How Gary Young Became the World Leader in Essential Oils: Part I

12 January 14, 2016 - Essential Oil History, essential oil research, Essential Oils, Wellness, Young Living Leaders, Young Living Lifestyle

It’s no secret that D. Gary Young is the modern-day father of essential oils, but few people know the details of his life and what led him to unlocking the pure power of plants. Over the course of more than 30 years, Gary Young has dedicated his life to researching the traditional methods of distilling botanicals and pioneering Young Living’s proprietary Seed to Seal® process.

Join us today as we explore Gary’s life in the first of two posts dedicated to the life and times of the modern-day father of essential oils.

Stay tuned for part two of the series as we look further into Gary’s life and his journey in creating the essential oils movement that we know and love today.

All pictures and original content for this post were adapted from Mary Young’s book, D. Gary Young: The World Leader in Essential Oils. With more than 300 pages and 700 photographs, this book will give you a behind-the-scenes look into Gary’s world, where you’ll learn about his many trials and triumphs.

What impressed you most about Gary’s essential oil journey? Let us know in the comments!

  • Akshi

    Very Very nice story.

  • Catherine Biddy

    His perseverance. He kept moving even if a door closed in his life! What an inspiration.

  • Darlene Young

    I’m impressed that Gary never gave up what I feel is a ministry of healing from our creator Himself for past present and future generations. I love all things natural and have dreamed about involving myself in this kind of ministry for years! I recently became an Independent Distributor and love it! An added bonus is that my last name is Young!

  • I just got the book last night. It is full of beautiful pictures of the history of this amazing company. I love that it is a picture book as it will be easy to show off to others when they are learning about Gary Young and the foundation of Young Living. We are truly blessed to be a part of Young Living, the World Leader in Essential Oils.

  • Paula

    What a wonderful story and an amazing Man , with dedication . For Walt Disney, “It all started with a mouse” For Gary Young ” It all started from a seed” And I am grateful for all that you have done and continue to do! I Love your oils and what I experience from them. But most of all, I Love sharing them with my daughters and grandchildren ! Thank You! And Gods speed to you!

  • Linda Starks

    I’m most impressed by the shear perseverance that Gary had all those years to see his dream come to fruition!

  • Barbara Kennedy

    What an inspiring story. What has impressed me the most is that Gary kept moving forward with his ideas. From where he began to where Young Living is today, is an amazing journey and an encouragement for anyone wanting to building a business.

  • Dawn Taylor

    Thank you so much for sharing Gary’s story with us. I am most impressed by his willingness to learn and then put his knowledge into action. Essential oils have taught me to be a student again and take action in my family’s health and well being. It is empowering!

  • Cherie

    Thank you for your gift of hard work & perseverance thru the years to bring us the quality product we can share in today! God Bless us everyone!

  • I love learning more about Gary Young! Using Young Living’s fabulous essential oils has helped my husband and I to live a much healthier life!

  • Anne

    I love that Gary started as a homesteader! That is so fascinating! I was struck by how the love of farming, the land, and the plants themselves runs deep in Gary and all that he does! I don’t know any other company with that type of vision at its core! Very impressive! Gives me even more confidence as I use and love these oils!

  • His heart for following God even when things weren’t easy.

  • I am always amazed at his complete devotion to quality, pioneering, and staying true to his beliefs.

  • Norma Shockley

    I was most impressed by Gary’s determination and the help he wanted to give others in areas of our lives. He certainly did that and more. He strived to put out a product that was pure and took the least of amount of anything that would not benefit , or take from the purist form of the finished oils. Having his own farm gave him the right of saying what was and would not be used in the oils. I am older, and so wished I would have had known about the oils as a younger person to be used on my self and family. Thank you Mr. Young, Sincerely Norma Shockley

  • Stacy Halbach

    I was so impressed that he sketched out and pretty much invented the modern day distillery for essential oils!

  • Joan Reid – Smith

    I was always told that God puts us together for a reason, and Gary being determined to create an fulfill a dream that helps so many people in their time of need. THANK YOU! GARY

  • I love how Gary Young had a dream and went after it. Truly remarkable!! I love Young Living Essential oils!

  • Penny

    Having the best quality and sharing it world wide.

  • Marguerite Rusk

    Dear Young Living Family,
    This has been the very best of my years. Being a distributor and helping people as well as the animals . I love to see results!

  • Donna Kay McGraw

    I was most impressed w Gary’s perseverance, despite the nay-sayers. what an awesome role model he is for all of us

    • Amen! Yes, it’s the persistence, innovation and hard work we can glean from his story and life. Following after his dream is an inspiration for us all.

  • Dolores Low

    Gary Young desire to share his knowledge of essential oils to support us emotionally , physically and spiritually.

  • Bibiana

    What impressed me most? That he did it – unstoppable – full of Passion!

  • Jennifer Balloun

    The most impressive part about Gary Youngs essential oil journey is that he never gave up! No matter what the obstacles were he overcame each one and still does to this day. His love for people around the world is evident in all he has done in building the clinic, farms, schools, best and first essential oil infused product, jobs, seed to seal process to ensure quality and pure oils! Thank you Gary lives have been changed and inspired because you would not quit for the dream and vision you had before you 🙂

  • Claire Taylor

    Gary’s single-minded commitment impresses me the most. Such care and dedication! It is so fascinating to see the photos and get deeper into the history of how this life-saving company (saved mine!) grew. I look forward to getting Mary’s book. Gary is a light-filled genius! I’m so gratefu, truly, and I look forward to seeing what he comes up with next.

  • Grassroots to Billionaire with humility to boot!! There are very few people who can carry that scenario off. Gary’s vision and this incredible product are 90% of what carries me through the ups and downs of my YL journey!

  • Gary is an amazing man. His drive and determination is very inspiring. I enjoy Gary’s stories and am blessed to be able to use Young Living everyday. I am here today because of Gary Young!

  • Amanda

    Amazing journey, following a passion and seeing results. Following the plan God had in mind and seeing the blessings. Great story.

  • Dianne M Lefebvre

    Truly an amazing story of an amazing man ❤️

  • Martha Wertz

    I ENJOY reading about the history of Gary’s dream, vision, persistence, navigation, LEADERSHIP, anointing and direction from God, team, family support, courage, and relentless faith that he was pursuing something BIGGER than he ever imagined. I joined YLEO December 30, 1995 and have watched and participated in the growth of this company. Gary speaks often about SOIL, SEED PLANTING, WATERING, FERTILIZING and NURTURING, appropriate WEEDING, RIGHT CONDITIONS, TIMING, HARVEST. Both in his fields as well as his life, we have seen this come to pass. There are powerful oils that come from our trees, our plants, for the nations. It appears to me that Gary and Mary Young and the YL community, have also tapped into this oil, as we have experienced phenomenal growth and significance , not only in the lives of others, but also their communities. Thank you, Gary and Mary, for being WORLD CHANGERS!

  • TC


  • When I had the privilege to meet he and Mary in person at the Gold Retreat 2015, I was so amazed at how down to earth he is (they are) and how his passion is so visible when he talks about his story.

  • Susan Merrill

    I love how he views this, not as his business, but his ministry. He pours so much of himself in this work and prides himself in quality and purity of the oils. This matters and really sets YL apart from other companies.

  • Carlene Walker

    Gary is a true visionary, a leader and natural motivator with a heart and soul larger than Phar Lap. We are all very honoured to have a man so dedicated to caring and helping others.

  • Deanna Avery

    It is impossible to pick just one thing. Everything Gary does is amazing. He is a truly conscientious, altruistic man. I am so proud to be a part of Young Living!!!

  • Judith

    Learned how to do everything himself and by doing so learned so much more.

  • Jeannie M Romanello

    I love our product, our company, our founders…our community… our EVERYTHING!
    Thank you for everything, you have already done & are still doing.
    Just really thankful.

  • I am impressed with Gary’s diligence to never give up even in the face of adversity! His heart to share with others is such a great example of true leadership. He started for his own needs, and then he shared it with us. Thank you for all that you do, Gary Young! And, thank you, Mary, for putting together this beautiful book to tell the story in words and images.

  • Lisa

    God blessed Gary with a vision & a mission … and he did it! How amazing is that? Forever grateful!

  • I absolutely know without a doubt after seeing the picture behind Gary as he is sitting at his desk in Baja, Ca of The I Am Presence and the Violet Fire in the white tube of Light-by Summit Lighthouse ~~~that Gary “get’s IT” : ) I said to myself , “Oh My Goodness-look at that, I have that same picture!” I also am impressed that he never gave up his dream, even after his injury in Canada! and is walking fine and working hard-I would like to know more about his recovery-IE: what did he do to recover? Thanks for all of this fascinating information!!!!

    • Thank You YL team for posting my comment , as I AM still so impressed about the beautiful spiritual picture Gary had/has of his “Divine Self” in his office in Baja, Ca. : )
      Peace to the Planet ! And Peace to all of mankind!

  • I’m most impressed by the profound look of kindness in Gary’s eyes. You can tell he truly loves what he does and has such passion for every aspect of his business. Thank you Gary, for allowing God to develop a vision in your heart that has grown Young Living to what it is today – a business that gives wellness, purpose and abundance to everyone who allows that to be their motto.

  • Diane Volpe

    Success is moving towards a goal step by step. Gary was an inventor with a passion to help others physically, emotionally and spiritually. His story of success is the wealth shared with others.

  • Wonderful story! I didn’t know that Gary had merged farms to create the largest TRUE lavender farm in the WORLD!

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