Is Ylang Ylang good for Seborrheic Dermatitis?

Ylang ylang essential oil, the fragrance equivalent of a tropical vacation in a bottle! Known for its rich, floral aroma, this oil is like a bouquet of sunshine that’ll transport you straight to a sandy beach with a piña colada in hand (well, in your mind at least).

Ylang ylang is also renowned for its calming properties, making it a great antidote to a stressful day. More importantly,this sweet-smelling elixir is also a potent antifungal and anti-inflammatory agent that can help soothe your irritated scalp.

There are no studies proving that ylang ylang oil has antifungal activity against Malassezia. However, the oil has anti-inflammatory, antiseptic and calming properties that may help relieve the symptoms of seb derm. People with dry skin will benefit most from using ylang ylang oil. 

Let’s take a deep dive:

What is Ylang Ylang?

Ylang ylang (pronounced ee-lang ee-lang) is a tropical tree native to Southeast Asia, particularly Indonesia, and is also commonly found in parts of the Philippines and Malaysia. The scientific name of the tree is Cananga odorata, and it belongs to the Annonaceae family.

The flowers of the ylang ylang tree are highly fragrant. You can smellthem from a mile away when they are in bloom. These scent bombs are used to produce ylang ylang essential oil through a process of steam distillation.

Ylang ylang essential oil has a sweet, floral, and slightly fruity aroma that is widely used in perfumes, aromatherapy, and skincare products. In traditional medicine, ylang ylang has been used for its various health benefits, such as promoting relaxation, reducing anxiety, and improving skin and hair health.

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Is ylang ylang anti fungal?

Studies have shown that ylang ylang oil has antifungal activity against various types of fungi, including Candida albicans, Aspergillus niger, and Trichophyton mentagrophytes, which are known to cause skin infections.

Ylang ylang oil contains several active compounds, such as linalool, geranyl acetate, and benzyl acetate, which have been found to have antifungal properties. These compounds work by disrupting the fungal cell membranes and inhibiting their growth and reproduction.

Unfortunately, I didn’t find any studies confirming that ylang ylang essential oil inhibits Malassezia growth.

This doesn’t mean that ylang ylang is bad for seb derm. Seb derm treatment is not all aimed at killing Malassezia. There are 4 other important components to seb derm.

Are there any benefits of using ylang ylang oil for seborrheic dermatitis?

There are plenty of benefits in incorporating ylang ylang oil into your seb derm routine. Let’s explore the skin benefits of this fragrant oil:

Ylang ylang oil has anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties

Ylang ylang oil has anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties which can help reduce skin inflammation. This helps with the redness and itching associated with seb derm and helps prevent further damage to your skin barrier. Plus, ylang ylang may help reduce wrinkles and skin aging.

Ylang ylang oil is an antiseptic

There is some scientific evidence to support the antiseptic properties of ylang ylang oil. A study in 2014 evaluated the antimicrobial activity of ylang ylang essential oil against bacteria like Staph aureus and Klebsiella and found that the oil can inhibit these strains.

Another study published in 2015 took a deep dive into ylang ylang and found that it is effective against multiple bacterial strains and candida albicans.

Traditional medicine has also used ylang ylang oil as an antiseptic for many years. The oil has been used in various cultures to treat wounds, skin infections, and other ailments.

While more research is needed to fully understand the antiseptic properties of ylang ylang oil, these studies provide some evidence that it may be effective in inhibiting the growth of microorganisms and balancing the skin microbiome.

Ylang ylang oil helps to regulate oil production and moisturize the skin

If you have a dry scalp, ylang ylang oil may help stimulate sebum production. This helps prevent flakiness and itching. The oil also helps to keep your skin moisturized, helping it look hydrated and smooth. 

Ylang ylang oil is calming and soothing

Ylang Ylang oil promotes relaxation. The antidepressant and stress relieving abilities of this essential oil helps to reduce stress, which is a major trigger for seb derm.

Is ylang ylang oil good for dandruff?

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According to Indians and islanders of the Indian Ocean, the leaves of the Cananga plant is believed to relieve itchiness and they apply the leaves directly to their scalp to treat dandruff.

Ylang ylang oil also helps to strengthen hair follicles and condition the scalp.

However, as mentioned before, ylang ylang oil hasn’t been shown to have any activity against Malassezia. Plus, applying ylang ylang topically may boost sebum production resulting in an oilier scalp.

My take on all of this is that if your dandruff is exacerbated by dry skin and you have symptoms of excessive flaking and itching, massaging a few drops of ylang ylang oil into your scalp may help.

However, if you already have an oily scalp, give ylang ylang oil a miss as it may aggravate your seb derm.

How to use ylang ylang for seborrheic dermatitis

Ylang ylang is not a heavy hitter in your seb derm regimen. If you are already using quite a few products for seb derm, don’t try to squeeze this in.

However, if you are a fan of ylang ylang, you can easily add a few drops to your moisturizer or scalp oil. If you’re using a carrier oil, make sure you use one that is safe for seb derm. My usual recommendation is to start with a 1: 10 ratio (1 part ylang ylang: 10 part carrier oil).

I find that ylang ylang can be helpful for those with dry skin or scalp. In humid weather, when your skin is already on the oily side, put ylang ylang away.

Potential side effects of ylang ylang

While ylang ylang oil is generally considered safe, there are some potential side effects that you should be aware of.

Ylang ylang oil is a potent essential oil and can cause skin irritation in some people. It’s important to always dilute ylang ylang oil with a carrier oil or cream before applying it to the skin and to perform a patch test first to check for any adverse reactions.

Ylang ylang oil also has a strong, floral scent that can trigger headaches or nausea if you’re sensitive, especially if used in large quantities or for an extended period.

The oil may increase your skin’s sensitivity to sunlight, which can increase the risk of sunburn or skin damage. Avoid direct sunlight or use sun protection while using ylang ylang oil topically.

2 thoughts on “Is Ylang Ylang good for Seborrheic Dermatitis?”

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