My dear friend Rachel, who lives in Florida where summer is well underway, asked me to write this post. Well, she asked me to send her a list of some natural insect repellents, and I thought it would make a good blog post. Since I’m pretty sure you don’t like bug bites either.

Essential oils that repel bugs

  • Lemon Eucalyptus (actually verified by the CDC)
  • Lemon Balm (You may have heard of citronella)
  • Lavender
  • Cedarwood
  • Tea tree
  • Clove
  • Lemongrass
  • Rosemary
  • Pennyroyal
  • Geranium

Delivery methods

  • You can add the oils to castile soap while you make it. Then wash with that soap before and after going outside.
  • You can add the essential oils to a carrier oil made from fruit or nuts, and rub it on your body. The carrier oil makes it spread better.
  • You can add the oils to water to make a spray, but remember to shake before spraying.

Some advice

  • Do not use these oils on kids under the age of 3, pregnant or breastfeeding women.
  • Less is better. Start with just a couple of drops per ounce, and increase to find your level of tolerance. But don’t add more than 10-15 drops per ounce.
  • Different oils work for different bugs, so a combination may be the best choice. Choose your oils and try them out, to see what works for you.
  • Do a patch test before you rub it all over your body, to make sure you won’t have an allergic reaction to the oils.
  • Make sure to get real essential oils, not synthetic or scent oils.
  • Remember that wearing perfume/deodorant might attract them to you.
  • Keep cool, they’re attracted to body heat and expelled carbon monoxide.
  • Wear covering clothes, especially in tick-infested areas. Long pants tucked into socks, and a long-sleeved shirt helps keep them off you. Cover as much of your skin as possible and choose a tightly woven fabric. The right clothes also help keep mosquitoes away from areas right in surface vessels, like your ankles, the back of your knees, and your wrists.
  • Wear the right colours. Did you know that mosquitoes are attracted to dark colours? Keep it light, it also helps keep you cool.
  • Eating garlic also repels mosquitoes. Maybe because they’re like tiny vampires 🙂

10 Comments

  1. Dawn

    Great tips! I cannot stand bugs, yet they love me! 🙁 Good thing I love garlic. hahaha

    Reply
    • Linda Ursin

      Thanks 🙂 Yes, it’s a good thing you love Garlic. For this, and a lot of other reeasons.

      Reply
  2. Chris

    Great tips on alternative ways to deal with keeping away pests.

    Reply
    • Linda Ursin

      Thanks 🙂 I hope they don’t give you too much problems this year

      Reply
  3. Hope Wissel

    Great tips. Thanks for sharing. Hubby uses oils a lot in his pain management but it is nice hearing about some more practical uses.

    Reply
    • Linda Ursin

      Thanks 🙂 Some of these do double duty for pain as well

      Reply
  4. Reba Linker

    Great info – we have lavender in our yard – I had no idea it could be used as an insect repellant. Thanks, Linda!

    Reply
    • Linda Ursin

      Thanks Reba 🙂 You can use it for lots of things

      Reply
  5. Caren Myers

    Thanks for this, Linda. Has anyone tried to make fly spray/repellent for horses with essential oils? Do you have any recommendations for what oils repel what bugs? We have those tiny gnats that are biting the horses’s ears and bellies.

    Reply
    • Linda Ursin

      If you search on Google, using the words natural bug spray for horses, you’ll find at least three recipes for horse spray with essential oils. I don’t know how well they work though.

      Reply

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