Do essential oils repel mosquitoes?Posted by Mosquito Squad
December 20, 2023
If you have ever been outside during the warmer months and dealt with mosquitoes, you have likely searched for the most effective do it yourself (DIY) mosquito repellent to limit mosquito bites. Many people seek out natural products such as essential oils in hopes of reducing the amount of bites they receive.
This creates the question, do essential oils really work to repel mosquitoes!
Mosquitoes' sense of smell tells them when a human target is within striking distance. While they can be even more attracted to you by certain scents (floral scented soaps, deodorants, perfumes, moisturizing lotions and even your own sweat), mosquitoes can also be repelled by certain ones (results may vary).
Citronella candles are a widely known and easily accessible insect repellent. Although this is a very common solution, citronella oil is only responsible for about 50% efficacy in the protection of mosquitoes.
Thyme contains strong anti-microbial properties and was proven to surpass N, N-Diethyl-meta-toluamide, also called DEET or diethyltoluamide, in one mosquito-repellent study. With a potent protection rate of about 91%, Thyme provides optimal protection against successfully repelling mosquitoes, as well as ticks and chiggers.
Crushed lavender flowers will produce a fragrance and oil that repel mosquitoes. The scent of lavender is unpleasant to mosquitoes, drawing them away from biting your skin. In addition to repelling mosquitoes, lavender has many health benefits and can calm and soothe the skin as you protect yourself from mosquitoes.
Oil of Lemon Eucalyptus
Products containing Oil of Lemon Eucalyptus (OLE) are a proven mosquito repellent that is EPA-Registered and one of the recommended products for mosquito bite prevention by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). However, the CDC does not recommend “pure” oil of lemon eucalyptus (essential oil not formulated) as a repellent. The CDC strongly recommends the use of an insect repellent containing both a safe and effective ingredient.
Is there a difference between using essential oils in lieu of chemical based insect repellents?
Essential oils are an effective source for natural mosquito bite prevention, however they are not always the best mosquito repellents. Most essential oils are not registered with the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and are not required to be approved by the Food and Drug Association (FDA). With the exception of OLE, the EPA has not evaluated the effectiveness of most commonly known insect repellents.
Does Mosquito Squad have a solution?
We have multiple effective methods of mosquito control to protect you, your family, and pets from these pests each season. Our best line of defense is our Barrier Treatment (this is not a natural based product), which we provide the option of treating every 3 weeks or every 2 weeks for added defense. If you are in a heavily wooded area or near a body of water, the 2 week option is recommended.
For our customers who prefer a natural approach, we do offer a Natural Treatment service that is effective in limiting mosquito population so you can enjoy the outdoors as well. The natural service operates on a 14 day cycle.
Make sure to give us a call so we can tackle these pests as soon as possible!