Make Your Own Natural Bug Repellent

Ever been in a situation where someone is very attracted to you and you’re trying to avoid him or her like the plague? Well, I have that relationship with mosquitos. For as long as I can remember, I’ve seen mosquitos bypass whomever else I’m traveling with and feast on my blood instead. While there’s no concrete explanation as to why mosquitoes are attracted to some over others, current research suggests that having an O blood type can be a factor. That, or I’m giving off some mosquito pheromones.

Either way, bug repellent is necessary wherever these blood-sucking stalkers are present. Keep in mind that our skin absorbs much of what is placed on it, into the bloodstream. That’s what goes into the science of transdermal (i.e. through the skin) products such as nicotine patches, birth control patches, or even CBD balms. That being said, toxic chemicals should be the last thing we’re spraying on our bodies.

Several years ago, I had an awful experience at a yoga retreat in Tulum. I was in the jungle for a week and single handedly supplied a mosquito community with my blood. I felt like I was the virgin in a Mayan mosquito sacrifice. Needless to say, I came home with 70+ bites all over my body and
would be up all night scratching my body. Then these bites turned into welts or scars. Super fun.

How did this happen? Well, I was at a yoga retreat and felt compelled at the airport to “go natural” so I threw out my chemical-laden repellent before passing security. I figured the retreat would offer some natural, hippie bug repellent.


So I’m in the jungle, away from civilization, and the only bug repellent available didn’t work on repelling mosquitoes from my delicious blood. I was frustrated, miserable, and could not wait to get back to the modern world away from these disease-carrying vampires. I vowed that I would never show up unprepared, but determined to find a natural solution at the same time. After a lot of research and test batches, I’ve created a non-toxic, natural bug repellant recipe. This stuff works. Tested it out in the bayous of Louisiana and I left with no bites! And best of all – you can make it at home, saving you money and knowing exactly what ingredients go into it!

Fun travel tip: If you do find yourself with mosquitos bites, you can apply tea tree oil or lavender essential onto the bites to help with recovery.


● witch hazel
● water
● citronella essential oil
● lavender or lemon eucalyptus essential oil
● Citronella is widely known for being a natural bug repellent, but did you know that lavender and lemon eucalyptus oils also work? I like to cut the strong citronella smell with lavender or lemon eucalyptus. I find that the more pleasant the smell for you, the more you’re going to use it!


Grab a small glass spray bottle and fill 1/3 of it with water, 1/3 with witch hazel, and add in 5-8 drops of each essential oil you’re using. Give it a shake, spray it onto your skin, and based on how it smells, dilute with more witch hazel or add in more essential oils. Everyone responds differently to the smell, so adjust based on your preferences 🙂


● Pay extra attention to spraying your ankles and feet! Certain mosquitoes have evolved to be attracted to the odors our feet emit because they know they are less likely to be noticed/swatted if they bite them.
● Apply repellent in an open area. While non-toxic, the smell can be a little intense for some and it will save you from receiving dirty looks from nearby people.
● Pack repellent in a small two to three ounce bottle. Not only does this fit the TSA requirement for carry-on luggage, but it also allows you to pack it in your purse, daypack, backpack, fanny pack, wherever! If you’re planning on being gone for longer, pack several bottles. If you make this natural repellent, let me know how it goes for you! Or if you have any other natural mosquito repellent tricks, I’d love to hear about it below in the comments.

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