Why Does My Peppermint Oil Smell Different?
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If you’ve been using essential oils for awhile or even just starting out, you may open up a bottle of peppermint oil and think “this doesn’t smell like my last bottle” or “this does not smell like the candy cane I was expecting.”

It’s normal to be alarmed.

I was alarmed the first time I went through a bottle of sweet smelling peppermint essential oil and bought a new one. I opened up the new one and this one smelled a lot more earthy and less sugary sweet.

Hmmmm….that’s weird. Right?

Well instead of freaking out, I decided to look into it.

Should Every Batch of Essential Oil Smell Exactly the Same?


Every batch of oils needs to meet purity standards – without a doubt. I personally use doTERRA brand because they extensively test ALL of their oils. There are no official purity standards on the market. The FDA doesn’t really regulate the essential oil industry at all. We as consumers need to do our own research and choose the company with the highest internal standards. I obviously landed on doTERRA. Not only do they have the highest standard on the market (Certified Pure Tested Grade) but they also publish all of the test results. You can go to the Source To You site, mash in your batch number (can be found on the bottom of your essential oil bottles), and see the results from YOUR oil. This is unprecedented and unlike any other essential oil company.

So doTERRA tests every batch and makes sure there are no impurities, synthetics, etc and that every oil meets a certain chemical profile for each essential oil.

Nature has variety. Synthetics do not.

This is important. If you’ve bought many different batches of oil over many seasons, and it’s never smelled different (even slightly) >> you might have a synthetic oil.

Sometimes we have:

  • colder weather
  • dryer seasons
  • wetter seasons
  • differences in sunlight
  • slight differences in soil variation
  • time of harvest
  • etc.

When you go to a winery and taste the same type of wine, but try different generations, you EXPECT it to taste different and smell different. This is exactly what happens when we are getting our oils as well. These slight variations can happen with ANY essential oil. We just tend to notice the difference in Peppermint essential oil because we’ve been trained since birth to recognize Candy Canes as peppermint (we want to smell only a sweet peppermint).

But this isn’t reality when you are dealing with REAL plants.

I like having Variety.

Variety means slight differences in chemical makeup. (Just slight – it’s still peppermint!) This means that one peppermint from one batch might work a little better in one circumstance over another.

Give me ALL the oils from all the seasons. I’d be happy to accept a bottle of not-so-sweet peppermint.

DoTERRA’s Statement

Because I know some of you may like word directly from doTERRA, I’ve included that as well. I emailed doTERRA Products and asked what they had to say. This is how they responded:

“Thank you for emailing us. dōTERRA’s essential oils are pure botanical extracts and will have slight variances from time to time. This may be due to weather conditions (temperature, sunlight frequency), moisture content (rain frequency, plant water content), and soil conditions (temperature), at the time of harvest. Each essential oil is tested for purity and potency and microbial tests are performed to ensure safety. Nothing is ever added or taken away. The active constituents in the oil always meet our standard, the potency is verified, and we confirm that there are no other contaminants before the oil is released for sale. Please let us know if you have any other questions, and have a great day!”

3 Responses

  1. Very cool! I didn’t know this- I’m new to oils so haven’t had a chance to notice the difference yet. Thanks for sharing

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