14.8.14

Homemade Bug Spray


Mosquitoes, flies, gnats, and ticks.  They're a part of life, especially when living outside, as we do.  The first week we stayed here, I bought a bottle of the commercial bug spray and quickly decided that the long term use was not going to work for us.  It was sticky and smelly, not to mention all the nasty chemicals seeping into our body.  I suggested we try a homemade version, but none of us were convinced that essential oils would be a match against the mosquitoes of northern Wisconsin.  Still, we were miserable and willing to try anything.  

I did some research on natural bug repellants and found that I had most of the ingredients already on hand.  The only thing I didn't have was witch hazel, but Mike had picked up a case of vodka for $3.00 to use for homemade tinctures, so I used a little of that instead.

I have to tell you, it worked.  It even worked better than the stuff with DEET.  The mosquitoes wouldn't come near us. {with the commercial brand, they would hover, but not bite}  The smell was pleasant and it didn't leave a sticky film on our clothes or skin.  

If you'd like to ditch the chemicals and make your own natural, homemade bug spray, here's what you'll need:

::  6oz spray bottle 

::  3 oz Water

::  3 oz Vodka {or witch hazel}

::  Essential Oils; 10 drops each of Tea Tree, Clove, Citronella, Peppermint, Eucalyptus, Basil,  and Cinnamon

Fill the bottle half full with water, add the essential oils and then fill to the top with vodka.  Give it a good shake and use as you would any commercial bug spray.  

Have you used ever used homemade bug spray?  What essential oils worked best for you?










8 comments:

  1. Another good use for vodka (I use it as a facial toner sometimes)
    I generally get bitten by every bug in town, however as it has rained so much this summer I've been spared. Does this work against horsefly? - they are my worst enemy!!!
    I will definitely give this a try.

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    1. I'll have to remember that vodka is a toner. Thanks! The horseflies are horrible right now and it seems to be working agains them, too!

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  2. We had a really cold winter this year and I think it did wonders on the thick layer of bugs constantly on the attach in Tennessee. Also, I know you just got chickens. I think you will see the bug population decreased by them naturally as well. Our flock of six is certainly doing wonders. They catch bugs mid flight and I've yet to scratch and itch or curse insects since they arrived.

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    1. Yes! The chickens are doing a fantastic job with the bugs. We've seen them do the mid air catch as well.

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  3. I have found DEET is the only thing that works for us (here in Iowa) to guard against the ticks....on our shoes and legs...I hate using it, so I try to be very sparing about it & try to just be very vigilant checking our bodies over thoroughly following our hikes...the ticks have pretty much died down here now, thankfully....do you have a recipe for a natural tick repellent? Maybe this recipe has proven effective against ticks, too? Thanks for posting it!

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    1. I've only had three ticks on me all year, so I don't know if it's from the spray or if we're on a down year for ticks. It may be worth a try, though.

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  4. We love our homemade bug spray. We move between two different ones. The first is a combination of witch hazel, rose geranium, lemongrass, lemon eucalyptus and citronella. The second is a combination of witch hazel, lavender, lemongrass and rose geranium. Both work equally well, and smell great.

    Saw the tick comment above, rose geranium is a tick repellant. We use it on the dog, just a drop on her collar and a drop on her back just above her tail and no ticks.

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    Replies
    1. Thanks for the tick info, Kim. I've been wondering what to use on the dog.

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