First, let me say that I adore essential oils. I truly believe in them – along side, not in place of, modern medicine. I use them for many things in my daily life: lavender to help my anxiety, lemongrass to combat the swelling from several of my RA meds, grapefruit in my water.
Not only do I love them, my youngest daughter has her own fabulous business making the most amazing rollerballs with EO’s. We really dig them.
And, when I began staying at home last year, I started using Young Living products.
Young Living is a Multi Level Marketing company founded by Gary Young, who recently passed away (that will be relevant in a bit). In addition to essential oils, YL also sells vitamins, an antioxidant juice it really pushes that I want to discuss, a line of infant care products, pet care products, and several other things.
The primary sales approach of YL, at least initially, is the starter kit. For $160, a person gets 11 essential oils, a diffuser, and some samples. They can also then buy other products at the wholesale price and are encouraged to sign up for the essential rewards program – which greatly benefits the person who signed them up. Finally, they can then begin building their own business.
Initially, I decided to start a Young Living business because it is the largest EO company in the world and I do believe in EO’s and natural health.
However, some things started bothering me pretty quickly:
- I was added to a few Facebook groups of people in my “upline” and started getting notifications literally 8-10 times a day from them pushing certain things. It was a constant “sell, sell, sell” feel and I am not a salesperson.
- Young Living’s NingXia Red – Oh. My. Word. YL sells these bottles of fruit juice – and I don’t care how many goji berries or antioxidants it has, it’s fruit juice – for two 750ml bottles for $96 retail or $73 wholesale. That’s ridiculous enough – but what REALLY bothers me is that it is marketed to make moms feel like total crap if they can’t afford this for their families. I mean, like their whole family is just going to up and die without this stuff. It really sucks.
- The same goes for YL’s infant care products. $11 per pack of baby wipes. And moms are made to feel like bad moms for using those store-bought “chemical-y” baby wipes on their babies. I don’t know about y’all, but, if I had a baby now, $11 baby wipes would not be in my budget and I refuse to make other moms think they need to worry about ridiculous things like that.
- The “seed to seal” YL-is-the-only-pure-oil-company garbage. Ummm, NO. I am going to tell other people the truth and try to help them whenever I can. I am a mom on a budget and I buy what works best for my family. While you should never buy the $4 Walmart “oils”, the Now Oils at Whole Foods and Sprouts are great and I buy them all the time. So, of course, I absolutely tell other people that. And when friends have wanted a few YL oils, I’ve just let them use my discount – because the markup is outrageous.
All that said, when Gary Young, the founder, suddenly passed away, I was really surprised and was looking online for more information when I came across an article detailing his rather shocking life story, including a criminal past for practicing medicine without a license and lying about his education:
Then I did some more research and discovered that Young Living is not a member of the Better Business Bureau.
And I knew for sure I was leaving.
I went into my profile and cleared out my “essential rewards” order – meaning they would ship me nothing this month. When I did, I got a pop up “warning” me that I would lose my reward points and not be eligible to be paid commission – which I don’t get anyway. I clicked okay and went on about my business.
And, on the day that would have normally been my order day, what did Young Living do? They pulled last months order – which was higher than normal because it included some items for a friend – and reordered those things. They then ran it through Paypal – which I have since stopped using – for payment as well.
I was totally shocked when I got the email “confirming my order.”
I am disputing it with Paypal but who knows?
I have now called to formally end my relationship with Young Living and let them know that it is abundantly clear to me WHY they are not a member of the Better Business Bureau.
I’ll be sending some emails to their execs as well – even though I know they don’t care. It’ll make me feel better.
This is just another example of the poor business practices of Young Living.
While they do have a few products and blends that I will miss, there is nothing that could make the pushy sales tactics and grossly overpriced products worthwhile.
If you want to use EO’s, I have a ton of resources. Email me. I’ll be glad to look anything up and point you in the right direction if I can – and you don’t even have to buy anything from me or sell your firstborn to afford a bottle of fruit juice. 😉
writer. holistic nutritionist. disabled nurse. wife. kid & fur mom. Follower of Jesus. Spirit Junkie.