How to get started with Essential Oils

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How to get started with essential oils

Many years ago I lamented that I couldn't afford essential oils. They were so expensive.

I wanted to make my own cleaners and natural body care products, but was held back by the fact that I didn't have essential oils on hand. So many recipes called for them.

I was also frustrated that I couldn't make many of the simple home remedies I came across.

One day I decided to bite the bullet and order a few. I made a list of the essential oils that kept appearing in the recipes I wished I could make and then researched online to find the best price.

I found that they were less expensive at Mountain Rose Herbs and ordered from there.

Having essential oils on hand changed everything.

With a select few essential oils on hand, I can:

In the end, buying a few good essential oils has saved me lots of time and money. Plus, it's helped me avoid the use of chemicals and other unsavory ingredients in my home and on my family.

To get started with essential oils, I suggest purchasing a few of the following:

These are the essential oils I use the most.

  • Lemon
  • Sweet orange
  • Eucalyptus
  • Tea tree
  • Peppermint
  • Lavender
  • Rosemary
  • Chamomile
  • Thieves

You don't need to get all of the above, but those are the ones you will find me using the most. All of them can be used in a variety of ways (cleaners, remedies, body care and so on).

What brand of essential oil should I buy?

At this point I am not loyal to one particular brand. I use essential oils from a variety of sources and am fine with that for the time being. If it changes, I'll let you know.

Brands you will find in my cabinet right now include:

The best advice I can give you is to make sure the essential oil you are buying is 100% essential oil and does not contain any fillers or oils. Some oils are diluted in order to use directly on the skin, you don't need those. Your purpose when stocking up is to buy pure essential oil.

But, I want to Learn More!


Vintage Remedies has a great course all about Aromatic Medicine.

Here's a quick peek at the modules:

Module 1: Science of Aromatic Medicine

Module 2: Applications, Dosing, & Chemistry

Module 3: Oils in the Body

Module 4: Scientific Best Practices

Module 5: Aromatic Medicine & Children

Module 6: Research & Development

It's a great way to get comfortable with essential oils and feel confident using them.

Books about Essential Oils

Want to pick up a few books about essential oils? They are great for deeper learning and wonderful to keep on hand for recipes and remedies when needed.

Here is a list of my favorite essential oil books. 

Where to buy essential oils for less:

As already mentioned Mountain Rose Herbs is a good, less expensive option.

Another option is to buy through Frontier Co-op as a wholesale member. I don't have a wholesale membership myself, but a local friend does and we go in together to make the minimum order for free shipping (which is $250, I think). I have purchased oils for less than $5 this way (when they go on sale).

As far as I know, there is no minimum to order through Frontier co-op as a wholesale member, but there is a one time $10 membership fee. Orders over $250 ship free. I don't know what the shipping prices are for under that amount.

If you order with friends it is easy to get to the free shipping amount since they offer many products besides essential oils (herbs, spices, kitchen gadgets, shampoo, etc).

Have you started using essential oils yet?



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    1. I forgot all about Beeyoutiful. I used their vitamins years ago, but don’t know if I even tried their essential oils. Love More Than Alive, too. I bought my wonderful water filter there.

      Thanks for the reminder!

  1. Thanks so much for the post. I have always wanted to use essential oils, but I really have a hard time dishing out the money to pay for them. I am working towards cutting out all the processed foods in our diet and I really want to live more naturally with herbal remedies and such. Maybe now I can take the plunge and order a few oils.

    I just found your blog, it looks great! Looking forward to looking around!

    1. Hi Danielle,

      Thanks for your kind words!

      I hope you will take the plunge and buy a few oils. Even if it’s just one or two. I use lemon and sweet orange all the time (for cleaning, in laundry, etc). Those two are fairly inexpensive and would help you get started. Or even just a bottle of peppermint. (That’s good for cleaning and remedies, too.)

      Keep up the great work. Cutting out processed foods can be challenging, but it’s worth it!

  2. I bought several bottles this summer with the same thought in mind and the only thing I used them was to try to treat my husband’s dandruff with the Tea Tree oil. I mixed a few drops with coconut oil and massaged the scalp with the mixture but it didn’t really help. You might have a better idea?

    1. I haven’t tried any dandruff remedies, but I did come across something in one of my books a few night ago, maybe it’s worth a try:

      Add 4 Tblspns dried nettle to 2 cups boiling water. Let sit overnight. Strain and add 1 cup apple cider vinegar. Massage into scalp. Leave on hair for a few minutes, then rinse out.

      Apparently parsley works well, too. Pour 2 cups boiling water over 1/2 cup chopped parsley. Leave for 30 mins. Strain out parsley, saving the water, then massage into scalp. Leave on scalp for 15 mins. Then rinse.

      Hope you find something that works!

    2. I have heard that coconut oil can be drying…maybe that’s why it wouldn’t work well on dandruff?

    3. I had bad dandruff as a child and teen because of the low fat diet my mom had our family on. When I changed my diet to include a lot more healthy fats (especially animal fats) my dandruff issues disappeared and I lost over 20 lbs as a petite small framed young adult. In addition to your essential oil use, try supplementing with 1T cod liver oil daily. Carlsons is an excellent brand.

  3. I’m a DoTerra girl and love to use their oils everyday! Their OnGuard toothpaste is great and my kids don’t catch colds from their play groups anymore. Lemon in my water and cleaning, oregano or melaleuca for sore throats, lavender for everthing! They make great house warming gifts too.

  4. I’ve been very eager to try Heritage essential oils based in Texas. I’ve enjoyed their FB page posts and the knowledge depth. They appear to be a high quality oil.

  5. Another doTERRA girl here. We use EOs for cleaning but also medicinally. I’ve used EOs for over 15 years and, honestly, quality is very much an issue. I actually sell it as well. Let me know if you want some free samples. I’d love to send you some.

    I love sugar scrubs. Peppermint-Rosemary is a favorite. Peppermint, in general, is one of my favorite oils. Great for headaches, digestive issues, reducing fever, migraines, muscle aches. Love my EOs!

    1. Hi Stephanie,

      Thanks for stopping by. Peppermint-Rosemary sounds like a lovely sugar scrub combination!

      Thanks for offering to send me sample of doTerra. I do have a friend who sells it and is sending me samples soon. I’m looking forward to trying them.

  6. I just started using quality essential oils a few months ago and I’m thrilled with the results. I have used a few synthetics to make candles smell good or add to cleaners, but when I decided to start using them as medication I decided to ensure I was getting top quality. I have a friend who introduced me to doTERRA and although I’m sure I can find them cheaper I’m impressed with the quality and the results. They have a blend which is similar to the thieves blend called On Guard that has prevented me from catching any of the nasty viruses that have been going around this winter. I am a volunteer and my duties involve school tours and riding buses, so you can imagine what I’ve been exposed to. I have been making home cleaners for years and it is really nice to know that lavender is antimicrobial and masks the vinegar smell. I’m also hooked on wild orange, it is a great mood enhancer and can really help de-stress me when things get frustrating.

    1. Thanks for leaving a comment, Kallie.

      I love seeing your enthusiasm about essential oils! It sounds like you enjoy incorporating them into your life.

  7. Thank you so much for this post. I’ve really been wanting to get some EO as well and start making my own soap and such and have found them to be expensive so I put it off! Can’t wait to check out Mountain Rose Herbs!

  8. I like the brands you listed, but I am a big fan of Eden’s Garden Essential Oils. They’re a good quality and because they are straight from the company, they are MUCH cheaper than Moutain Rose Herbs (which is the other brand I usually use.

  9. For dandruff : approximately 20 years ago I saw a recommendation in Prevention magazine using herbal tea. I do not remember the exact poportions but I do remember the herbs I used. I boiled sage, thyme and 2 cups of water to make a strong tea, cool, strain out herbs and rinse hair with tea. I believe I left it in until my hair dried and then rinsed it out or I may have slept that night with it, don’t really remember that part. I do know that I had tried many dandruff products with no help. After using this tea I was never bothered again with dandruff

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