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1-Minute DIY Natural Bug Spray Recipe {That Really Works}

Deter mosquitoes naturally with this natural bug spray that uses witch hazel and essential oils for a pleasant smelling, but very effective homemade bug spray.

Ugh. Mosquitoes. I hate them, but they love me. No, really. They love to bite me. If you think it’s rubbish that mosquitoes prefer to bite some people over others, I am living proof that it’s a true phenomenon. 

In fact, going camping is a brutal experience for me, because they love me more than anyone else around. Unfortunately, my body has a stronger immune response to mosquito saliva than some people experience, which means that when I get a mosquito bite, I develop huge, welt-y, itchy bumps. 

So while some people barely notice a bug bite, I’m dancing around scratching those itchy welts and practically jumping out of my skin! 

Natural Homemade Bug Spray Recipe with essential oils

Effective and Natural Bug Spray

I used to douse myself in horrible smelling commercial bug sprays and lotions but they disrupted me almost as much as they did the mosquitoes. And honestly, sometimes they didn’t work all that well anyway.

I dislike mosquitoes (or at least their bite)…and I love easy DIY projects. Today’s DIY natural bug spray project satisfies both requirements! Other projects that also fit the bill include the Citronella CANdle project and my Terracotta Pot Citronella Candles.

By the way, if you are a camper, I also recommend adding herbs to your campfire to keep bugs away. It really works!

When it’s time to blow out the CANdles or stomp out the fire and come inside, invariably a few little buggers have camped out in hiding spots around the bedroom just waiting to hear peaceful, rhythmic breathing so they can attack.

Safe Essential Oil Bug Spray That Works

Oh, I almost forgot. There’s one more requirement for the perfect bug spray. I don’t like putting toxic stuff on my skin as you will see in the Natural Skincare Series of recipes. 

Since kids absorb even more chemicals into their skin, I really don’t want to put toxic stuff on them.

It was time to make an effective and safe essential oil bug spray and ditch the chemical-filled commercial stuff.

This all-natural bug spray recipe is bad for bugs, but it’s good for you because it’s super simple to make. It’s also good because it actually smells nice, unlike most bug spray products you can buy in the store. And finally, it’s not toxic to your skin. 

Why Does This Natural Bug Spray Work So Well?

Thanks to some pleasant-smelling essential oils in a base of witch hazel that I love and they hate, mosquitoes will fly away from you instead of towards you. Take that, aggravating mosquitoes! 

Ingredients That Deter Mosquitoes

It’s important to note that this is not a spray that harms bugs. If they somehow get to you and take a bite, it isn’t going to poison them or anything. Rather, this natural bug spray acts as a deterrent that discourages them from getting close to you in the first place! So, you can rest assured that this natural bug spray will not disrupt the ecosystem or hurt anything, whether it’s a mosquito, a flowering bush, or your family.

There are certain plants that mosquitoes hate: herbs such as mint, lemon balm, lavender, sage, and citronella (maybe the most famous of this list). When it comes to essential oils, it turns out that mosquitoes also hate lemongrass, rosemary, and eucalyptus.

That means we can harvest the natural power of these plants and make a custom blend of scents that will have mosquitos flying the other direction from you. You’ll remain bite-free and get to enjoy the yummy smelling oils at the same time!

Related Post: Plant a Mosquito-Repelling Garden to Protect Outdoor Entertaining Spaces

If you are like me and hate becoming the inevitable mosquito buffet during the warm weather months, try making this homemade bug spray. When you spray this on, you’ll enjoy being outside again – and everyone else will become mosquito lunch for once. 

How to Make My Homemade Bug Spray

Remember how I said I love easy projects? Well, this little DIY bug spray is not only a snap to mix together, but it only takes (maybe) a minute to complete. Quick and easy…I’m all for it!

Important Note: While this recipe doesn’t contain any harmful chemicals, some essential oils can be strong enough that they irritate skin – especially children’s sensitive skin. If you have any concerns at all about that, simply spray this all-natural essential oil bug spray on clothing, hats, and other gear rather than directly on the skin.

Essential oils to use for pain relief in a diy oatmeal bath recipe

Ingredients for the DIY Mosquito Repellent:


  1. Add all ingredients into a small glass or plastic atomizer. Shake to mix.
  2. Shake well and apply liberally.

How to Naturally Treat Mosquito Bites

I have found this spray to work very well. However, if you forget to wear it, or if someone you’re with does receive a mosquito bite, there’s a simple way to treat it. I highly recommend you keep a bottle of this natural insect bite roll-on with you any time you’re outdoors. It’s my favourite way to treat those painful, itchy welts.

Headache Relief Roller ball Remedy

Looking for more effective natural solutions to try? Here is a handy resource guide for finding all you will need to create a home apothecary:

apothecary shelves stocked with dried flowers, herbs, and more

And there you go! I hope this easy but effective natural bug spray changes how you deter mosquitoes this summer. Now get out there and enjoy the warm weather without worrying about becoming a mosquito sampler plate!

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Easy DIY Natural Bug Spray

This essential oil bug spray will stop you from becoming a mosquito sampler plate! Avoid those itchy, uncomfortable welts and stay comfortable outdoors.
Cost $3



  • Pour all of the ingredients into an atomizer or spray bottle.
  • Shake well to combine.


Note: some essential oils can be strong enough that they can irritate delicate, sensitive skin, such as children's. In this case, it is recommended to spray this bug spray onto clothing instead of the skin itself. 


  1. It would be nice if the author responds to the questions. I actually would like to know the answers to some as they apply to not just me but others. Thank you.

    • Hi Michele, I have been responding to questions for the years that this recipe has been up, but some of them didn’t show as a reply (you can see them below the comment in many cases) because of the format this blog had 4 years ago. I have updated a few more so they show up. and I have also added a link to a resource guide that I have created to find equipment and ingredients. Thanks for your suggestion!

  2. The label is so cute, though <3
    I even think I could recreate this as a liquid candle thingy and have both – an effective insect repellent and a cosy autumn candle (I tend to buy tons of them anyways, why not DIY them?).

  3. That is a great recipe. We go to the park often, so this is handy. Can we use floral water instead of witch hazel?

  4. Yes, It’s true. That works perfectly fine..

    Most people use commercial products to prevent mosquitoes and other defenses for their safety due to mosquito-borne diseases such as Dengue, Malaria, Yellow Fever, LaCrosse Encephalitis (LAC), West Nile Virus (WNV) etc,.

    But, several people love to do Natural Mosquito Repellent by planting herbs plants around or inside the house..

    Thanks for sharing. ;)

    Jaime Scott PhD
    Health and Wellness Advisor

    • The ingredients listed have links you can click to see the products available for shipping. Just click the orange text and it will take you there.


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