What is it? 
Cananga Odorata is a fragrance and flavoring.

How can I avoid it? 
Skin contact with Cananga Odorat is required for it to cause a rash. Discontinuation of exposure to products containing Cananga Odorat should result in improvement and/or resolution of your dermatitis. By law, all products made in the US for topical use have the ingredients listed either on the product package or the box that contains it, so check the labeling of your skin care products for this ingredient. If there is no information ask your pharmacist or call the company directly. At work, request a material safety data sheet (MSDS) to help identify potential sources of exposure.

The avoidance of fragrances and flavoring agents such as Cananga Odorata can be difficult, since so many everyday products contain these substances. One should use only fragrance-free cosmetic and household products. “Unscented” products may contain low levels of a fragrance to cover up an undesirable odor and also should be avoided. Products labeled as “hypoallergenic” do not assure that the product is truly free of fragrance.

Since fragrances are complex mixtures of many ingredients, an individual may tolerate one fragrance but not another. A trial-and error method of avoiding a fragrance allergen in a product can be performed by applying the product to the forearm in the same small area twice a day for a week. If no dermatitis develops, the product may likely be used safely.

Since some fragrances are also flavors, foods can, rarely, cause flare-ups of dermatitis in fragrance-sensitive individuals. Particularly if you have oral or lip allergies as discussed with your health care provider, you should avoid foods prepared with Cananga Odorata.

Typical chemical compositions of the various grades of ylang-ylang essential oil are the following:
  • Linalool
  • Germacrene
  • Geranyl acetate
  • Caryophyllene
  • p-cresyl methyl ether
  • Methyl benzoate
  • Sesquiterpenes
  • Perfumes / Colognes / After-shaves / Toilet water
  • Skin Care Products / Cosmetics
    • Deodorants
    • Hair sprays, gels, tonics and lotions
    • “Permanents-Relaxers”
    • Soaps / Cleansers
    • Shampoos / Conditioners
    • Moisturizers 
    • Make-ups
    • Nail Polish Remover
    • Sunscreens
  • Medications, topical, prescription and over the counter such as
    • Anesthetics
    • Antiseptics
    • Creams, Ointments, Solutions
    • Foot And Other Powders
    • Nasal Decongestants
    • Herbal remedies, including Traditional Chinese Medications
    • Motion sickness remedies
    • Wound Dressings
  • Household products
    • Air Fresheners / Aromatherapy / Potpourri 
    • Cleaning Products / Soaps / Detergents (A preferred household cleaner is dilute white vinegar.) 
    • Dish soaps 
    • Furniture polish
    • Laundry care (detergent, softeners)? 
  • Foods, candies, gum, beverages, various, as a flavoring or spice
  • Oral Care Products as a flavoring
    • Cough mixtures m Toothpaste / Mouthwash
    • Throat tablets and lozenges
  • Tobacco
Other names for Cananga Odorata:
  • Ylang Ylang oil 
  • ilang-ilang 
  • Cananga tree 
  • Perfume tree
Potential cross-reacting/co-reacting substances:
  • Benzyl salicylate 
  • Fragrances

How safe is it?

Hang tight. We're thinking.