Avoid harmful chemicals like DEET and deter mosquitoes and biting insects naturally with our easy DIY mosquito repellant recipe. Combining apple cider vinegar and a blend of essential oil that mosquitoes, sand flies, midgies and other bugs just hate, you can enjoy your picnic or hike in the bush without pesky mozzies buzzing around or harmful chemicals on your skin! In Australia, our mozzie season can vary depending on rainfall, so this spray is handy all year round.
Easy Homemade Mosquito Repellent Recipe
- Raw Apple Cider Vinegar
- Distilled Water
- Essential Oils - the essential oils that mozzies dislike most are tea tree, spearmint, lavender, lemon, lemongrass, clove, citronella and eucalyptus. In this recipe we used 5 drops each of citronella, lavender and lemongrass.
- Glass Spray Bottle
Fill your spray bottle with half distilled water and half apple cider vinegar. Then add your chosen mixture of essential oils and shake to now have your own organic insect repellent.
How To Use Your Homemade Mozzie Spray:
It is important to shake well before use to ensure the effectiveness of the deterrent spray, and so that the oils and the vinegar are mixed together, as you do not wish to spray undiluted essential oils on your skin. Spray liberally over skin needing protection. Avoid open wounds, eyes and mouth. Not suitable for use on children under the age of 3. Discontinue use if irritation occurs. Store out of sunlight and use within 6 months.
If you wish to use this as a sandfly repellent or a midge repellent, we recommend wearing long plants and sleeves and spraying your clothes lightly also. Sandflies and midgies are very small with a very itchy bite.
Why It Costs Less to Make Your Own
As with many common household and beauty items, a natural mozzie repellent can be made inexpensively at home, using simple, natural ingredients. It's the best to be able to save money and plastic packaging waste!
For this homemade bug and insect repellent you can even make your own apple cider vinegar from apple scraps. In addition to essential oils, you could add several tablespoons of dried herbs that you grow at home such as Sage, Rosemary, Lavender, and Thyme. Steep the herbs in the mosquito repellent mixture for one to two weeks and then strain through a fine sieve or nut milk bag.
Add a mixture of herbs grown at home that have been known for their antibacterial, antiviral, antiseptic, and antifungal properties for centuries.
Can I use natural mosquito repellent for dogs?
Firstly, do not use chemical sprays containing DEET, because DEET is highly toxic to dogs and cats. It's not very nice for humans either! Other common ingredients in natural mozzie sprays that are harmful to dogs are Garlic, Citronella, Never use cintronella candles around dogs. For the best natural insect repellent for dogs use the recipe above with Apple Cider Vinegar and water, but only use essential oils that are safe for dogs: such as lemon eucalyptus, lemongrass essential oil, neem oil, rosemary oil, peppermint oil, and lavender. The oils must be diluted before spraying - and avoid their eyes and nose.
Helpful tips to help soothe your skin if you've already been bitten
Apple Cider Vinegar - Dab a drop of apple cider vinegar on the bite to disinfect and help reduce the stinging sensation. You could also soak a face washer in cold water and vinegar and apply to your skin. For many bites all over the body, dilute 2 cups of vinegar in a tepid (not a hot bath, this may make itching worse), and soak for 20 minutes. If skin irritation occurs, stop this treatment.
Witch hazel - Witch hazel is a natural astringent which can help reduce inflammation, soothe the burning and irritation and help speed up healing. Apply a small amount of witch hazel to a cotton pad and gently dab over the bite.
Chamomile tea - Steep a teabag filled with dried chamomile flowers in water in the fridge for 30 minutes. Squeeze any excess water from the tea bag and apply directly to the mosquito bite. Let it sit for 10 minutes before wiping with a damp cloth. You can keep the tea bag in the fridge for later applications.
Discover Biome's Naked Beauty Bar
Looking to simplify, reduce waste and know exactly what you are putting on your skin? At Biome's Naked Beauty Bar, you will find all of the beautiful raw ingredients you need to make your own natural skin care and cleaning products. These ingredients are available in convenient reusable glass jars, and in bulk from all of our stores. Find all our DIY recipes here > Find all our DIY skin care ingredients online Share what you make and tag #BiomeNakedBeauty on Facebook and Instagram.
As with all our DIY recipes, you can experiment to suit your preferences. Many factors can change the end result, including temperature, humidity, light, ingredient quality.
Before using any raw DIY ingredient for the first time, please first research that ingredient's potential benefits as well as safety precautions and possible side effects. Check with your medical professional if you have any concerns.
If you have severe acne, very sensitive skin, or another skin concern or health condition, we recommend seeking medical advice before using any new product on your skin, whether that be a raw ingredient, a DIY product you've made yourself, or a commercially formulated product.
Please exercise caution when using essential oils. If you are pregnant or have any kind of health or skin condition, we recommend you speak to your doctor before use. Essential oils are highly concentrated liquids, so use in moderation. Pure essential oils should never be used directly on the skin and should never be ingested. When using an essential oil for the first time, do a skin patch test. Each essential oil is unique and may not be suited to everyone. Please research potential benefits as well as safety precautions before using any essential oil. Some essential oils may interfere with medication. Check with your medical professional if you have any concerns.