When we moved into the woods a few months back, I realized very quickly we would need a Homemade Bug Repellent Spray. There’s a lake close by. The amount of bugs, insects, creepy crawlies is unbelievable. My 3 boys (7,10, 11) are getting used to them. When we first moved in we were being attacked by ticks. I just knew I had to come up with a solution quickly!
These statements have not been evaluated by the FDA and are not meant to treat, cure, or diagnos are disease or disorder.
I pulled out a bottle of stuff I bought at the pet store that was safe for our dog and for humans too. I bought it for my dog thinking we could beat a spell of fleas over the counter.
I didn’t end up using the second bottle I bought. I still had it lying around and thought maybe we could use it on ourselves.
Halfway through the week and through the bottle, I realized that I would have to figure out how to make this myself.
The bottle costs $20 for 32 FL OZ. It only took us about a week to use the entire bottle. I surely couldn’t spend $20 bucks a week on this stuff. So, I did what I usually do when I want to make something myself, I simply look at the ingredients!
That’s right I look at the bottle to see what’s in there. I saw peppermint oil and clove oil. I knew I could make something with essential oils.
It’s pretty easy these days to find a Whole Foods Market, or an Earth Fare, or other natural foods market where they sell essential oils.
They come in small bottles but don’t be alarmed, you’ll only use a tiny bit of them for this recipe. I knew I wanted something that would deter mosquitoes as well as ticks if possible and if it worked on fleas that would be a bonus.
So I looked in the cabinet to see what I had on hand. I noticed I had citronella.
I don’t even remember buying it or ever using it. Citronella candles are used for mosquitos, right? So, I looked more into it and saw that there were a couple of studies saying it was about as good as deet.
Mixing up the natural tick, mosquito, and flea repellent is a breeze and takes probably under 2 minutes, including grabbing the supplies.
Also, look at more uses for peppermint oil!
IMPORTANT NOTE AND DISCLAIMERS:
Speaking of animals. Is this safe for animals? You should ask a veterinarian. They may talk you into buying an expensive prescription like my dog is on, but hey it is pretty foolproof it seems.
This repellent is just that it aids in repelling fleas, ticks and mosquitos. It’s not going to repel every single insect or bug. Ticks or other bugs may still get on you and bite. Some insects/bugs carry diseases. If you need an absolute solution you should seek other sources.
Also, this spray must be applied very often, every hour or so. Make sure to spray shoes well. Use common sense and don’t spray it in your eyes.
My observations on how well this repellent works…
Before use, we were seeing about 7 or 8 ticks on each person give or take a few. When spray was applied (to skin, shoes, & clothing) about every hour (when outside), we only saw about 1 to 2 ticks per person. It’s a significant difference but not absolute.
Homemade Bug Repellent Spray Recipe
You will need 32 FL OZ bottle.
- 25 drops Peppermint Essential Oil
- 15 drops Clove Essential Oil
- 5 drops Citronella Essential Oil
- 1-2 tsp of natural degreasing soap or just Dawn dish liquid
- Enough water to fill up the rest of the bottle
Mix together the ingredients in a 32 FL OZ Bottle, place the top on and swish it around a bit. That’s all there is to it!
There are a couple of other good repellents you may not find in the store that seems to work pretty well.
One is called Picaridin. – This works up to 12 hours on mosquitoes, ticks (14 hours for lotion); up to 8 hours against biting flies, gnats, chiggers, and sand flies.
The other is called Permethrin. – Works on ticks, chiggers, mites, and mosquitoes. It says on Amazon, in the product description, it lasts up to 6 weeks (or 6 washings.)
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