When I first was exposed to some of the multi-level marketing (MLM) essential oils such that are now flooding our society, I was instinctively repulsed by them. I wasn’t sure exactly why, but I knew that the energy that was coming across was completely wrong. In the years that followed, I’ve been able to discern and pinpoint more specific reasons why I had that initial and correct repulsion.
The first and foremost reason is that the sales tactics used by many agents of MLM essential oils are little more than fear mongering. This shows up frequently in their sales pitches be it on Facebook, on their websites, or in Meetup groups. Many of the sales agents bring up the horrific dangers of life in our world and then inaccurately argue that EOs are the solution to all of these problems. While essential oils are extremely powerful healing agents, they are not the new miracle solution to everything. Anyone who promises you a magic cure to everything should be held a distance.
Beyond the fear based tactics, I am dismayed by the poor education of many of the sales people for MLM EOs. Most of these people have only had minimal training with essential oils and are trying to work well beyond their educational limits. Essential oils can be incredibly dangerous when not administered properly. While one can argue that these people are well-intended and want to help people heal, that argument is undercut by the fact that the more oils the salespeople sell, the more money they make. Healing is only part of their goal in most cases.
From the lack of education stems more serious health related issues involving essential oils. EOs need to be diluted properly. If they are not, long term dangerous effects can result including permanent sensitization. Techniques such as the Raindrop Therapy actually expose skin to unsafe levels of many essential oils, and the redness that many practitioners claim is detoxification is actually a reaction. Likewise, inappropriately ingesting EOs can cause severe organ damage and even death. Essential oils aren’t water flavorings! (If you do suffer from an injury or illness due to essential oils, please report your problems here.)
Furthermore, most essential oils have not been approved by the FDA for use as drugs. Thus, MLM essential oil sales agents claiming healing properties are actually in violation of national laws through some of their advertising techniques. Recently the FDA warned two of the major MLM essential oil companies that they were in violation of these laws.
Finally, one of the most disturbing things to me is the deceit practiced by some of the companies and their founders. This includes scientific proof of adulteration of theoretically pure essential oils with synthetic ingredients and the subsequent cover up of those findings. A video of the deposition of one of the scientists uncovering the deception can currently be found here, but as threats of lawsuits abound, this video keeps being removed from the internet though the courts have already given permission for it to be published from what I understand.
As a result, I do not use or advocate the use of multi-level marketing EOs. However, I do still support using essential oils, especially for spiritual healing practices. So how does one go about doing this safely? First of all, it’s always best to use a highly educated aromatherapist who has extensive hours of training. In addition, one should look for objective scientific research on the safety of whatever oil one chooses to use just as one should investigate any new drug before taking it. A great resource on essential oils is the safety manual written by Robert Tisserand.
© 2014 Green Heart Guidance