essential oils 101: guest post by Amy Basha Conetsco

essential oils 101

I started using essential oils consistently about 2 years ago as part of my ever-growing attempt to get pregnant and start our family.  While that has yet to happen, I have experienced many other life-changing impacts of using essential oils including: managing my PCOS + endometriosis symptoms with some of our hormone regulating oils {clary calm, clary sage, + geranium to name a few}, removing toxins + chemicals from our household to reduce the toxic load on both my + my husband’s bodies by replacing the brand name/store bought products we previously used with simple, homemade solutions {which is important for fertility + our reproductive organs}, and boosting my overall well-being and health in general with some proactive, and plant-based, approaches {one simple example being lemon oil in my water every morning to cleanse + detox my body}.

My purpose + my why is to share this knowledge + this work with as many people as possible to help them swap out the chemicals, the toxins, and the hormone disrupters, for natural, plant-based solutions that are safe for the whole family.  So thank you for reading along and allowing me to do what I love most.

Speaking of these natural, plant-based solutions…a lot of people are under the impression that essential oils are some new, hip, trendy product, and I'm here to tell ya, that’s not the case.  We {humans} have been using plants as healers, teachers, guides, and partners for as long as we can remember.  Plants were the original medicine.  

So why did we stop using plants as our medicine?  Humans got to a point where they thought they were smarter than nature and started creating man-made, synthetic medicine.  Unfortunately, we can’t outsmart nature, and I’m going to share with you exactly why natural solutions are safer + more effective {in a lot of instances...but certainly not all}.

What are essential oils?  Essential oils are volatile aromatic compounds.  Say what?  What that means is that essential oils are potent, fast acting and the life blood of a plant.  Just like we have blood circulating throughout our bodies + nourishing us, that’s what essential oils are for the plant.  The essential oils oxygenate + bring nourishment to the cells of the plant, they help the plant to grow, they help the plant repel viruses or bacteria and they attract pollinators.  

Whether you know it or not, you have likely had an experience with essential oils.  Have you ever rubbed a basil leaf in your fingers and the smell got stronger?  Yep…that was the oil sac that was ruptured, and you aromatically experienced the essential oil of that plant!

The amazing thing about essential oils + humans, is that they don’t distinguish between it’s mother plant + the human body {crazy, right?!}. They simply start providing all the same benefits to us as they do to their mother plant: nutrients, oxygen to cells, and killing off bacteria/viruses.  These are all things our bodies need to fight off disease…and why plants and plant-based solutions are so effective.

I’m going to share with you the “big 3”…an easy to remember + understand guide for using essential oils.

  1. 3 ways to use essential oils

  2. 3 ways essential oils work in the body

  3. 3 things to look for in essential oils {and 3 reasons why I choose dōTERRA}

Please note: from this point forward, I will be referring to dōTERRA essential oils…as it is the brand I know and trust…you’ll see why when we discuss the 3 things to look for in essential oils.

The 3 ways you can use essential oils are: aromatically, topically and internally.  

Aromatic use: this is when you breathe in and/or smell the oils.  You can do this in a number of ways: by using a diffuser, by placing a few drops in the palm of your hand + cupping your nose and taking a few deep breaths, and even by opening the bottle and inhaling {you don’t have to use a single drop}.

Topical use: this is when you apply the oils to the body.  I always recommend diluting the oils with a carrier oil {I use dōTERRA’s fractionated coconut oil, because it’s not too oily} before applying to the body, and diluting even more if you are applying to little ones or pets {please reach out with any questions on this...or for more dilution info}.  Some of the places I apply oils daily are on the bottoms of my feet {on guard for immune support, geranium, clary calm + clary sage for hormonal support, balance to start my day grounded, rooted + steady, and lavender/frankincense/serenity for calming + sleep support} as well as to target areas for specific needs {clary calm over my abdomen for hormonal support, deep blue + copaiba over aching muscles for pain relief}.

Internal use: this is when you take the oils directly through your mouth.  And again, this is with dōTERRA oils only.  Unfortunately, many essential oils out there are synthetic or adulterated, and I wouldn’t recommend taking internally.  dōTERRA’s are perfectly safe...and with that being said, you have to do what you are personally comfortable with.  Every body is different and if you don’t feel comfortable taking oils internally, then don’t.  Trust your gut.  I, on the other hand, take multiple oils daily: a drop of frankincense, copaiba, yarrow pom + turmeric under my tongue every morning and night, lemon oil in my water first thing in the morning, pink pepper + green mandarin in my water throughout the day, and a FLOOM bomb when we are sick {a veggie cap filled with 2 drops each of: frankincense, lemon, on guard, oregano + melaleuca…and I add copaiba + turmeric as well}.

You will reap the benefits of essential oils by using any one,  or a combination of the three ways mentioned above.  And the 3 ways essential oils work in the body are: physically, emotionally, and energetically.

Physically, essential oils molecules are small enough to penetrate the cell membrane.  This is what makes them so effective…and far more effective than synthetic pharmaceuticals, which are too big to get through the gates of the cell membranes, and therefore can only mask symptoms.  They cannot provide long term change or get to the root of the cause of the issue, because they aren’t getting directly into the cells.  Essential oils on the other hand, do get directly into the cell and address the root cause.

Emotionally, essential oils impact the amygdala in our brains…this is what drives our emotions + reactions, where we store our emotional trauma + where we process memories.  The info that hits our olfactory nerve, bypasses the prefrontal cortex + travels straight to the limbic brain + into the amygdala.  This is why a smell can elicit an emotional response in a matter of seconds.  Using essential oils to support us emotionally can help comfort us, uplift our mood, provide peace + calm, and so much more.   

Energetically, essential oils impact us in a similar way they do emotionally.  We are all energy…you, me, the plants, the food we eat…everything around us is energy.  Essential oils give us the ability the create energetic anchors in our day that impact our frequency + change the way we energetically move throughout the day.  When I first started using essential oils, the support I felt the most was emotional + energetic. I was blown away by how upheld + supported I felt.  And then I started having physical experiences as well, and that was when I knew this was meant to be part of the work I did in this world.  I knew I was meant to share.

The more I researched + learned about essential oils, the more I also learned that they are not all created equal and quality matters.  The 3 things to look for/pay attention to with essential oils - and this is so important - are purity, potency + community.  These are also the reasons why I choose + trust dōTERRA.

Purity:  there are limited standards in the essential oil industry, which leads to a lot of synthetic or adulterated products on the shelves being sold to consumers.  dōTERRA set out to change that, and created their own standard of quality, which is the highest standard in the industry: CPTG - certified pure therapeutic grade.  This means that every single batch of oils is tested by a 3rd party {Aromatic Plant Research Center} before being approved by dōTERRA for bottling.  There is a website: source to you that provides complete transparency behind the testing of each batch of oil, so as the consumer, we can see exactly what is in each bottle of oil.  No other essential oil company has this level of transparency, quality, or purity.  Simply put, dōTERRA essential oils are the most tested, most trusted + most pure.  

Potency: sourcing has a lot to do with the potency of the essential oils.  dōTERRA’s co-impact sourcing, not only sources where these plants optimally grow {versus where it’s convenient or where they own land}, which allows the plants themselves to thrive, but they support the farmers, growers, harvesters + distillers {and their families + communities} in such a big way.  Knowing exactly where your essential oil came from, and being able to trust that all the love + care is going in to preserving the plants, flowers, trees, from which the oils are extracted, along with stringent growing, harvesting + distilling protocols, is so important for the long term impact on Mother Earth + on us.  I could go on forever about co-impact sourcing and how it is changing lives, one farmer, one family, one community at a time…all while providing the highest quality essential oils to us.  So if you want to learn more about that, please reach out to me!

And lastly, Community: this might seem out of place, but it’s so important.  When I first got started using essential oils, I didn’t know what the heck I was doing, haha.  It was my community, my team, my tribe through dōTERRA that supported me in learning how to best use my oils, and then showing me the tools and giving me the resources to learn even more on my own.  It was so empowering and has truly changed my life in so many ways.  The education, the support, the resources, the giving back and taking care of communities, it all matters and makes a huge difference.  And again, is why I trust + choose dōTERRA.

If you want to learn more about essential oils, dōTERRA,  cleaning up + minimizing the toxic load on you/your family, have questions, you name it, please reach out to me.  My purpose is to teach, to serve, and to support and there is nothing in this world that brings me more joy.

You can reach me at or on my website here.