This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

Which emu oils are best?

If your nails are brittle, your cuticles are torn, your skin is irritated or wrinkled or your hair is damaged, then you might need to try emu oil. Emu oil is obtained from the nutrient-rich fat of an emu, which is a flightless, ostrich-like big bird native to Australia. Emu oil penetrates deeply into the skin and body to moisturize and heal at a cellular level. Emu oil also has plenty of anti-inflammatory capabilities, which makes it a great remedy for treating joint and muscle pain. 

What to know before you buy an emu oil

Consider your budget

It’s important to consider your budget before you purchase emu oil, especially if you aren’t looking to spend a ton of cash. There are many bottles of basic emu oil that cost less than $8, but if you are looking for emu oil that’s AEA certified, you can expect to spend anywhere from $15-$30. And the higher-end bottles of emu oil go for $50 or more.

Look for an AEA certification

The American Emu Association, also known as the AEA, oversees the guidelines for the production and distribution of emu oil. It’s crucial to look for an AEA certification to make sure that the emu oil you’re purchasing is a safe product that has been properly graded, standardized and analyzed.

What to look for in a quality emu oil

Unrefined emu oils

There are many proponents of unrefined Australian emu oil that say it is better than all other emu oils. Unrefined and therapeutic-grade emu oil is fairly different from the more common refined emu oil. Unrefined emu oil is a biologically active kind of emu oil obtained from a specific genotype of emus that are only raised on Australian soil. Pure, unrefined emu oil smells fresh and pure and doesn’t include any fillers, perfumes, dyes or other oils.

Refined emu oils

High-quality, grade-A refined emu oil has its own benefits. The best producers use expensive equipment, time and patience to sterilize and refine the emu oil and keep it free of bacteria and contaminants. Refined emu oil needs to be 100% pure to be certified by the American Emu Association.

Preserving freshness

It’s essential to store your emu oil in a cool and dark place to keep it fresh as long as possible. Emu oils that are refrigerated will stay fresh and effective for up to two years, while frozen emu oils will stay fresh for even longer than two years.

How much you can expect to spend on an emu oil

Four-ounce bottles of basic, low-quality emu oil go for less than $8, but you should expect to spend about $15-$30 for a small four-ounce bottle of refined emu oil that’s AEA certified. And you can spend $50 or more for a four-ounce bottle of pure, unrefined Australian emu oil, which is a traditional Aboriginal remedy.

Emu oil FAQ

Who discovered the health benefits of emu oil?

A. Native to Australia, the emu is the world’s second largest bird and is an important part of Aboriginal culture. The emu offers highly nutritious and lean red meat and fatty oils that indigenous Australians have used topically for millennia. 

The Aborigines were the first people to discover that emu oil could help prevent sunburn when it was applied to the skin. Keep in mind that emu oil should not be used as an alternative to sunscreen, since the SPF of emu oil is very low.

Which medical conditions can emu oil help treat?

A. Emu oil is considered a traditional remedy for several different medical conditions, including high cholesterol, hair loss, wounds, inflamed stiff joints, sore muscles and irritated skin. Emu oil is not FDA-approved, and there is no scientific evidence to support treatment of these conditions with emu oil, but there is plenty of anecdotal evidence.

What’s the best emu oil to buy?

Top emu oil

Naturals New Zealand Emu Oil Pure Premium Golden Powerful Skin and Hair Moisturizer

Naturals New Zealand Emu Oil Pure Premium Golden Powerful Skin and Hair Moisturizer

What you need to know: This customer favorite emu oil from Naturals New Zealand is a great option for relieving aching joints, moisturizing your skin or conditioning your hair.

What you’ll love: This Naturals New Zealand emu oil is the perfect all-natural skincare solution, sourced from American farm-raised emus without using any pesticides, hormones or antibiotics. The emu oil also comes with a creamy and rich composition.

What you should consider: Keep in mind that this emu oil is fairly expensive.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Top emu oil for the money

InstaNatural Emu Oil

InstaNatural Emu Oil

What you need to know: This affordable emu oil from InstaNatural is an excellent choice for itchy skin, aching muscles and healthier nails.

What you’ll love: This budget-friendly InstaNatural emu oil helps decrease any skin discoloration, scars and dark spots and replenish your hair. The 100% pure emu oil comes with a convenient hand pump and is rich in unsaturated fatty acids.

What you should consider: It’s important to consider that this emu oil has an unusual smell until it dries.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Worth checking out

Y Not Natural Extra Large Emu Oil

Y Not Natural Extra Large Emu Oil

What you need to know: This vitamin-packed emu oil from Y Not Natural is full of omega fatty acids, minerals and vitamins.

What you’ll love: This organic Y Not Natural extra large emu oil is sourced from farm-raised Australian emus and is the perfect choice for reducing inflammation, improving the appearance of your aging skin and moisturizing your skin.

What you should consider: This Y Not Natural extra-large emu oil is pretty pricey.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon


Sign up here to receive the BestReviews weekly newsletter for useful advice on new products and noteworthy deals.

Alex Kilpatrick writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

Copyright 2021 BestReviews, a Nexstar company. All rights reserved.