Words by Tara Wagner
Why doTERRA? Here’s the truth…
I get asked all the time why I stand behind only doTERRA, and as adamantly as a crazy person.
So I created this page – and I constantly update and add to it – to share both my own personal reasons why I’m so hardcore in love with them, as well as some general info you might like to know if you’re researching brands for yourself.
There are so many reasons that added up to a hell yes for me:
- My own experiences
- The quality of their oils
- Their farming methods and sustainability principles
- The “Co-Impact Sourcing” model they created
- Their Healing Hands Foundation
- The incredible business opportunity and the values they promote
- And then some things you only learn by lurking around a few years…
Below I’ll go through each of these in as much detail as I can.
(Be warned, there is a lot of info here.)
P.S. I’m not the type to bash other companies. If you’re looking for slander, gossip, or the like, I don’t play dirty. I’ll share my reasons “why doTERRA”, but I’ll let you form your own “why not the other guys” conclusions.
My Essential Oils Back Story
I was introduced to essential oils in 2000, and began exploring them as a massage therapist. I enjoyed them, but never saw anything that would make me do a double take. After a few years, they became relegated to the “smells nice”, or the “let’s add it to my natural cleaners” categories, and that was that.
In January 2012 a client reached out to me and asked if I’d ever heard of “doTERRA”.
“Uh yeah, but no thanks.” *eyeroll*
I told her I knew alllll about oils and “MLMs” and it just wasn’t my jam. She graciously explained that my mind was about to blown, and could she just send me a few oils to see for myself.
Free stuff? Sure. Send away.
Commence, Operation Mind Blown.
She sent me Frankincense, and at first sniff something grabbed me. The aroma was different. The “vibe” was different. It was like I was feeling this stuff in my soul. WHAT THE HELL.
I read and researched and TRIED TO FIND A REASON TO SAY NO to this. Because I knew. I knew this was a crossroads, and I wasn’t sure I’d be able to contain myself without good reason.
Then I dabbled a little further.
And down the rabbit hole I went.
I was delving into the emotional aspects of aromatherapy and using them in my belief breakthrough coaching. I was tracking my clients progress and shocked at how much easier the work became (and thus my job lol). And I was experiencing the same thing for myself. I was breaking through some of the stickiest, longest running beliefs I held and meeting a whole new me on the other side of this crazy healing I was experiencing.
I was moved to my core again and again. To the point I couldn’t NOT keep talking about it.
But still…an MLM? It made my skin crawl.
I heard someone say that “network marketing has a very well-deserved black eye” and I remember both LOLing and also thinking, “Yeah, a black eye I don’t wanna share.” Yet here I was, unable to not share what was legitimately rocking. my. world. (And those around me.)
It was a slow process of both self-acceptance and trusting the process of life that allowed me to venture (eeeeeever-so-hesitantly) into the world of “actually selling this stuff”. But it didn’t stay slow and hesitant for long. Because people were catching on, and if we were gonna do this thing together, we were gonna do it WELL. we were gonna give “network marketing” and “sales” and “dirty hippies” a whole new connotation.
And we have.
Now, 7 years later, I’m a Diamond with doTERRA and incorporate the use of essential oils and their impact on the limbic system into my Belief Breakthrough coaching, while helping other female entrepreneurs embrace their own passion of oils and create a part- or full-time incomes as well.
As I said above, there are a LOT of things that I’ve learned and researched and processed over the years that turned me from EMBARRASSED AF to be “doing an MLM” to PROUD AF to be partnering with a company, and truly a revolution, I believe in. let’s delve into this now…
The Quality of Their Oils
So here’s the rub (pun fully intended)…There are no regulations or certifications when it comes to essential oils.
Even “organic” doesn’t guarantee high quality when it comes to oils.
Contamination, adulteration, unsustainable or poor farming or distillation practices, slave wages, and poor quality oils are all a HUGE problem in the industry right now as companies scramble to jump on the popularity, but try to compete on price instead of quality.
doTERRA’s executives, seeing the industry problems, wanted to solve them with a brand and a product that could be trusted to set the highest standards in essential oils, sustainability, and fair trade practices.
They created their “Certified Pure Therapeutic Grade” (CPTG) oil to stand for all those things and more.
(Yes, this is an in-house label, not an external certification, because again…those don’t exist to doTERRA’s standards.)
With doTERRA you’re getting a commitment to:
- The use of research-backed plant varieties (not just any oil they think they can sell)
- The growing of plants far beyond the standards of organic certification
- Precise harvesting practices, unique to each plant (did you know some plants have to be hand-picked or harvested immediately after it rains or right before sunrise?)
- Exact and careful distillation using precise temperature, time, and pressure unique to each plant
- Never any fillers, adulterants, or even improper plant parts
- 3 rounds of 11 different third-party tests of each and every batch to ensure the highest quality essential oil possible
- Test results shared on their Source to You website
This has created a CONSISTENTLY high quality product, so much so that researchers from around the world are now studying oils – doTERRA’s oils – because they can get consistent results not seen in other brands.
These things are serious problems in other companies:
- Some companies will only test their oils on occasion, never knowing that their distiller has started adulterating their oils to make a buck.
- Or their tests aren’t comprehensive enough, or done by knowledgeable chemists, and so synthetic additives or contaminants might not be found.
- Some companies only utilize in-house testing labs, creating a lack of trust and accountability.
- Or you might get one bottle of good oil, and the next is poor. (This inconsistency is why essential oils were so seldomly researched before recently.)
- And while other companies are even found bribing their chemists to falsify documents on quality, doTERRA is paying big bucks to have chemists tell them how they can keep improving, create more testing methods, and increase quality.
This video by a highly respected third-party chemist in the essential oil industry, Dr. Robert Pappas, who spoke at doTERRA’s convention in 2014, explains how these things have been an issue for many companies he works with.
Their Farming Methods and Sustainability Principles
This is something doTERRA has refused to budge on, despite receiving criticism for it.
They grow plants only in the areas where they are biologically appropriate.
Why is this important? Think about it…
No amount of soil amendments or greenhouses can make up for a plant growing where it’s not meant to grow.
Soil conditions, weather patterns, temperatures, rainfall, altitude….all of these things nurture a plant to its healthiest, and thus create an oil of its fullest potential.
Oils not grown in this way have different chemical compounds, different properties, different aromas, and produce a different quality oil with different end results.
On top of that, doTERRA doesn’t come in as some big corporation and buy up the land in these other countries areas. Instead they empower local farmers to own their own land, and partner with them. God, I love that.
Just Some doTERRA’s Partner Growing Regions
Their Co-Impact Sourcing Model
Which leads to this. And this is big.
Fair Trade is so important right now, and since doTERRA works with growers around the world, their commitment to fair practices was one of the first things I wanted to know about.
And they more than delivered.
You see, doTERRA knew the company could only be as healthy as the people they worked with.
And when you’re sourcing things like Vetiver from Haiti or Cardamom from Guatemala, you’re already working with some pretty unhealthy economies and struggling communities.
In order for doTERRA to be able to continue delivering CPTG quality oils, they knew they had to make a difference in the communities that grew these plants.
Before Co-Impact Sourcing initiatives were in place you’d have growers unable to make a fair wage because of the middle men who needed to do the distilling.
Or you’d see a lack of training lead to a lack of quality in the plant material being harvested.
Or perhaps saddest of all, with growers only being paid when plants are harvested, they would be forced to harvest too soon. In an effort just to care for their families, they would produce poor quality oil that only cheap companies would buy for low prices.
It’s a vicious cycle that doTERRA helps break.
And here’s how they do it:
- doTERRA helps growers cut out the middle men by helping them gain the equipment and the skills to distill their own oils.
- They offer training to increase the skill and knowledge of growers to produce the only quality of oil doTERRA will purchase.
- And they do something no one else is doing…they pay their growers a higher wage and on a schedule that allows them to break out of the Feast or Famine conditions.
- This all results in a higher quality oil that doTERRA pays a higher dollar amount for, and creates not only sustainable farming practices, but also a lasting and exclusive partnership between growers and the company. (Because why would growers settle for selling to any other company?)
Knowing that doTERRA has this commitment, and that with every oil I buy I’m impacting hundreds of lives around the world, is huge for me.
I can’t get behind a product or a company that doesn’t align itself with integrity and these kinds of values.
Their model of Co-Impact Sourcing is even getting attention from places like Forbes!
Check out the first video below!
Their Healing Hands Organization
Healing Hands is doTERRA’s non-profit organization created to give back to communities.
They’ve dug wells.
Provided faster aid after natural disasters.
Helped in rescue missions against sex traffickers.
If they see a need they can fill, they work to make a difference.
They partner with organizations such as Choice Humanitarian, Operation Underground Railroad, Days for Girls, Mentors International, and many others to improve lives through ending hunger, stopping sex trafficking, providing feminine care products to young girls who often leave school when they start puberty, and offering micro-loans to micro businesses around the world in efforts to end poverty.
And this only skims the surface.
I love this about doTERRA.
They work charity and giving back into everything they do:
- They offer products that give 100% of the price to Healing Hands
- Every event they have includes opportunities to donate to Healing Hands in some unique way
- Even during their annual incentive trips (basically a big doTERRA vacation + party) they include a Volunteerism Days to support the local communities
And they continue to expand on their growing list of efforts, in order to make a difference and encourage others to do the same.
And the coolest part?
doTERRA covers 100% of the administrative costs of the organization themselves, so that every dollar donated goes directly to those in need.
(You can donate $20 to Healing Hands just by buying their Rose hand lotion, btw. Dooo eeeeet!)
Their Business Opportunity and Compensation Plan
Like I said above, network marketing has a (very well-deserved) black eye.
But I’d encourage you to consider that they’re not all created equally.
This is a great model, if done well.
And doTERRA does it well.
It’s not uncommon for businesses to have marketing, advertising, and sales budgets, along with staffing sales teams. doTERRA simply decided to funnel all that into their customers instead, choosing to empower and support everyday families to benefit from what they were already sharing.
Here are some other examples of how they do it differently…
They intentionally avoided recruiting big name network marketers to launch the company, and instead sought out smart, heart-centered moms.
Because “family” is the vibe they were going for.
And while other companies are making it hard for their business members to earn a living, doTERRA steps in not only with a commitment to make it easier, but they’ve even taken from their own bottom line and ADDED to their compensation plan to pay their Advocates even better (something you NEVER see in this industry, especially when they already had one the best compensation plans out there).
But just like with their farmers, they know they can only be successful if their Wellness Advocates could be too.
- While it’s not uncommon for companies to pay their members late, or even sadly, sometimes not at all, doTERRA has never done that.
- The executive team even went without a salary in their first two years in order to ensure the longevity of the company, but they never once made their Advocates wait or withheld a check.
- And they pay more generously than other companies as well.
- They offer an ascending compensation plan, which pays you a higher percentage on the levels where you have the most members (most companies pay you the least on these levels).
- They have lower volumes needed to receive bonuses and Leadership pools, meaning you can reach higher ranks, faster, and maintain that level of income easier.
- They pay you in dollars, not cars, because they know you don’t need more expenses.
- They have a higher retention rate than any other I’ve seen (65% quarterly)!
- And because of these things they have more members reaching higher ranks than other companies (as many in one month as others have in one year), and who are actually able to earn a full-time income (or more).
And what do they do when you reach those higher ranks?
They encourage you to pay it forward.
They even offer volunteerism trips and opportunities to travel the world, donating time and energy to helping others.
(And if you start a charity, they’ve been known to donate massively to it.)
Because still, at the heart of this company, the mission is not to make money, but to make a difference.
And that kind of principle is infectious.
(If you’re interested in the business side of things, I would read more here. If you’re not, just know that all this means doTERRA takes care of their peeps, so that they can take better care of you. Even Forbes says so!)
Things you only learn by lurking around a few years…
And then there are the things you pick up in conversations with the executive team, or the behind-the-scenes staff who spill the real stories, or the other Wellness Advocates in doTERRA who came from other companies and who’ve seen it all.
These are the things you won’t see on their website, but you will see in action if you hang around. Did you know…
- The executive team rolls up their sleeves and gets their hands dirty building schools or digging wells or feeding the hungry. (Did ya see the pics above?) Because giving back is the point of this thing for them, and they want to stay involved and on the ground, not just paying lip service.
- One of the Executive Team programmed his phone number into my phone (not naming names!) and told me, basically just a face in the crowd to him, that I could text him anytime with tough questions. That spoke highly of their true desire to support others.
- The Exec team shared one administrative assistant for about 4 years, because they wanted to cut costs in order to prioritize more investment into quality assurance and company growth. Doesn’t seem like a big deal, but it’s an example of their conscious decision-making.
- There is never any pressure to “live a glamorous lifestyle” once you hit a high rank with doTERRA. While other companies want you to flaunt your money, or give you a fancy car, doTERRA encourages you to live simply, get out of debt, and give as much as you can to others.
- Even at high level business retreats from doTERRA, there was never an emphasis on “making money”…it was still all about making a difference, showing up to serve, prioritizing your family, and honoring your self-care.
- In fact, Wellness Advocates in doTERRA joke that it’s a personal growth program masquerading as an essential oil company, because of the amount of encouragement and discussion around being a better person, partner, and parent, not being a better salesperson.
- doTERRA partners with government officials, congresspeople, and senators, supports S.T.E.M. programs, and works with scientists and researchers to increase our knowledge of oils, because they want to bring essential oils mainstream and they’ll climb any obstacles to do it.
- Did you know they grew to be a billion dollar company one year faster than Apple? No joke. You can’t do that without a product people see the difference in.
- I also love that they started as a debt-free company, are still a debt-free company today, and started doTERRA Free to Give as a way to encourage debt-free financial freedom and wisdom for their members too.
- Can I mention again their micro-loan program in partnership with Mentors International for developing communities around the world? I’m a big-time fan of the micro-loan philosophy, and how it empowers individuals or families to change their lives and communities.
- Or how about how many doTERRA Diamonds and above go on to start their own charities, doing things like donating first aid kits around the world, helping families afford to adopt, and much more.
- Oh and customer service….oh my goodness, how wonderful customer service is. If you ever have to call in you’ll be greeted by a genuinely happy person who goes above and beyond to help you (must be the oils they pump through the ventilation – wish they did this in ever call center around the world!).
- Speaking of customer service…Countless people who held down a 9-to-5 in doTERRA Corporate Headquarters have turned in a 2 week notice to leave their desk job, with a Wellness Advocate Enrollment Form in order build a doTERRA business as a Wellness Advocate instead. Others who started out selling the oils but decided it wasn’t for them, actually sought out jobs with the corporate office instead. If that doesn’t say something about the level of belief in this company, I don’t know what does…
- They are constantly working to give back to their community, such as always holding their convention locally to support their local economy, or helping build the new Autism center at Utah Valley University.
- They even decorate their walls with art from the beneficiaries of their Healing Hands organization.
- The Executive team is humble, caring, generous, kind, and can I just mention humble again? God, we need more of them in the world.
- And if you ask our team? They’ll tell you it’s the culture of doTERRA…THE PEOPLE. The friendliness and kindness and genuine energy of caring that is palpable and makes you want to be a better person too. The way they’ve got your back and cheer you on and never, ever let you underestimate yourself. Or maybe that’s just our team. 😉
All of these things, and so much more, have created a retention rate over 4x higher than the industry standard (this means that 78% or more of doTERRA members stay doTERRA members year after year, and 65% of them purchase at least once every 3 months) and helped them grow to be the largest essential oil company in just 5 years, and the fastest growing company of all time.
You can’t do that without a product people love from a company people are proud to get behind.
So, there you have it…
The many reasons I fell in love with doTERRA and trust them exclusively.
Share your reasons in the comments below!
(And no trolling please. I respect if they aren’t your jam. Please respect that they are mine.)
Curious to learn more about their oils now?
Check out these two buttons to learn how I use essential oils in my belief breakthrough work:
LOVE IT? SHARE IT!
About the Author
I’m the breakthrough coach for self-employed women who are barely surviving their business. I help you to identify and overcome your old habits – both practical, as well as emotional and mental – learn a better way of approaching the work/life/family juggling act, and gain confidence in your new role in your growing businesses. Learn more about me here.
Let’s Connect On
Let's Connect On