What Are Essential Oils?
“Essential oils are natural aromatic compounds found in the seeds, bark, stems, roots, flowers, and other parts of plants. … Essential oils are non water-based phytochemicals made up of volatile organic compounds. Although they are fat soluble, they do not include fatty lipids or acids found in vegetable and animal oils. Essential oils are very clean, almost crisp, to the touch and are immediately absorbed by the skin. Pure, unadulterated essential oils are translucent and range in color from crystal clear to deep blue.” – ‘An Intro to Essential Oils’ doTERRA website. The quality and purity of essential oils can be affected by many factors. The variety of plants, where and how it is grown (organic/sustainable or conventional), when and how it is harvested, and how it is extracted can all cause contamination if not done right. It is very important to research the oil company’s methods of extraction and testing for purity to ensure your oils will be as effective as possible. There are many companies out there, but we have personally fallen in love with the doTERRA brand oils as well as with how the company operates.
The Awesome Spray
What you will need: Coconut oil (or any other carrier oil) [this one is from Costco], Peppermint, Eucalyptus, Geranium and Lavender essential oils (these are doTERRA), a spoon and a spray bottle (I think mine is a 4oz). AromaTools has a ton of jars at amazing prices! Essential oils can leach chemicals from plastics thereby contaminating your product so its best to use glass jars when using EO’s.
Peppermint Oil irritates any bug that is pheromone sensitive including ants, aphids, beetles, caterpillars, spiders, plant lice, moths, flies, and fleas.
Eucalyptus oil has the same effect on bugs that Peppermint oil does. Repels mosquitoes, ticks and no-see-ums.
The chemical properties that make up the lavender plant are bug repellant. That is how the plant defends itself against predators. It repels fleas, lice, and moths to name a few.
This plant has insect repellant properties as well, including mosquitos and beetles.
Many essential oils must be diluted before being used on skin because they are so potent. One drop of doTERRA peppermint essential oil is equivalent to 25 bags of peppermint tea!! My personal fav is coconut oil because it has SO many amazing uses. Plus it has a natural spf of 4 so there is a little protection from sunburns in this as well! (Sun is definitely important, but that is a whole different post!) Other carrier oil options are almond oil, jojoba oil, olive oil, etc.. 🙂
Put it all together
Ok, now that you have all your ingredients we can put them together.
First I put in my oil. I use about 1/4 of a teaspoon of coconut oil. If your oil is already liquid then just add it right into the jar. My oil is not liquid so what I do is just put it in the jar and then run hot water over the jar and the oil liquifies in just a minute. About this much:
Then I add about 27 drops of each oil into the jar. Anywhere between 25-30 drops is fine. 😉
Next, fill the rest of your jar with water and shake! That’s it! Your nontoxic bug spray! The eucalyptus oil can last up to 6 hours but you are welcome to reapply when you feel its needed. Be sure to shake it up before each use.
We have gone up to 4 hours with no bites! We live on a lake and go fishing quite a bit. We spray this stuff on and have yet to get any bites sitting out on the dock. Also, we mowed our lawn recently (June in Georgia) and did not receive one single bite. That to me is AMAZING!! Our first night in this house my husband got a bunch of chigger bites, a few days later this bug spray was made and in full effect! I also spray this around the door frame for all the doors that lead outside and the bugs don’t like to come in anymore haha!
Let me know how this works for you!!