This Or That? Ylang Ylang Oils

by Bella Martinez April 27, 2023

This Or That? Ylang Ylang Oils

Walk through the aromatherapy aisle at your local health foods store and you’re likely to catch a whiff of Ylang Ylang essential oil. This potently floral, exquisitely beautiful oil has captured the attention of many essential oil users for decades. But so has one question – what’s the difference between Ylang Ylang’s many varieties? 

In today’s blog, we’ll share our musings on all things Ylang Ylang oil and delve into the similarities and differences between each Ylang Ylang variety. Read on to discover more.


What Is Ylang Ylang Essential Oil?  

Ylang Ylang extra essential oil by Edens Garden


Native to SouthEast Asia and popular in natural perfume, Ylang Ylang (Cananga odorata) is a fast-growing tree that flowers year-round. Ylang Ylang flower (pronounced, ee-lay-ng ee-lay-ng) is also referred to by its genus, Cananga.


Ylang Ylang extra essential oil by Edens Garden


Its yellow, fragrant flowers undergo steam distillation in fractions, or different lengths of time, producing varying grades of Ylang Ylang essential oil. It is one of few plants that can produce unique oils from fractional distillation.


Ylang Ylang extra essential oil by Edens Garden

Distillers of Ylang Ylang most often choose when to fraction their distillation based on that batch’s specific gravity–or density of a liquid compared to the density of another liquid. While there are no rules or benchmark characteristics of Ylang Ylang fractions, there are distinct generalizations that can be made about each grade. Let’s discuss what those are. 

What’s The Difference Between Ylang Ylang Oils? 

There are five commercially available floral fractions of Ylang Ylang oil:

  • Ylang Ylang Extra
  • Ylang Ylang I
  • Ylang Ylang II
  • Ylang Ylang III
  • Ylang Ylang Complete

At Edens Garden, we offer three out of five Ylang Ylang fractions.

Ylang Ylang Extra Ylang Ylang I Ylang Ylang Complete

Ylang Ylang Extra 

Ylang Ylang Extra is the first of five fractions and is distilled for about 30 minutes to an hour. It is often the most favored of the five in perfumery for its refined, complex aroma. It is the highest in linalool, geranyl acetate and benzyl acetate, making this variety of Ylang a superior sedative and muscle relief for tension, spasms and soreness.


Fraction  Aroma Use
Distilled and collected after 30 minutes - 1 hour
  • Refined
  • Complex
  • Sedative
  • Muscle soreness
  • Tension
  • Spasms

Ylang Ylang I 

Ylang Ylang I is the second fraction, directly following Ylang Ylang Extra, and is distilled for approximately three hours. It contains a balanced amount of Ylang’s most common constituents, making it a good choice for easing anxiety as well as boosting mood. This variety has a sweeter, greener aroma than other fractions.


Fraction  Aroma Use

Distilled and collected after 3 hours


  • Sweet
  • Green
  • Anxiety
  • Mood boosting

Ylang Ylang Complete 

Ylang Ylang Complete can refer to Ylang oil that is the product of 6 hours of distillation or a blend of fractions. At Edens Garden, we offer a Ylang Ylang Complete that’s been distilled for 6 hours. It contains a high amount of heavier aromatic molecules like beta-caryophyllene and germacrene, giving it an aroma that’s deep and floral with fruity notes.[1] This variety is often chosen for its aphrodisiac and skin and hair care benefits.

Fraction  Aroma Use
Distilled and collected after 6 hours
  • Deeply floral
  • Fruity
  • Aphrodisiac
  • Skin care
  • Hair care

What Can I Mix With Ylang Ylang? 

Ylang Ylang essential oil is one of the most potent, meaning a little goes a long way. It adds an intensely sweet and floral note to almost any blend, and pairs well with essential oils like Jasmine, Peppermint, Clary Sage, Lavender and Geranium

Its many benefits also make it a great addition to blends that assist with everyday issues. In fact, we’ve sprinkled it into many blends for its wonderful aroma and powerful effects. 

Here are some of our favorite oils to blend with Ylang Ylang to achieve maximum benefits.



Together, Ylang Ylang, Lavender and Chamomile can make falling asleep (and staying asleep) a breeze. Add these essential oils in equal proportions to your essential oil diffuser or try Good Night – a blend in which all of these oils guest star. 

To a Pearl Diffuser, add: 4 drops Ylang Ylang Extra + 4 drops Lavender + 4 drops Roman Chamomile

Better Mood

To enhance your mood, try adding a creamy, rounded note to Ylang Ylang, like Vanilla or Peru Balsam. Diffuse a blend of Vanilla and Ylang Ylang during playful moments or to help create a symbiotic atmosphere.

To a Mio Mist Diffuser, add: 1 drop Ylang Ylang + 1 drop Vanilla Oleoresin


To enhance its sultry aroma, add a few drops of Clary Sage or Geranium to Ylang Ylang to awaken sensual energy. Dilute your blend in a carrier oil such as Fractionated Coconut oil to craft a soothing massage oil. Alternatively, try Aphrodisiac or Love essential oil blends, which both highlight this floral favorite.

To Unscented Body Oil, add: 5 drops Geranium + 4 drops Clary Sage + 3 drops Ylang Ylang Complete

Anxiety Relief

Anxiety management is necessary, but not always easy to achieve. Thankfully, studies have shown that Ylang Ylang can help to reduce feelings of stress and anxiousness.[2] Pair Ylang Ylang with Lemongrass and Sweet Orange to ease anxiety, or try Anxiety Ease essential oil blend in an essential oil inhaler.

To an Essential Oil Inhaler, add: 5 drops Sweet Orange + 3 drops Ylang Ylang + 2 drops Lemongrass 


  1. Ylang Ylang.

  2. Effects of Ylang-Ylang aroma on blood pressure and heart rate in healthy men.

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Vincelle Robinson

August 25, 2021 at 7:36 am

Ylang Ylang Complete is my favorite of the five on the market. Edens Garden’s smells beautiful. I also love the Good Night blend. Such a gentle, soothing, and relaxing scent.

Brenda K

August 23, 2021 at 4:05 pm

These “This or That?” posts are so helpful — thank you! Now I’ve got new inspiration for using the Ylang Ylang oil I just reloaded on (also picked up the Lemongrass-YY blend to try)…and finally know how to pronounce it properly.