Medical practice without a license, an FDA scandal, and a date with the US Department of Justice sounds like a riveting fiction novel, not what comes to mind when you think of one of the first major essential oil companies.
Young Living truly has a mix of everything, and while the company faces issues there are some hidden gems in their product lines!
One of the first essential oil companies around, Young Living opened its doors, figuratively, in 1993. Donald Gary Young started the company, and Young Living was off to a start with scandal as Donald has convictions on his record for practicing medicine without a license.
Young Living has a fairly infamous history with the FDA, and it tarnished much of their reputation. The FDA cited that the public reports and sales tactics of Young Living were not in line with the possibilities of essential oils.
At the time Young Living used a pyramid-scheme type sales strategy where a person who regularly purchased essential oils through Young Living could become a “consultant” for compensation or discounts depending on their sales for each month.
Unfortunately, Young Living didn’t consider that they would become liable for every statement made by these “consultants” on social media. The public statements that Young Living became responsible for including that Young Living essential oils could treat:
- Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
- Parkinson’s Disease
- Heart Disease
The list continues, but clearly, essential oils play a small roll in health and wellness. Many people regularly use essential oils to better their daily lives, improve their immune system but the “consultants” and Young Living took it to a new level with false testimonials and outright dangerous marketing tactics.
As if the initial start of the company with Donald Gary Young’s convictions and then the 2014 trouble with the FDA weren’t enough, in 2017 the Department of Justice placed a guilty ruling against Young Living and its executives for trafficking of Rosewood Oil as well as Spikenard oil as both are protected under the Endangered Species Act and the Lacey Act.
Today, Young Living still faces scrutiny for their history, and they don’t seem to be doing much to recover the lost ground.
When you step outside of the issues with the FDA, the BBB and every other struggle that Young Living has gone through, their essential oils are high quality and justify their price. It’s easy for any essential oil company to say that their oils are the best.
Young Living has made that claim many times. But there is no “best” of essential oils because some companies distill, refine, or otherwise process specific oils better than the competition.
The essential oils such as Eucalyptus, Lavender or Peppermint probably aren’t worth buying from Young Living because you can find oils of equal quality for far less. But, the blends such as Joy, Gratitude, and Thieves oil are of exceptional quality, so much so that they have a strong following regardless of the company’s reputation. If anything speaks for product quality, it’s a consumer’s willingness to look past scandal and buy the product anyway.
Because Young Living typically relies on independent “consultants” there is little available in the way of customer service. Many people have gone to the Better Business Bureau for help in resolving their issues including overcharges and requiring customers to pay for return shipping on items received which they did not order and did not authorize payment on. These issues are common and very recent. It seems that Young Living hasn’t made any changes in how their ethical practices.
The BBB currently has Young Living red flagged for outlandish marketing statements and its high volume of customer complaints.
The complaints chop up to regular charges on credit cards without authorization, overcharging, and shipping merchandise to customers who didn’t put in an order. Additionally, there are apparent issues with getting a refund for these transactions and the high charge of the “required” overnight shipping.
Additionally, claims as recent as one month before this article include that the sales team claimed the essential oils “Thieves Oil” could cure cancer and other severe ailments.
Overall, the customer service for Young Living is as shady as it’s company history. If Young Living is for you because you trust the quality of their oils, you should work through an online retailer you trust rather than the Young Living website or an independent consultant. Amazon has many Young Living essential oils available, and you would deal with their customer service rather than Young Living.
Young Living has one of the widest price ranges that you’ll see in the essential oils industry. Of course, there’s usually some fluctuation between different types of oils. However, the difference usually isn’t this significant.
You’ll need to shop around a little on Amazon for what you want, but if you can purchase packs or sets of Young Living oil, that’s probably your best option. If you’re looking to make a substantial investment into high-quality essential oils, you should try the Young Living Everyday Essential Oils Collection that includes the Joy oil, a fan favorite.
Because Young Living is higher up on the price range than the other essential oil options available you might want to select which products you use carefully. If ordering a collection or set isn’t for you, consider carefully which essential oils you use on a daily basis before buying. You don’t want to waste $ on oil that you occasionally use in a humidifier or diffuser.
Where it really is worth it to buy Young Living is in the accessories. Young Living portable diffusers are typically inexpensive and are excellent for cars, offices, and bathrooms. As the diffusers climb in price, they become more stunning using wood and glass rather than thick white plastic that changes color. Invest in an ultrasonic diffuser from Young Living. It will cost about the same as their Everyday Essential Oils Collection.
The product variety isn’t very large; Young Living focuses almost exclusively on only essential oils and diffusers making it easy to find what you do and do not like from the company. They don’t make a ton of body care products or alternative home products. They also don’t make very many blends.
The Young Living Thieves Oil is well-renowned throughout the essential oil community as one of the best blends available, but it’s one of the few blends that Young Living offers. Joy is another which many people love using simply because it smells amazing.
If you’re looking for variety, don’t look at Young Living. But if you want hyper-focused attention on a few specific things, this company may be right for you.
Although Young Living’s Thieves oil has sparked much controversy, people keep returning to it because they love the effects and its potency. Thieves oil traditionally includes lemon, cinnamon, clove, Eucalyptus Radiata, as well as rosemary. From reading the ingredients you can imagine it has a potent and pungent odor, but it serves many uses.
Thieves oil is known for giving people a boost in the morning, probably because of the presence of lemon and clove. Additionally, thieves is a great cleaning agent which you can use to spiff up the house while ensuring that your home doesn’t smell like Pinesol.
Gratitude from Young Living is their best product, and it has a price tag to match. This oil helps sooth irrational emotions, create calm, and elevates the spirit. It’s recommended that you add Gratitude to your bathwater or into a humidifier to establish a calm space for you to relax. Many people also use it as a cologne or for daily wear on their wrists and pulse points on the neck.
Young Living has a long and troubled history, but the product quality isn’t up for debate. The oils go through similar distilling processes as any other essential oil and more often than not use the plants that actually provide some benefit to people. However, these essential oils are not USDA organic and don’t undergo any third-party testing for purity or naturalness.
If you’re looking for something that has a small cult following with little in the way of science to back up the companies claims, then Young Living is for you. Their Thieves and Gratitude oils are the exception, and so many people report that they enjoy using them it’s hard to argue that they’re not worth the investment. Additionally, Young Living makes some pretty wonderful diffusers that can last for years and look like a piece of art rather than a diffuser.