Kristen’s Picks: Recommended Natural Health Sources

As an herbalist and aromatherapist, I’m often asked about where I get the ingredients I need and which brands I trust. You can’t just walk into your local big box store and find bulk dried herbs or quality essential oils, after all!

To help make natural health easier for you, I’ve compiled a list of brands, products, and services I personally use and/or can recommend. This isn’t an all-inclusive list, but is based on my current knowledge and experience. I update it as I learn of new options.

My affiliate and referral links are included when available. You can read my full affiliate disclosure here.

Essential Oils

One of the most frequent questions I get is about the best essential oil brand. The short answer is that there are many quality essential oil brands. The long answer can be found in my book, Essential Oils: Separating Truth from Myth. I personally use or can recommend the following essential oil brands:

  • Mountain Rose Herbs offers a great selection of certified organic essential oils along with their other products. They’re working towards providing more GC/MS testing on their oils, though this isn’t available on every oil they carry. Mt. Rose is very mindful of sourcing quality ingredients, so I still recommend them as an excellent option.
  • Plant Therapy is doing great things with a growing line of certified organic oils, carrier oils, accessories, blends, roll-on bottles, hydrosols, and more. Free shipping on US orders. I recommend choosing their organic essential oils.
  • Hopewell Essential Oils carries a very large selection of high-quality essential oils at some of the best prices around. Shipping isn’t free, but you may save a substantial amount of money regardless. This small, Christian family-owned business also provides excellent information.
  • Florihana is a French distillery that offers extensive certifications on their oils, including batch-specific GC/MS reports. Most of my essential oils are from Florihana.
  • Eden Botanicals offers an extensive catalog of premium essential oils, hydrosols (distilled botanical waters), extracts, carrier oils, diffusers, and aromatherapy accessories. They specialize in bulk and wholesale options, but now offer quantities more appropriate for the home user.
  • Nature’s Gift is a well-respected aromatherapy supplier among herbalists and aromatherapists. They offer an extensive selection and the site is filled with excellent aromatherapy education.
  • Rocky Mountain Oils offers great blends and roll-ons, along with a small assortment of accessories. Many of their oils and blends come diluted in a carrier oil, so be sure to read ingredients before buying. GC/MS reports are available. Free shipping on US orders.

Bulk Herbs & Ingredients

Home herbal DIY projects are so fun! But before you can dive in, you might need things like bulk herbs, beeswax, carrier oils, and more. These places have you covered.

  • Mountain Rose Herbs is my favorite source for bulk herbs, but they also offer lovely carrier oils, butters, extracts, teas, clays, salts, spices, and more. It’s a simply delightful online store!
  • Starwest Botanicals offers a similar selection as Mountain Rose Herbs, though product sizes are more limited. You’ll find herbs, essential oils, natural body care ingredients, extracts, and more.
  • Bulk Herb Store also offers excellent herbs, many organic. Their selection isn’t as extensive as Mountain Rose Herbs, but they run fantastic sales from time to time.
  • Frontier Co-Op is another option and might be extra convenient because they’re usually available at local health food stores.

What about Amazon? Though it’s convenient and I’ve done it in a pinch, I don’t recommend buying bulk herbs and ingredients on Amazon. You don’t know if they’ve been stored in a hot warehouse and for how long, plus brand adulteration is more common.

Herbal Extracts and Dietary Supplements

As an herbal practitioner, I’m able to offer you professional-grade supplements through my Fullscript dispensary at a 20% off discount on retail prices.

Fullscript carries some of my favorite brands like Herb Pharm, Gaia Herbs, Wise Woman Herbals, Pure Encapsulations, Thorne, MegaFood, and many more.

Buying through Fullscript instead of Amazon ensures you’re getting real, quality products that will give you the results you need. Simply set up a free account to begin!

Other options for quality extracts and supplements include:

  • Natural Hope Herbals carries a wide range of single herb extracts, proprietary formulas, teas, salves, and other supplements. They’re a wonderful Christian company with trustworthy products.
  • Earthley is a forward-thinking, growing herbal products brand that offers remedies for the whole family. You’ll also find natural personal care and cleaning products.
  • MegaFood provides food-based nutritional supplements my family takes (also available on Fullscript)
  • Wise Woman Herbals offers high-quality herbal extracts (also available on Fullscript)
  • Mountain Rose Herbs has an extensive line of herbal extracts and preparations, along with their bulk herbs, ingredients, and essential oils
  • Gaia Herbs, Herb Pharm, and Herbalist & Alchemist are other trustworthy herbal extract brands.

Naturally Healthy Kitchen

When you want to enjoy nourishing food, the right tools and ingredients can make it so much easier. Along with buying locally as much as possible, these online options can provide you with additional ingredients and supplies.

  • Real Salt is my favorite unrefined sea salt! I use it in all of my cooking, as well as in some of the remedies and personal care products I make for our family.
  • Cultures for Health is my go-to for all things fermenting.
  • Pleasant Hill Grain offers top-quality small kitchen appliances, bakeware, grains, tools, and other hard-working kitchen supplies that will last.
  • Lehman’s is an old-fashioned hardware and appliance store that offers almost everything you need for a sustainable lifestyle, including hard-working kitchen tools.
  • Traditional Cooking School answers all of your real food cooking questions with their online cooking classes!

Women’s Core Health & Fitness

After 13 years in competitive sports and 8 births, I’m a huge proponent of core-aware fitness and pelvic floor physical therapy for women. Most fitness approaches come from a male-centric model that doesn’t take into consideration the pelvic floor anatomical differences and cyclic hormonal changes women have. This can lead to new or aggravated diastasis recti (a separation of the “six-pack” ab muscles), along with other pelvic floor problems.

I talk with many of my students and Thriving Health clients about both of these core-supportive options:

Fit2B is an online home-fitness studio that offers over 200 workouts in every style. It’s geared for women but works for anyone. Bethany, the founder and instructor, focuses on body-honoring fitness that supports true core health. I’ve been a paying member for almost 10 years.

The Tummy Team is an online pelvic floor physical therapy practice. Most women need pelvic floor physical therapy after pregnancy and birth, but it may not be locally available. Kelly Dean offers free resources, core-aware education, and virtual physical therapy appointments with her practice.

Herb Growing

You can find some medicinal plants and seeds at local stores in the spring, but for less common herbs, you’ll probably need to order online. Most seed catalogs offer medicinal herbs, though you might have to look in the culinary and flower sections to find them. Here are some of my favorite ordering options:

  • Mountain Rose Herbs carries a great selection of medicinal herb seeds from Strictly Medicinal Seeds (see below). Since you might need to order dried herbs, essential oils, and other supplies, Mountain Rose Herbs is a convenient place to get herb seeds.
  • Strictly Medicinal Seeds is one of my favorite places to go for medicinal herb seeds and plants, as well as other herbalist tools and plant growing advice. Richo Cech is extremely generous with his knowledge and experience! I genuinely love supporting this herbalist-run business.
  • One Green World carries a wide variety of unique plants that can be hard to find elsewhere. My schisandra vine is from One Green World.
  • Fedco Seeds offers seeds, plants, and roots/tubers for many medicinals. They’re a Maine company and many of their varieties are extremely cold-hardy.
  • Pinetree Seeds carries a nice selection of herb seeds in small quantities for the home grower. Since their seed packets are smaller, their prices are often lower, too. This is a great option for perennial herbs that you only need to plant once.
  • Baker Creek Seeds offers some medicinal herbs along with their many heirloom vegetable, fruit, grain, and flower seeds.