Repel Bugs Naturally

Need Natural Bug Repellent for MosquitosSummer is perfect for spending some timeoutdoors.  A warm summer night can be so peaceful and relaxing.  But there is nothing worse than going outside to relax, only to be eaten alive by mosquitoes, chiggers or whatever elsedecides to have you for dinner.  Some of these bugs, like mosquitoes and ticks, even carry diseases.  No one wants to come in contact with these annoying insects. Many try to avoid them at all costs.  You may not know it, but one of those costs may be your health.

Toxins in Bug Repellent

The typical thing most people do to deter bugs is spray down with bug repellent before heading outdoors.  This terrible smelling spray may work for keeping the insects away, but italso contains toxic ingredients.  The most common toxic ingredient in bug spray is deet.  Deet was patented by the U.S. army clear back in 1946. This chemical works quite well at repelling mosquitoes and other bugs, but it also works quite well at melting plastic.  Yes, something that melts plastic is in a product meant for your skin.  There is something seriously wrong with that!

Deet can also cause terrible side effects, such as brain impairment with prolonged exposure! Other harmful side effects include:

  • Headaches
  • Loss of memory and concentration
  • Nausea
  • Shortness of breath
  • Fatigue
  • Muscle weakness
  • Skin irritation and rash

What’s even more alarming is that we spray this toxic substance on our children, who are even more susceptible to deet’s venomous effects than adults.

Essential Oils for RepellentEssential oil lavender for natural bug repellant

Thankfully, there are much safer ways to repel bugs.  Certain essential oils work just as well as deet for keeping bugs at bay.  Another plus is that they smell so much better!  Some of the most effective oils used for bug repellent are:

  • Citronella
  • Lemongrass
  • Eucalyptus
  • Lavender
  • Germanium (great for ticks)

Your local health food store may carry a natural repellent made with one or more of these oils.  If you’d like, you can also make your own.

Most natural repellents have a strong citronella smell, which personally I’m not a huge fan of.  Making my own bug spray allows me customize a scent that I enjoy while still keeping the bugs away.

Insect Repellent Recipe

  • 1/4 cup of oil (olive, almond, or avocado work well)
  • 20-50 drops of essential oils
  • 2 Tbsp of Aloe Vera
Pour the oil and aloe vera into a small bug spray bottle.  Choose at least 3 of the essential oils listed above and add a blend of  25-50 drops.  Shake well before each use.

I love the smell of lavender (it’s great for stress), so my favorite combo is:

  • 20 drops lavender
  • 10 drops lemongrass
  • 5 drops citronella
  • 5 drops germanium
  • 5 drops eucalyptus

Ditch the Deet and Go Natural!

Chemical free bug repellents like the recipe above are safe for everyone, including children and dogs!   We spray our dog down about 3 times a week, and it’s been working very well at preventing fleas and ticks.

P.S. Remember, health isn’t just about what we put inside our bodies, but what we put on it as well.  Ditch the deet and instead use this safe, natural, and effective solution to repel those pesky bugs.

What simple and effective bug sprays do you make or use?

More Articles You Might Enjoy: