Natural insect repellent

It’s certainly been a hot summer. I’m not complaining I love the sun but with sunshine comes insects. My eldest daughter and I seem to be particularly tasty to mosquitoes and so I wanted to create a natural insect repellent and bite soother. Both have been incredibly effective and smell delicious! It feels so good to not be covering our skin in nasty incectisides.

I feel it’s important to say I am not a qualified aromatherapist but a keen amateur who uses essential oils daily on my whole family but I do my own research first and it’s important you do the same.

Cooling insect repellant

  • Coloured glass spray bottle
  • Witch hazel
  • Essential oils

Firstly think about what insects are a particular problem to you and about the ages of those you want to use the spray on. I found the following chart extremely helpful.

We chose citronella for mosquitoes and lavender for house flies and a little peppermint . I used 80ml bottles and filled them with witch hazel. Essential oils are extremely concentrated and therefore powerful and must always be diluted before putting them on your skin. In this instance I used a 2% dilution – a drops dilution chart is extremely useful.

From the chart above you’ll see 2% dilution means adding 6 drops of essential oil per 10ml. So for 80ml you would add 48 drops.

We used 20 drops of lavender essential oil, 20 of citronella and 8 drops of peppermint in our spray. Add the oils and replace the spray top. Either shake or gently roll your bottle to blend.

Now remember I said you need to do your own research here is a good example of this. Peppermint is a powerful oil (and it tends to dominate the smell profile of a blend) but it should not be used in dilutions over 1% and you’ll see here u have used less than 1% in our blend. I recommend the following book if you’d like to start using essential oils at home.

This spray has not only kept the bugs at bay it’s very cooling too and lovely to use. Store out of direct sunlight.

For those times when you do get bites or nettle sting this soother is brilliant. I got the recipe from this great website called using essential oils safely

I used whitch hazel as my carrier again as I didn’t have anything else but sunflower oil or grapesead oil would be great too. I bought 10ml aromatherapy roller bottles on e-bay – they are so handy to have. I keep this in the fridge so it’s always handy and extra soothing.

I had my doubts about weather this recipe would be enough to calm bug bites and nettle stings but it’s worked better than anything else I’ve tried.

Those who know me or have been following my blog for a while will know what a fan of natural remedies I am. In January I joined Neal’s Yard Remedies Organic as a consultant and rekindled my love of essential oils – which I have dabbled in since my teenage years. In June I was fortunate enough to attend an introduction to aromatherapy course at Neals Yard Covent garden. Neal’s Yard are the first UK supplier of organic essential oils and i’ve loved learning more about this super ethical company. Do beware of cheap essential oils they are likely to be synthetic and not the real deal. If you would like to order oils through me or discuss the opprtunity Neal’s Yard offers please do get in touch this further. I’m also up for general chat about essential oils and what you love too so do please leave a comment.

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