Is doTERRA a Scam? – Get Your Facts Right!

It is 2019, and unless you are living in a cave and away from modern society, you probably must have heard about doTERRA. You might be even asking yourself, “is doTERRA a scam?” – which is probably why you came here.

Well if that’s the case, then this article is just for you!

doTERRA is a direct selling slash multi-level marketing company that is internationally known for its “CPTG” essential oils. This brand of essential oil is particularly popular in the MLM industry, just like Young Living.

In this doTERRA review, we will be discussing about all the things you should know first before:

  • Buying doTERRA products and
  • Joining the doTERRA business opportunity

Let’s get started!

Review Summary

Name: doTERRA

Owners: David Stirling, Emily Wright, David Hill and others

Price to Join: $35 + Package Cost

Is doTERRA A Scam ReviewIs doTERRA A Scam ReviewIs doTERRA A Scam Review

doTERRA Business Opportunity Rating:

doTERRA Product Rating:

Short doTERRA Video Review

Before I proceed, let me assure you that I am neither affiliated nor promoting doTERRA and its products.

On that note, I also have no intention of ruining the reputation of this multi-level marketing company.

However, I feel that some things should be brought to light regarding this company.  Especially when it comes to doTERRA’s trademarked CPTG stamp.

I provided you the table below so you can quickly navigate your way through the entire doTERRA review.

What Should You Know Before Buying Essential Oils

When buying essential oils like doTERRA, you should base your decision on the product’s quality, affordability and beneficial properties.

What To Know Before Buying Essential OilsWhat To Know Before Buying Essential OilsWhat To Know Before Buying Essential Oils

To help you out, these are the first three things that you should consider when thinking about buying essential oils from doTERRA.

#1 Quality

Essential oil qualities come in different levels and with several factors. Before buying one, you should know which essential oil do you want.

At the top grade are the pure essential oils, therapeutic essential oils (like the doTERRA products) and organic essential oils.

Knowing which essential oil quality you want will help you make a wise decision. But how can you make sure that doTERRA’s products are the one that you are looking for?

#1.1 Look for GC/MS Testing

While essential oil standards are not regulated, there are specific quality standards for these kinds of products that are recognized and honored throughout the world.

The GC/MS (Gas Chromatography/Mass Spectrometry) testing is one of them. This test reveals important details about the quality and composition of essential oil.

The Gas Chromatography measures the constituents contained within a particular essential oil sample, while the Mass Spectrometry can aid in determining if a sample contains any adulterants or impurities.

Does doTERRA products come with a GC/MS test?

#1.2 Look for the Latin names

Checking the Latin names of the essential oils can help you pick the right one that you needed. Much like “doTERRA” is a Latin word which translates to “Gift of the Earth”.

For example in case of doTERRA products, the company offers a Lavender essential oil.

By checking the Latin name on the bottle, you will be able to tell if the product is indeed a Lavender and not Lavandin. 


  • Lavandin (Lavandula Intermedia) is said to have a stimulating effects.
  • Lavender (Lavandula Angustifolia) is known to be calming and relaxing.

There are different plant species which different essential oils are extracted from. One plant species offer various benefits than others.

You might be thinking that the product you bought does not work when you simply bought the wrong one.

#1.3 Look at the Glass bottle

doTERRA essential oils comes in brown glass bottles. Do you know why?

This is to preserve the quality of the essential oil.

When you are planning to buy essential oils, look for essential oils in cobalt blue or an amber brown glass bottle.

This is because essential oils will break down plastic. 

Essential Oil BottlesEssential Oil BottlesEssential Oil Bottles

Essential oils are also light sensitive, which means they will break down over time when exposed to light.

#2 Essential Oil Price

The cost of essential oil can vary, but most of the high-quality products will cost you a lot. This is mainly because of the equipment used and the quality of the ingredient.

However, it does not mean that the most expensive essential oils products have the highest quality. Contrary to what most of us believe…

Paying more does not necessarily mean getting better quality products.

This is true in the case of doTERRA.

The reason behind the company’s overpriced products have nothing to do with its quality but because of the compensation plan which I will discuss more in details later.

Does this mean doTERRA is a scam? Well, I will discuss that too in a moment.

#3 The Brand

Although an essential oil’s brand is not everything, it is good to do proper research on the company you are getting your product from.

For doTERRA, you can take a few minutes to learn about:

  • doTERRA’s product quality standards;
  • whether they offer Gas Chromatography (GC) and Mass Spectrometry (MS) testing or not;
  • how and where they source their oils;
  • and anything else you can find about the brand and its products.

I repeat, the Gas Chromatography and Mass Spectrometry tests will help verify the constituents contained within an essential oil.

It is highly advisable that you purchase from brands that offer GC and MS results on each of their products, so you will know precisely what you are paying for.

On the other hand

doTERRA has the CPTG stamp and slapped it on its product labels. According to doTERRA, a product can only be considered CPTG if:


So does this mean that doTERRA’s essential oils are of a higher grade? More importantly…

  • Does the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved the CPTG?
  • Can this be an assurance equal to the GC/MS tests?

What Does The doTERRA’s CPTG Stamp Mean?

I hate to break it to you like this, but the CPTG stamp on doTERRA products is nothing but hype and a marketing tool, period!

The CPTG is trademarked by the people behind doTERRA themselves to make it look like their essential oil products are above their competitors in the industry.

What’s really disappointing is that…

The FDA did not approve and had nothing to do with such certification. Which translates to the doTERRA products, even bearing the CPTG seal, not USDA certified, not certified organic, nor FDA approved!

This is FDA’s official statement regarding doTERRA products.

To be fair to them, doTERRA does have a few good essential oil products, but I assure you it has nothing to do with the CPTG stamp on its bottle.

Regarding this matter…

You can make sure that you will be able to buy the highest quality essential oils all the time by reading this article on what you need to know before purchasing essential oils.

Now you might be wondering, since doTERRA products aren’t that impressive, why are they so darn expensive? Well, as I promised, the answer is in the next section.

doTERRA Is An MLM Company

Yes! doTERRA is a multi-level marketing company.

No matter what its affiliates say, when you look at doTERRA’s compensation plan, it is that to a typical MLM company.

To keep you updated, the video below is one of the newer doTERRA compensation plan presentations that you can find on the Internet.

You can clearly see that doTERRA is an MLM company base on its comp plan. So doTERRA is an MLM, big deal right? 

But what does it have to do with its expensive products?

Why doTERRA Products Are Expensive

doTERRA products are priced way more than normal to pay off its distributors and support its compensation plan.

One of the advantages of an MLM company like doTERRA is that it does not need to spend millions of dollars on advertisements on TV, magazines, social media, and radios.

doTERRA also do not need to build physical stores or rent stalls to display its products.

doTERRA uses a word-of-mouth advertising courtesy of its millions of Wellness Advocates, the company’s fancy way of referring to its distributors.

These distributors are not paid individuals. They advertise, promote and sell doTERRA products on their own will.

doTERRA members get exclusive discounts to all the company products. By selling these discounted doTERRA products, they can earn a profit of up to 55%!

They will also get a chance to earn commissions when they can bring someone to join the company.

Does this makes a lot of sense now?

doTERRA products are relatively more expensive when compared to other essential oils of comparable quality to compensate the members and to support the company’s compensation plan.

You would think that doTERRA’s expensive products will allow its distributors to make a lot of money. Unfortunately, this is not true.

doTERRA’s premium product price is a double-edged sword.

As a matter of fact, it is one of the reasons why majority of doTERRA Wellness Advocates does not make any money at all! Ironic isn’t it?

Below, I will discuss the reasons why you are “most likely” to fail and not make any money when you become a doTERRA Wellness Advocate.

You Might Be Interested In: How You Can Quit Your Job and Still Earn a Full-Time Income Online

Why More Than 95% Of doTERRA Distributors Fail

Let me make it clear that I have nothing against doTERRA or any other legit MLM companies.

However, the statistics suggest that more than 95% of the people who join an MLM company fail. This is no mere speculation; this is a fact!

And these are the reasons why.

#1 Expensive Products

Yep, this is number one of the reasons why people fail in doTERRA.

Imagine how hard it is to convince someone into buying your overpriced essential oils when there are similar yet

  • cheaper, 
  • certified organic,
  • and USDA approved essential oils that other people can purchase elsewhere.

When you compare the prices of doTERRA essential oils to many other reputable brands, the price difference is astonishing.

doTERRA essential oils range anywhere from three to ten times the cost of other brands depending on the specific oil.

This can make the product difficult to sell or leave you a feeling of guilt for selling high priced items to your friends and loved ones.

#2 Joining with the Wrong Mindset

Let’s face the facts; most people who join the doTERRA opportunity are most likely interested in the compensation plan more than the product itself.

I have seen this happening in most of the MLM companies that I was involved in.

One thing I am sure about is when Wellness Advocates does not make money over some time, they will eventually leave doTERRA.

This is because they joined the company thinking it is an easy way to make money instead of actually having a pleasant experience with its products.

#3 Customer Retention

Customer retention is one of the most challenging tasks when you do business with doTERRA.

You may have 100 people join you in your doTERRA business, but if you do not have the knowledge to retain at least half of them, you can’t create a sustainable business.

Taking the statistics into consideration, your distributor retention rate for doTERRA is only 5%.

This means that out of 100 people you bring into the doTERRA business, only five will stay.

GRANTED that you will somehow manage to get 100 people to join the business which believe me, is not as easy as how your sponsor might have told you.

In addition to the things above…

These are the other reasons why more than 95% of people fail in an MLM business like doTERRA.

Related: How You Can Quit Your Job and Still Earn a Full-Time Income Online

Is doTERRA A Scam

I wouldn’t say that doTERRA is outright a scam. It is a legit MLM company with a legal compensation plan.

Nevertheless, doTERRA might be a legit MLM company…

But it’s the manner of how its distributors promote this company and its products that could draw the line between a doTERRA scam and ethical MLM business.

If someone approach you saying that doTERRA products can cure diseases or it is an easy way to make money, then be careful!

Is doTERRA a scam afterall?

I want to hear your thoughts in the comment section below.

Is doTERRA A Pyramid Scheme

Even if doTERRA has a decent product line that you could earn profits from, which most pyramid schemes do not have according to the FTC, other red flags link doTERRA to a pyramid scheme.

Some of which are:

  • expensive products;
  • the company’s heavy emphasis on recruitment and;
  • the costly monthly maintenance

Here’s how you can easily spot a pyramid scheme from miles away.

How To Protect Yourself From Possible doTERRA Scams

For those of you who are wondering “is doTERRA a scam?”, here are a few useful tips that you can use to avoid being a victim of the hype and false promises.

  • doTERRA is not a get rich quick program
  • You need to sell products and work hard to earn profits
  • Your income should come from selling not recruitment

Meanwhile, for those who have just heard about doTERRA, below is a concise company introduction.

What is doTERRA

doTERRA literally means “Gift of the Earth,” according to doTERRA’s official website.

The company has been around since 2008 and was founded by

  1. David Stirling, 
  2. Emily Wright,
  3. David Hill,
  4. Corey B. Lindley,
  5. Gregory P. Cook,
  6. Robert J. Young, and
  7. Mark Wolfert.

Interesting enough, David Stirling, Emily Wright, and David Hill were former executives of another MLM company, Young Living.

doTERRA produces and distributes a wide variety of health and wellness products that contain essential oils.

doTERRA Membership Options

If you want to take part of the essential oil fever which is on the rise as you read this doTERRA review…

You might be glad to know that doTERRA offers two membership options. You can either join the company as a Wholesale Member or as a Wellness Advocate.

When you become a wholesale member, you will be entitled to enjoy a 25-55% off on all doTERRA products.​

You have to purchase a particular enrollment pack to become a wholesale member. These are:

  • Home Essentials Kit ($275)
  • Emotional Aromatherapy Diffused Kit ($195)
  • Family Essentials Kit ($150)
  • AromaTouch Diffused Kit ($150)
  • Natural Solutions Kit ($550)
  • Every Oil Enrollment Kit ($1950)
  • Cleanse and Restore Kit ($245)
  • Diamond Enrollment Kit ($2750)


The cost to become a Wellness Advocates is an initial $35 fee. Aspiring doTERRA Wellness Advocates must also choose one of the starter kits above to enroll as an official distributor.

On top of that, you must also pay an annual $25 Wellness Advocate membership renewal fee.

The upside of being a Wellness Advocate is that you can make money by recruiting people to doTERRA. You will also earn a percentage for the total product sales of all the people under your team.

Disclaimer: The package prices may have changed depending on the time you are reading this review, but you can check doTERRA’s website to validate its accuracy.

Should You Join And Become A doTERRA Wellness Advocate

That depends.

Although there are some serious roadblocks that you must overcome so that you will become successful in an MLM company like doTERRA…

I do believe that you can make money with this kind of business opportunity.

Related: Here’s How Many People Is Making Money At Home Without Selling Products Or Recruitment. You Can Do It Too!

My Humble Advice

If you have your heart set into becoming one of the Wellness Advocates of doTERRA, I highly recommend that you learn what Attraction Marketing is.

  • It is a powerful network marketing strategy that will allow you to promote your doTERRA products more effectively.
  • Attraction Marketing will also allow you to meet like-minded people who are eager and willing to join your doTERRA business without you needing to reach out to them!

Get started on an Attraction Marketing training program here.

In addition to Attraction Marketing, you can also take a look at the best MLM training programs to guide your way and maximize your chance of success.

On the other hand…

If you think that doTERRA is not the business opportunity that you are hoping for, then I can recommend an online business program instead.

If done right, this business program will allow you to make a full-time income at home! It is even possible to generate a 6-figure income or more without needing to:

  • Sell any products
  • Recruit People
  • Do home parties
  • Make cold calls
  • Prospecting strangers

But perhaps the best part about this online business program that I am telling you about is, you can get started for free!

Final Words

Thank you for taking the time to investigate the truth on is doTERRA a scam or a legit business opportunity to make money.

I certainly hope that you found the answers that you are hoping for.

If you think this doTERRA review could help educate other people too, kindly share this to them at your convenience.

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  • Do you have any questions about doTERRA? 
  • Do you want to share your own experience with this company and its products?

You can contact me directly or leave a comment below.

Finally, regardless if you join an MLM company like doTERRA or start your own online business, make sure it is something you are truly passionate about.

Until here and I wish you all the best in the future.

Your pal,




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  1. Robin Graviet says:

    I have been trying to cancel my “loyalty membership” for months now. I keep getting the run around and they keep charging me monthly. The “online chat” rep hangs up when I ask about canceling. It’s definitely a scam.

  2. You are entitled to your options, although I’d be surprised if you were even remotely educated in the domain of chemistry, biology, or aromatherapy. I have an issue when someone tries deliberately to destroy one company’s reputation or products, probably just because they wanted to become a millionaire in the field and failed. Boohoo. Tell your friends you don’t want to work in a MLM, fine. Stop whining online about what you find “unjust” about something.

  3. carol antonoff says:

    ar doterra products sold on ebay or a 3rd party (not directly from doterra) fake? how can you tell if the product is authentic?

  4. robert cepale says:

    I had the most difficult time to simply place an order for lozenges. I was told I had to re-certified. It would take an hour and they would call me. No one contacted me. I attempted this 3 times with the exactly the same results each time. They say they are sorry for the problem and will surely call me. They never did. Don’t how this company can stay in business? Very strange.

    1. Thanks for sharing this Robert!

      I hope doTERRA sees this message and have an answer for you.

      ~Jack (BareNakedScam)

    2. Patricia Liverman says:

      Hi Robert,
      I have been using essential for almost 25 years. I was introduced to Young Living and in a short time realized I wanted nothing to do with them. I had called them with a question about an oil and they asked for my credit card number first because the advice was not free. A very rude awakening! As fate would have it I discovered an EO company that was happy to answer my questions, and never criticized another competitor in the almost 25 years I have been dealing with them. They never claim to have the best oils {even though there is a lot of evidence that they probably are, or at least that they are second to none],
      and they have some very effective blends. Pacific Institute of Aromatherapy’s Original Swiss Aromatics. The best part is their pricing. Their prices change according to availability. What that means is if a certain crop has a great year the savings for the company is reflected in the price of the oil. Also the reverse. If you call them they are happy to explain. The owner Kurt Schnaubelt has a personal blog. On occasion He has answered the phone when I called! Even now.
      For me a most important issue is that because they have been in business for over 30 years, they have long standing business relationships with some of the best oil field owners on the planet. That brings me to a most vital fact. The most therapeutically desirable EO will always come from areas where it is originally found. Example: lavender’s country and region of origin is Provence, France.
      You might try checking them out. I am convinced you will be grateful if you do. I find them to be very reliable. Also for the past several years their prices have gone up due to issues beyond their control, like currency issues in Europe. I hav found them to be a transparent company. I am fully convinced of the integrity in all aspects of their business.

  5. I read your article and wanted to check to see if DoTerra was really as expensive as you said. Their main competitor is Young Living. By and large Young Living is more expensive than DoTerra. I don’t know the company that Abigail spoke of so I couldn’t check that one.

  6. DoTerra oils MAY be pure therapeutic grade oils, as are many oils available from reputable companies. DoTerra oils MIGHT aid medical conditions, to some degree (although all evidence to date is only based on personal accounts rather than true and factual research). DoTerra oils ARE extraordinarily expensive. Ok, all these facts have been thrown up by respondents in the comments to date, so let’s get onto the one obvious fact that all respondents seem to have overlooked, and yet it is glaringly obvious to me.

    DoTerra oils are sold by anyone. I am gonna repeat this . . . DoTerra oils are sold by anyone.

    If DoTerra oils performed as their hype claims, then the oils should only be dispensed by a qualified aromatherapist, one who has had training at the feet of a master and is certificated. And I don’t mean a 20 minute online course, or a weekend training. I mean 2 to 3 years training.

    My friend’s grandmother is a dottery old bird and she sells DoTerra. Of course she does, as the DoTerra company do not screen their Wellness Advocates. The WA hands over the money and is given a kit and a booklet and a bit of training by the person who signs them up. My friend’s granny was telling people to ingest all sorts of oils for every ailment. And since she lives in a retirement village and is a very happy, likeable and social old soul, the old biddies in the village were buying her advice and buying her oils. Until recently. Nine old souls became very ill with gastro intestinal disorders and severe dehydration, and were rushed to hospital in the past 2 weeks. Unfortunately, for the past 4 weeks they had all been ingesting the oils 4 times a day, as prescribed by granny, and as granny emphasised the oils were SAFE, some of the old folk were taking more than a few drops each time in the hope of getting much better/cured/whatever. Granny’s oils have now been confiscated by the authorities.

    Okay, so this all sounds rather extreme, but this is not an isolated case.

    People who have an absolute passion and blind faith in DoTerra are prescribing oils with no qualified knowledge of what they are doing. Reading info in a booklet given by DoTerra does not make anyone qualified to prescribe oils. You don’t go to your plumber if you have a problem with your bowels, and you don’t go to your doctor to have your toilet unblocked. Similarly you wouldn’t ask your hairdresser for psychological counselling, just as you wouldn’t ask your therapist for a haircut.

    If essential oils are potent medicine, surely DoTerra advocates realise that by prescribing specific oils for certain ailments without any qualification or formal training whatsoever, that they are perhaps risking the health of trusting (but naive) people.

    I am a practising Aromatherapist and Naturopath of 25 years experience, and whilst I don’t have a problem with the efficacy of DoTerra’s oils, I certainly find it troubling that anyone with a wad of cash can sign up to sell the stuff.

    By all means, purchase the oils for yourself (although you will spend 4 times the price of what a better therapeutic grade French essential oil company offers) and use it for yourself and your family EXTERNALLY, but never presume that you are qualified to advise others of what oils they should be INGESTING for their health.

    1. Hi Abigail very interesting information and you absolutely have a point I have just bought my first pack and verylittle or rather I would say practically no training was given,so to confirm what you are saying no essential oils are supposed to be ingested?

  7. Hi Jack … Whenever I hear MLM it means 3 things: overpriced products, desperately stressed people blinded by the money more than pushing a quality product and stay away as your time best we used on other money making opportunities. Some people thrive in such marketing methods but others like me simply wither and die. Thanks for sharing this one. Apeng.

  8. Hi Jack. Very nice review on doTERRA. I have heard about their essential oils and in fact my wife was very curious about them. I think in many MLM businesses product itself can be pretty good, but business side of it is SUPER TOUGH. I have been a part of VEMMA. I fell in love with product but I struggled so much with referrals. Most money is made by top levels who started the pyramid.
    Anyway thanks for the review.

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