Table of Contents
- What Is Ylang Ylang Essential Oil?
- Using Ylang Ylang Essential Oil For Hair, Hair Loss
- Using Ylang Ylang Essential Oil For Skin And Acne
- Side Effects Caused By Ylang Ylang Essential Oil
- Does Ylang Ylang Essential Oil Have A Pleasant Scent?
- Blending Ylang Ylang Essential Oil With Other Oils
Ylang ylang, pronounced “EE-lahng EE-lahng”, means “flower of flowers,” so it probably won’t surprise you to hear that the oil produced from this flower is truly exceptional. Ylang Ylang offers many uses and blends well with pretty much any other essential oil and natural scent. This makes it popular among aromatherapists, commercial beauty product manufacturers, and DIY enthusiasts. Whatever results you are looking for, be it skin health, hair health, or even mental health, chances are ylang ylang will help you achieve them.
What Is Ylang Ylang Essential Oil?
Ylang ylang essential oil is extracted from the flowers of the Cananga odorata genus of trees. The flowers of the ylang ylang tree are a striking bright yellow, and almost look like an incredibly elegant peeled banana, with many droopy petals stemming out of the center. The oil is often a colorless liquid, although it can also have a pale yellow hue to it. Prized for centuries by the countries that grow it, ylang ylang trees are cultivated in Indonesia, the Philippines, and the Polynesian islands, among other tropical Asian countries.
The ylang ylang flowers go through an intense 14 hours of steam distillation, during which several grades or levels of ylang ylang oil are extracted. The first oil is the strongest, often called ylang ylang “extra” or “complete,” while the second and third levels are still pure ylang ylang oil, albeit with less potent therapeutic properties. Ylang ylang oil extra is often used in aromatherapy to boost the mood and combat depression.
Ylang Ylang is even famously used as an aphrodisiac, and plays a traditional part in the wedding night ceremonies in indonesia. Today, it is also used to lower blood pressure, ease digestive issues, and relieve PMS symptoms. It also has great benefits for skin health and hair care which we will discuss in more detail below.
While the lower levels one two and three of ylang ylang oil aren’t used as much therapeutically, they are very often used as fragrances and ingredients in foods, soaps, shampoos, and perfumes, the most famous one probably being its use in the legendary Chanel No5.
Using Ylang Ylang Essential Oil For Hair, Hair Loss
Many essential oils will help with hair issues. However, ylang ylang oil helps with your hair and makes you smell absolutely wonderful at the same time. The first step to healthy hair is achieving a healthy scalp. Your scalp, and right beneath your scalp, is where your hair gets all of it’s nutrients from, so it’s important to give your hair a healthy foundation.
One of the biggest hair-related problems people face is dandruff and a dry flaky scalp. This is caused by the scalp not producing enough sebum, which is the oil that your body naturally produces to moisturize itself. Ylang ylang oil helps regulate your sebum production, while it’s antibacterial and antimicrobial properties help fight and remove the dandruff. Combined with a little bit of coconut oil, ylang ylang oil is an excellent moisturizer for your scalp, and can give you short term moisturization along with long term sebum balance, which is the perfect antidote to dry scalp.
Hair is held into your head by small roots, and falls out when these roots become too weak to hold it in. The number one way to combat hair loss is simply to strengthen the roots, by providing them with more nutrient rich blood. When used properly, ylang ylang oil can actually stimulate healthy hair and roots growth.
Try mixing a few drops of ylang ylang oil with some coconut oil, and massage it into your scalp with your fingertips using circular motions. Massage for 3-5 minutes to really stimulate the blood vessels in your scalp. Then, cover your hair with a towel for anything from 30 minutes to overnight – the longer the better. When you’re ready, wash it out thoroughly with a natural shampoo. Another reason ylang ylang oil may be so effective for hair loss is that it also combats stress, which is one of the leading causes of hair loss in adults. A little ylang ylang oil used daily can really have a positive impact on your mood, and in turn, may reduce your hair loss.
Ylang ylang oil is also known to give a hair a beautiful shine to it while sorting out frizz and tangles as well. It has a sort of instant-conditioning effect. You can mix in a few drops with your daily shampoo, or even mix a few drops into a spray bottle with some water and spray it into your hair in the middle of the day for a quick hair boost.
Using Ylang Ylang Essential Oil For Skin And Acne
Ylang ylang oil has been used for centuries in skin and acne treatments. Its desirable smell combined with its powerful properties have made it a perfect all-around beauty solution. Ylang ylang shines by effectively balancing the oil production of the sebaceous glands, especially in drier and more mature skin. It’s also known for giving the skin a fresh glow after being applied. This, combined with its effect of tightening the skin, improving the skin elasticity, and reducing wrinkles, makes it a great choice for reducing the signs of aging. For a simple cleansing and balancing toner, mix a teaspoon of ylang ylang oil into a cup of chamomile tea.
One of the challenges faced by people suffering from dry skin and acne is that the commercial acne treatments available simply dry out the skin, leaving irritated, peeling skin behind which is not much better than acne. Ylang ylang oil is able to cleanse the acne and fight the bacteria causing it, while simultaneously moisturizing the skin.
Even though it is technically an oil, it’s not an oil that will further clog the pores, and it can actually help regulate the sebaceous glands to produce the right levels of their oil on their own, which helps treat the acne and dry skin at the root of the problem. Use it by adding a few drops to your daily face wash or moisturizer, or simply dilute a few drops in a 1:1 ratio of witch hazel and apply it directly to the acne with a cotton ball.
Side Effects Caused By Ylang Ylang Essential Oil
Ylang ylang is considered a very safe oil, and doesn’t have any severe side effects associated with it. However, like all essential oils, ylang ylang oil is extremely concentrated, and should be patch-tested before using. Dilute a few drops in a carrier oil and apply it to a small patch on the inside of your wrist, and wait 24 hours to see if your skin reacts to it. For this reason it is also strongly advised only to use high grade and organic ylang ylang oil, since the last thing you want to do when trying to improve your skin is to rub concentrated pesticides and toxins onto it.
If you want to ingest it, make sure to use only ylang ylang oil that is clearly labeled “therapeutic grade,” and look for ylang ylang “complete” or “extra.” While there have been reports of nausea and headaches associated with excessive use, using ylang ylang in measured doses shouldn’t cause side effects.
Pregnant women, as well as people taking regular medications, should check with a doctor before ingesting. People with medical conditions, especially diabetes and irregular blood pressure, should also check with a doctor before using – since ylang ylang can affect the blood flow and nervous system. While usually these effects are desirable, people with heart conditions and such should check to make sure it won’t cause adverse reactions.
Does Ylang Ylang Essential Oil Have A Pleasant Scent?
As noted, ylang ylang oil is quite famous for its scent. It can even be used by itself as a light perfume, applied directly to the neck and wrists. However, try go easy on it as the smell can be overpowering if used in excess. Ylang ylang is also very popular to use in a diffuser, since it fills the room with a very calming and soothing aroma which is known to reduce stress and anxiety as well increase sexual desire. This makes ylang ylang oil the perfect scent to wear when spending time with your loved one at the end of a long day, whether by diffusing it or even by putting a little on the bed sheets.
Blending Ylang Ylang Essential Oil With Other Oils
Building on what we just wrote about its scent, ylang ylang oil blends very well with other oils. To promote a feeling of well-being and optimism, diffuse 2 drops of ylang ylang with 2 drops of bergamot essential oil. For a tropical smelling air freshener, diffuse 2 drops of ylang ylang with 2 drops of jasmine. For a stimulating aphrodisiac massage rub, mix 2 drops of ylang ylang oil with 2 drops of sandalwood or rosewood oil. It also pairs very well with lavender essential oil, clary sage oil, tea tree essential oil, and citrus oils for hair and skin.
The truth is that since it carries such a delicate smell and offers so many uses for all skin and hair types, ylang ylang will blend well with pretty much every essential oil! Experiment until you find a combination that perfectly suits your needs.
— Lisa Marie Halsey (@LisaMarieHalsey) March 26, 2017
Ylang ylang oil is a highly practical oil – it would be pretty tough to go wrong no matter how you use it. We talked about hair health, skin health, acne, relaxation, and blending, and whether you decide to use it on its own, or as a note in a more complex potion, it will definitely add a desirable extra layer of effects to your body care routine. Going natural with your products gets even more exciting when you find out about amazing oils like ylang ylang, since you have definitely come across at least a few commercial products that contain some form of ylang ylang without even realizing it.
The best thing about getting ylang ylang as an essential oil, however, is that you get to use it natural and pure. What could be better?