DIY Ways to Repel Bugs

I love the outdoors! I love being so close to nature. I feel it is important to a person’s health to feel the ground beneath their feet. I feel so much better when I get outside and connect with nature.

But there are some down sides….one of those downsides is bugs! Ugh. I hate being followed around by mosquitos and gnats while I am hiking and camping. It is a total annoyance, no matter how important those bugs are to the world!

So, bug repellent is a must. Sadly a lot of bug repellents have some pretty nasty chemicals and those chemicals leave an awful smell. Luckily more and more companies are coming out with great options for those of us who do not want the chemicals in our sprays!


Here are some scents to keep around your campsite to keep those pests at bay:

  • Lemon
    • Mosquitos hate the smell of lemon and orange peels. Rub and keep citrus fruit peels around your campsite to keep them at bay.
      • Note-this may attract bees or ants if left in the wrong place or for too long.
  • Lavender
    • Place plants around your property or camp site to repel bugs.
  • Tea Tree Oil
    • Create a tea tree pol spray by mixing 1 cup water and 15 drops of tea tree oil. Rub on surfaces with a rag OR use as a spray for your tent and campsite. Tea tree oil has been deemed safe for pets. Just do not allow them to digest it.

Here are tips to keep the bugs away from you:

  • Lemon/Citrus
    • Rub those orange and lemon peels on you.
    • You can get this lemon eucalyptus spray at Target for $4.99:

  • Need oil- Mix this with coconut oil and apply to the skin to keeps bugs away! Neem oil has also been used as a home remedy for acne!
  • Lavender- Rub Lavender oil or plants on your skin to keep bugs at bay. This works best if you rub the plant on warm parts of your body. You can also keep the plants around your home or campsite to repel the bugs.
  • I found some really great information on a site called My favorite pieces of info I found on this site is a recipe for spray and a recipe for ointment to repel bugs. Here they are:
    • Spray- Mix ¼ cup boiling water with ¼ cup vodka and let it cool. Pour it into a glass spritzing bottle and add 5 drops each of lemon eucalyptus oil, cedarwood oil, and catnip oil. Shake well before using the spray. (
    • Ointment- Melt ¼ cup of beeswax pellets in a double boiler and add ¼ cup of coconut oil. Take off the heat and allow to cool until a film forms on top. Whip in 5 drops each of lavender, thyme, basil, and citronella oils until the mixture becomes light and fluffy. Spread a thin coating on exposed skin to prevent mosquito bites. (
  • If you prefer to buy your bug repellent, I have a few recommendations for you! Visit my 15 beauty hacks for camping article for my recommendations! You can find that here.

I hope this helps everyone!