7 Natural Ways to Protect Yourself from Mosquitoes this Summer

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You know the drill; you’re enjoying a BBQ, the drinks are flowing, there’s a fire keeping you all warm and cozy and then you hear it. Zzzz! A bloody mosquito is using your face as a bouncy castle and you’re cozy feeling quickly dissipates as you spend the next few minutes swatting the little bugger in an attempt to shoo it away from your skin. It usually ends with someone grumbling about going indoors and then it’s game over; one-by-one you all retreat inside and the mosquitoes have won. 

But it’s not just BBQ’s that get ruined by pesky mosquitoes. They sneak into our bedrooms, keeping us awake with their constant buzzing. And when they do manage to feast upon our body we’re left with nasty looking red bumps that are just begging to be itched.

So, what do you do to stop this from happening? Well, you could barricade your windows and doors and sleep under the confines of a mosquito net. Or just keep your clothes nice and long. But, heck no! It’s summer. We want to feel the breeze on our skin. So you turn to mosquito repellent. Unfortunately, more often than not, these repellents contains a pesticide called DEET that is toxic and detrimental to human health. Exposure to DEET has been linked to all kinds of scary things ranging from headaches, weakness and fatigue to tremors, shortness of breath and even memory loss. Pretty scary stuff, huh? It’s potentially more dangerous to our children, too, so before you reach for the store-bought repellent, why not try and make your own?

There are so many ways to help keep mosquitoes at bay this summer that are effective and both healthy and enviro-friendly for all the family to use.

Here are our 7 natural repellents to obsess over this summer:

1. Homemade Mosquito Repellent

A repellent spray is the first thing people want to use when trying to stop themselves from becoming a meal for insects. You can just spritz yourself and enjoy the evening without that persistent buzzing in your ear. Skip the chemical spray and make your own. It’s super easy to make and many of the ingredients you’re likely to have on hand. Simply spray onto your skin before heading outside.

Find the recipe here.

2. Citronella Soy Candle

Not only does citronella smell both wonderful and citrusy it really does work to keep those pesky mosquitoes away. These candles are really easy to make and because they are made with soy, they won’t release any unwanted toxins or chemicals.

Find the recipe here.

3. Mosquito Repellent Bracelet with Essential Oils

Why not make a a fashion statement while wearing mosquito repellent? Citronella and tea tree oil are both natural insect repellents so it makes sense to infuse your bracelet with these essential oils. Plus these are pretty easy to make so you could even turn it into an afternoon activity with the kids. Fun and practical!

Find the recipe here.

4. Bug Repellent Lotion

This lotion is not only easy peasy lemon squeezy to make, but it’s pretty affordable, too. Many natural body lotions on the market are pretty pricey, and not really an option if you’re on a budget. That’s when DIY recipes like this come in handy. This lotion has just four natural ingredients and it will last you a pretty long time so you could make up a batch ahead of summer and use it daily.

Find the recipe here.

5. Mosquito Repellent Lotion Bars

Not a fan of citronella? It can be a rather pungent scent, especially when on the skin. This DIY recipe is great as it uses different scents in conjunction with citronella, that still repel those nasty bugs. These lotion bars are so easy to use; once made, simply rub between your hands to warm it up and, as you do, a small amount will melt off allowing you to work it into your skin as a moisturizer.

Find the recipe here.

6. Summer Mason Jar Luminaries

Not only will these work to keep you safe from mosquito bites they’ll look so cute as a centerpiece on the table. And if you don’t have mason jars you could easily just upcycle some old jars. The blend of essential oils combined with fresh lemons, limes and rosemary helps ward off insects, and the floating candle makes it really pretty at night.

Find the recipe here.

7. Natural Sunscreen with Bug Repellent

Combine your sun protection and bug protection into one product with your sunscreen. This DIY sunscreen is all natural and has a really creamy texture, making it easy to massage into your skin. Whether you’re outside enjoying some rays, tending to your garden or having a get-together you can make sure that you’re protected.

Find the recipe here.

Of course there are many other ways to keep yourself protected this summer. A quick and effective idea is to use lavender essential oil on an old piece of material and hang it near windows to keep mosquito and gnats from coming indoors, which means you can keep your windows open well into the night during the hotter nights.

Another idea is to up your intake of garlic as, when large quantities are consumed, it’s gradually released through our pores. Be warned though, although this may keep bugs from coming anywhere near you, it may also repel humans! And if you’re outside grilling, throw a little rosemary onto the BBQ. The smell alone is wonderful but the scent will also keep mosquitoes away from you and your food.

Short on time, or let’s face it, a tad lazy?

Not all of us have the spare time to be making up concoctions in the kitchen. We want quick and easy products that we can pick up, put on and rely on to work. When time isn’t on your side, or if you’re jetting off on your holiday and looking for some great products to take, here are just three of the wonderful products now on the market. They’re all DEET-free and natural—perfect!

1. Alfresco Natural Insect Repellent Moisturizer

Alfresco has created a moisturizer that is not only going to give you silky smooth skin, but will repel insects, too. With a blend of over 20 essential oils it smells wonderful and is not only DEET and paraben-free but it’s also gentle enough to use on sensitive skin. Handmade in batches in the UK, you can get this shipped worldwide so we can all rejoice over a mosquito-free summer!

Get yours here.

2. Badger SPF 30+ Anti-Bug Insect Repellent Sunscreen

Looking for a product you can buy that will protect you from more than just the sun? This anti-bug sunscreen is also water resistant you can enjoy a swim while staying protected. It’s also DEET-free and non-toxic so you can be confident using it on the whole family.

Get yours here.

3. Babyganics Mineral-Based Baby Sunscreen Spray SP 50 + Natural Insect Repellent Spray Bottle Duo Pack

Babyganics have created a range of baby-safe products for both sun and bug-protection. The mineral-based sunscreen will prevent sunburn and skin damage, it also glides on smoothly so you won’t have to spend ages rubbing it in.

The duo also comes with a natural insect repellent, which is great for your baby or small children.  It’s DEET-free and made with essential oils that are safe for babies and young children.

Get yours here.

Number of gnats that took a chunk out of me during the making of this article: 3.

Lora O'Brien

Lora O'Brien

Lora is a virulent wellness enthusiast. She freelances from the UK where you can find her writing about all things healthy foodie and natural beauty. Fun fact? She reads and watches more DVDs than the average human.
Lora O'Brien

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