Love Bug

Nothing says warm weather like the onset of bug bites! Insect repellents are a must - mosquitos can transmit things like West Nile Virus, and ticks are of course associated with Lyme Disease (among other things). Plus, dealing with an itchy welt isn't anyone's idea of a good time. 

If you want to keep your skin bite-free but don’t love the idea of slathering on a bunch of chemicals (DEET is scary stuff, guys), consider making your own essential-oil based insect repellent. This recipe works best on mosquitos and most flying insects. If you are in an area with ticks, add juniper, oregano, and geranium to the mix. 


  • 12oz bottle of Witch Hazel
  • 15 drops of citronella essential oil
  • 10 drops of peppermint essential oil
  • 10 drops of tea tree oil (optional, but is a good idea to add if going to be in an area with ticks)
  • 7 drops of thyme
  • 7 drops basil
  • 1 large jar or jug for mixing, ensure it is large enough to hold all of the ingredients
  • Empty spray container


  • Add all ingredients to your mixing jar and shake well
  • Decant the insect spray into smaller spray container(s)
  • Store remaining mixture in the mixing jar in a cool, dark place and refill your spray bottles when necessary
  • Shake well before applying; apply to exposed areas 15 min prior to being outdoors. Re-apply every 90 minutes.