Today’s Solutions: September 28, 2023

Summertime is the season to enjoy the outdoors, but it’s also the season for mosquitos. If you’re planning on relishing the warm summer nights or embarking on a summer camping trip, here are ways to make homemade mosquito repellent that really works!

First off, if you spend a lot of time in your yard, planting lemon balm, basil, citronella, lavender, or catnip can help keep those pesky bugs away in the first place. To make a DIY mosquito repellent, all you have to do is combine specific essential oils with water and alcohol, witch hazel, or vinegar. 

Citronella is one of the most popular natural mosquito repellents, which you could probably guess from the number of citronella candles on the market. And for good reason, citronella has shown to be as effective as DEET at warding off mosquitos. Lavender, geranium, lemongrass, and lemon eucalyptus are also great options for alternative essential oils that will keep bugs away.

For an easy DIY recipe, combine half a cup of water with half a cup of witch hazel and add 30-40 drops of citronella or other essential oil. If you don’t have witch hazel on hand, you can also use vodka or vinegar. Vinegar may be the best option for those with sensitive skin. 

Other ingredients that can beef up your repellent are rosemary, peppermint, cinnamon, soybean, Greek catnip oil, thyme, and tea tree oil. You can add these to boost your recipe or just make your mixture smell more appealing. 

Beyond repellent for your body, you can also spray apple cider vinegar around your patio or campsite to keep mosquitos at bay or throw some thyme leaves into your campfire. According to Malaria Journal, burnt thyme leaves give off a protection rate of 85 percent anywhere from 60 to 90 minutes. 

Mosquitos can put a real damper on summer adventures. Fortunately, these simple recipes and tricks are an easy and non-toxic way of emerging from your summer nights itch-free.

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