All Natural Bug/Bee Spray

All Natural Bug/Bee Spray

Essential Oil Bug Spray

Use the following ingredients to make an all-natural bug spray that is safe for your family and the environment:

Essential oils: choose from citronella, clove, lemongrass, rosemary, tea tree, eucalyptus, cedar, catnip, lavender, or mint

Natural witch hazel or vodka
Distilled or boiled water
Vegetable glycerin

Once you have all the ingredients listed above, fill an 8-ounce spray bottle half full with either distilled or boiled water. Add the witch hazel or vodka to fill almost to the top. Add one-half teaspoon vegetable glycerin along with anywhere from 30 to 50 drops of the essential oil of your choice. Keep in mind that the more oils you use, the stronger your spray will be.

Bug Spray From Fresh or Dried Herbs

Another option for a natural insect repellent is to use fresh or dried herbs. For this recipe, you will need the following:

Distilled water
Witch hazel, vodka, or rubbing alcohol
Dried herbs: choose from peppermint, spearmint, citronella, lemongrass, catnip, or lavender

To make this natural, eco-friendly repellent, boil one cup of water and add 3 to 4 tablespoons of dried herbs (any combination of the above-listed herbs will work, although it is recommended to use at least one from the mint family). Mix well, cover, and let cool. Once the solution has cooled, strain herbs out and mix with one cup of witch hazel, vodka, or rubbing alcohol. Store in a spray bottle in a cool place, such as the fridge, and use as needed.

These are just a couple of easy, affordable, safe, and natural recipes for insect repellents that will allow you to enjoy being outside without toxic bug sprays. If bees are bombing your barbeque, try the DIY natural bee repellent recipe below.

Source: Earth 911; Originally published on July 7, 2015, this article was updated in July 2021.

Make Your Own Bee-Away Spray

You can use this natural bee repellent safely indoors or outdoors.

Spray bottle
Dr. Bronner’s Pure-Castile Liquid Soap (peppermint or non-scented)
Peppermint oil
Cayenne pepper

Combine 2 or 3 teaspoons of liquid soap with water in your spray bottle. This will create a soapy mixture that can be safely sprayed on most things. Add more or less soap, depending on where you’re spraying it. If you’re spraying it outside, it should be stronger so it won’t wash off if it rains. If you’re spraying it indoors, use more water so it won’t have such a strong smell (always test surfaces before spraying).

Add a few drops of peppermint oil to your mixture. A lot of bugs, including hornets, dislike the smell of peppermint.

Add 1/8 teaspoon of cinnamon and 1/8 teaspoon of cayenne pepper to your mixture. This combination of scents will make your mixture strong enough to keep most pesky bees away.

Spray this around your doors, windows, decks, patios, and so on to keep your outside events buzz-free. Also spray underneath lawn chairs, tables, and on walkways. If you’re using your spray indoors, as mentioned previously, make sure to only spray surfaces that will not be damaged by the mixture.

Your natural bee repellent works because the water will evaporate and leave behind the peppermint, cinnamon, and cayenne smells to deter the insects from hanging around.

NOTE: Use common sense when interacting with nature. Don’t spray directly at a bee or wasp because it may become agitated and come after you. Wasps are especially aggressive; if you have a problem that isn’t helped with these solutions, consult a professional.

Source: Earth 911, Wendy Gabriel; Originally published on June 20, 2017, this article was updated in June 2021.