Are you ready for all the summer outdoor fun? Making your own natural mosquito repellent is going to make this summer even better I promise! They are more effective than citronella candles, and you can take them on outdoor trips with you!
Both of these easy recipes use essential oils and other all natural ingredients. They smell amazing, and are super effective at repelling insects such a mosquitoes! We have tested them in mosquito country during our trip to Florida visiting gorgeous gardens and hiking through the vast Everglades National Park.
In this tutorial, I will share these 2 proven effective natural mosquito repellent recipes without any harsh chemicals:
- A 2 ingredient mosquito spray that takes 1 minute to make. It works amazingly well!
- A natural mosquito balm recipe that has skin moisturizing benefits, and you can use it as a lotion or lip balm too!
We will also compare the pros and cons of homemade natural mosquito repellent and conventional store bought bug sprays at the end.
* Some resources in article are affiliate links. Full disclosure here .
Here is another good reason for homemade bug repellent: one of the most widely used active ingredients in conventional bug sprays is DEET, which has been linked to neurological problems. It is also toxic to birds and aquatic life. Conclusion: homemade natural mosquito repellent is good for you and good for the planet!
Through some research, I learned that the best all natural mosquito repellent often contains some of the following essential oils you can easily find on Amazon: Lemon Eucalyptus essential oil ( which I have found to be the most effective, and always a key ingredient in the best mosquito repellents ) , Tea Tree oil ( which is also very effective as insect repellent ), Citronella oil, and / or Lavender essential oil.
Recipe 1 : 2 ingredient mosquito spray that takes 1 minute to make. Super effective!
I used these good quality 2 oz glass spray bottles which are so easy to carry. Fill it about 90% full with drinking quality water, add 10 drops of Lemon Eucalyptus essential oil , and 5 drops of Tea Tree oil or Lavender essential oil.
Please note: Lemon Eucalyptus oil is not a blend of Lemon oil and Eucalyptus oil. The oil of Lemon Eucalyptus comes from the tree Corymbia citriodora.
You can also just use water and 15 drops of Lemon Eucalyptus essential oil, or substitute the 5 drops of tea tree or lavender oil with other essential oils you love such as Citronella, Lemon or Lemongrass, basil or rosemary. I love the smell of lavender, so I use Lavender essential oil often!
You will see the oil floating on top. To use, shake well right before spraying each time. Goodbye mosquito bites!
Related article : Homemade effective green cleaning products with free printable labels!
Recipe 2: A natural mosquito balm that has skin moisturizing benefits
I also made this natural mosquito repellent balm because it is easier to carry on a hike or camping trip, and it stays on longer especially when we are sweating a lot in the heat.
UPDATE: A BIG thank-you to our reader Lorie who shared a great tip: “many Essential Oils list their “Flash Points”… this being the maximum temperature each should be exposed to. (Similar to different cooking oils) I would caution that many Essential Oils have low “Flash Points”. It may be advisable to stir the melted balm mixture for a bit to let it cool before adding the Essential Oil. This would preserve the properties of a more delicate Essential Oil. “ Thank you Lorie!!
The bees wax and oil in the right proportions will create the right consistency of a firm butter-like lotion. If it is too soft, it may become runny in the heat.
You can skip the Shea butter and make it with just bees wax and an oil such as coconut oil, olive oil, or almond oil.
Here is the proportion I used: 1 tablespoon each of beeswax ( cut to small pieces or use pellets) and Shea butter, and 2 tablespoons of coconut oil, and a total of 15 drops of essential oil blend like in Recipe 1 .
Create a double boiler by bringing some water close to boiling in a small saucepan, and place a glass or metal dish inside the pan.
Add the oils, butters and bees wax. The beeswax will melt in about 5 minutes. Add the essential oils, pour into a container and let cool. The mixture will harden in about 20 minutes.
If you do not like the consistency, just return the mixture to the double boiler. Add more bees wax for a firmer consistency and more coconut oil for a softer balm.
Additional tips, pros and cons:
- Essential oils are potent concentrates. It’s important to know the basic safety guidelines. Here are two excellent articles by Christina at Hippy Home Maker: general safety, and safety for children
- Store these in a cool dark place when not using.
- Homemade natural mosquito repellent is very effective and healthier than conventional store bought bug sprays. It also costs less. The only con is that the spray needs to be shaken before each use, and needs to be re-applied every 2-4 hours when sweating a lot.
And of course if you have many mosquitoes in your garden, it’s a good idea to use prevention tips such as removing standing water to prevent mosquitoes from laying eggs, and plant mosquito repellent plants like basil, lemon grass, lavender, etc!
More summer fun ideas you may love: make these beautiful mason jar oil lamps, tutorial here.
You may also love: 20+ Gorgeous DIY outdoor lighting ideas.