Qualified vs quack: 7 ways to identify a professional aromatherapist

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Finding a good aromatherapist is often more difficult than finding a good doctor. In the United States. Almost anyone can call themselves an aromatherapist as there is no standardization or Federal certification for aromatherapy or the alternative medicine that uses essential oils. This leads to a number of courses that offer certification on aromatherapy, the art of blending essential oils and so on. Confusion sets in, when your aromatherapy practitioner says he is an aromatherapist and not an aromatologist. There are subtle differences between aromatherapist, aromatologist, aromacologist and aromatherapy practitioner etc. This article will detail on how to identify the differences and find the right aromatherapist for yourself.

How to find qualified from quack? Qualified. You need to find one who has experience, qualification and sound knowledge in essential oils and aromatherapy. Any quack can boast himself as an aromatherapist and loot money from you if you are not shrewd enough to put him to rigorous questioning. Yes, before relating to a qualified aromatherapist, you need to put him to test and ask him about his details – aromatherapy study, experience as practitioner and successful cases handled.


If you live in the U.S., you need to find out what is your State’s stand on aromatherapy eduction and how it licenses/does not license aromatherapists.  If you are in other countries, find out the Federal rule of your country and identify aromatherapists based on your State’s certification principles. It should be brought to light that there is no Fed-recognized certification for aromatherapists right now. There are only two kinds of aromatherapy practitioners – aromatherapists and aromatologists. An aromatherapist is an individual who has formal training in aromatherapy and has hands-on experience in the field of massage, nursing or cosmetology. An aromatologist is an individual who has formal training in the subject, but is not experienced in nursing or massaging or other related study. What is generally offered by aromatherapy institutions is a certificate or diploma in the subject and hence, you need to know the details of the course only from an aromatherapist before you undergo your therapy with him.

How to find an aromatherapist: There are several ways and below are a few of them:

1. Check your Yellow Pages: Best and easiest way out. You need to check your local Yellow Pages and find aromatherapists in Aromatherapy or Alternative Medicine columns. You can call the person to verify his credentials.

2. Ask local massage therapists: If you know of any massage therapist, you can ask them of aromatherapists they know. They would definitely be in touch with some renowned ones and so you can find the qualified from the quack.

3. Go online or on the spot: Check online or go to the spot of alternative medicine centers. You will definitely get a few leads to good aromatherapy practitioners.

4. Ask for details: Once you find a list of aromatherapists, you need to verify their credentials. You can do this by asking them about their formal training – Where and how long did you train yourself in aromatherapy? Do you have any certification for the same? This can be an appropriate question.

5. Certificate is not license: Having a certificate from a University is different from being licensed from the State. So, ask for that too.

6. Ask for hands-on experience:
Distinguish whether the person is an aromatherapist or aromatologist. Find out the experience the aromatherapist has in massaging, nursing or other related study. This would help you find the authenticity of the person.

7. Observe the attitude:
This is important. How does the individual feel when you ask all these question? Good, bad or terse or stressed? Or, does the person avoid such questions? This will help you know the true self of the practitioner.