell and feel the oil.

Open the bottle and give the oil a good whiff. If you know what the oil should smell like, you may easily detect something different about a fake oil. If you aren’t sure, then you may still realize that the oil smells more like alcohol or chemicals than lemon, orange, lavender, and other common oil scents. Some manufacturers can get very close to an authentic aroma, so continue with this process even if it passes this test.

Put a drop or two on your finger or on a piece of paper. If it feels oily or leaves oil marks on the paper, then it’s not likely a real essential oil. Except for heavy oils like sandalwood and patchouli, essential oils are light and will not leave a greasy ring when dropped on paper.

Use the information presented here to closely analyze every bottle of essential oil that you purchase. You can’t assume that products sold in local stores are real and of high quality just because they’re sitting on store shelves rather than being promoted online. The same logic applies in reverse because many of the highest quality essential oils are sold online.

If you start with one or two oils when trying a new supplier, you will have a chance to inspect the oil before ordering more. This is also a great product for brand loyalty, so find essential oils that you know are real and then stick with them.

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