Today’s Solutions: March 01, 2024

Bug bites are among the few things that can turn a summertime outing into an unappetizing experience. And though scratching provides in-the-moment relief, it only makes bites more painful in the long run and could potentially cause infection.

Fortunately, some essential oils have antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties that can spare us from the temptation of the scratch by soothing inflamed skin, be it from mosquito bites or other buggers.

When properly diluted, these oils can be applied to bites multiple times a day. One thing to keep in mind though is to avoid the eye area and wash your hands after application, says Sarah Villafranco, M.D., a natural skincare expert.


Lavender oil is not only great at calming the mind before bedtime but can also be relaxing and rejuvenating for the skin too.

Tea tree

Extracted from the Melaleuca alternifolia trees of Australia, the tree tea essential oil has great anti-itching and anti-swelling properties you can tap into. This germ-fighting oil is also helpful during cold and flu season, so hold on to it after the sun sets on summer.


The cooling rush of peppermint is a quick salve for hot, itchy bites, and its invigorating scent can also help boost alertness and act as a quick pick-me-up.


Chamomile is known for being good at improving relaxation, lifting mood, and even reducing anxiety. But apart from being good for a calming cup of teathe chamomile plant also has soothing and anti-inflammatory effects on the skin.


Like peppermint, eucalyptus is cooling, and its antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties make it a popular choice for topical application.


A less obvious pick for bites, basil also has antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties. Known in the world of natural medicine as a natural insecticide, basil can help keep the bugs away and even provide relief in the event of a bite.

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