An Uncomplicated Life Blog: Why I Broke Up With Young Living

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Thursday, May 9, 2019

Why I Broke Up With Young Living

Young Living has some of the best essential oils in the business. So why did I decide to stop buying them and featuring them on this blog?


I'm passionate about essential oils. No, they're not a fad - they've been around for thousands of years. I use them on my body, on my kids' bodies, I diffuse them, I consume them, and I make my own products with them (many of which have been featured here - I'll a great resource for you with all of the best DIYs at the end of this post!) In 2015, I was invited to an "oil party" where I learned about Young Living and experienced the quality difference to the oils I had been buying at Whole Foods. I was converted - the quality was SO much better! But in April, I broke up with them. I'm no longer going to be purchasing any of their oils. Here's why.

most viewed essential oil DIYs at the end of this post for you to check out

Can I just say, really quick, that I have a lot of friends in Young Living who are making a go of building an oil business and I think that's fine! If it works for them, then great. I'm not making any judgments on them, and happen to know many lovely people associated with the company. This post is not about any one person or trying to knock the business they're building. It's simply about how Young Living just isn't a good fit for me anymore. There's absolutely nothing personal towards anyone in this post.

Let's start at the beginning! Back in 2016, I published a ton of DIY posts featuring essential oils. I had my Young Living (which will be referred to as YL from here on out) independent distributor information on my blog, and linked my commission based link in each post. YL both called me and emailed me, and told me I had to take all those posts down. I used "trigger" words; words that aren't allowed to be used by YL reps. Words like acne, sleep aid, immune support, allergies, and anything that indicated the essential oils were a "cure" for an ailment.

I did some editing of the posts. I fulfilled everything they asked of me. But they kept coming back with more and more they wanted edited out. In the end, I decided to simply take my independent distributor information off my site. As soon as I did that, YL laid off me, even though I left my posts up. I didn't understand at the time, but the issue wasn't WHAT I was saying; it's that I had a financial gain from recommending a non-FDA approved product. I remember being so baffled because other oil companies made the same claims I did, but they weren't in trouble. I didn't understand why they could say it while I couldn't. I now know that it's because of the MLM structure. There's a whole lot of us without any formal training or education in nutritional supplements, aromatherapy, or even the science behind the oils and here we are, recommending all kinds of stuff and the kicker: we're gaining financially from those recommendations.

One of my most popular posts of all time - had to take all the Young Living independent distributor info off of it, or get kicked out of their MLM club.

Except I wasn't gaining financially. YL has such a complicated sign up process/website that simply linking my independent distributor info in a blog post resulted in exactly ZERO sales. I mean, their website still confuses me (why do I need to give you my social security number when I'm just trying to buy some oils?!) so I totally get it. I wouldn't buy from them either. In fact, people went from my blog posts straight over to Amazon to buy cheaper oils! So they were interested in trying them, but didn't want to deal with the hassle of YL's website, or sign up for something with a commitment, or deal with the outrageous prices. I get that.

That whole debacle annoyed me, but I pressed on with the company because the quality of their oils was second to none. 

I remember, in the summer of 2018 while I was pregnant with the twins and therefore on some oils and pregnancy groups regularly, a woman was diagnosed as anemic. She was asking the group if YL had any quality iron supplements, or products with iron in it that she could take. One of the groups moderators recommended Ningixa Red. This is YL's catch all, solve all beverage. It's $31 for a 750ml bottle, and you have to pay $15 to have it shipped to you, btw. Need energy? Drink Ningxia Red! Want a prenatal vitamin? You need Ningxia Red! Increase breast milk supply? Better sleep? Anti-aging regimens? Yup, this drink was the recommendation from YL representatives for all of it.

Ningxia Red, pictured here because I used it in my apple cider vinegar cocktail post. I've since stopped using it - all other parts of the cocktail remain the same.

I saw that recommendation and was like, wait. No! Nope. There's no iron in this drink! I went to my fridge, which of course had a bottle of Ningxia in it because I was a faithful YL follower and was buying the sales pitch hook, line and sinker. I looked at the nutrition label. Sure enough, there's less than 2% of your daily value of iron in that drink. Any amount below 10% is considered a poor choice for that vitamin/mineral. But it was being recommended as an iron supplement, to a pregnant woman, who was already anemic! Did you know, if you're anemic for too long while pregnant, you can cause permanent damage and birth defects to your baby? So this wasn't just a bad recommendation - it was a dangerous one. I piped up and told the woman seeking help that Ningxia wouldn't help her, and gave her my best iron supplement recommendation. By this point, all the red flags were raised. 

There was another time an older gal, who has no breakouts and doesn't even have oily skin, was raving about a new charcoal face wash the company launched. She wasn't saying, "YL has this new product and it's great for so and so skin type", she was specifically saying that she used it and loved it and we should be telling everyone about it. "But charcoal is good for acne prone skin, and you have dry aging skin... Why are you using this bar of soap?!" I thought as I read her comments in this group. 

That was the thing. The bulk of commentators in online YL product support groups have never met a  product they didn't personally looooove. Everything was amazing! Everything should be used by everyone, always! The company could do no wrong, make no bad product, and everything was hyper-positive, super pro-YL, and everyone was blessed by Jesus and oils. It was weird. Even my non-religious friends started using the "blessed by oils" lingo. It, quite frankly, was creepy. I'm not religious so much as I am spiritual, but hey - don't use Jesus' name to make a sale, mmmk? Not cool.

The bad taste in my mouth culminated after the twins were born. I've written about my sleep troubles on this blog. I've had trouble sleeping for years! I asked about the YL sleep supplement to my upline: "Is this safe for breastfeeding moms?" I got a resounding yes! Well, they won't say yes, they say they'd take it, or did take it, and they felt comfortable with it. So I took it. And my babies immediately reacted to it! Their saliva started to smell like dirty feet, and they were fussy. More importantly, they started LOSING WEIGHT. I wondered why all of a sudden my babies, who had been weight gaining champs, would be so fussy and lose weight? It was the supplement. It also made them sleep through the night, which seems like a win, but it was harming them. They were not developmentally ready to sleep through the night, but the supplement passed through my breast milk on to them and made them sleep. And smell really bad. This is all confirmed by my pediatrician, by the way. Once I discarded the supplement, their saliva returned to normal and they went back to waking once or twice a night to eat, and continued to put weight back on. 

Now, YL's oils are a great quality! They really are. I think. I don't know, they're not publishing 3rd party reports on their oil testing. But they have a neat marketing ploy "seed to seal" which promises they control the plant, the distillation, the bottling and the distribution of the oils. Ok. That's good. That also drives up their prices - they can market it for as much as they want! With no middle man, the oils would be incredibly cost effective to do this way, yet they're one of the most expensive brands on the market. Why? Well, they yield record profits each year. They also have to pay out their MLM (multi-level-marketing) structure with all the bonuses and free product, and they pass that cost directly on to you.

By this point, I knew that I HAD to find another oil company. I love oils and believe in their benefits. I've experienced them first hand. Even if you don't believe in them, simply replacing candles with diffused oils will be a huge benefit to your home! Anyway, I reached out to some legit oil gurus. People I didn't think would actually ever email me back. But they did. And they told me about Revive.


Third party quality control reports posted publicly? Check. FDA label approved for ingestion? Check. Free shipping? Check. Non-MLM markups? Check. And the quality? Because I'm now a big stickler for high quality... Y'all, these oils are superior. I had my nanny, who loves oils herself, smell test. She preferred Revive oils 100% of the time. If you watched my Instagram Stories (and please tell me you did watch that funny blooper!) my husband did too. They're that good. 

I found a company who makes quality oils for a quarter of the price (or less!) that are therapeutic grade and indigestible. In fact, their oils outrank YL's most the time. So... I broke up with YL. I don't want to pay their prices, I think their company culture is a tad odd and I want knowledgable, educated people making my product recommendations. So I broke up with Young Living. Because I found a more affordable and all around better oil company.

Want to try them? Buy a $9 bottle of lavender and see the difference yourself! Click here and use code Paige10 for 10% off your order! You'll thank me later. Trust me. I was blown away. Think you'll miss some of your favorite YL blends like Joy, Dragon Time, Peace & Calming or even Thieves? Oh don't worry, they have all of those, with a page on their site that lists the YL or doTERRA oil name and what Revive calls them. You'll miss nothing and save yourself quite a bit of cash!

Want some ideas on how you can use oils? Here's a link to my top oil posts!

Young Living does indeed make quality oils. But I was sick of paying for a mulit-level-marketing structure and having my upline tell me "how much the company is giving us." No, they weren't; they're passing all the costs (and then some) directly on to us. A lot of what I saw in that company was said to create a sale. Independent distributors are pushing nutritional supplements they know nothing about to people with real health problems. That led me to do a tad more research and when I did, I found a great essential oil company replacement! Young Living, I'm so sorry, but I'm breaking up with you. 

14 comments:

  1. Ever since you mentioned that whole chaos you went through with YL I decided not to buy from them. I ended up finding more affordable essential oils. Their sh** was too expensive anyways. I'm going to check out Revive need some lavender oil.

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  2. Thank you for recommending oils that I can afford more often! I loved your oils posts and your recs were great, but man they are expensive and yes the ssn to buy them... no thanks.

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  3. Completely get it! I had a similar reaction with Beachbody and how every workout program worked so well for everyone who tried it. I still use their stuff because I know the things that work for me and like them but I couldn’t handle being part of the selling groups because they touted literally EVERY program and product as the greatest thing they’ve ever tried. On another note, definitely want to check out the Revive oils.

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  4. You no longer have to give your SS# to become a member.
    And while I agree there are other good companies out there, no other company owns their own farms and let’s you come tour the farms anytime you want. In my opinion that’s one of the best ways to know the quality of the products you’re using. It’s like knowing where your produce comes from. It’s marked for a reason....because it matters.
    I also don’t feel that $11.25 for lemon oil is too expensive, nor is it that much more than other companies (it is pretty comparative actually). Yes, some oils are more, but that’s not because of the markup, it’s because they source from exactly where the plants are native, whereas other companies don’t.
    It sounds like your bad experience may be partly due to your upline and others on your team. A good team who understands they don’t know everything and will find out for you (instead of just saying yes) makes a world of difference.

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  5. There are so many things that make me raise an eyebrow. And asking for your SSN when you sign up (although I understand that's no longer the case, but still..), there seems to be a lot of questionable things going on and that doesn't sit well with me. Glad you've ditched them and are much, much happier with Revive. Holy hell, what a difference in cost....!

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  6. This is all really interesting. I feel like people tend to trust companies that are "natural" or whatever, but at the end of the day they're all just companies, and their biggest interest is the bottom line.
    I've always just been hesitant about oils because there's no science to back them up.

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  7. Interesting perspective on YL. Glad you found a company that you like better!

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  8. YL is known for that and loads of other people have been through it too! Can’t support YL because they take advantage of their “recruits,” as most MLM’s. On Netflix, watching “Betting On Zero”! It’s about Herbalife but the same is true for most other MLMs :) I’m glad you’ve moved on! Stay safe out there

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  9. I have to say I've never tried YL essential oils but I'm an avid user of essential oils, for years! What a frustrating experience this must have been for you & I don't think I'll ever try YL after reading your frustrations!
    -Madi xo | http://www.everydaywithmadirae.com

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  10. I never heard and I don't know YL but I love using essentials oil even my father loves it. We used it as our massage oil and my moisturizer. I used organic one 😊.

    http://momsjournal.info

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