A beloved ingredient in 5YINA formulation is Osmanthus fragrans aka Gui Hua 桂花, a medicinal plant used in China for thousands of years. The flowers come from an evergreen native to east Asia and the most fragrant varietals bloom in September and October. At the height of its blooming season, the osmanthus tree is a poetic olfactory experience.
While the flowers are tiny, the scent profile of osmanthus is tenacious and captivating:
rich, honey sweet, fruity-leathery, sensual, complex, and delicate, all at the same time.
Perfumery and Food
These petit blossoms are commonly used in perfumery and food since ancient times. Harvested by hand, it takes over 1000 kilograms of flowers to yield 1 kilogram of osmanthus absolute, making it one of the most expensive and coveted ingredients for perfumery.
Reknowned french perfumer, Jean-Claude Ellena on the story behind Hermes’s perfume Osmanthe Yunnan:
“During a visit to the Forbidden City in Beijing, I was captivated by an exquisite smell that led me by the tip of my nose to the Imperial Palace, where osmanthus bushes were in bloom. In November, despite their tiny size, the flowers exuded a strong scent of apricot and freesia. I imagined combining these blossoms with a tea from Yunnan, the most beautiful province in China… and the idea for the fragrance was born.”
Already in vogue since China’s Song dynasty, osmanthus enfleurage was infused in hair pomade used by Chinese ladies to condition, style, and perfume their lustrous locks. The lingering perfume of osmanthus on the hair was a subtle way to make one more alluring.
Osmanthus blossoms make beautiful tea and is often paired with green, black and oolong teas.
We love a good cup of osmanthus tea from time to time. It’s a delicious tea that’s simple to make. Take 1-2 tablespoons of dried osmanthus flowers and place it in a tea pot or nug. Steep for 30 seconds with water that’s about 90 C/ 195 F. Strain, take in the enchanting fragrance and enjoy. Subsequent steeping may require longer time. To change up flavors, you may add black or green tea, or create a tisane blend with other flowers or herbs ( tip: goji berries work well ). The beautiful golden blossoms are great as topping on desserts. You can use it in sweet stews, puddings, jelly and cakes. Get creative!
Osmanthus as Medicine
According to the Encyclopedia of Materia Medica《中药大辞典》, osmanthus is warm and spicy. It is used to warm the lungs, detox, and disperse cold. Traditional Chinese Medicine physicians combine osmanthus with other herbs to treat halitosis, toothache, coughs, hernia, and painful menstruation. 
Rich in polyphenols and vitamin B3, osmanthus offer antioxidant benefits that may help reduce chronic diseases. In a 2013 study published in Scientific Reports journal, researchers found that aroma profile of osmanthus may have a sedative effect that curbs appetite. Potential neuroprotective and anti-tumor effect were also found in another 2017 research on the bioactive compounds of osmanthus essential oil.
Osmanthus flowers being rich in niacinmide and antioxidants, help improve skin elasticity, address pigmentation and rejuvenate skin. Grace Beauty Oil and Hydrolat, 5YINA’s autumn skin treatment, are formulated with wildcrafted osmanthus flowers in our proprietary botanical complex to add suppleness, protect and illuminate the complexion.
GRACE BEAUTY OIL
 中医世家 http://www.zysj.com.cn/zhongyaocai/yaocai_g/guihua.html
 Yamamoto, T., Inui, T. & Tsuji, T. The odor of Osmanthus fragrans attenuates food intake. Sci Rep 3, 1518 (2013) doi:10.1038/srep01518 https://rdcu.be/bXxp4
 Wang, L., Tan, N., Hu, J. et al. Analysis of the main active ingredients and bioactivities of essential oil from Osmanthus fragrans Var. thunbergii using a complex network approach. BMC Syst Biol 11, 144 (2017) doi:10.1186/s12918-017-0523-0 https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5745743/