essential oils for beginners

Top 10 Essential Oils for Beginners

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Essential oils have been increasing in popularity at an alarming rate. You can find them everywhere: online, in health food stores, in shampoos and other personal care products, and even at Walmart (I didn’t see that one coming). Below is my list of the top ten essential oils for beginners that is the perfect variety if you are just starting out.


I have to warn you now that I use doTERRA essential oils exclusively. They are the ONLY brand of essential oils that I will ever recommend someone to take internally.

I have family members that work for the company and I am very familiar with the quality of the products they make and the process they go through. I know I can trust the company, and that their oils are Certified Pure Therapeutic Grade and that many of them can be safely taken internally.

There are a lot of other oil companies out there, and most of them will say they are 100% pure, but then they also have a warning on the label that says FOR EXTERNAL USE ONLY on oils that SHOULD  be consumable if they really are 100% pure and without synthetic fillers.

If you are reading this post and want to try some of these oils, PLEASE only consume them if you buy doTERRA brand. It’s fine if you want to use other brands for aromatic use (though I would still definitely recommend doTERRA – this stuff is really the best there is on the market in terms of quality, therapeutic effect, and your health, because they’re pure from the plant), but if you buy other brands, DO NOT take them internally.

There’s no point in trying to obtain health benefits from essential oils if you buy ones that are full of crap.

Sorry, not sorry.

In the spirit of full disclosure, I am a Wellness Advocate for them, which means people can buy oils retail or wholesale through me and I get a commission.

In all honesty, I would STILL ONLY recommend doTERRA brand products if I wasn’t. I know they really are the BEST quality, which translates to being the most beneficial for your health and having the highest therapeutic effect, which is why I AM an advocate for them. It’s a brand I can fully stand behind.

I digress, but the above point is SUPER IMPORTANT. Without further ado, let’s get down to my top ten essential oils for beginners that I don’t think anyone should be without.

10 Best Essential Oils for Beginners:

essential oils for beginners

1. Lavender

This one is one of the most classic and popular essential oils for beginners. For a lot of people, if they’ve heard of any essential oil, it’s lavender. Lavender is a very soothing oil, known for helping relieve stress and for helping people calm down before bedtime, or while they meditate.

But did you know that it’s just as soothing to the skin as it is to your senses? I personally use lavender mixed with fractionated coconut oil (this is just coconut oil that has been treated so that it stays liquid, no matter the temperature. How do they do this? Sorcery.) on my legs after I shave them.

It’s also a must-have in the kitchen because it’s excellent at soothing burns (blisters too!). One other useful quality – it’s a natural antihistamine. I put some in the diffuser when I have friends come over who are allergic to my cats. Just to be clear, it’s not a cure for an allergy – my friends also usually take medication when they come over – but lavender can help support their bodies in being around something that aggravates their allergy.

essential oils for beginners

2. Wild Orange

I love putting a couple drops of wild orange in my water. It gives the water a refreshing taste, and the citrus naturally supports your body in detoxifying itself.

I had heard from someone that if you put a drop of Wild Orange on a piece of Styrofoam, the oil will dissolve it. I was skeptical, but I finally got to try it and IT WORKS GUYS. In about a minute, I had a hole in my piece of Styrofoam. My mom was worried the oil would dissolve her insides, to which I replied: It’s a good thing your insides aren’t made of Styrofoam.

Wild Orange is a powerful detoxifier and can help break down unnatural stuff in the body (think components of processed foods). It is also an amazing mood booster when diffused or used aromatically, as are pretty much all of the citrus oils, like lemon, bergamot, lemongrass, and grapefruit.

essential oils for beginners

3. On Guard

This one is probably my all-time favorite that I use every single solitary day. On Guard is a must-have essential oil for beginners. It’s one of the blends that doTERRA makes, and it’s an incredible immune booster. When I feel like a cold might be coming on or I know I’ve been exposed to someone who is sick or I’ve been traveling, I take a drop or two.

User beware: this blend is very strong and spicy! I love the kick it has, but for some, it may be a bit too intense. You can dilute it with water if you prefer. The blend is comprised of clove, cinnamon, wild orange, eucalyptus, and rosemary, and the smell is amazing. It smells warm and spicy like the holidays or the fall season, and I love to diffuse it or smell it from the bottle.

It’s also great for oral health, and after using my toothpaste that is already infused with On Guard, I put a drop or two under my tongue and swish it around.

essential oils for beginners

4. Balance

This oil is really important for my mood support. I love balance because I feel like it levels me out. It’s known as the grounding blend. I get anxiety pretty often and it interferes with my ability to be productive. My lack of productivity, in turn, makes me feel more depressed, so it’s important for me to take preventative measures.

I apply it topically to my wrists and sometimes my neck. I also often experience mood swings, which I feel happen less often the more I utilize this oil. It’s great in the diffuser for this as well. doTERRA has an awesome video showing the effects of Balance on blood cells. Check it out here.

5. Frankincense

Frankincense has amazing anti-inflammatory properties. I always keep it on hand and apply it topically and/or take some internally when I have any kind of swelling going on or have a wound that is healing.

It is also known as an amplifier oil, which means it helps increase the effectiveness of other essential oils that you use.

Besides those two uses, it just has a really nice, earthy smell. I love to give people Frankincense for Christmas in particular because of the connection to the nativity story (I’m not religious, but I love the oil and I love stories).

6. Lemon

Lemon is also a powerhouse and critical essential oil for beginners. As I mentioned with Wild Orange, I love to put lemon in my water. It’s very refreshing and just gives my water a little something extra. I don’t drink sodas and rarely drink juice, so it’s nice to have a little flavor.

Lemon is kick-ass at removing sticky stuff – like leftover residue from stickers, glue, any sort of adhesive residue really. It just takes it right off.

I also like to make home-made, non-toxic cleaning products with lemon and white vinegar.

7. Peppermint

There are a ton of uses out there for peppermint. I apply it topically on my forehead to alleviate headaches (be SUPER careful not to let it get in your eyes though!). It works wonders to alleviate nausea when used aromatically. When taken internally, it aids in digestion and soothes an upset stomach.

I put some on the back of my neck for alertness. I take a drop or two to freshen my breath. And lastly, I diffuse it to keep spiders away! Yes! Spiders apparently really do not like peppermint, and I really do not like spiders, so it all works out.

8. Melaleuca

This oil might be better known as tea tree oil is my go-to for all things having to do with skin irritations, from blemishes and rashes to cuts and bug bites.

Melaleuca is your skin’s BFF. I just apply it topically 2-3 times a day whenever I have something going on, and within a couple of days, I usually see a vast improvement.

Clary calm – nighttime foot ritual to prep for sleep, menstrual cramps

9. Digestzen

Digestzen is another of doTERRA’s signature blends, and as you might imagine, it supports healthy digestion. It contains ginger and peppermint, which have been used as digestive aids for hundreds of years. This blend also has anise AND fennel, both of which have a smell that I really do not care for. For that reason, I avoided this oil for a long time.

And then I got desperate. I had the most horrible upset stomach one night, apropos of nothing. Nothing else was helping. I tried eating foods that were supposed to be calming to the stomach, I hydrated, I even went out and bought Pepto-Bismol. Nothing gave me any relief.

So I reluctantly pulled out Digestzen. I took it internally, applied it topically to my abdominal region, and I used it aromatically. ALL 3 application methods, people! I was DESPERATE. And it was the only thing that worked. My suffering lessened greatly in about 20 minutes. So now I am a loyal fan of this one, despite my aversion to fennel and anise.

10. Eucalyptus

Eucalyptus is #1 in my book for respiratory support. It’s actually the first essential oil I ever used or came across.

When I was 8 years old my dad was battling pancreatic cancer. His lung had partially collapsed and he had a lot of mucus built up in his lower respiratory tract. My mom had him breathe eucalyptus oil and she applied it to his chest. It helped him clear his airway and breathe a lot easier. I use it whenever I’m sick and congested. It works wonders and smells amazing.

I boil a pot of water, put a few drops in, and lean over the steaming pot with a towel over my head.  This traps the steam around me and I breathe it in. It’s like being in a mini steam room.

How Do I Get Some??

Can’t wait to get the healing powers of plant medicine in your life? I get it. Neither could I!

There are a couple ways you can get started.

Option 1: Buy them at retail price.

Use the links above to purchase an individual oil, or visit doTERRA’s online store here. You can use the Shop tab at the top of the page to explore all of the oils doTERRA has to offer and buy them at retail price. Full disclosure: This is a link to my personal shop page. I will get a commission off of your purchase, at NO extra cost to you. This helps support me and what it costs me to run this blog.

Option 2: Buy them wholesale (25% OFF).

Use the link for the online store above, and then click the Become a Member tab to the right of the Shop tab at the top of the page. You can sign up for a year of wholesale membership with doTERRA, which means you get 25% off the retail price of all of their products. The membership costs $35 for the year and is well worth it if you are planning to buy more than 1 or 2 oils.

They also have a loyalty rewards program, which means you accrue points you can redeem for free products when you place monthly orders. There’s no obligation to participate in this program if you sign up for a wholesale membership. But I love the rewards program and often use my points to buy gifts for people, especially around Christmas. That way I don’t have to find extra money in my budget for gifts.

If you opt for a wholesale membership, you can do one of two things:

1. Choose an enrollment kit, and have the $35 membership fee waived.

2. Pay the $35 membership fee, and add whatever oils you’d like to your cart.

Note: You can choose an enrollment kit AND add anything else to your cart, if your kit is missing something you want.

My Recommendations

Maybe you already have a pretty good idea of what oils you want after reading this article. Or maybe there are some essential oils you’ve had on your wish list for a long time. But if you’re still struggling to figure out which oils to start with, I have a few recommendations.

If you want to start small:

I would start with the Beginner’s Trio Kit, which has Lavender, Lemon, and Peppermint. It’s not an enrollment kit, so you will need to pay the membership fee if you’re going the wholesale route, or buy it retail. It’s a great way to just dip your toes in the water.

If you’re looking for a few more oils to play with:

I would recommend the Home Essentials Kit, which has 7 of the 10 oils I talked about in this article, plus Breathe (a blend that has Eucalyptus in it and supports the respiratory system as well). You would NOT have to pay for the membership, and you could add Balance and Wild Orange if you want the exact oils from this post. The great thing about this kit is that it comes with a diffuser!

If you’re REALLY excited about all of this and you want to dive in:

I would recommend the Natural Solutions Kit. It has ALL of the oils from this post (plus a few more!), a diffuser, a wooden box to keep your oils in, and some home and personal care products that have essential oils in them. This is the kit I personally started with, and I love it!

If you order oils through me, I will reach out to you personally to make sure you are supported in your incorporation of oils into your life. Also, be sure to sign up below to receive a special essential oil blend!

That’s all for now!

P.S. Want more essential oil guidance? Check out my post, 12 Amazing Diffuser Blends for Every Mood.

Hey there! I'm Megan.

Hey there! I'm Megan.

I believe in cultivating a happy life with intention, using one small building block at a time.