Ylang ylang (Cananga odorata) Oil, is a balancing, soothing fragrance for many natural hair and body care solutions. This oil comes from the big droopy yellow flowers of the cananga tree. These fast growing trees are often found in tropical climates (India, Indonesia, the Philippines), and used for their fabulous fragrance.
The oil has a strong, sweet, floral scent and is sold in 4 commercial grades:
- Extra – the finest, comes from the first distillation
- Three (what I’m currently using)
I was surprised when my oldest daughter Asia (who is quite the mixtress herself:) wanted to shake some in our nightly hair oil. Depending on the style, I’ll braid or twist her hair at night, and take it down in the morning. It gives her hair a pretty curly effect without heat. It also saves me lots of time so I can do Laila’s hair (also thick and luscious), mine, and still get them to school on time!
these were taken before bed, but you can still see a few of her curls
We’ve been on a heavy coconut oil spree over the last few weeks (we bought a big jar from Costco) and I use this to apply to her hair after detangling with spritz (water with lavender oil and nettle). It makes her hair super soft and shiny. I added more water to the spray bottle and shook in a little ylang ylang because I love the smell (and it calms the house before bedtime).
She asked me – What’s ylang ylang Mommy, what’s it do?
As I got all professorial, and her pretty little eyes began to glaze over, I decided to give it to her post style (minus all the aphrodisiac stuff) – which I’m sharing with you!
9 Great Ylang Ylang Oil Benefits
1. Good for body relaxation – Ylang ylang is antispasmodic, meaning it suppresses muscle spasms. It’s excellent to rub into your skin after a workout or anytime your muscles feel tight and achy.
2. Lowers blood pressure – I used this with a group of cardiac patients (32 people) who were hoping to avoid surgery and a heart attack. In addition to making changes to what they ate, and their exercise regime, I gave everyone a spritz with lavender and ylang ylang for relaxation. In the 3 months we worked together, no one in this group had surgery or a heart attack. Made me say hmmm…
3. Kills head lice – As a parent, I love this one because once a year a letter comes home saying someone (in one of my kids’ classes) was sent home with head lice. Web Md has a spray recipe thats supposed to kill 92% of lice. I hope to never use it but I’m glad I have most of the ingredients on hand. It’s includes ylang ylang, anise, and coconut oil — who knew?
4. Lifts the spirits/causes euphoria. Feeling blue? Open a bottle of ylang ylang and inhale…deeply. Ylang ylang lifts the spirits, can cause feelings of euphoria, and tempers depression. How’s that for less than $10.
5. Perfect hair tonic – ylang ylang balances oil production in all skin types, especially those of us oily skinned beauties. When used on your hair and scalp, it stimulates hair growth. I believe this is THE special ingredient thats helped Asia’s edges grow in thicker and faster in the last few weeks.
6. Good mood food – this deep scented love potion also balances feelings of jealousy and dissolves the symptoms of anger and frustration. The next time you’re feeling some type of way – don’t throw this bottle at anyone. Add a few drops to a cup of water and set it next to you while you pray, vent, or call a friend to bring you back from the edge…
7. Decreases feelings of fear
8. Calms irritability, boosts relaxation – My son (4) usually needs some help calming down when he comes home from school. I’ll apply some sensory pressure (massage) on his arms and legs, and if her really needs it, we’ll use a sensory brush. I like to spray ylang ylang scented water in the air during this time. He LOVES it! If a tantrum’s brewing and I can find it in time, it works well to ease his little temper – which he definitely got from his father’s side of the family.
9. An aphrodisiac – It’s hard to find any article that doesn’t speak about the increase of sexual, sensual desire with this scent. I think Rosewood Oil has a more intense effect (everyone is nicer to you with this on your wrist:) but it may be it’s intense relaxing effect that helps you feel more in the mood. With Valentines Day coming up, it will be in my sensual collection of goodies, along with that rosewood oil…
- It can be used as a flavoring – I kept seeing ylang ylang used as food flavoring but didn’t find any food recipes with this ingredient. I love it and all, but haven’t eaten it…that I know of. I did find an abstract that examined the safety of using ylang ylang in food. Check it out here if you’re curious.
- Other moody effects: balances feelings of anxiety, grief, impatience, hypersensitivity, stress, feelings of overwhelm, melancholy.
- Supports the spiritual principle of Acceptance.
Use less than you think you need with ylang ylang. It is pretty powerful and too much can cause headaches and nausea. I rarely use more than 4 to 6 drops (and I’m heavy handed with my oils), even in baths.
Asia’s CoCo-Ylang Hair Oil Recipe (for Healthy Shiny Curls)
2 tablespoons coconut oil
1 to 2 drops ylang ylang oil
- Apply to hair with or without a water spritz.
- Braid hair and sleep with a silk or satin scarf/hair bonnet.
- Take hair down and style as usual in the morning.
You don’t have to use coconut oil. Jojoba, safflower, and sunflower oil, also work well in this recipe. For a deep conditioning, try using coco-ylang hair oil for scalp massage and as a hot oil treatment.
Here are some other pics from our bedtime hair show:)
Enjoy the benefits of ylang ylang lavishly:)
Have you had any success with ylang ylang?