Essential Oils: Ylang Ylang


First of all, its pronounced EE-LANG EE-LANG unless you’re southern, then it’s YA-LANG YA-LANG. I know y’all were all sitting there like I was, trying to figure out how in the world to say it. Is the Y silent? Or maybe the L is silent? The English language is a weird thing, so best to just give it to you straight-up. If you’ve read my posts on other oils then you know what you’re getting, we only use science around here since people like to have tangible facts. Ylang is also one that I highly recommend for the oily arsenal.




Background

Ylang Ylang (Cananga odorata) is derived from the flower petals of the tropical Ylang Ylang tree of Asia and the south Pacific. It has a very floral scent and was even used in the famous Chanel No. 5! Fancy, right? It like many essential oils have been used throughout history. In Indonesia, it is commonly used on the beds of newlyweds (bow-chicka-wow-wow). Fun fact about Ylang, the quality of oil depends a lot on the cultivation of the flowers. If picked early in the morning, the oil will be more beneficial since pollination occurs by night moths.

Benefits

Heart Health. Ylang improves blood flow and supports the circulatory system. It can help control blood pressure and is super effective when used alongside other oils. 
Mood Enhancer. Ylang directly effects the olfactory system in the brain. Because of this, simply inhaling the scent can have wonderful and positive effects on your mood. Research published in 2006 states that the oil helps relieve depression in humans. 
Skin and Hair Health. Probably the most popular use for the oil is in cosmetics and hair products. It helps to regulate sebum production to keep skin from drying out. It helps maintain the moisture in the hair as well as promoting growth.
PMS Remedy. Lord knows we could all use a little help during that time of the month. Ylang helps reduce symptoms of PMS and regulate hormones. It can be a female’s best friend during certain times. However, it will induce menstruation and should NEVER be used during pregnancy or breastfeeding. 
Aphrodisiac. That’s right, Ylang Ylang is the little blue pill of the oil world. It increases the libido for both men and women. Is it going to make you run upstairs, leaving a trail of clothing behind? Probably not. However, through consistent use, it can really improve your overall sex drive. After all the excitement, you should get a great night of rest since Ylang Ylang is a mild sedative! Win, Win! 

Application

As with all oils, test a small patch on your skin before using it extensively. Just make sure you keep it away from orifices such as your eyes, ears, or more sensitive areas. Yeah, y’all know what I mean. It’s not going to work any better if you put it in your No-No square. 
Diffusing is always my preferred method. Easy. Simple. You don’t have to worry about dilution.
As far as internally, I don’t ever recommend it since people can react so differently. However, if you insist on it, make sure you’re using higher quality oils and not something from your local Dollar General. It ain’t going to kill you, but I might use extra caution the first time around.

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