It seems to be late in the season, but the mosquitoes are out full force here now. I’ve been waiting! I needed to try out my recipe of natural homemade mosquito repellent. It must be my sweet, sweet blood they love because I can be hit when no one else is, so I just knew if it kept those nasty flying things away from me, it works and I would share with you.
A homemade mosquito repellent can be simply just water and bug defying essential oils. You don’t have to smell like a citronella candle if you don’t want, there are many essential oils that will do the trick.
I’ve been researching homemade dog soap, so I figured the oils that are good for repelling bugs from dogs would work great for humans, too. Here’s a few I found.
Lavender is good for the skin and for repelling fleas and mosquitoes.
Citronella is probably the most famous and widely-used mosquito repellent. It also repels fleas.
Peppermint works well against fleas.
Cedarwood repels fleas and mosquitoes and helps anchor the scent blend when mixed with other oils.
Eucalyptus is a germicide that smells wonderful! Plus it repels fleas and mosquitoes.
Lemongrass repels mosquitoes.
Since I have a few of these on hand for my handmade soap, I decided to try lemongrass mixed with eucalyptus to make my homemade bug repellent.
Gather all your supplies.
Mix 8 ounces of water (distilled water can be used, but I just used tap water–it will be used up before nasties can grow), 1 teaspoon of each lemongrass and eucalyptus oils. That’s approximately 24 drops of each oil. I added them right into a recycled, well rinsed (don’t want to attract the mosquitoes!) body spray bottle.
As you know, oil and water don’t mix well.
Shake it well before applying, it will make it very cloudy. If you see separation, shake again.
We took a trip to the woods for some more grilling wood. It’s the middle of July, the woods are hot! I was a hot, sweaty mess. The mosquitoes stayed away. By the time we made it to the woods, I couldn’t smell the oils anymore so I was a little worried about the effectiveness. Evidently smell isn’t what provides the repelling powers.
I’ve also tested it out on the deck after dark. I sat out there for 2 minutes with no repellent. They ate me alive! I applied my homemade mosquito repellent–they attacked my niece, not me. She used some the next time we went out
So, I am a believer in this homemade repellent. It smells wonderful, too! Like anything, you’d need to reapply often if you’re swimming or sweating–it’s going to wash right off of you. It may not last as long as DEET, but I would rather apply more often with a natural, homemade product than apply that!
Did I tell you the cost of this? I buy my essential oils at Wellington Fragrance, a Michigan company!, and based on those prices, this 8 ounce bottle of homemade mosquito repellent cost me a grand total of 92 cents. 92 cents! For the most part, any of those oils I listed above (Lavender excluded) would cost about the same.
I can now love the outdoors after dusk naturally.
Here's the full recipe and printable!
- 8 ounces
- 1 cup water
- 2 tsp bug repelling essential oils: lavender, citronella, peppermint, cedarwood, eucalyptus, lemongrass
- Mix oil and water into a spray bottle.