DISCLAIMER: The thoughts and opinions expressed in this blog regarding essential oils are based upon my experiences and findings alone. They are not to be substituted for professional medical advice. If you have serious health problems, please consult a medical provider or licensed aromatherapist before using essential oils as a remedy.
I’m sure that by now you’ve heard a thing or two about essential oils and are probably wondering what the craze is all about.
From an Asian culture, my parents always used oils for physical ailments. I’d grown used to seeing bottles of oils around the house, but I didn’t really understand their true use until I started working at a spa and using them in all of my treatments.
The oil movement is taking the world by storm, and for a good reason: not only are oils wonderfully fragranced, but they have unique healing and therapeutic properties that you can benefit from in every aspect of life. Whether it’s healing a cut or calming down anxious nerves, once you learn how to integrate oils into your daily routine it can be a complete life-changer.
Great health alternatives
From backaches, cuts, to even arthritis, there are plenty of oils that help remedy these issues. I remember at a young age I choked on a piece of food and my throat muscles closed up, stopping my air. My dad worked some eucalyptus oil onto my throat and it loosened up my muscles in a matter of seconds.
In later years, my mom developed a case of plantar fascilitis. After giving her peppermint, turmeric and frankincense oil, this helped calm down the pain significantly.
Therapeutic to the senses
There’s a reason why many spas incorporate oils into their treatments along with deep breathing exercises and aromas – essential oils can stimulate and even alter your mood through your olfactory nerve receptors. There’s a huge neurological response that happens when you’re exposed to aromatherapy, which I won’t get into the science of, but you can read more at Yale Scientific if you’d like to decode it.
One oil, many purposes
Many oils like lavender and peppermint are very versatile and can be used for a multitude of different things. From stress relief to cuts and pimple extractions, I always have a bottle of lavender on hand. Peppermint has also served me well in fending off headaches, achy joints, and even indigestion. Take that, prescription medications!
My favorite affordable essential oil brand: Edens Garden
DoTerra was my first quality oil brand when I discovered it at beauty school. Later when I worked in a spa, one of my massage therapists showed me a new oil she got from Young Living called “Thieves.” She was kind enough to let me take it home for a few days and I found that aside from it having a wonderful Christmas-y scent, it also helped alleviate my cold symptoms very quickly!
Now, I don’t want to discredit or bash Young Living as their products truly are of exceptional quality, but no matter how great the product or company, your wallet will simply not allow for certain prices if you’re on a budget. After buying many oils from Young Living I quickly realized how expensive they were – they could not remain a part of my daily expenditures. A 15ml of Thieves was $45 alone, and I went through the bottle fast since I used it for everything.
After doing some research to find affordable oils I stumbled upon Edens Garden, which is a top-notch quality brand that compares to Young Living and many other quality oil companies. Within a year, I collected over 50 different oils from this company and spent far less than I used to with Young Living.
I compared a few oils with Young Living and found Edens Garden oils to be extremely competitive in terms of quality. A few blends may have slightly different formulations (I think this may be due to patent laws), but EG has worked just the same for me as my YL oils have.
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A background on the company
From their “About Us” page: “After almost a decade of working in the natural industry, I saw that there was a need for an essential oil company that had genuine concern for customers and offered affordable products without compromising on quality. While traveling the world, working tirelessly at companies committed to holistic products and learning everything I could about essential oils, it became clear that a new kind of natural business was necessary. My dream was to build a business that valued people over profit and dealt honestly while offering direct access to the many benefits of essential oils.”
Aside from being a woman-owned company, Edens Garden also gives back to foundations like Teen Challenge and Youth With a Mission. How’s that for a company that doesn’t sell their soul to make a quick buck?
Quality oils are expensive to produce – how does Edens Garden keep their prices low?
Unlike Young Living or DoTerra, Edens Garden does not use distributors as a middle man for selling their products. The only other place I’ve ever seen selling Edens Garden oils aside from their own website was Amazon.com. By cutting out the middle man, they have control over their direct sales and can therefore keep prices low.
100% Natural vs. 100% Therapeutic-Grade – What’s the difference?
Therapeutic oils can actually be as medicine for healing. I have a theory that just like the local farmers selling organic produce without the certification label, Edens Garden may not label their therapeutic-grade products as such (you can read more about the oil-grading controversy at AromaWeb’s wonderful article here). Hear me out: I once asked a few farmers at the local farmer’s market if their produce was organic. They told me they weren’t certified USDA organic, but they didn’t follow GMO farming practices either. They have to pay thousands of dollars for the certification, but even without it they are technically organic. I assume this could possibly be the case with Edens Garden as well.
Labels aside, there has been a huge ongoing fight where Big Pharma is bullying oil companies into labeling their products as medicinal. This means they are trying to force oil producers into getting medical certification and impose regulation on them as well. Perhaps Edens Garden is trying to stay under radar from attacks from Big Pharma by not labeling themselves as therapeutic-grade? We won’t truly know that answer.
This is how powerful essential oils are when they are of the highest quality. They’re so powerful that even the pharmaceutical industry is trying to take them as cash-cow hostages.
A lot of therapeutic-grade oils can be administered as medication: you can take certain oils under the tongue to reap maximum health benefits. Edens Garden has stated they cannot recommend their oils to be taken internally for the sake of their own liability, but I have used a few drops of their oils under my tongue with no issues. That said, it is important to be an informed consumer and know which oils are safe for internal use before attempting to use them in that respect. You can read more about this on Edens Garden’s FAQ page.
Quality & Affordability
Young Living has set the standard of quality for the oil industry, but they aren’t known for being affordable. Many of their oils cost $50 and more, which makes it impractical for many people to get a few staple oils to start out.
Aside from their surprisingly wonderful quality, Edens Garden oils are extremely affordable with many 10ml bottles being in the $5-$15 range and can also be purchased in a variety of sizes from 5ml up to 250ml (unheard of!). This makes it easier for people to try out different oils without wasting money!
Something very important to me is the affordability of rare oils. Oils like Melissa, Jasmine, Rose and Helichrysum are harder to produce and therefore cost far more than most oils. For example, a 5ml bottle of Young Living’s Melissa oil is priced at $207.57, whereas Edens Garden’s Melissa 5ml bottle is only $66.95. Which would you rather purchase?
The biggest selection of oils I’ve ever seen
I thought Young Living had a huge collection of oils, but Edens Garden’s library of oils is far more massive. Edens Garden also has multiple species of single oils – Australian Sandalwood, East Indian Sandalwood, and Hawaiian Sandalwood, for example. This gives customers the exciting option to explore other species of one family! Check out their single oil collection here, but don’t forget their Synergy Blend oils too!
Great for gifts and new oil enthusiasts
Edens Garden gives you the option to purchase a handful of select oils in a 2, 6, 12, or 32-pack. You can mix and match a variety of oils and have the option of gift packaging too! I personally bought a 6-pack for my very first purchase and was able to get all the oils I wanted. Aside from their “Create Your Own” sets, they also have pre-selected gift sets which are also great for holidays or birthdays.
Now that I’ve babbled on enough about the greatness of Edens Garden, below is a comprehensive list of my favorite oils and how I use them!
Oils for Skincare
Lemon for brightening: I really like mixing in a drop of lemon into my serum before moisturizing. Lemon’s citrus properties help break apart the pigmentation clustered together in dark spots from acne scars.
Tea Tree for breakouts: Tea tree comes from the melaleuca tree, which has both powerful antibacterial and anti-fungal properties. This is great for pimples, candida, fungus, and even fresh cuts as well. Because tea tree is very strong, make sure to dilute this into a carrier oil, moisturizer or serum, or you can burn your face – I’ve done this before and it wasn’t pretty!
Lavender for blackhead extractions: For those of you who perform extractions at-home, lavender is a great way to soothe the skin afterward. I really recommend against self-extraction since incorrect procedure can result in scarring, but I know more than half of you do it anyway. When I do a full T-zone blackhead extraction, my nose is swollen and throughout the day becomes increasingly red and blotchy. Applying a drop of lavender on the affected area helps prevent swelling and redness.
Cellulite Synergy Blend: This is a Synergy Blend exclusive from Edens Garden. I bought a small 10ml bottle of this to incorporate into a daily regimen and see if this gave some results, and I was surprised that I actually did start seeing them. It didn’t remove them completely, but it did minimize them by a lot. Bonus: the results actually stayed!
Step 1: Using a dry brush (I use this dry brush here), I brush down areas with stretch marks and cellulite. My target areas were my inner arms, inner thighs, and rear thighs. Using the dry brush, use one-way strokes against the skin. It will be extremely uncomfortable, but over time your body will adjust to it.
Step 2: Shower off thoroughly. After dry brushing, the toxins and dead skin cells should be rinsed off immediately. After the shower, thoroughly dry off.
Step 3: Mix in the Cellulite Synergy Blend with shea butter, cocoa butter, or lotion. I’ve had great results using shea butter and oil on the affected areas.
Frankincense (not pictured): I actually just ran out of this bottle, but frankincense is one of my top favorite essential oils. The only way I can explain its smell is probably that of an unearthed ancient scripture, but frankincense has regenerative and anti-aging properties that help firm and smooth the skin when mixed with a serum or moisturizer. You can even tell the results overnight! I apply frankincense on my face, neck, and chest, which are both places that show the first signs of aging.
Helichrysum (not pictured): When I worked at the spa, one of our educators told us that she would use a drop of helichrysum to seal cuts and have them closed up within the hour. She wasn’t lying! Last year I decided it was a good idea to have a race against my boyfriend but tripped and fell hard on my knee. I had a huge gash which I thought would leave a huge scar, but mixing helichrysum into my antibacterial ointment on a regular basis helped it heal extremely fast and left only a light scar.
Oils for Pain and Discomfort
Restoration Synergy Blend: Now named “Digest Ease,” this blend is great for stomach bugs or indigestion. Back as a spa therapist I was taught to use peppermint to aid digestion, but Restoration is a far more powerful blend. Simply add a few drops into a carrier oil to create lubrication and slowly massage onto the belly in clockwise strokes. Moving clockwise along the intestines helps coax any waste to move through the intestines while working counter-clockwise would work against it.
Ginger: As a child, my mom taught me to chew on a fresh piece of ginger to instantly settle stomach bugs. Ginger oil can definitely be used in this sense, but it is a “hot” oil and tends to burn the skin and even mouth when taken internally. I actually like using ginger more for circulation problems as well as treating arthritis or joint pains. Together with peppermint, this is a great remedy for injuries.
Peppermint: I always keep a bottle of peppermint in my purse, at my desk, and by my bedside table because it has a variety of uses. Whenever I get hit with a headache, rubbing 1 or 2 drops of this on my fingertips and rubbing into my scalp helps to settle headaches. Peppermint is also another oil suitable for digestion as well as injuries and inflammation. Peppermint is also very strong, so remember to dilute it and don’t put it near your eyes!
Eucalyptus: This oil is great for athletes who need a soothing topical solution. Back when I worked at the spa, military personnel and athletes would request eucalyptus as an add-on to massages and other body treatments. I personally suffer from many back problems, so this is my savior during those painful times.
Align: Comparable to Young Living’s “Valor,” this oil is great for both emotional grounding as well as physical healing. Align is a perfect aromatherapy solution for anxious times or when emotional grounding is lacking. On the physical side, diluting a few drops of Align into a carrier oil is great for reducing pain caused by conditions like fibromyalgia, bursitis, and much more.
Oils for Respiratory Ailments
Exhale: I keep this on my bedside table for times when I suffer from congestion or allergies, especially during the seasonal changes. This Synergy Blend is great for stuffy noses caused by allergies or even colds. I no longer have wicked headaches from the flu because of this oil!
Respiratory Ease: My boyfriend has a serious case of asthma and also works in a dust and debris-filled environment. Because of this, he constantly has a hard time breathing. Rubbing a few drops of this mixed with a carrier oil into his chest and also swabbing some near his nose has helped calm down the asthmatic symptoms he experiences, and as a result, he uses his inhaler much less!
Oils for PMS and Menopause
Ylang Ylang: This exotic oil has a very dreamy and floral scent that is frequently used in perfumes, haircare and skincare formulas. Upon research, I’ve found that ylang ylang can actually boost your mood and kill anxiety, which was proved correct when I put a few drops in my oil diffuser. This definitely helps me with my nasty PMS mood swings that I experience. Unfortunately, ylang ylang may possibly cause allergic reactions to certain people if used topically, myself included. But for women who aren’t allergic: ylang ylang may help period cramps by topical application!
Clary Sage: Next to ylang ylang, clary sage is another oil that can cause skin irritation to some people. However, whether topical or diffusing into the air, clary sage helps balance hormones, which is great during PMS when our estrogen and progesterone levels dip low. Even outside of menstruation, women with hormonal imbalances or menopause can benefit from using clary sage.
Oils for Emotional Boosters
Joy: Joy is comparable to Young Living’s “Joy” as well as Aveda’s discontinued “Love” Pure-fume and contains Bulgarian rose oil, which has high vibrational properties that help with depression. Joy also contains jasmine and Roman chamomile, which along with rose are very expensive oils due to their highly therapeutic benefits.
Aphrodisiac: To be honest with you, I’m not the type to buy products that claim to “boost your love life.” I wanted to try out this Synergy Blend since I saw it contained jasmine, which is an antidepressant, anti-spasmodic, anti-septic – pretty much anti-everything-bad. For it being a floral blend, it is definitely a sensual-smelling blend that isn’t too heady. Aside from the medicinal benefits, this could also be blended into a massage oil for the sensual aroma.
Love: Well, it is what the name is. Love smells like a sweet, citrusy rose, and oddly makes my mouth water (maybe because of the sweet orange). This Synergy Blend contains ylang ylang, geranium, and clary sage, which helps balance your mood and hormones. I’ve found that this oil literally makes me smile, for lack of a better word. You definitely feel emotional warmth when smelling this.
Oils for Mood, Anxiety and Depression
Hope: I used this oil a lot during my hardest times of depression. Oftentimes I cried myself to sleep, and hope was the only feeling that made the tears stop. As silly as it sounds, there was a certain grounding and calming feeling that I got from this oil.
Uplift: During my last job, I worked in a constant high-stress environment. I kept a big bottle of Uplift on my desk, rubbed it into my hands and smelled it until I could calm my nerves. My coworkers around me always asked what the smell was, and soon enough, all 4 of the other girls in my department were constantly grabbing for this bottle! Surprise: Uplift contains melissa, which is a highly coveted oil due to its amazing ability to treat depression. Melissa alone is also very expensive, which makes Uplift an affordable alternative that creates similar results.
Anxiety Ease: When I was laid off, I had a very hard time finding a new one and therefore experienced frequent anxiety attacks. Back when I was younger, I experienced terrible attacks that would have me on the floor, gasping for air. This Synergy Blend helps bring my anxiety down to a far more manageable level. This speaks volumes from me because anxiety once ruled my life.
Petitgrain: This oil smells really bitter, but I’ve grown to like it as it helps manage anger and encourages forgiveness. I took one whiff out of the bottle and really thought the smell was so horrid I’d probably get pissed off trying to force myself to smell it, but oddly enough it truly does quell a hot head. I’ve found that during times of disagreements, using this before bedtime has really helped me “sleep on it” and come morning, I actually feel the desire to forgive and forget.
Mountain Savory: Mountain Savory is great during the winter months to prevent flu. On the emotional side, this oil has helped me learn to let go of things. I have the wonderful talent to over-think things, so this oil helps me release myself from my thoughts. I call it my “c’est la vie” oil.
Oils for Aromatherapy
Grapefruit or Tangerine: Sprinkle over dark-colored carpet or mix into a bottle of water and spray into lighter-colored carpet and then vacuum. The citrus smell helps battle out the bugs and leaves your house smelling fresh!
Carrier Oils for Dilution
By now you’ve probably realized that many oils need to be diluted. Carrier oils can make one drop of essential oil go a long way, and help pushes the essential oil into the skin for easier absorption. Coconut or olive oil both work as wonderful cost-efficient carrier oils, but there are many others that have a variety of distinguishable benefits. My favorite is Eden Garden’s Camellia Seed oil. Also known as “tsubaki” in Japan, the camellia flower is widely reputed for its anti-aging and beautifying properties. I also like using this in my hair for some hydration! Edens Garden has a huge variety of carrier oils and can be found here.
Edens Garden oils can be ordered through their website or on Amazon.com. Now that you’ve found an affordable essential oil brand, will you try incorporating essential oils into your daily life too? Are you already a fan of oils? Let us know your thoughts and opinions in the comments below!
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