Aftelier Organic Ylang Face Elixir ~ scented body product review

Aftelier Organic Ylang Face Elixir

The weather has suddenly turned cool and windy here in the northeast, so it's the perfect time for me to upgrade my skincare for extra moisture and protection — and if I can work a good-smelling product or two into my regimen, then all the better! Natural perfumer Mandy Aftel of Aftelier has just released a new Organic Ylang Face Elixir, which I've been sampling this week. It contains organic ylang ylang, a creamy floral blended with bright pink grapefruit and blood orange, both known for their toning and softening properties, in a base of seven organic oils (rice bran, sweet almond, apricot kernel, camellia, grapeseed, squalene and rose hip seed).

When I first became seriously interested in fragrance, and I was smelling as many perfumes as I could in order to define what I liked, I realized that ylang ylang was (and is) one of my favorite floral notes. It's sensual without being overpowering or animalic, and it adds an "exotic" element to softer, more garden-like florals. In Aftelier Organic Ylang Face Elixir, the ylang ylang is creamy and a touch custard-y, yet its bright side also makes an appearance, heightened by the presence of the natural citrus oils. The resulting scent is smooth and sunny, uplifting and calming at the same time. I think I might even notice a touch of rose in the blend, but I could be wrong all about that. What I do know is that this potion's fragrance makes me smile.

Aftelier's Face Elixirs are now packaged in glass bottles with dropper caps, which makes them very convenient to use, even if you're feeling sleepy towards bedtime. I've been working from a sample vial, which isn't difficult, either: I dispense three or four drops into the palm of my hand, let them warm there for a few seconds, and then gently press and massage the elixir into my face. My finicky complexion has accepted this formula without any problem at all, and when I wake the next morning, my face feels soft and smooth (but not greasy). Plus, I've had the pleasure of drifting off to sleep on a light wave of scent; I can't ask for much more!

Do you have a favorite skincare product that's fragranced as well as effective? Feel free to share in the comments!

Aftelier Organic Ylang Face Elixir sells for $65 for 15 ml; 1 ml samples (enough for several uses) are available for $6. For purchasing information, see the listing for Aftelier under Perfume Houses.

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  1. 50_Roses says:

    I have mixed feelings about this. I do like that the face elixirs now come in a dropper bottle, and the new larger size is actually less expensive per ml than the old size of 7 ml for $40, but–the Wild Orange face elixir that I have been enjoying has apparently been discontinued. The Wild Orange is a nice, not-too-bright woody orange that I find very relaxing at bedtime. The formula works well with my oily, acne-prone skin, moisturizing it without makeing it greasy or causing breakouts. I mostly use it around my eyes, and it has not caused me any irritation, unlike some so-called “eye cream” products that sting and burn. Unfortunately, I do not find ylang to be relaxing. How do I say this tactfully–for many people, ylang acts as an aphrodisiac, which is not exactly conducive to sleep, although it works well if you have other things in mind! I guess when I run out of the Wild Orange, I will have to get the rose face elixir, unless there are other options available by then.

    • Jessica says:

      Ah! Well, I can’t really comment on the aphrodisiac aspect… I suppose it doesn’t work that way for me!

      The selection seems to be tightly edited, so that some of the older formulas aren’t around anymore — but I did smell the rose-frankincense elixir about a year ago, and I liked it very much.

  2. morgana says:

    I have to confess that I bought Clarins Blue Orchid Face Oil primarily because of its smell. I am not so sure that it works perfectly for my skin, but it smells so good … On the other hand, Fawn Lily Botanica’s Geranium Argan Oil facial serum works really well for me. The bottle also looks nice.

    • Jessica says:

      Well, fragrance is very important when it’s a product that you’ll be applying so close to your nose, right? ;)

      I’ve never heard of Fawn Lily — will check it out!

  3. annemarie says:

    Is this product an oil or a serum? Sounds like an oil.

    I pay only a little bit of attention to skin care products but what I do notice more and more is (maybe) a growing trend towards facial treatments containing botanical oils, as opposed to the much more ‘scientific’ serums put out by the big cosmetic houses like Estee Lauder. Is this a trend towards more ‘natural’ products; a rejection of all that (pseudo)-science? The counter-argument is that the plant-based ingredients can actually be very harsh.

    I tend to be very cautious about putting highly fragranced products on my face but occasionally now I use Caudalie’s Divine Oil on my face, in the evening it feels worn out and dry, and the results were lovely. The scent is very relaxing too.

    Thanks for the review!

    • Jessica says:

      Hi, Annemarie — I don’t even know what “serum” means anymore. Anything and everthing! This is definitely a blend of carrier oils (which are all beneficial to skin) and botanical fragrance oils.

      My face really seems to prefer many botanical ingredients and natural waxes, etc. to synthetic ingredients — but everyone’s skin has its own temperament, of course!

  4. nozknoz says:

    This sounds yummy and like a worthwhile alternative to wearing perfume to bed. There are so many things I want from Aftelier, since I also love her perfumes. My credit cards are trying to hide as they hear me typing this. ;-)

    • Jessica says:

      Oh, I know, I know. Don’t even look at the solid perfumes in antique compacts, seriously. ;)

  5. PekeFan says:

    I like Weleda Rose Facial Oil Capsules. They have a lovely fragrance and make my skin look and feel wonderful.

  6. scentfromabove says:

    Well, I have very sensitive skin. I use Estee Lauder’s Hydrationist. I’ve used it for years. It smells great and keeps my face dewy and moisturized. I haven’t trusted my skin to anything else.

    • Jessica says:

      If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it, right?

      • scentfromabove says:

        Yes mam. At least that’s what my mama taught me. LOL!

  7. Rappleyea says:

    A word of caution from a practicing aromatherapist. Grapefruit is mainly for oily skin and orange is photosynthesizing (will cause a reaction in the sun) so use only at bedtime. Orange can also be irritating to the skin as can the almond oil and squalene.

    • Jessica says:

      This is all useful info to keep in mind. Thanks, R! Yes, everyone: for any new skincare product, patch-test first!

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