Bug Repellent Roller Bottle Recipes

I don’t know if it’s something about my blood, what I eat, or the scent of my shampoo, but ever since I was a kid, bugs have LOVED me.  Growing up in Iowa, there were always plenty of flies, mosquitos, and gnats around.  And they ALWAYS found me.  I was constantly swatting away those annoying biting bugs!

 

The same is true now, whether I’m hanging out with family in my backyard in Kansas or sunning on the beach in Florida’s beautiful Gulf coast — mosquitos, no-see-ums, gnats, flies, ants, you name it — if I’m not doused in bug spray, those biting insects are all over me.

 

Thankfully, I’ve figured out how to make DEET-free, natural & effective bug repellents that keep those biting pests away from me.  I love my homemade bug sprays (recipes here), as well as my bug repellent lotion bars (they do double duty of both moisturizing skin and repelling bugs), and DIY essential oil candles that keep bugs away.

 

And now, I’m really excited to share with you my newest creation- bug repellent roller bottle recipes!

Like my natural bug sprays, these rollerballs use essential oils to keep away pesky insects like mosquitos, ticks, flies, and ticks.  Plus these roll-on bug repellents are really handy to always keep in your purse or quickly throw in your bag.  Heck, they’re even small enough to fit in your pocket.  Handy for walks in the woods, going to the beach, or just hanging out in the backyard.

 

 

bug repellent roller bottle blends by OneEssentialCommunity.com works for repelling mosquitos, ticks, flies, gnats, no-see-ums, and more. 10 different rollerball recipes and free printable of labels & recipes

 

 

Which essential oils keep bugs away?

 

1 lemon eucalyptus

According to the CDC, lemon eucalyptus is the most effective essential oil for a natural mosquito repellent.  Although its name can be confusing, lemon eucalyptus isn’t two essential oils (lemon and eucalyptus) blended together, rather lemon eucalyptus essential is one essential oil.  It’s from the eucalyptus citriodora tree native to Australia.

Why does it work so well to keep those biting pests away?  Lemon eucalyptus essential oil contains a small amount of PMD (p-menthane 3,8-diol).  PMD is an effective and long-acting mosquito repellent.  Part of the reason it’s long lasting is that lemon eucalyptus evaporates more slowly than most other essential oils and will last for several hours.

 

2 citronella

Citronella is one of the best known essential oils for being able to repel mosquitoesAccording to the National Pesticide Information Center, citronella works so well because it masks the scents that are attractive to bugs, namely carbon dioxide and lactic acid.

 

3 lavender

Lavender is a great natural bug repellent.  While it’s always a good idea to dilute essential oils, lavender is such a gentle oil that it can be used inside and outside your home, on plants, as well as on people and pets.  It’s a very versatile oil that helps repel all kinds of pesky bugs from mosquitoes to head lice, flies, gnats, ants, bed bugs, moths, spiders, ticks, and fruit flies.

 

4 geranium

Geraniol, a key constituent in geranium essential oil, has been proven effective in repelling a wide variety of bugs including mosquitos, flies, gnats, and ticks.

 

5 cedarwood

Ideal for wooded areas, cedar is helpful at repelling many pesky bugs like moths, mosquitoes, flies, and silverfish.  And it’s great for keeping creepy crawling pests away too, like ants, fleas, mites, ticks, and lice.

 

6 tea tree

Tea tree essential oil is extracted from the stems and leaves of the Melaleuca alternifolia tree native to Australia.  Tea tree essential oil (aka melaleuca) is well known for its antifungal, antibacterial, and antimicrobial properties that make it great for natural DIYs like this mold & mildew cleaner, powerful homemade shower cleaner, laundry detergent, trash can deodorizer, natural deodorant that actually works, immune support foot rub, and essential oil healing salve.  But in addition to all these great uses for tea tree, it’s also a good natural insect repellent and insecticide.  Tea tree is also great at keeping bed bugs and head lice away.

 

7 lemongrass

I love the smell of lemongrass, but thankfully,  a lot of bugs don’t.  Lemongrass is closely related to citronella, which is well known for being a great natural insect repellent.  Lemongrass works on a wide variety of pests including chiggers, fleas, flies, fruit flies, no-see-ums, mosquitoes, and ticks.

 

8 peppermint

To me, peppermint has a fresh, clean scent that reminds me of candy canes and Christmas, but to many insects it smells horrible.  They can’t stand the smell of it and it drives them away.  Peppermint is a great natural repellent to ants, aphids, bed bugs, boxelder bugs, cockroaches, fleas, fruit flies, gnats, head lice, moths, spiders,  stink bugs, and wasps.

 

9 spearmint

Like peppermint, spearmint essential oil is also good for keeping away ants, boxelder bugs, flies, gnats, head lice, mosquitoes, moths, and spiders.  But although those two essential oils are similar, spearmint’s lower concentrations of menthol, make it a safer and more suitable oil to use around young children.

 

10 rosemary

Did you know that the herb rosemary is also part of the mint family of plants?  And like many other plants in the mint family, rosemary is very good at repelling insects like mosquitos, flies, and ticks.

 

11 orange

Sweet orange (aka wild orange) essential oil has 90-95% content of limonene, which is lethal to fleas and flies.  Plus, most bugs hate the smell of citrus essential oils (such as, sweet orange, lemon, grapefruit, & bergamot).  Ants, cockroaches, gnats, head lice, moths, silverfish, spiders, ticks, and weevils all detest scent of sweet orange essential oil.  Which is perfect, because I LOVE the fresh, clean smell of sweet orange essential oil!

 

Want to get more ideas & recipes for how to use essential oils to keep bugs away?  When you’re done learning how to make bug repellent rollerballs, click over to my mega article all about using essential oils to keep bugs away.  It includes how to prevent & get rid of bed bugs, getting rid of fruit flies, keeping bugs out of your garden, keeping pantry ant free, and so much more.   You’ll find 20+ easy recipes & DIYs for using essential oils to repel bugs.

 

 

essential oils to repel bugs by oneessentialcommunity.com -- cedarwood for mosqquitos, flies, silverfish, ants, fleas, mites, ticks, lice ... cinnamon for wasps, warwigs, bed bugs, silverfish, spiders,... rosemary for mosquitos, flies, ticks... geranium for mosquitos, flies, gnats, ticks... peppermint for ants, aphids, bed bugs, boxelder bugs, cockroaches, fleas, fruit flies, gnats, head lice, moths, spiders, stink bugs... citronella for fleas, mosquitos, gnats, moths, ticks... lemon eucalyptus is most effective essential oil for mosquito repellent, lavender for mosquiots, head lice, flies, gnats, ants, bed bugs, moths, spiders, ticks, fruit flies... lemongrass for chiggers, fleas, flies, fruit flies, ticks, no-see-ums, mosquitos... sweet orange for ants, cockroaches, gnats, head lice, moths, silverfish, spiders, ticks, weevils, fleas, flies... tea tree for bed bugs, dust mites, head lice... spearmint for ants, boxelder bugs, flies, gnats, head lice, mosquitos, moths, spiders

 

 

How to Make Bug Repelling Rollerballs

  • start with a 10 ml glass roller bottle
  • add the drops of essential oil (see roller bottle recipes below)
  • fill rest of 10 ml roller bottles with a carrier oil (like fractionated coconut oil).  It’s helpful to use a little funnel like these when filling the roller bottles with carrier oils.  Be sure to leave a little space at the top so that’s there’s room to put the roller ball back on.
  • snap on the rollerball
  • shake the bottle to mix the carrier oil and essential oils
  • put on a label
    • get a free printable with all the recipes and free labels here
    • print the labels (I use plain printer/copier paper)
    • cut out the labels
    • wipe the outside of the roller bottle clean with a little rubbing alcohol.  This will get rid of any dirt and oil and prep the bottle before putting on a label.  Labels stick best to squeaky clean bottles.
    • Cut strips of packing tape that are about an inch longer than the labels
    • Place label face down on packing tape.  You want a slight bit of tape above and below the label and about 1/2 inch on the left and right side of the label.  This overlap is so that the packing tape will stick to the roller bottle and form a seal around the paper label.  The packing tape will both adhere the label to the roller bottle and add a nice water-and-oil-proof covering to the label.
    • Put label on the roller bottle

 

 

10 Bug Repellent Roller Bottle Recipes

get a free printable of all 10 bug repellent roller bottle recipes here

free printable of bug repellent roller bottle blend recipes & labels

 

1.  Don’t Bug Me

8 drops lemon eucalyptus essential oil

4 drops geranium essential oil

3 drops lavender essential oil

Then fill rest of  a 10 ml roller bottle with fractionated coconut oil or your favorite carrier oil.

 

Don't Bug Me roller bottle blend by oneessentialcommunity.com -- 8 drops lemon eucalyptus, 4 drops geranium, 3 drops lavender essential oil, then fill 10ml roller bottle with carrier oil. shake well to mix. apply bug repellent to ankles, wrists, back of neck, behind ears, elbows, and knees. reapply as needed.

 

 

2.  Happy Camper

6 drops cedarwood essential oil

6 drops orange essential oil

3 drops lemon eucalyptus essential oil

Then fill rest of  a 10 ml roller bottle with fractionated coconut oil or your favorite carrier oil.

 

Happy Camper roller bottle blend by oneessentialcommunity.com -- 6 drops cedarwood, 6 drops orange, 3 drops lemon eucalyptus essential oil, then fill 10ml roller bottle with carrier oil. shake well to mix. apply bug repellent to ankles, wrists, back of neck, behind ears, elbows, and knees. reapply as needed.

 

 

3.  Be Smitten Not Bitten

5 drops citronella essential oil

3 drops peppermint essential oil

3 drops lemongrass essential oil

3 drops lavender essential oil

Then fill rest of  a 10 ml roller bottle with fractionated coconut oil or your favorite carrier oil.

 

Be Smitten, Not Bitten roller bottle blend by oneessentialcommunity.com -- 5 drops citronella, 3 drops peppermint, 3 drops lemongrass, and 3 drops lavender essential oil, then fill 10ml roller bottle with carrier oil. shake well to mix. apply bug repellent to ankles, wrists, back of neck, behind ears, elbows, and knees. reapply as needed.

 

 

4.  Bug Off!

5 drops cedarwood essential oil

3 drops eucalyptus essential oil

3 drops geranium essential oil

3 drops orange essential oil

Then fill rest of  a 10 ml roller bottle with fractionated coconut oil or your favorite carrier oil.

 

Bug Off! roller bottle blend by oneessentialcommunity.com -- 5 drops cedarwood, 3 drops eucalyptus, 3 drops geranium, and 3 drops orange essential oil, then fill 10ml roller bottle with carrier oil. shake well to mix. apply bug repellent to ankles, wrists, back of neck, behind ears, elbows, and knees. reapply as needed.

 

 

5.  Life Is Better in Flip Flops

4 drops patchouli essential oil

4 drops cedarwood essential oil

3 drops orange essential oil

2 drops lavender essential oil

2 drops geranium essential oil

Then fill rest of  a 10 ml roller bottle with fractionated coconut oil or your favorite carrier oil.

 

Life is better in flip flops roller bottle blend by oneessentialcommunity.com -- 4 drops patchouli, 4 drops cedarwood, 3 drops orange, 2 drops lavender, and 2 drops geranium essential oil, then fill 10ml roller bottle with carrier oil. shake well to mix. apply bug repellent to ankles, wrists, back of neck, behind ears, elbows, and knees. reapply as needed.

 

 

6.  Take a Hike

5 drops eucalyptus essential oil

5 drops lavender essential oil

3 drops rosemary essential oil

2 drops cedarwood essential oil

Then fill rest of  a 10 ml roller bottle with fractionated coconut oil or your favorite carrier oil.

 

Take a Hike roller bottle blend by oneessentialcommunity.com -- 5 drops eucalyptus, 5 drops lavender, 3 drops rosemary, and 2 drops cedarwood essential oil, then fill 10ml roller bottle with carrier oil. shake well to mix. apply bug repellent to ankles, wrists, back of neck, behind ears, elbows, and knees. reapply as needed.

 

 

7.  Outdoor Oasis

8 drops citronella essential oil

8 drops lavender essential oil

Then fill rest of  a 10 ml roller bottle with fractionated coconut oil or your favorite carrier oil.

 

Outdoor Oasis roller bottle blend by oneessentialcommunity.com -- 8 drops citronella and 8 drops lavender essential oil, then fill 10ml roller bottle with carrier oil. shake well to mix. apply bug repellent to ankles, wrists, back of neck, behind ears, elbows, and knees. reapply as needed.

 

 

8.  Bugs Be Gone

3 drops lavender essential oil

3 drops peppermint essential oil

3 drops lemongrass essential oil

3 drops lemon eucalyptus essential oil

Then fill rest of  a 10 ml roller bottle with fractionated coconut oil or your favorite carrier oil.

 

Bugs be gone! roller bottle blend by oneessentialcommunity.com -- 3 drops lavender, 3 drops peppermint, 3 drops lemongrass, and 3 drops lemon eucalyptus essential oil, then fill 10ml roller bottle with carrier oil. shake well to mix. apply bug repellent to ankles, wrists, back of neck, behind ears, elbows, and knees. reapply as needed.

 

 

9.  Lake Life

5 drops cedarwood essential oil

3 drops eucalyptus essential oil

3 drops geranium essential oil

3 drops orange essential oil

Then fill rest of  a 10 ml roller bottle with fractionated coconut oil or your favorite carrier oil.

 

Lake life roller bottle blend by oneessentialcommunity.com -- 5 drops cedarwood, 3 drops eucalyptus, 3 drops geranium, and 3 drops orange essential oil, then fill 10ml roller bottle with carrier oil. shake well to mix. apply bug repellent to ankles, wrists, back of neck, behind ears, elbows, and knees. reapply as needed.

 

 

10.  Bye Bye Bugs

5 drops lemon eucalyptus essential oil

4 drops orange essential oil

3 drops tea tree essential oil

3 drops spearmint essential oil

Then fill rest of  a 10 ml roller bottle with fractionated coconut oil or your favorite carrier oil.

 

bye bye, bugs! roller bottle blend by oneessentialcommunity.com -- 5 drops lemon eucalyptus, 4 drops orange, 3 drops tea tree, and 3 drops spearmint essential oil, then fill 10ml roller bottle with carrier oil. shake well to mix. apply bug repellent to ankles, wrists, back of neck, behind ears, elbows, and knees. reapply as needed.

 

 

get free printable of all 10 bug repellent roller bottle recipes here

free printable for bug repellent roller bottle blends by oneessentialcommunity.com

 

 

How to Use

  1. shake well or roll bottle in palm of hand to evenly distribute essential oils
  2. apply bug repellent to ankles, wrists, back of neck, behind ears, elbow, and knees.
  3. reapply as needed (typically every 1-2 hours)

tip:  If there are lots of bugs around, I double apply the bug repellents.  First, I use one of these rollers on my neck, ankles, wrists, knees, and elbow.  Then I use bug spray over my clothing, on exposed skin, and to my hair.

Find my DYI bug spray recipes here

 

 

Bug Bite Relief

Oops you got bit.  Now what?

Even with the best bug repellent, bites can sometimes still happen.  Try one of these easy-to-make essential oil itch relief treatments.  There’s a rollerball version, a cream, and even a convenient bug bite relief in a stick form (like Chapstick tube).

itch relief cream recipe

DIY anti-itch stick

itch relief roller bottle blend

 

 

bug repellent roller bottle blends by oneessentialcommunity.com -- works to keep away mosquitos, ticks, flies, gnats, no-see-ums, and more -- 10 rollerball recipes & free printable labels

 

 

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Sarah Lewis

A little thing about me: I 💙 essential oils. I also love using my background in research to help people learn more about essential oils and all the wonderful ways they can be used. I share DIY recipes for natural cleaners that really work, non-toxic beauty solutions, and holistic wellness. My essential oil recipes, info, and tips have been viewed more than 20 million times. I've been featured on MindBodyGreen, Health & Natural Living, All Natural Ideas, This Natural Home, Natural Living Ideas, and Passion for Savings.