The Young Living Essential Oils website claims as a member you’ll find the “potential” to transform your financial future. Does Young Living Essential Oils offer a genuine opportunity to transform your life, or is it just another MLM that will only cost you money?
Can You Make Money with Young Living Essential Oils? Most Young Living Essential Oils distributors lose money. According to the 2016 Young Living Essential Oils Earning Disclosure, 98.85% of all Young Living Essential Oils distributors lost money.
In this Young Living Essential Oils Review, I analyze the business opportunity and reveal your chances of success.
Young Living Essential Oils Review.
I started my evaluation with the Young Living Essential Oils Income Disclosure. Over the years, Young Living Essential Oils has published various Income Disclosures, and each year the disclosure becomes more misleading. This review cuts through the intentional misdirection so you can better weigh your chances of success and understand what you will agree to if you become a Young Living Distributor.
Young Living Essential Oils is a privately owned multi-level marketing company that earns more than $1 Billion annually. Critics of the MLM business model describe MLMs as product-based pyramid schemes and chain recruiting schemes where less than 1% of the distributors earn more than they spend on products.
Product-Based Pyramid Scheme?
Throughout much of this article, I test the Young Living Essential Oils opportunity for characteristics that might define it as a product-based pyramid scheme. Pure pyramid schemes are easy to spot and are illegal. Unfortunately, product-based pyramid schemes are a little tougher to recognize and can be so smooth in their recruitment you may never realize you’re in one.
Ultimately, of course, it doesn’t matter if Young Living Essential Oils is a product-based pyramid scheme or not. What matters most, if you are considering the opportunity, is if you have a realistic chance at success.
After studying the Young Living Essential Oils opportunity, I’m convinced that most people will not only fail with the opportunity; they will lose money.
Is Young Living a Legitimate Business Opportunity?
If you’re thinking about joining Young Living Essential Oils to build a business, you may be excited about the potential for earning money. You might even believe you’ll make a lot of money and transform your life. That is what the Young Living Essential Oils website promises.
Unfortunately, most people who try the opportunity end up spending more money than they make.
The so-called opportunity often becomes an added monthly expense.
For most distributors, their Young Living Essential Oils business is a liability that creates additional expenses each month. In this review, I show you why this happens and what it takes to succeed as a Young Living Essential Oils distributor.
As you read this article check your emotions at the door and objectively consider the facts. Young Living Essential Oils uses emotional triggers to sell you the dream of abundance. To see the risks of becoming a distributor, it is essential that you maintain an objective perspective.
Some of what I’m about to reveal may seem cold. I’m just trying to cut through the feel-good emotional screen Young Living hides behind.
If you make the wrong decision about Young Living Essential Oils, you will probably lose more money than you earn from the so-called opportunity, waste your time and energy, possibly damage friendships and perhaps suffer humiliation.
Before you invest your time and money in Young Living Essential Oils, consult with a friend or family member you trust who can offer an objective opinion. Invite them to read this review.
Take the time you need to make an informed decision. Young Living Oils has been around a long time. It’s not going anywhere.
The Young Living Essential Oils sales pitch starts with selling you a dream that you can have your own successful business and make money. If you take time to look around, every MLM sells that same dream. That’s how they hook people into buying their expensive products.
To determine if Young Living Essential Oils is a true business opportunity, I used information from the Young Living Essential Oils website to answer five questions.
Dr. Jon Taylor created these questions as a means of determining if an MLM is an exploitative company or a genuine direct selling opportunity. His research into MLMs is available on the Federal Trade Commission’s website. Young Living Essential Oils was one of 300 MLMs Taylor researched.
In the past 40 years, the laws governing MLMs have become so lax that many MLMs have more in common with scams than with legitimate direct selling opportunities. The five questions I use in my analysis of Young Living Essential Oils separates the wheat from the chaff.
Below are the five questions I asked to determine if Young Living Essential Oils is a legitimate business opportunity or an exploitative company;
Ultimately, by answering these questions, we can determine how much money a distributor might earn with Young Living Essential Oils and their prospects for success.
Is success with Young Living Essential Oils dependent on recruiting?
The Young Living Income Disclosure for 2017 only lists members who are “Active Business Builders,” and goes on to describe an Active Business Builder as a member who has made a minimum of one product purchase in the previous 12 months and personally enrolled at least one person.
In other words, if you aspire to the abundant lifestyle Young Living promises, you must recruit.
Look at the Young Living Essential Oils Income Disclosure Statement, and you’ll see the distributors who have the largest downline make the most money.
Like a pyramid scheme, if Young Living Essential Oils stopped recruiting, the company would collapse.
Young Living Essential Oils appears to have robust retail sales. However, there is a huge emphasis on recruitment. Dr. Jon Taylor describes this style of recruitment as chain-recruitment because every recruit is then encouraged to recruit, creating a never-ending chain.
Chain recruiting, as seen in the Young Living Essential Oils Compensation Plan, combined with other unethical policies, works to the advantage of a few at the top of the organization.
Because success as a Young Living Essential Oils distributor is dependent on recruiting, it meets Taylor’s definition of a product-based pyramid scheme.
Does Young Living Essential Oils permit unlimited recruiting?
Young Living Essential Oils does permit unlimited recruiting. As a Young Living Essential Oils distributor, you will be competing against all other Young Living Essential Oils distributors, including the ones you recruit and the thousands with an online presence.
Soon after you sign up as a Young Living Essential Oils distributor, you’ll discover how difficult it is to recruit. Prospects may have already heard the Young Living Essential Oils sales pitch or a very similar pitch from a competing MLM. Or worse, they tried Young Living Essential Oils and discovered it wasn’t what it pretended to be.
A legitimate direct sales opportunity will typically control and protect territories. For example, a salesperson is the only salesperson for that company within a specific zip code area. By controlling territories, a legitimate marketing company offers genuine and measurable income potential.
Young Living Essential Oils does not protect territories. Instead, it promotes unlimited recruiting. Unlimited recruiting creates the false perception that you have an opportunity to recruit an unlimited number of people. In real life, it doesn’t work that way.
Unlimited recruiting is evidence of a pyramid scheme. Pyramid schemes cannot survive where territories are protected and recruiting is limited, because without recruiting they die.
Also, consider that the Essential Oils market is saturated. Spend a few minutes searching online for anything related to essential oils. You’ll see there are tons of distributors from countless MLMs pushing one magical oil after another.
Search Facebook for essential oil groups, and you’ll find hundreds. As a Young Living Oils distributor, you’ll also face competition from retail outlets. High-quality essential oils in health food stores are less expensive than similar oils offered by Young Living.
Are Young Living Essential Oils distributors required to spend money to get started and must they continue to spend money each month to qualify for commissions or bonuses?
A new Young Living distributor is required to buy a starter kit. Starter Kits range in price from $40 to $160 and contain an assortment of products.
Also, each month a Young Living Essential Oils distributor must either purchase or sell a minimum of 100PV (Personal Volume) before they are paid commissions and bonuses.
100PV is assumed to equal $100.
Committing to monthly auto-ship is strongly encouraged.
To advance in rank, a distributor must also meet Personal Group Volume and Organization Group Volume minimums.
Requiring Young Living Essential Oils distributors to purchase a minimum amount of product is “Pay to Play.” This requirement is typical of pyramid schemes.
When you join Young Living Essential Oils as a distributor, you are forced to pay the company for the chance to make the company money. You are then forced to continue paying for that privilege each month by buying more product.
To my knowledge, MLM is the only industry that requires its sales force to buy products. It’s ridiculous.
With legitimate direct selling companies, you do not have to pay for the privilege of making profits for the company. They pay you.
Young Living Essential Oils pushes the cost of running their company onto the shoulders of distributors who can least afford it.
Working for free is bad enough but being tricked into paying for the chance to work for free so the company can earn a $1 Billion each year is unethical.
The cost of buying products can add up to thousands of dollars. If you had been required to invest thousands when you joined Young Living Essential Oils, the nature of the scheme would be obvious.
However, Young Living Essential Oils milks you a little each month and soothes your suspicions with assurances that one day you will enjoy a life of abundance.
When a sale is made, does the distributor making the sale earn about the same as someone upline who had nothing to do with making the sale?
The Young Living Essential Oils Compensation plan is so complex and misleading that it is not possible to determine commission percentages.
The Compensation Plan states that “For complete details, see Terms and Definitions…” However, Terms and Conditions cannot be found anywhere on the website.
The complexity of the Young Living Essential Oils Compensation Plan hinders anyone’s attempt to perform due diligence.
When a company makes performing due diligence challenging they are hiding something. That single detail demonstrates lack of integrity and is reason enough to avoid Young Living Essential Oils.
The Devil is in the details.
Does Young Living Essential Oils pay overrides or commissions on more than four levels above the distributor making the sale or purchase?
Young Living Essential Oils pays overrides on at least 9 levels according to their Income Disclosure.
More than 4 levels are unnecessary and serve only to enrich a few people at the top of the organization at the expense of all the lower ranking distributors.
Dr. Jon Taylor shows that a pay structure with more than four levels of overrides is an exploitative funnel moving money from the bottom of the organization to the top.
Legitimate direct selling companies restrict levels to no more than are necessary to manage their sales force. Only four are needed in most cases; Local, State, Regional, and National.
More than four levels of override create enormous leverage for the few at the top to earn commissions. Leverage is what generates the residual income MLMs claim anyone can achieve. They fail to mention that the residual income is created by forcing distributors to buy products.
The wealth enjoyed by the few at the top of Young Living Essential Oils comes out of the pockets of their distributors.
For example, a Young Living Essential Oils distributor recruits five distributors. Assume those five distributors recruit five, and so on down the line. And, assume a commission of $5 is earned on each sale.
The following example below has only six levels of override, yet it shows how quickly income is leverage for the few at the top. Young Living Essential Oils has 9 levels!
Young Living Essential Oils Assessment.
The questions I used to evaluate Young Living Essential Oils are based on the research of Dr. Jon Taylor. Taylor’s research is published on the FTC’s website.
According to Taylor, if the first four questions or all five are answered with a ‘yes’ the distributors are probably being exploited and may suffer financial harm.
Because Young Living Essential Oils distributors must buy products to join the MLM and continue to buy products to earn commissions, they are first and foremost customers, not distributors and certainly not in business for themselves.
The probability that a Young Living Essential Oils distributor will earn a positive cash flow is practically zero.
Read the Young Living Essential Oils Earning Disclosure Statement!
The Young Living Essential Oils Income Disclosure Statement reveals everything you need to know about your chances of success with Young Living Essential Oils. Read it carefully.
The 2017 Worldwide Income Disclosure Statement eliminates 60% of the distributors because they did not earn anything at all. For that year, Young Living only included distributors who earned at least $1 in commissions for the year, had recruited at least one person and who had made a purchase in the last 12 months.
This manner of reporting creates a very misleading image of the “opportunity’s” income potential.
Because the 2017 Income Disclosure is so misleading, I recommend that you use the 2016 US Income Disclosure Statement, to get a better idea of your chances for success.
As you look at the average monthly income figures, remember that each distributor is buying at least $100 worth of product each month. They must earn at least $100 to break even, not to mention taxes and other costs of running their business. As a point of reference, the US poverty level was $12,000/year in 2016.
Check out the 2016 Young Living Income Disclosure. How many distributors did NOT earn at least $100 a month? 97.5%!
How many Young Living distributors could NOT support themselves above the poverty line?
When you factor in business expenses, these figures are much worse.
Now, let’s look at the numbers from the top down. The first monthly income level that might pay a living wage is the Gold distributor level. It pays about $6,000 a month. That is not the abundance promised, but it’s probably enough to live on.
How many distributors are earning $6000 or more a month?
There are easier ways to create an abundant life for yourself and for the people you love.
Young Living Essential Oils is NOT an Opportunity.
Do you really believe Young Living Essential Oils wants you to live an abundant life?
They’ve been in business since 1993. If Young Living Essential Oils wanted to help people succeed it would be obvious in their Income Disclosure Statement. As a billion dollar company, they have the resources to help people, but they aren’t doing that.
Instead, they continue to force their distributors to buy expensive products which is why the company earns over $1 Billion a year, and most distributors lose money.
You Are a Captured Customer.
A Young Living Essential Oils distributor is first, and foremost, a captured customer.
Would you buy Young Living products if you knew you wouldn’t make money with the opportunity?
What it Takes to Become a Young Living Gold Distributor.
We’ve established that only 0.2% of Young Living Essential Oils distributors earn $6,000 or more a month. That level of income begins at the rank of Gold.
On average, according to the 2016 Young Living Essential Oils Income Disclosure, it takes 54 months to reach the rank of Gold, the first level that pays a living wage. That’s four and a half years!
The vast majority of Young Living Essential Oils distributors will spend hundreds, perhaps thousands of dollars and waste months of their life only to lose money and quit.
The more money a Young Living distributor spends on products, the more money she will lose and the more the company and her upline will make.
If you want to succeed with Young Living Essential Oils, you must be able to gain someone’s trust and then convince them they can have an abundant life if they become a distributor, when in fact, the odds are they will only lose money.
The Young Living Essential Oils Compensation Plan.
The purpose of the Young Living Essential Oils Compensation Plan is to persuade prospects they can make a lot of money with the business opportunity.
The complex nature of the Compensation Plan numbs the rational mind. Also, the use of abstract labels such as PV, PGV, LV, Unilevel, and Compression, makes understanding the plan nearly impossible without the help of a sponsor.
Because the compensation plan is so complex and difficult to comprehend, most people will not take the time to understand it before they become a distributor. They’ll let their sponsor tell them what it means which would be a mistake. That’s the point, because what a sponsor tells you about compensation is not legally binding.
A legitimate direct selling opportunity has an easy to understand, straight commission compensation plan. With a legitimate direct selling opportunity, you know precisely how much you earn when you sell a product.
If you could evaluate the Young Living Essential Oils logically, you might see that it is not an opportunity.
Remember, Young Living Essential Oils is selling a dream of an abundant life. The purpose of selling you this dream is to lock you in as a customer, not to help you make money.
It’s NOT Your Business.
When you become a Young Living Essential Oils distributor, you are not an entrepreneur. You’re a contractual salesperson.
If you build a downline, you are building a sales force for Young Living Essential Oils Incorporated, a privately owned billion dollar company. It’s not your business.
Why would you pour your money, time and energy into building a business for Young Living Essential Oils?
Is Young Living Essential Oils a Pyramid Scheme? According to published reports on the Federal Trade Commission’s website, Young Living Essential Oils meets the definition of a product-based pyramid as defined by Dr. Jon Taylor.
Is Young Living Essential Oils legit? Young Living Essential Oils is a legitimate MLM company. However, according to the Income Disclosure Statement found on the Young Living website, the majority of the Young Living Essential Oils distributors do not make money.
Is Young Living Essential Oils a good business opportunity? Young Living Essential Oils is NOT a good business opportunity. According to the Income Disclosure Statement found on the Young Living website, most distributors do not make money. Subtract business expenses and the cost of products from earned commissions and bonuses, and most Young Living distributors LOSE money.
If you found this review of Young Living Essential Oils helpful, or if you have experience to share, please leave a comment below. Thank you.