How Do I Use Essential Oils Safely?

Our Story Why doTERRA What is an Essential Oil?

Essential oils are used in three main ways: aromatically, topically, and internally. While every essential oil has different recommended uses, all should be used safely.

Because doTERRA essential oils are powerfully potent, safety is critical—but it is also simple! Below are at-a-glance safety guidelines that will help you and your family feel totally confident using essential oils in your daily routines.



Aromatic use is an easy and effective way for your body to absorb the benefits of essential oils. Smell is a highly sensory experience, and the elegant aromas of every essential oil have unique scents that are aromatically uplifting, calming, and more.

Do Don't
  • Diffuse 3-4 drops of essential oil in a cold air or water diffuser
  • Apply essential oil to a cotton ball and place in desired area (such as inside a car vent)
  • Combine essential oil with water in a spray bottle and mist over linens or into air
  • Add essential oil to a batch of laundry or to dryer sheets
  • Put 1 drop essential oil in palms, rub hands together, cup hands over the nose, and inhale deeply
  • Apply essential oils directly on or inside your nose                          
  • Diffuse essential oils in a non-ventilated area                                                                                



Topical use is a great way for your body to absorb essential oil benefits due to their low molecular weight and lipid solubility. Often we suggest that essential oils are used with a carrier oil, such as Fractionated Coconut Oil, to help increase absorption and simultaneously moisturize dry or flaky skin.

While carrier oils can be generally useful, some essential oils require dilution (or use of a carrier oil) to protect the skin. Every essential oil approved for topical use is divided into one of three categories:

 (N) Neat: apply directly to the skin without carrier oil

(S) Sensitive: dilute prior to use for sensitive skin types

(D) Dilute: required dilution prior to us

Do Don't
  • Check the essential oil label to see if the product is suggested N, S, or D
  • Dilute “Neat” or “Sensitive” essential oils with Fractionated Coconut Oil in a 1:3 ratio prior to use
  • Dilute “Dilute” essential oils with Fractionated Coconut Oil in a 1:10 ratio prior to use
  • Test topical essential oil use on a small patch of skin before applying to large areas of the body (everyone’s body reacts differently)
  • Check the essential oil label for UV warnings
  • Apply essential oil to skin around the eyes
  • Apply essential oil to eyes and inner ears 
  • Apply essential oil to broken, damaged, or otherwise injured skin
  • Apply to sensitive areas                                                                                                                                                           




Internal use allows you to receive essential oil benefits from the inside out—just one drop at a time! The flavor profiles of many essential oils are useful in cooking or can be added directly to a glass of water for a unique taste. Though essential oils are derived from consumable plant material such as fruit rinds or spices, not all are safe for consumption.

Do Don't
  • Check the label to ensure the product is approved for internal use
  • Add 1 drop essential oil per every 120 mL water (water is a safe way to dilute essential oils for internal use)
  • Slowly add to recipes using a toothpick
  • Add to a vegetable capsule and consume
  • Directly consume undiluted drops of essential oil
  • Consume essential oils not approved for internal use                                                                                                

*For all application methods, be sure to read and follow the labels for specific instructions and safety information.

Select Your Continent

Select Your Region

Select Your Location

Select Your Language