How to Repel Bugs Naturally with Essential Oils

It is no secret that essential oils have numerous benefits such as alleviating negative moods, deodorizing stale and stuffy indoor environments, boosting the immune system and more. But did you know that repelling bugs is one of them? This article will teach you how to repel bugs naturally with essential oils.

Essential oils vary in terms of scents, properties, pros and cons. Identify the essential oils that have bug repelling properties:

Diffuse the oil where bugs have the easiest access to such as doorways and windows. Add a few drops of your choice of bug repelling essential oil or oils to your diffuser. Place them near places that needs bug warding for 30 minutes 2-3 times a day. If you want to combine essential oils, here are a few suggestions (for 100ml water):

  • 1 drop basil + 2 drops bergamot + 2 drops lemon
  • 1 drop star anise + 1 drop clove + 3 drops peppermint
  • 2 drops citronella + 3 drops eucalyptus

Create a homemade bug repelling spray by mixing water, witch hazel/grain alcohol and your choice of essential oil or oils. Use this spray or wherever it’s needed. Some oils such as basil, eucalyptus, lemon, peppermint, and thyme are anti-bacterial, ideal to be incorporated into cleaning sprays that can be sprayed on kitchen counters and such.

Place cotton balls with a few drops of bug repelling essential oil into the trash bin. The trash bin is an inviting breeding ground for bacteria, bugs and other pests. Bugs also have an acute and heightened sense of smell so what may smell mild to us smells overpowering to them.

If you’re dealing with bug or pest issues inside your home you can also place cotton balls with a few drops of bug repelling essential oil or oils in your kitchen cabinets, drawers, closet or other areas that are facing this issue. This keeps the house smelling fresh, clean and most importantly, bug free.

If needed or necessary, apply topically sparingly or with very strong dilution. Be wary when using essential oils on the skin. Always carry out a patch test before proceeding with topical usage to avoid adverse reactions. Bergamot, lemon and lemongrass are phototoxic, therefore should only be applied during night time. Whereas clove, lemongrass and thyme are potential skin sensitizers and irritants, should be strongly diluted following a 0.5% dilution rate. If you’re pregnant, basil, clove, star anise and thyme should be avoided whereas other oils should be used sparingly and under a doctor’s supervision.

On top of using essential oils to deter bugs away, you can also grow some bug repelling plants such as basil, peppermint or Venus flytraps. Another helpful tip is to regularly clean your house and get rid of any stagnant water around your house as that is another breeding ground for bugs, especially mosquitoes. Remember to practice with precaution and care.