There isn’t a person on the planet who likes mosquitos. It’s hard to enjoy them when all they do is live to crash your summer parties by sucking the blood right out of ya and running off with it. Though, at least we get a temporary reminder of them as we scratch the scene of the crime for a few days.
While we can use whichever bug repellent is being advertised to us, we’re often left wondering which product is best for us. Should we use natural products? Are these chemicals harmful? Try not to worry too much this summer because there is another route that you can go down: the natural mosquito repellent.
Natural Mosquito Repellent
So, what exactly should you use to keep them away? The answer is essential oils! These little miracles in a bottle have long been at the root of praise for their ability to help with our hair and skin, calm anxiety, fight off colds, and help with energy. Not to mention, they smell great and come in a variety of scents that each have their own benefits attached.
Oil Of Lemon Eucalyptus
The Centres for Disease Control have actually listed this particular oil as a well-trusted natural mosquito repellent. However, they do warn that you shouldn’t be using “pure” oil of lemon eucalyptus but you should instead be using a synthesized version. Additionally, researchers at the University of Florida have suggested you not use this oil on children who are under the age of three.
To make a natural mosquito repellent at home using this oil you’ll only need three ingredients:
- 25- 30 drops of oil of lemon eucalyptus
- 1/2 teaspoon of vanillin (imitation vanilla)
- 8 tablespoons of witch hazel or rubbing alcohol
All you need to do is mix all of the ingredients together in a bowl until they’re properly stirred together and then pour the mixture into a spray bottle.
You can add vanilla to the repellent as a way to get more from the mixture. Vanillin, found in vanilla bean extract, has been backed by researchers at Oxford University as prolonging the life of a mosquito repellent.
Catnip Essential Oil
Ah, you thought catnip was only for your furry friends at home? The good news is that you won’t need to pry catnip from Fluffy’s paws because you’ll be using the essential oil instead. Catnip essential oil has even been supported by the American Chemical Society as being more effective than DEET, which is the ingredient we typically see in store-bought repellents.
All you need for this repellent recipe is:
- 45-50 drops of catnip essential oil
- 4 ounces of witch hazel of rubbing alcohol
- 4 ounces of water
To combine everything thoroughly, simply add the ingredients to a spray bottle and shake well to mix everything together.
Thyme Essential Oil
Thyme doesn’t just spice up our dinners; the herb can be used as a natural mosquito repellent that holds off the bugs just as well as store-bought repellents. What’s great about thyme is that even if you don’t want to use it in oil form, you can still burn the leaves for a powerful mosquito repellent. In fact, studies have shown that burning the leaves actually offers 85-90% protection from insects for 60-90 minutes.
If you’re interested in making a repellent using thyme oil then all you’ll need is:
- 10 drops of thyme essential oil
- 4 ounces of water
- 4 ounces of witch hazel or rubbing alcohol
The only thing you need to do is mix the ingredients in a spray bottle and shake it before you apply.
Other Essential Oils You Can Use
Sure these three work very well but there is a significant amount of additional oils you can use to make a natural mosquito repellent. Some of the best ones are lavender, rosemary, citronella, clove, geranium, neem, basil, cinnamon, and mint. You shouldn’t be applying essential oils directly onto your skin, though, so if you’re going to make a repellent using oils you should be diluting it with water or witch hazel.
Though these oils work well on their own, you can combine a selection of them into one recipe and keep the solution with you throughout the summer. Depending on the combination that you use, the amounts will vary, but using 5-6 essential oils together in one natural mosquito repellent works just as well as using one.
With these recipes, you can keep the blood-suckers away and actually get the most out of your summer!