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kid-safe and effective DIY bug spray recipes using essential oils-- includes FREE PRINTABLES for recipes, charts, and bottle labels!!

Warmer Weather, Time for Bug Spray

It’s getting warmer out.  We’ve already hit highs in the 80’s here in Kansas City.

That means the bugs are coming out.  And that means it’s time to make up some bug spray.

 

Natural, Non-Toxic Bug Spray

I stopped using store bought bug sprays a few years ago.  It’s so easy and inexpensive to make my own!  And when I make my own, I know exactly what’s in it.  I can choose natural and safe ingredients and customize them for my family. No more chemicals and pesticides!

 

Bug Spray That Actually Works

Natural is great, but it also needs to WORK.

Ever since I was a little kid, mosquitoes have LOVED me!  I’d walk two feet outside and I’d get bit.  I’d be in a group of people and no one else would get bit, but I’d be covered in bites.

So I had a big incentive to find an all-natural bug spray I could make with my essential oils that would keep those bugs away from me.

 

Lots of Effective Essential Oil Options

I’m a researcher, so I read and researched and experimented to learn what essential oils really work for mosquitoes, flies, gnats, and ticks— the most common bugs we all deal with come summer.

I flipped through lots of essential oil books.   I read Pinterest recipes.  I read research papers.  I crossed checked the info.  I tried lots of different blends on me and my family.

And do you know what I found?

LOTS of essential oils work to repel bugs.

There’s not just one perfect combo.  You’re not limited to the one recipe you stumble across on Facebook or the one that your friend tells you about.  Those may be great, and you may love them.  Then you’re all set.  But if not, I hope to give you options so that you can easily make a custom bug spray that your family loves.

 

Basic Bug Spray Recipe

to a 4 oz spray bottle add…

2 oz of witch hazel (This doesn’t need to be exact.  I just eyeball it by filling the bottle a little less than half full)

2 oz of distilled water (again, I eyeball it and fill the bottle most of the way full, but leave room for the essential oils and the spray top)

essential oil 

20-25 drops for kids age 3+

40-50 drops for adults and kids age 10+

(that might sound like a lot of essential oil, but keep in mind that this recipe makes a 4 ounce spray which is the equivalent of 12 standard size roller bottles)

Tips for using

  • oils and water don’t mix, so be sure to shake the bug spray before you use it
  • avoid spraying on face
  • avoid touching eyes and mouth if you have bug spray on your fingers
  • for young kids under 2, spray onto their clothes (and not on their skin)
  • apply as often as you need it

 

Where to Get Supplies

4 oz spray bottle

  • a glass spray bottle – here’s where I get mine
  • For bug spray, I prefer to use a plastic spray bottle since we’ll be using it outside and I don’t want to risk a glass bottle breaking
    • you may have one at home that you can reuse– check the bottom of the plastic bottle to see if it’s #1 PETE or #2 HDPE, either of those kinds of plastic will work
    • need a plastic spray bottle?  here’s one I like

witch hazel- here’s the kind I like

distilled water– right in the bottled water aisle at your grocery store or Walmart

 

My Favorite Essential Oil Blends for Bug Spray (safe for adults and kids 10+)

10 drops geranium + 15 drops lavender + 5 drops patchouli + 10 drops lemongrass + 10 drops citronella

15 drops lemongrass + 15 drops eucalyptus + 20 drops citronella

20 drops lavender + 20 drops lemongrass + 10 drops peppermint

20 drops rosemary +  20 drops cedarwood + 10 drops peppermint

15 drops lavender + 10 drops basil + 10 drops rosemary + 15 drops spearmint

15 drops eucalyptus + 20 drops lavender + 15 drops lemongrass

click here to get a FREE PRINTABLE of all the bug spray recipes, tables, and bottle labels in this post

kid-safe and effective DIY bug spray recipes using essential oils-- includes FREE PRINTABLES for recipes, charts, and bottle labels!!

 

Kid-Safe Essential Oil Blends for Bug Sprays (for kids age 3+)

10 drops lavender + 10 drops citronella

8 drops lavender + 5 drops geranium+ 7 drops cedarwood

10 drops lemon eucalyptus + 10 drops lavender

5 drops lavender + 5 drops geranium + 2 drops patchouli + 8 drops spearmint

5 drops geranium + 5 drops citronella + 2 drops patchouli + 3 drops lemon eucalyptus + 3 drops lavender + 3 drops spearmint

10 drops citronella + 5 drops lemon eucalyptus + 3 drops patchouli + 3 drops lavender

click here to get a FREE PRINTABLE of all the bug spray recipes, tables, and bottle labels in this post

 

Have you seen this kid-safe bug spray? Love it!! it's keeps bugs away and it's DEET-FREE!! It's made with lemon eucalyptus essential oil, which the CDC (Center for Disease Control) recommends as an effective mosquito repellent.

 

Are you ready? Warmer weather is coming and so are the BUGS! click for 10 more kid-safe bug spray recipes & FREE PRINTABLE of recipes, tips, and how-tos.

 

 

Which Essential Oils Repel Mosquitoes, Flies, and Ticks?

Which essential oils work to repel bugs?  The answer depends on which bug you’re wanting to keep away.  I’ve got a more detailed table below, but here’s a good introduction to some of the most effective essential oils for repelling mosquitoes, flies, and ticks.

Mosquitoes:  lavender, geranium, lemongrass, eucalyptus, citronella, and others

Flies & Gnats:  lavender, patchouli, rosemary, peppermint, spearmint, and others

Ticks:  lavender, lemongrass, eucalyptus, rosemary, sage, thyme, and others

click here to get a FREE PRINTABLE of all the bug spray recipes, tables, and bottle labels in this post

kid-safe and effective DIY bug spray recipes using essential oils-- includes FREE PRINTABLES for recipes, charts, and bottle labels!!

Want to know which essential oils to use in your bug spray?  Want to create your own blend?

The table below shows which essential oils work to repel mosquitoes, flies, and ticks.

The stars are meant to call out the essential oils that seem particularly good at repelling that bug. It’s not really scientific which ones got a star and which ones didn’t; it’s more subjective based on a few things: my personal use and experience, any research reports I stumbled upon, and how many other homemade bug repellents also use that EO to ward off that bug. So it’s really just shorthand for me and you to know which essential oils I’d go to first to repel that bug.

And on the right side of the table, it also lists which essential oils are generally considered safe to be used topically (diluted, of course) with kids that age.

click here to get a FREE PRINTABLE of all the bug spray recipes, tables, and bottle labels in this post

 

 

kid-safe and effective DIY bug spray recipes using essential oils-- includes FREE PRINTABLES for recipes, charts, and bottle labels!!

 

Want a cute label for DIY bug spray?

These labels are included in the free printable (along with the bug spray recipes and charts on which essential oils work to repel mosquitoes, flies, and ticks).

You can print the labels out on adhesive label paper, but I usually just print labels like this on plain white printer paper.  I use clear packing tape to adhere them to the spray bottle.  Here’s how I do that:

  • print out labels on plain printer paper
  • neatly cut around each label
  • make a wider piece of tape
    • cut two pieces of clear packing tape (about 3 inches in length each)
    • lay the two pieces of tape down on a clean surfaces with the sticky side up
    • overlap the two pieces of tape by about a quarter inch
  • place the paper label image side down on the tape, making sure to leave at least a 1/4 inch border
  • cut out the label, leaving at least a 1/4 inch border of tape (so it will stick to the bottle)
  • stick the label to the bottle, smoothing down as you go to avoid air bubbles

click here to get a FREE PRINTABLE of all the bug spray recipes, tables, and bottle labels in this post

kid-safe and effective DIY bug spray recipes using essential oils-- includes FREE PRINTABLES for recipes, charts, and bottle labels!!

click here to get a FREE PRINTABLE of all the bug spray recipes, tables, and bottle labels in this post

kid-safe and effective DIY bug spray recipes using essential oils-- includes FREE PRINTABLES for recipes, charts, and bottle labels!!

 

 

You may also be interested in these other essential oil recipes, tips, & hacks

DIY After-Sun Spray Made with Essential Oils

20 favorite roller bottle recipes with free printable labels

31 Genius Essential Oil Tips and Hacks

25 Ways to Diffuse without a Diffuser

ultimate sugar scrub for your softest smoothest skin ever {with 15 essential oil blends so you can customize}

soft & silky whipped body butter

 

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  Hi, I'm Sarah from ONE essential COMMUNITY. We're a community who loves using essential oils, making natural diy items, and helping each other live our healthiest lives! We're so glad you found us. Please join us at http://oneessentialcommunity.com

Please note: This is for informational and entertainment purposes only and should not be taken as medical advice.  Products mentioned in this article have not been evaluated by the FDA. These products and information on this page are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. This website is not a substitute for professional care.  Always consult your medical doctor regarding your medical care. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website.

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