Homemade Anti-bacterial Copycat THIEVES® Essential Oil Blend

Need a Solution for staying well and boosting immunity?  This DIY Antibacterial / Antifungal Essential Oils Blend (like Thieves®) is easy to make and cheaper than buying the pre made blend. - Great to use for cleaning your home too. Make this Antibacterial Essential Oil Blend at home and heal yourself and clean your home--naturally!

If you’ve heard of essential oils, likely you’ve also heard of THIEVES®.

With all the concerns about germs and antibiotic resistant bugs these days, this essential oils blend is quite the rage.

See, the “bugs” mutate and become resistant to standard medications, but from what I’ve read they don’t do the same for natural remedies, like essential oils.

That’s good news for us “crunchy folk.”

When I first was talking with someone about using essential oils (I thought the whole topic was a bunch of hocus pocus, by the way), the woman whom I was talking with kept saying something that sounded like “Feeves.”

We had a not so great phone connection, I guess.

I finally had to ask.

Me: What do you keep saying–“Feeves?”

Other woman: “Thieves,” she said. “T-H-I-E-V-E-S.”

Me:  Oh.  Uh–what’s that?

I was then told a story about essential oils. That apparently, back during the time of the Black Plague, thieves would go to places where the dead bodies were and they would steal goods off of the corpses. But to protect themselves from the super-contagious plague grossness, they would put a blend of oils or spices on themselves.

Supposedly the THIEVES® blend by Young Living oils was made to mimic the germ-killing blend.

Now, I don’t know if this is all true or not.

There are plenty of folks who claim it’s true–and many who claim it isn’t.

I suspect that there is some truth to it.

Regardless, we’ve used THIEVES®, and have used other similar blends, and we have been pleased with the results of most of them. Honestly, I like this DIY blend better than one of the big name blends that I tried.

But I’m always trying to figure out how to making thing cheaper. I’m kinda the DIY-it-if-you-can Queen. Hubby says I have this characteristic “Happy Grin” when I figure out a way to save our family money with a DIY version of anything. I think it started when I first made Dairy-Free Milk Substitutes when we were first married. (You can check out Easiest Coconut Milk and Easiest Almond Milk for those recipes if you like :).)

So–enter my version of this blend….My Homemade Antibacterial Oil Blend.

Simple to make. Just as effective. Cheaper than buying a blend already blended. (You’re basically getting paid for doing the mixin’ yourself. In these troubling financial times, I’ll take the savings anyway I can [within reason, of course!].)

(Note – There are a few affiliate links in this post. If you make a purchase after clicking I might make a commission. It helps me keep cranking out this helpful free information for you.)

How to Use an Antibacterial Essential Oil Blend

Following are ideas that I have read about or personally used.  Of course, with the medical uses, I am not a medical practitioner, nor do I pretend to be one.  But these are uses I have heard about or ways that I have personal experience with myself.

Again, some of the oils in this blend are “hot” and can burn.  Please dilute with a carrier oil before applying directly to skin or taking internally if you so desire.

1.  For sickness – diffuse in the air or use topically or internally (with caution)

2.  House cleaning

3.  As a mouthwash

4.  Dental issues – I have occasionally swished with 1-2 tsp of coconut oil with about 4 drops of antibacterial oils added to address dental concerns.

5.  Wound Healing

I hope to share some recipes in the not-too-distant future, so make sure you are subscribed to my email feed. You wouldn’t want to miss that, now would you :)?

Where to Buy the Stuff You Need

Wondering where to buy essential oils? They are sold all over the place. I personally left the 2 big Direct Sales companies and went with Native American Nutritionals after a lot of investigating. A lot. As in–Going to lose my mind if I have to call another company lot.

You can check out Native American here. Their oils are top notch and they are very helpful people.

If you don’t feel like making your own blend, their antibacterial blend is called Spice Traders (now called Immune Strength). I like it quite a bit and a local friend of mine has used it successfully to fight off numerous sinus infections.

You can read my series, “Which Essential Oils Company is Best?” here. It’s really fascinating–and things get pretty dicey in the comments so get a cuppa (I recommend my Rich and Nutritious Won’t-Mess-with-Your-Adrenals Coffee Substitute with a splash of coconut milk and stevia (and a little cocoa if you’re feeling adventurous) and sit down to read them. I guarantee you’ll learn a lot.

2.  For the bottles, you can use an old essential oil bottle like I did, or you can head over to Mountain Rose Herbs and get an amber dropper bottle there.  Just search under “bottles” :).

Now for the necessary disclaimer: The information in this post is for entertainment purposed only. Please consult a medical practitioner before using any alternative medical practices, supplements, and anything else you might change to improve your health. Gotta get that in, folks :).

Interested in making More Essential Oils Blends?  The Essential Oils Deck has a bunch of recipe blends for health and beauty to get you on your way.

Essential Oils Blend Recipes

Have you used an antibacterial essential oils blend before?

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    Speak Your Mind


  1. I think it’s a good oil blend, but the YL story about the source of Thieves absolutely cannot be true. It ranks at the level of internet legend.

    One huge clue is the use of eucalyptus oil, which comes from a plant that originally only grew in Australia (and perhaps New Zealand) and thus, was not even known to the rest of the world until a few hundred years after the Plague. That’s not the only problem with this tale.

    Also, I think others must have been pointing out the flaws in the story YL originally told, because they’ve changed their original version.

  2. Thank you Adrienne! Not only did I just buy the ingredients for this “recipe”, I also fell in love with this blog. I tell you…. I CAN’T STAND many of my favourite blogs anymore. All of them are either doTerra or YoungLiving distributors.
    I absolutely hate MLM schemes and I hate it even more when people are trying to shove these things down my throat. And this whole attitude about “only this brand will help” blabla makes me sick ;). I loved reading the posts about the best essential oil company. And the comments speak for themselves. I personally trust three different Swiss brands here. I am from Switzerland and always support “local” stuff first. I can get them at my health food store or online. I like to be independant. I’m convinced (and I’ve done my reserarch) that all of my three brands offer high quality oils that are just as good as any of these MLM oils.
    If you have any other (copycat) recipes for good blends, I think many of us would appreciate them.

  3. Lesley Chachere says:

    The only problem I can see with this is that young living oils are therapeutic grade which means they are safe to ingest. Essential oils that you purchase can be 1% essential oils and filled with lots of other fillers that are dangerous. This is why numerous essential oils say for external use only. After doing a lot of research into other companies and doing my homework I decided to use only Young living oils bc they are very particular about their quality. They raise all of their products from seed to the finished product. The only company that does every single step and process. This gives them amazing quality control. It also makes them have smaller batches and supply bc they like to maintain the quality. You can tour and watch the harvest of many of the plants. I would be cautious when recommending that people take random oils and mix together to make the replica of thieves. If someone would buy essential oils from a health food store and do this it could be extremely dangerous if they ingest them!! And no I do not profit from young living oils. I am a die hard user of them and allow family members and friends to buy on my distributor account to get the discount. I don’t recruit distributors underneath me. I am not in it to turn a profit. I don’t market. I usually give free samples to anyone and everyone who will use them because they have made such a difference in my life. A true quality essential oil will be therapeutic grade, be in a dark glass container that keeps sunlight out. It will never be in a plastic container bc true essential oils breakdown plastic bottles. It will never say for topical use only.

    • The thing to remember here is that any company, including Young Living, and doTERRA, can state that they are therapeutic quality but they aren’t under any regulations to be so. I am not saying that they aren’t but we are taking the companies’ words for it. I believe that essential oils will only break down cheap or certain types of plastic but I don’t buy them in plastic bottles. Haven’t seen them that way.

    • I was horrified to read Lesley Chachere’s comments about ingesting essential oils. NEVER, EVER ingest essential oils. They are to be taken in via skin via a qualified aromatherapist or via fragrance. Anyone who suggests that therapeutic grade oils are safe for ingestion is wrong, and must be ignored. I have been in this business for years, use only the highest quality oils available from European and other growers, and would never encourage some one to believe that essential oils can be ingested. (Some can, but only in tiny doses and only if advised by a medical practitioner or suitably qualified individual). I am sorry Lesley, but being a member of an MLM scheme does not qualify you to sell these oils and your opinions and advise is dangerous at best and could be catastrophic, causing death!

      • Hi James. I appreciate your comment, but there are really so many people in essential oils who say that ingesting is fine / or ingesting with caution is fine. I am not personally happy with the extent to which the MLMs recommend ingesting oils, but I think there is a place for that. I addressed some of it in this post. http://wholenewmom.com/health-concerns/how-to-use-essential-oils/

        I would love to hear your thoughts. The death incident comment really is alarmist. I am all for caution but the stats on deaths by essential oils compared to the deaths by pharmaceuticals illustrates how focusing on EO deaths really seems to be blown way out of proportion – would you agree? Thanks!

  4. Sally Lirvey says:

    I’m just a beginner, but have a recurrence of plantar fasciitis and read that valor mixed with wintergreen helps tremensly, also you can add RC, but I can’t find that anywhere. If you have any suggestions, I would be grateful.

    • I’m sorry but what are you looking for? I’ll try to help.

      • This wasn’t my comment, but I have plantar fasciatis as well, and would love to know if there is a blend that will help it. I keep mine pretty well controlled with stretching, but there’s always the possibility of a flair up.

        • I haven’t ever had this but I am reading about peppermint and lemongrass and wintergreen and helichrysum as being good options. Hope that helps. Not medical advice but this is what I would try if it were me. Hope that helps.

  5. Hello! I’m new to this blog, and have found it to be the most interesting reading. Informative, and caring without all the MLM crap. Very refreshing. I especially liked how you handled the scared into buying only MLM product people…..lol. Those companies are very good at that crap. It’s upsetting to me that they take people who are ill, and prey on them. And I would think they are the ones who can’ least afford it.. Now, this is just mho, so if there are hostile people ready to dispute, please keep that to yourself. I won’t respond anyway. I just wanted to let Adrienne know that I’m impressed with her and what it is she’s trying to accomplish here. You go girl!

  6. Teresa Nestico says:

    Hello Adrienne,
    I really enjoyed reading your series about which essential oils’ company is the best. I am a rep of Young Living, I mean, I just started now to understand how good essential oils are and how they work, so I really appreciated people like you who have done all this researches for people like me that do not know anything but they really want to know where to find top notch oils at the best prices. And I will buy from the company you recommend, and buy from YL only products the Native American Nutritionals don’t have, like: the wolfberry juice, and the Animal Scent ointment.
    I finally got to get interested in essential oils about 2 months ago when my son, who is in a wheelchair got a pressure sore on his butt, again. So I asked my friend, (who has been using oils for about 30 years) if the essentials oils would help my son’ situation. She gave me few oils to use directly into the wound. Another friend also gave me the Animal scent wich I found it good. Now I would like to know from you if I could put the Thieves blend directly into the wound or if I have to mix it with Olive oil as I don’t have the other ones you talk about in your posts. Also I have been using colloidal silver. What do you think I should use and how long or how many times at day. Could you also tell me what do you think about the Animal Scent that YL sells? I’m just curious of your opinion.
    Thank you so much for all the work you do for all of us, even for the ones that have so much bad stuff to say to you ahah.
    Blessings to you

    • Hi Teresa. Thanks so much for your kind words! I would personally not recommend putting the Antibacterial blend directly into a would as it could really sting. I have done it but many would have issues with it. I can’t medically advise at all but I personally used the antibacterial blend about 3-5 times per day when I had a bad sinus infection.

      I haven’t tried the animal scent. In fact, I can’t find it on their site – could you send me a link to it please? Thanks!

      • Teresa Nestico says:

        Hi Adrianne,
        Thank you for answering, it’s so good that you answer everybody.

        Here’s the link for the Animal Scent, I am writing from Canada but they have it on the US website only: https://www.youngliving.com/en_US/products/home/pets/animal-scents-ointment.

        Regarding my son’s wound, he doesn’t feel anything down there, So can I put it in since he has no feelings there?
        Where do you apply the blend when you have a sinus infection?
        Thank you

        • I’m trying to find out about the Animal Scent, but as for your son’s wound, even if you don’t have feeling you can still burn the skin w/ too hot of an oil so I could err on the side of caution. For a sinus infection, I have added a drop or two of oil in w/ my saline rinse http://wholenewmom.com/whole-new-budget/how-to-make-your-own-saline-nose-wash/ but be careful again. I used the Thieves blend internally and again, be cautious. And this is not medical advice – please consult w/ a physician before using supplements or changing any of your dietary regimen. http://wholenewmom.com/health-concerns/homemade-anti-bacterial-thieves-essential-oil-blend/

          • Teresa Nestico says:

            Ok, I understand and will do as you say. I have another question (actually 2). My friend gave me 3 oils to put in the wound, I think they are doing good but I want to know if you agree. The oils are: frankincense, basil and salvia. Could they burn him as the Thieves blend does? I also bought a homeopathic cream: Emuaid (the regular as the strong one has too much tea oil) from the States. I am not using it yet, do you think it could do any good?
            Thanks again for the time you take to answer all of us.

            • I don’t know what salvia is – could you clarify if you spelled it correctly please? Thanks. I can’t medically advise, sorry about that. I have heard about emu oil but not the emu aid. Is it all homeopathic?

              • Teresa Nestico says:

                Sorry, I meant sage, salvia is in Italian. Yes they say emuaid is all homeopathic, I’m not an expert…I have to believe them, these are the ingredients: Argentum Metallicum, Bacillus Ferment, Phytosphingosine, L-Lysine HCL, Tea tree oil, and Ceramide 3. Anyway, i started using it and it looks it’ s good so far.
                So you really cannot tell me if i’ll burn my son if I put frankincense, sage and basil oil into his wound? Please I need to know.
                Thank you again for your time.

                • I’m sorry but I can’t medically advise. I personally have used 2 of those oils NEAT (w/o diluting) but I can’t say it won’t hurt someone else. It is always best to dilute at first and use with caution. Thanks much.

        • They do not have anything like that at Native American Nutritionals. sorry.

  7. The entire argument regarding the utilization of the Thieves Oil name is petty. It seems to me that the history has shown this oil was used LONG before trademarks, and even LONGER before some company decided to usurp the name and call it theirs. Get over it already.

    Adrienne, I LOVE your site. Made some of this mixture this morning. Keep on keepin’ on, you rock! :-)

  8. Do you provide copycat recipes for other blends? There are 2 products I buy that I would like to make myself as they are expensive to keep buying – would like to find someone that can tell me how to make them.

  9. I love essential oils! Thanks for the recipe. When I get all the oils, I will be making it.

  10. Nikki Sullivan says:

    I’m new to EOs, so please forgive me if this is a silly question. When you state that the blend can be used for household cleaning, what would you mix the blend with for this purpose? Water in a spray bottle, or..? I read through the comments on this post and didn’t see any mention of how it would be used as a household cleaner. I’ve really enjoyed reading your blog thus far and appreciate the time/effort you put into researching! Thanks Adrienne!

  11. Lavon Head says:

    Well thank Goodness you mentioned the NAT equivalent is Spice Traders because I didn’t want to mix my own. Ha!! I’m so glad you do so much research and so thankful you did the research for oils. I”m loving my NAT oils and especially enjoy aromatizing them… is that the correct word?

  12. am new to all this oil stuff. on ebay one seller sells the spices for home-made thieves in a packet for one to steep/infuse into olive oil for 2 weeks, one packet to 2 cups oil. am thinking on trying this and maybe adding frankincense and myrrh too. your opinion would be appreciated.
    also, if this turns out good, I want to make a paste or ointment of it, for my elderly mom as it would be easier for her to apply. what do you think of coconut oil? should I steep the herbs in that or in the olive oil and then mix into the coconut? if not a good idea, what do you suggest?
    thank you.

    • Hi. I am not sure what you are asking in the first part of your question. I can’t say what I would do you can’t really steep in coconut oil unless it’s liquid. Does that help?

  13. Hi! Thanks for blog! You post lots of items of interest.

    I tried this recipe for copycat thieves oil by buying the oils from Native American Nutritionals. I have a bottle of YL Thieves to compare and have some suggestions:

    1) the recipe needs more cinnamon – maybe twice as much if one is trying to achieve the same aroma for diffusing.

    2) I used eucalyptus radiata and it is overpowering! I hate it. The recipe should have half the amount suggested, or maybe less. Or, as you suggest, maybe a different type of eucalyptus? It ruined my blend for diffusing. I guess I’ll use it for cleaning.

    • Hi there and thanks! I might try w/ more cinnamon but I was thinking that clove is the more overpowering oil in Thieves.

      As for the euc radiata, I don’t find it to be so but sorry if you do. I enjoy the smell of this quite a bit and someone was at my home the other day and commented about how nice it smelled. I guess everyone is a little different? If you try something and like it please share. Thanks!

      • Yes, very true. Eucalyptus reminds me of vicks vapor rub so it’s not appealing to me, though I’m sure others like it. But it was still fun to try out the recipe – thanks again for sharing!

        • I can see that. I don’t have an overwhelming sense of the euc from diffusing it – it smells more clovey and cinnamonney to me….but I might try it w/ different proportions as well. Thanks!

  14. Thank you so much for this post as well as your others on Essential Oils. I am finding them extremely informative. I have little experience with EO and simply started a little research because I was interested in making my own bath salts. I find the commercially prepared ones overpowering. After lots of research, I am ready to try EOs for their therapeutic properties as well. I don’t know anyone who uses them, so there is nobody that I could ask for help. Now I feel like I have enough information to make an informed decision about which oils to buy, etc. I had no idea that there were “sketchy” EO on the market. Thank you so much for all your research and for sharing this information. Can you recommend a good source for diffusers? Also if you are thinking about doing other copycat blends, I would be grateful for one that helps with migraines.

    • Yes on the diffusers. I am using the AromaCloud Spa round the clock right now and LOVE it. I was using the doTERRA Lotus. Didn’t love it. Wouldn’t stay on long enough and hard to clean. This Spa one has a 1 year warranty. Well worth it. I will see what I can do about more blends. Do you have a blend you like for that? Did you see the Healthy Gut Summit coming up? I think it would appeal to you – it’s free and will address root causes of issues in the gut. Some information is in this post. http://wholenewmom.com/whole-new-budget/free-kindle-books-healthy-living-jan-24-2015/

      This is the link (affiliate link) to the diffuser that I love: http://bit.ly/1tIhF1r
      This one is very similar but is for a smaller area – like a bathroom: http://bit.ly/1wyi9BZ (again, it’s an affiliate link).

      • Thank you so much Adrienne. I have registered for the Healthy Gut Summit and am looking forward to that. I will definitely consider the AromaCloud Spa diffuser – had already looked at that, but it’s nice to what other people think before I invest into something like that. I have been looking at purchasing the Migraine Relief Blend from Rocky Mountain Oils, http://www.rockymountainoils.com/migraine-relief.htm but so far have not purchased it. It looks promising though, so I think I might give it a try. I don’t know how long it will take for shipping to Canada, but I don’t expect that it would take too long.
        I really appreciate your response and the heads up about the Summit.

        • You’re so welcome! I think the summit looks amazing and the price is right :)! I think they ship pretty quickly. I hope you’ll tell me what you think about the oil and the diffuser. I really really love it!