Buyer’s Guide to the Best Emu Oil

amber eyedropper bottle of the best emu oil beside lavender herbs

If you’re looking for the best emu oil, you want to use a product that has the highest amount of essential nutrients with the lowest amount of contaminants.

This information will help you choose the best certified emu oil based on having standardized processing, accurate grading and reliable testing by 3rd party labs.

Emu oil is a naturally refined oil made from the fat pockets of the emu bird.  The oils are a rich source of fatty acids that have been shown to have many health benefits.

Emu oils have a wide range of uses and can be used in the cosmetic, pharmaceutical, veterinary and light industrial sectors.

In order to use the oil for different applications, they should be properly processed and graded.  An emu oil rated for industrial use should not be used for cosmetic purposes; and oils made for cosmetic purposes may not be suitable as nutritional supplements.

Unfortunately, the emu oil industry isn’t completed regulated; some countries don’t have the technology or regulations in place to adequately refine and grade emu oils.

This can result in some companies selling low-quality oils with questionable purity issues. These products could be mixed with unwanted ingredients and could even have unsafe levels of contaminants or toxins.

So how do you choose the best emu oil?

For consumers living in the USA or Canada, the American Emu Association (AEA) is the only organization that’s developed specific quality control measures that grades and certifies emu oil that meets or exceed industry recognized standards.

AEA-Certified Emu Oils are the Best Emu Oils

american emu association logo for the best emu oil

American Emu Association (AEA) Certified emu oils are currently the only recognized products in North America that have been some sort of documented analysis and documentation for consumers.

The whole purpose of having a “certified emu oil” is to provide consumers with a safe product that has been properly tested, analyzed and standardized.

AEA-Certifed Emu Oil must meet the following requirements:

  • The oils must be refined and bottled in certified facilities.
  • Each facility assigns a ‘batch code’ to each batch of emu oil
  • Batch samples are sent to an independent, third-party AOCS certified chemist (American Oil Chemist Society) for testing.
  • Only 100% pure emu oil can be certified
  • Product formulations mixing emu oil with other ingredients cannot be certified

All AEA-Certified emu oils must follow the Emu Oil Trade Rules; a specific set of guidelines for properly grading the oils for its intended use.

You can find other products that may claim to be superior to AEA-Certified emu oils. However, the consumer has no way of knowing if an un-certified emu oil has been properly analyzed and graded for its specific use.

If you are unable to find AEA-Certified Emu Oil, then the next step down is choosing either 100% Fully-Refined or Un-Refined emu oils.

What’s the Difference Between Refined and Un-refined Emu Oils?

The other two forms of emu oil is based on how they are processed: Refined or Un-refined.

Both types of oils have slight differences in how they’re processed and individual make-up.

Fully-Refined Emu Oils:

  • Have been distilled or processed to remove the majority of contaminants.
  • Depending on the process used, it may also remove some portion (or all) of the fatty acids naturally found in the oil.
  • Refined emu oils are usually white in appearance.
  • May or may not be tested for purity by 3rd party laboratories

Un-Refined Emu Oils:

  • Claimed by some marketers to be the ‘biologically’ active form of emu oil as it may retain the majority of fatty acids and vitamins after processing
  • Un-refined emu oils are usually yellow in color.
  • May or may be tested for purity by 3rd party laboratories

Marketers of un-refined emu oil may claim these are superior to fully-refined emu oils because they retain the majority of fatty acids and minerals for maximum health benefits.

However, if there is no 3rd party testing performed on either type, the consumer will not be able to determine the exact purity and quality of both classes.

The majority of research on emu oil uses 100% pure, fully-refined oils.

Additional Factors for Getting the Best Emu Oils

Other things to consider are choosing emu oils made from organically-raised emu farms, closely checking ingredient labels and avoiding questionable products.

1. Choose Products from Organic Farms:

– Organically-raised emus are reported to be farmed in a safe and humane way which reduce your exposure to steroids, antibiotics or growth hormones.

2. Check Ingredient Labels on Products Claiming to Contain Emu Oil:

– Do you want a 100% pure emu oil or do you prefer products with added ingredients?

– Emu oils are now found in skin care lotions, shampoos and soaps. There may be additional ingredients (such as mineral oil) added to the emu oil which may affect its overall effectiveness.

3. Beware of Low Quality Emu Oils:

– Emu oil is not completed regulated in some countries, therefore, there are many products that might not contain what’s claimed on the ingredient label.

– There may be an increased risk for exposure to unwanted ingredients and rancid oils.

– Try to choose products made by reputable emu farms or producers that stand behind their products.


Emu oil is a naturally-derived oil that can offer many health benefits.

Due to lack of regulation in the emu oil industry, you should choose emu oils processed to ensure exceptionally high levels of purity and quality.

The best emu oils are made by the following methods ranked in order of importance (ie. choose molecular-distillation before AEA-certified):

  1. AEA-Certified Emu Oils
  2. Choosing between 100% Fully-Refined vs Un-Refined emu oils
  3. Purchasing oils made from reputable emu farms that follow sustainable, organic farming practices

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