Recipes for Natural Insect Repellents

Essential oils:

  • cinnamon oil (for mosquitoes)
  • lemon eucalyptus or regular eucalyptus oil (mosquitoes, ticks and lice)
  • citronella oil (mosquitoes and biting flies)
  • castor oil (mosquitoes)
  • orange oil (fleas)
  • rose geranium (ticks and lice) 

Safe carrier oils and alcohols include:

  • olive oil
  • sunflower oil
  • any other cooking oil
  • witch hazel           
  • vodka  

Combine 10-25 drops (total) of essential oils with 2 tablespoons of a carrier oil or alcohol.

Herbal Insect Repellent (from Mother Earth News)

  • 2 1/2 teaspoons total of any combination of the following essential oils: basil, cedar wood, citronella, juniper, lemon, myrrh, palmarosa, pine, rose geranium and/or rosemary (available at health food stores)
  • 1 cup 190-proof grain alcohol (available in liquor stores)

Place ingredients in a jar with a tight-fitting lid and shake vigorously. Transfer to small bottles for storage. To use, rub a small amount on any exposed skin (test first to be sure your skin will not be adversely affected by the repellent) or dab it on clothing.

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