Native to Southeast Asia, ylang-ylang or ilang-ilang is a tropical tree in the Annonaceae family. The name ylang-ylang comes from the name of the tree 'ílang-ilang' in Tagalog (the official language of the Philippines) which means 'the flower of flowers'. The essential oil of ylang-ylang first appeared in Manila (Philippines) in the 1860s. However, it is in Nosy-Be (Madagascar) and the Comoros Islands that its large-scale commercial production has developed, where the tree is grown mainly as a bush.
Ylang-ylang essential oil is obtained by steam distillation of its flowers. The distillation process can last from 12 to 20 hours and is done in stills to extract an essential oil in several fractions.
Its essential oil is well known for haircare as it promotes shine and invigorates the hair. It is a must for dull hair lacking vitality. However, it is also used in all types of bodycare, as ylang-ylang is known for its powerful anti-inflammatory properties (skin allergies, eczema, psoriasis). An excellent sebum regulator, it is a natural energiser with a powerful exotic floral note.