Why are some essential oils more expensive than others?

In the last entry, I published What is Aromatherapy? which is a timely article for me because I realized that not all aromatherapy oils are created equally. Some oils are just too diluted that the essence of the oil disappears in seconds. This is a second of a series of articles on Aromatherapy and Dr. Mike Turvil discusses
Why are some essential oils more expensive than others?

“The price of an oil reflects the time and energy needed to produce the plant material and the yield of essential oil the plant material will provide. More oil could be extracted from a leaf rather than a flower and so oils from leaves are cheaper than oils from flowers,” says Mike Turvill, doctor of organic chemistry, and President of Spa Essentials.


Spa Essentials is a professional spa supplies company offering local and international quality-oriented spas and practitioners, standard and customized product solutions from a comprehensive range of the highest quality ingredients, products and supplies.

Turvill however laments that “The expense of essential oils together with increased demand for aromatherapy has created a market for poor quality, artificial or synthetic oils so that companies and individuals have started to adulterate expensive oils to make them go further and in some cases, to make more money.”

Essentials oils, Turvill says, can be changed in many ways such as dilution in which the essential oil is diluted in a solvent or spirit base; or stretching when an expensive oil is diluted with a cheaper one e.g. petitgrain is mixed with neroli both of which come from orange.

“It is difficult not only to know the contents of these adulterated blends but also to detect synthetic versions such as fragrances. However, in all cases, these artificial or synthetic oils will not have the same therapeutic effects and so the effect on the body will be limited or non-existent,” Turvill explains.

The pure oil is made up of hundreds of different chemical constituents, many of which are still unknown to scientists, and mixed together they produce the particular effect. In addition, as the adulterated or synthetic oil will be placed on the skin or inhaled through the lungs it is best to ensure you are using the “real thing,” warns Turvill.

For further information please contact SPA ESSENTIALS, the exclusive Philippine distributor of Australia Botanical Products, the leading supplier of essentials oils in Australia, at (02)838-2167 or e-mail [email protected]

Spa Essentials Wellness Oils – which contain only pure essential oils — are exclusively sold in Watson’s store within Metro Manila.

Those who would like to attend an aromatherapy workshop to understand how they can make their own aromatherapy products could call Spa Professionals on (02)838 2170 or e-mail [email protected]

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