Getting Started with Essential Oils on a Budget

Using aromatic plant medicine like essential oils is one natural way to give attention to your health and beauty. If you’re thinking that essential oils are your way to better health and better household, perhaps you’re getting ready to take a big slice from your budget to be able to afford it. I have been interested in joining the essential oils bandwagon, but I hesitated for a bit when I found out that it isn’t exactly budget-friendly. $40 for a 5mL bottle of a therapeutic grade essential oil? No way! But with further research, I eventually found out that essential oils can be affordable without breaking the bank, and without compromising in quality! Here’s what you need to know to save while building your essential oil arsenal:

Essential Oils

1. Find out where essential oils originate

Different plants mean different prices. Plus, some plants naturally yield lower amounts of essential oils, making it more expensive. For instance, one pound of pure rose damascene oil takes about 2,500 pounds or rose flowers and a short 30-day window to harvest the crop, but not during peak hours of intense sunlight. Because of that, a pound of this essential oil is worth more than $2,000. Some essential oils like rosewood, which is cultivated from a tree native only in the Amazon rainforest, is expensive because it’s rare. These are expensive examples, but most essential oils are distilled through cold-press and usable amounts can be easily gatherable, so they can be sold for $15 or less. Also, knowing where your essential oils come from and what benefits does it have can make substitution easier. If there’s a cheaper essential oil that has the same health benefits or aroma you wanted, you can opt for it instead of the more expensive one.


2. Just a small amount of essential oil is enough

Essential oils are highly concentrated plant extracts, so a small 5 or 10mL bottle can last for months of regular use. Keep this in mind, so you’d not be tempted to buy a lot of one type of oil. Essential oils, generally, should be consumed within a year of purchase, but some can be kept longer when refrigerated. You can make the most out of your essential oils by dilution. Using drops straight from the bottle can cause allergic reactions, so it must be mixed with a carrier oil before applying on skin. This is why a small bottle is supposed to go a long way.


3. Start with the oils you can gain the most from

If you’re getting started in aromatherapy, it’s normal to want every essential oil. When I looked at Young Living’s variety of Everyday Oils, I feel like I want them all since my family needs all that benefits! But make sure to take it slow – buying more will surely wreck your budget. Figure out the oils you can get the most benefit from and slowly build your essential oil collection from there. Here are some of the most affordable and versatile oils to help you start:

  • Lemon – Lemon is one of the most versatile and least expensive essential oils. Health-wise, lemon supports circulation and relieves heartburn. When mixed with coconut oil, it can be used as a skin enhancer. It can help strengthen the immune system and keep the mind focused. The revitalizing scent of lemon can improve the mood and allow you to think clearer. You can add it to your water or smoothie for a boosting zing. You can mix it to your food for a boost in flavor. Also, it’s a great cleaning agent. It can remove stains, grease spots, sticky residues, and can also freshen up musty and stinky areas.
  • Lavender – Lavender is another classic essential oil that is well-loved for its aromatic and therapeutic qualities. Add in a few drops on your warm bath for a soothing, spa-like experience. Massaging with lavender oil will help you unwind, and the scent of the oil can help you sleep more peacefully. The aroma of lavender also fights seasonal sniffles, helps support the respiratory system, and relaxes the mind and body. Applying lavender oil mixed with coconut oil can soothe skin; cure minor cuts, burns and insect bites; and provide relief for stiff joints and muscles.
  • Peppermint – Peppermint essential oil has a lot of applications, too. Its fresh and invigorating scent can boost mood and energy, especially during days when you’re sleepy but needs to get work done. It’s great for long car rides to keep the driver stay focused. When rubbed on the skin, its cool sensation can ease muscle tension during cramps or after a workout. Also, it can be used as a dietary supplement and digestive aid. It can also relieve nausea and heartburn.
  • Grapefruit – Grapefruit, like most citrus oils, are affordable and economical. Its aroma can uplift and brighten your mood, making you feel more refreshed and energized. Add a drop or two to your water or juice to help keep your mind alert. When added to your body scrub, it can help soothe and enliven your skin. When added to recipes, it can help support weight management, as well as healthy detoxification.


4. Find reputable essential oil suppliers

The well-known essential oil brands may cost more, but you can find brands that offer quality essential oils for less. However, since the industry lacks regulation, a lot of companies claim their products are 100% pure but in reality, they contain fillers and other synthetic ingredients. Many people fall for the terms “certified pure” and “therapeutic grade,” but that’s not always the case. That’s why it’s best to purchase only from a trusted brand.


Young Living is a well-known brand of essential oils. You can be assured that their product is of great quality and authentic; see their Seed to Seal production process.doTerra is another globally known essential oil company, and their products are certified pure therapeutic grade. However, both of these brands are in a higher price bracket, which can be heavy on the pocket. Here are my two favorite brands that offer cheaper, yet quality essential oils:

  • Plant Therapy – Plant Therapy sells high-quality essential oils at a much economical price than Young Living and doTerra. They offer a large selection of products: over 125 single oils, 47 blends, 43 sets, 24 diffusers, 23 roll-ons, 20 carrier oils, and other accessories – making them a one-stop shop for your essential oil needs. They test their products with a third party, in which results are public and can be seen on every product’s page on their site. You can buy Plant Therapy products on their online shop or through Amazon
  • Edens Garden – Edens Garden also brings you pure essential oils at an affordable price. They offer both certified organic line of essential oils and a conventionally-sourced lineup of products. Their products are independently tested and quality controlled by a third party tester. If you’re looking for an alternative to Young Living and doTerra’s products, Edens Garden offer the same thing for a lower price! Check it out on Amazon – they even mention their doTerra’s counterparts! My favorites include the invigorating Joy, calming Align, and anti-aging Age Defy

You may also look for small-business owners who run amazing apothecaries if you like to shop locally.