Essential Oil Bug Repellent

Essential Oil Bug Repellent

The weather is warming up and outdoor activities are popping up on your calendar.

So how do you shield yourself from the subsequent bug bites?

Many prefer a natural solution that isn’t chemically-laden, like DEET, to discourage bugs from landing on their skin. DEET is a chemical agent. It is the common active ingredient in many insect repellents sold in stores.

According to sources, DEET was developed by the U.S. Army in response to missions in jungle environments during World War II.

While it is the most common form of bug repellent available, its long-term health effects on humans are still being evaluated.

A selection of essential oils, when alone or mixed together with other carrier oils such as coconut or olive, can offer an effective and safe way to evade a corporeal canvas of swollen, itchy red bites this season.


The pungent menthol scent of peppermint is said to be strongly disliked by many bugs, including ticks and spiders.

Dabbing a cotton ball with a few drops of peppermint essential oil and leaving them around the house where there are spiders can be a successful way of moving them along and keeping them away.

Another suggestion is to fill a spray bottle with water and enough drops of peppermint essential oil to create a noticeable smell. Then spray it on yourself, or the areas of your house prone to bugs or insects.

Another tip for eradicating ticks is said to be rubbing pure, undiluted peppermint essential oil on the behind of the submerged insect to force it to remove its head from beneath the skin.


The soothing scent of lavender is considered one of the most common featured in aromatherapy practices today. This light oil with a pleasant aroma is known for having analgesic, antiseptic, antibacterial, anti-inflammatory and insecticidal assets that make it valuable in both preventing and treating stings and bug bites.

According to author Patricia Davis, in her book “Aromatherapy A-Z,” lavender essential oil has historically been incorporated as a natural bug repellent for centuries. It can even be helpful in keeping moths and other insects from compromising the quality of stored linens.

Its analgesic properties are able to reduce pain at the site of swelling, while anti-inflammatory and antibacterial components simultaneously work to reduce the size and redness. According to sources, the right amount of lavender essential oil can also help in preventing fleas, beetles and flies from causing a full-blown infestation in your home.


Lemongrass grows in clumps or hassocks that appear similar to common overgrown blades of lawn grass. The fresh, light lemony scent of lemongrass, while welcoming to humans, it is not a favorite scent of insects.

Placing fresh-cut blades of natural lemongrass around the house is said to be one way to remedy mosquitoes and small bugs from buzzing around.

Stores, particularly Asian groceries, offer potted versions of the plant. Lemongrass essential oil is also known for having antiseptic and anti-inflammatory properties suitable for alleviating the itchy, redness and swelling of bites and stings.


Rosemary is an aromatic herb with a deep earthen scent. The tiny, pine-like needles of rosemary are often dried and utilized for culinary purposes. Many claim that using rosemary essential oil mixed with water can be used as a spray to repel flies.

Tea Tree Oil

Tea tree oil has many healing components which make it ideal for a number of skin issues, including bug bites and stings. The hearty, camphor-like smell is also acts as a natural bug deterrent. Since tea tree oil is potent when it is pure, it is suggested to dilute the essential oil with another carrier oil, such as coconut, olive or jojoba (water is another option), and use as a spray for defense. Tea tree oil can also be used to reduce the size and redness of bug bites when applied to skin. (Remember to never apply pure, undiluted essential oils directly to the skin as this can increase irritation)


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