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Reasons Why Buying Essential Oils "Just Anywhere" Can Be Problematic #4 Oxidation

Reason #4) Oxidation

Oxidation is the process of the breaking-down of molecular structure. All essential oils oxidize. Some oxidize faster than others (see Reason #2) Shelf Life). There are three things that cause e.o.s to oxidize; heat, air, and light. Therefore, the best case scenario for storing them is in a cool, dark place in with tightly-sealed, dark glass containers.

Essential oils sitting on a store shelf are exposed to heat and light which are only going to degrade their properties faster than in ideal conditions. If those pretty little bottles sitting exposed on a shelf have no documentation of when or where they were produced, you should understand that the properties have been waning away since the day they were produced and you will likely have no idea what is in it, short of doing your own testing. It is a common practice among EO companies to add adulterants in order to maximize their profits. Specific tests such as GC/MS, Optical Rotation, Refractive Index, Relative density, and Specific Gravity are among the most reliable for determining the contents (and quality).

You can safeguard yourself and your investment by requesting verification of production dates (the "birthday of the oil batch), shelf life, and test results. If these are not available, consider purchasing from another company that does offer this information.

Updated January 2023

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