Essential Oils Don’t Work (& What to do About Them)

Posted May 8, 2019 by Thirty-Something Angie in Clean Living / 0 Comments

If you've ever said "essential oils don't work for me," then please, read this post and let me help you troubleshoot how you're using oils. #essentialoils #naturalliving

I want to take a minute to debunk a phrase I hear all the time when the topic of essential oils comes up. If you’ve ever said “essential oils don’t work for me,” then please, read this post and let me help you troubleshoot how you’re using oils.

Got your attention with that title, huh? If you’ve followed my blog for even a minute you know that I’m a huge believer in essential oils.

Don’t worry. I haven’t suddenly changed my mind. Instead, I decided to address a topic that comes up a lot when I talk to people about essential oils

If you prefer video format, I did a Facebook live on this same topic last year, which you can watch right here:

5 Reasons Essential Oils Don’t Work

Have you ever felt like essential oils don’t work? Let’s look at some reasons that may be.

1. You are using a low quality essential oil.

You get what you pay for, and essential oils are no exception. I can tell you from experience that I used to buy my oils for $5 a bottle from the grocery store. They smelled good, and made my natural cleaners more aromatic, but I didn’t notice a significant difference in my life.

I didn’t notice a huge difference in my own life until I started using more potent oils, which, yes, come with a higher price tag. That’s because they’re not diluted or cut with anything to make them cheaper, and in turn, it makes them more effective.

Just because something smells good, doesn’t mean you’re getting any real benefits from them.

Every single thing that goes into an essential oil matters.

  • the final product matters
  • the distillation process matters
  • how the plants are grown and harvested matters

Have you been using lower quality oils out of fear of splurging on something more expensive? If so, I would encourage you to try out a few higher quality essential oils before writing them off completely.

2. Essential Oils are not “One Size Fits All”

If you go into the pharmacy with a headache, there’s an entire aisle full of medications that can help you with that.

Have you ever thought of why?

It’s because everyone’s body chemistry is different. Every headache is different.

You need options when it comes to anything that affects your body, and essential oils are no different.

I know when I suggest an essential oil for a specific purpose, that’s because it works great for me. I hope it’ll work just as well for you, but that’s not a guarantee.

If you use an essential oil and it doesn’t work the way you’d hoped, try another oil that can be used for the same purpose! I find a lot of my suggestions from this reference guide.

If you've ever said "essential oils don't work," then please check out this article and let's see if we can troubleshoot how you're using your oils!

3. You’re Using the Wrong Method of Aromatherapy

There are actually three different ways to use essential oils, and they all have their place.

  1. Aromatically: this is the most common way to use essential oils. You breath them in through the air and benefit that way. This is why diffusers are so popular!
  2. Topically: this is when you would apply them directly to your skin and absorb the oils into your blood stream. Always use a carrier oil when doing this, and be careful to use oils that aren’t classified as “hot” oils that can burn (like cinnamon).
  3. Internally: this is when you actually ingest the oils, and not everyone agrees with that. Personally, we only do this very, very rarely with oils I fully understand. Depending on your comfort level, this can be an option for your aromatherapy practice as well.

You might just be using your essential oil the wrong way for what you’re trying to do, and that’s another way that your reference guide can help.

4. You Aren’t Using Your Oils Often Enough

Essential oils are an organic substance, which means that they’ll get used by our bodies very, very fast. In fact, in a healthy body, you’ll use up an essential oil within only a few hours.

That means that you need to be reapplying much more often than you probably are. I know when I first started using oils, I’d apply something once and expect it to last all day, but with oils, that’s impossible.

Listen to your body, use your oils as often as you feel is necessary (a good guideline is around every 90 minutes), and your body will use up what it needs.

5. You Need to Change Your Mindset About Oils

Many times, I find that people want to use essential oils the same way they would use a medicine. If you ask me, that won’t be as helpful for you, because essential oils aren’t medicine.

Yes. Essential oils can help support our bodies. And yes. They can help support us in wellness. But, they aren’t nearly as effective if you just use them to try and treat a symptom.

I always suggest that people find the root cause of what they’re dealing with, and try to support their bodies from there, rather than trying to treat a symptom.

Once you start finding the imbalances and problems in your body, essential oils are a wonderful way to restore your body back to its full function.

So, those are my 5 tips on why essential oils might not be working for you!

Do you think one of these tips might help you find peace with your essential oils? Essential oils and aromatherapy have been a huge part of my own family’s lives for over 5 years now, and I’ve learned a lot in that time. I really hope that these 5 tips will help you fall in love with your essential oils and get the absolute most out of them.

Want to learn more about essential oils? Check out these posts!

My Essential Oil Planner: Your Printable Solution to All Your Essential Oil Needs!

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