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The Aromahead Blog - Aromatherapy Education and Resources

All Natural Bug Spray Recipe

natural bug spray recipeFight Bugs Naturally and Smell Good Doing It!

As spring rolls into summer, bugs are often people's number one complaint. Mosquitoes and other biters are a nuisance in just about every region. They can really put a damper on summertime fun.

Until recently, the solution has been obvious: buy bug spray, and spray it on thick! But these days, we're becoming more conscious of chemicals in the products we rely on every day. When it comes to the aerosols and lotions you slather on your and your children's skin, ingredients really do matter.

Thankfully, you can use all natural bug spray.

Yes, natural bug spray really works! It smells better, and it's safer for you and your family. Best of all, you'll know exactly what you're using, because you made it yourself!

Follow our basic recipe, or make your own tweaks if you're experienced with essential oil safety.

You'll need a few ingredients:

8 drops Cedarwood Essential Oil -- Juniperus virginiana
3 drops Juniper Berry Essential Oil -- Juniperus communis
8 drops Patchouli Essential Oil -- Pogostemon cablin
5 drops Spikenard Essential Oil -- Nardostachys jatamansi
Just under 4 oz (120 ml) Organic Frankincense Hydrosol -- Distilled from Boswellia carterii
4 ml Solubol dispersant
4 oz (120 ml) Spray Bottle

Make sure you're buying pure essential oils and hydrosols. They may be a little pricier than what you'll find on the grocery store shelves, but spring for the good stuff. Pure essential oils don't contain additives or synthetic fragrances--which can trigger headaches and skin reactions. On top of that . . . synthetics rarely work!

Don't hesitate to contact the company you are purchasing from. They should be able to supply evidence of the quality of their oils.

PET plastic is the best container to work with. It's known as a non-reactive plastic that doesn't leach. I usually prefer glass when working with essential oils but in cases where glass isn't ideal, such as when kids might drop the bottle, PET plastic is a good choice. Have fun with the bottle! If you have kids, give them some office labels and markers and let them design their own brand of bug spray!

Once you have your materials, it's time to start blending!

  • Add the hydrosol to your plastic bottle first.
  • Carefully add the appropriate number of drops of each essential oil. This recipe is crafted with a safe dilution of essential oils, so be sure not to use more than are listed.

Essential oils are highly concentrated, so the bottles are generally topped with orifice reducers to ensure they don't spill. Tip your essential oil bottle gently until the drops fall out slowly enough to be counted.

  • Add the Solubol dispersant.
  • When you've added all the drops, seal the spray container and shake gently.
  • Spray freely on your skin and clothes before heading outdoors, and after swimming. Because essential oils, even in a blend, shouldn't come in contact with your eyes, avoid spraying directly onto the face.

Make a few bottles of natural bug spray to start out with and stash them in easy-to-grab places, like a basket in your entryway and in your bathroom. Remember not to leave your spray bottle out in the sun or in your car for long periods of time. Heat may weaken the strength of your blend. I recommend making this product fresh every few weeks, as it does not have a preservative in it.

Next step? Enjoy your summer!

Founder at Aromahead Institute
Andrea Butje is an internationally-recognized Aromatherapist who has changed the educational paradigm through her inspired approach to teaching essential oils and Aromatherapy Certification. Check out her book, The Heart of Aromatherapy, at Aromatics International!

Topics: Recipes and Blends, blends, remedies

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