While most people enjoy the summer, not everyone enjoys the creatures that come with it, particularly the annoying mosquito. When trying to enjoy the outdoors, nothing is more annoying than constantly having to swat away mosquitoes. The recent Zika virus epidemic has made it even more important to keep these pests at bay.
Commercial bug repellents might work well at keeping mosquitoes away from you, but the majority of them contain DEET (N,N-diethyl-m-toluamide). Numerous health issues have been linked to DEET, ranging from minor side effects like skin irritation or allergic reactions to more serious long-term effects like interference with the nervous system.
Natural Bug RepellentsAlthough most commercial bug repellents contain harmful substances, there are many natural foods and compounds that produce scents that can effectively repel insects.
Lemon eucalyptus essential oil, which is extracted from the leaves of the lemon eucalyptus tree has been proven throughout various studies to be effective at repelling mosquitoes.
Citronella essential oil, which is extracted from lemon grass, also has a strong scent that is proven to ward off mosquitoes and other flying insects.
One study also found that substances made from the peel of common citrus fruits such as lemons, limes, oranges, tangerines and grapefruits were all found to be effective at repelling mosquitoes. This proves that natural, strong smelling plant-based substances and citrus fruits have the ability to repel mosquitoes without causing harmful side effects to the people using them.
Mosquito Repellent Mason Jars
An effective, and aesthetically pleasing, method of using essential oils and citrus fruits as mosquito repellent is through the use of mason jars. Here is everything that you’ll need to make your own mason jar bug repellents:
- 2 mason jars
- 10 drops of lemon eucalyptus essential oil
- 10 drops of citronella essential oil
- 1 lemon, sliced
- 1 lime, sliced
- 4 sprigs of rosemary (optional)
- Floating disc candles
- Add an even amount of slices of lemon and lime to each jar
- Put 2 sprigs or rosemary into each jar (optional)
- Fill the jar about 3/4 full with water
- Add essential oils, 10 of each type to a specific jar (don’t mix them together)
- Add more water (if necessary) until the jar is almost full
All you have to do to activate these natural mosquito repellents is by lighting a candle. They made great additions to porches, backyards, campfires or any other outdoors place where people (and mosquitoes) like to spend time.