Is Young Living Essential Oil a Pyramid Scam?
Before we take a deep look into the profile of this company, I have to admit that I am really not a fan of the holistic approach to curing diseases. I am more of a Western medicine type of guy but yes, I do concede to the fact that not everything can be cured by western medicine.
Today, we are going to review one of the rising stars in the MLM industry – Young Living Essential Oil. We’re going to check if it is indeed worth your time of just another cookie-cutter MLM that will go just as fast as it came.
Young Living Essential Oils is an MLM company based in Utah that sells essential oils and other holistic products. The company is relatively old, considering that it was founded in 1993 by Donald Gary Young. And while the company is quite dated compared to other established MLM companies, it is still showing consistent growth as shown by many MLM lists over the internet.
What Are Their Products?
If you are new to MLMs, it is important to know that for an MLM business to be considered legit, it needs to have at least one product which they sell to the market. It doesn’t matter what kind of product it is as long as they are not illegal items. It can be soaps, cleaning products, skin care products, and all kinds of products. In this case, Young Living’s main products are essential oils.
If you’ve been watching morning news in America, essential oils seemed to have picked up popularity a the start of the 2000s. Many believe that this kind of oil has healing powers and with regular use can ultimately prevent many types of diseases. Now, as I said, I will be the first one to point out if the product seems too ridiculous especially if it is about medicine.
Young Living Essential Oils claim that their oils have healing powers through their mixing of herbs and essential minerals to their oil. The owner himself is a life-long user of the product and claims that it has indeed made him stronger over the years. He maintains his own farms in Utah and even other parts of the world to gain access to indigenous plants for his product.
Their Product Line
If we’re being honest here, the effects of essential oils on the overall well-being of the users are still debatable given that it is really hard to test for. This is usually the case when researching “wellness” products since the results are subjective at best. But the good news is there are no side effects in using essential oils, and many studies back this up.
Young Living Essential Oils separates itself from its competitors by blending other ingredients into its essential oils to create several products that aim to target different kinds of diseases. Here are their main products.
- Beauty Products
- Antioxidants for Wellness
- Weightloss supplements
- Healthy Living
- Natural Cleaning Products
While you can argue that some of the products are just one and the same, seeing that most of it fall under the “wellness” category, if you’re really specific about it, the products all have different uses and benefits.
Their bread and butter, however, belongs to a category of its own just because of the sheer number of products and variety they have. It’s just essential oil for all intents and purposes but they have over 100 types of it which they claim offers all kinds of healing powers and benefits. It’s really hard not to categorize this product on its own.
Their best-selling essential oil line is called “Thieves.” The price ranges from $25 to $50 which if I’m being honest is a little bit on the steep side, however, you need to take into account that you only use a drop at a time. A 15 ml bottle (their standard size) could last you up to months, depending on use.
Are Their Products Any Good?
As I’ve said at least a couple of times now, I am not huge on a holistic approach when it comes to well-being and health. I found that a good diet and exercise are still the better approach but I must say that their essential oils have piqued my interest since the logic of their product seems sound enough.
I did my research and found out that essential oils do in fact boost your immune system and mood for reasons still unknown to researchers all over the world. If you want to pounce on this health goodness, now is the best time since the market is saturated with essential oils at the moment.
If you do your research online, as I did, you will quickly see many positive reviews about their product. But you must consider that some of the reviews come from distributors themselves because they will benefit from a good review of the product. In any case, take the “too good to be true” reviews with a grain of salt and only seek out reviews from users and not distributors to have a baseline of what their products are capable of.
Can You Turn A Profit Using Young Living Business Model
Just like any other MLMs on the market today, it comes with many pros but also many cons. The key to understanding, if it is indeed worth your time, is to make sure the pros simply outweigh all the cons.
One of the hardest parts of getting into an MLM business is getting rid of its “pyramid scheme” association. Many people still associate MLM to pyramid schemes and even more actually think of them as one and the same.
Just to refresh you, there are big differences between MLMs and pyramid schemes. The first one that comes into mind is the way you earn money. In MLM, you earn by recruiting members and selling them products from the company. They are called your downlines. This is completely legal since you are funneling your products through the use of legitimate sales techniques. On the other hand, pyramid schemes mostly make their members money by having them recruit other people to join them. This is one of the biggest distinctions between MLMs and pyramid schemes.
However, many MLMs are just pyramid schemes disguised as MLMs. You can tell that the MLM is leaning towards a pyramid scheme if the primary way of turning a profit is by recruiting more members. If the presenter or the company itself pushes you more into recruiting other people than selling their products, that company is indeed a pyramid scheme disguised as MLM.
If you want to be on the safe side of things, it’s always a better choice to opt for more established money making online schemes. One of the best money making opportunities available is called affiliate marketing. There are many highly rated affiliate marketing programs but the best one, in my opinion, is definitely this #1 Affiliate Program.
Is Young Living Business Model a Pyramid Scheme?
The short and quick answer to this question is – No, it is not a pyramid scheme.
However, it does exhibit many qualities that pyramid schemes disguised as MLMs do. First off, their compensation plan is so complicated that their recruitment video is almost 40 minutes long.
Just like many other MLM companies out there, the key is to find the perfect balance of recruitment and product selling. If the company pushes for more recruitment instead of pushing their products towards members or the public, they are toeing the line to being considered a pyramid scheme.
Young Living Essential Oils carefully toes the line between this but it does clearly push its products more than recruitment. It helps that their product is overall a quality product if you will believe the reviews found on the internet. Having said so, a big part of your potential profits will come from the recruitment process.
Young Living Essential Oils Compensation Plan
Their compensation plan is as convoluted as they come, mainly to distance themselves to pyramid schemes. However, it does function the same way as a classic Ponzi scheme. The more people below you, the more commission you’re going to get. But in their compensation plan, their “recruitment bonus” is computed in percentage.
- You get 8% of the sales of your first-level downline
- You get 5% of the sales of your second-level downlines
- You get 4% of the overall sales of the third to fifth-level downlines
They also employ what you call a “be quick or you’ll miss it approach” when it comes to their recruitment process. This is apparent with their “Fast Start Bonus” which will have you get a 25% commission on the first 3 months of each of your downline.
They have other types of bonus commissions apart from all these but basically, the more your downlines are, the more your earning potential is. Take note that I use the word “earning potential” and that is on purpose. If we’re being honest here, you can never reach your “earning potential.” Not even close. It just serves as a milestone for people, and perhaps a “shiny value” to lure in people interested in making money quickly.
If you are really interested in making money online, a good alternative to joining an MLM product is to promote your own product or start working as an affiliate online marketer. If you want to know more about affiliate marketing, you should definitely check out my most recommended program on the internet, My #1 Recommendation.
Complaints about Young Living Essential Oils
If you dig around enough, you will see many complaints about Young Living Essential Oils but without a doubt, their biggest complaint is from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
The gist of the complaint is Young Living Essential Oil Products intentionally posts misleading health benefits of their product without having the science to back it up.
While many of you would be quick to judge this company as being fraud, this type of complaint is actually quite common in holistic medicines. Sure, you’d find many doctors claiming that all of the health claims are made-up but you can also find equally enthusiastic suburban moms that will claim the opposite. It totally depends on you where you will put your stock in – the doctors or the moms/distributors.
Conclusion – So Is Young Living Essential Oils a Scam?
The answer is no. But that doesn’t paint the picture as a whole.
For all MLM companies on the market, the key is to balance the recruitment and the selling to be able to call it a legit marketing company. Yet, many companies still fail to balance these things out resulting in them becoming just like your regular pyramid schemes. This is one example of those companies.
Having said that, Young living is definitely not a pyramid scheme but it surely does look like one given the context. The only real consolation here is their product is actually not that bad, that is if you don’t take their FDA complaints into account.
Overall, just like my many recommendations surrounding MLM companies – better to stay out of them altogether. There are countless better products out there that do not toe the line to becoming illegal just to make you money.