Homemade bug repellent is a safe alternative to the commercial brands containing DEET. DEET is an insect repellent that can cause large irritations and rashes on the skin and has caused serious complications and death in a select few reported cases. You probably have a better chance winning the lottery than you do dying from DEET, however, I would rather put something on my body that is cheap and healthy as opposed to a commercial brand that is expensive and may cause severe irritation or death.
To make the bug repellent you will need just a few ingredients. This recipe for repellent is very effective and inexpensive, and probably the easiest to make. You will need:
- Witch Hazel (Can be bought at Wal-Mart by the peroxide) 16 oz costs $3.19
- Spray Bottle 16+ ounces
- Boiled or Distilled Water
- Essential Oils (100-125 drops) or about 1 teaspoon – I use a combination of 30 drops peppermint, 40 drops tea tree, and 40 drops eucalyptus. More drops the stronger it is.
That’s it! The recipe is 8oz of witch hazel and 8 oz of boiled water then add the essential oils in. Shake before each use.
This makes 16.167 ounces of repellent. Here is the cost breakdown.
- Witch Hazel cost $1.60
- I reuse spray bottles from cleaners and other things but you can buy one for $2.24 at Wal-Mart and maybe cheaper in bulk on Amazon
- Boiled water costs a fraction of a penny
- Essential Oils can be bought for a 60 ml variety pack for $18.99 and you use 5ml in the recipe for $1.58
Final Cost is 1.60+2.24+1.58=$5.42 for 16 ounces and you can reuse the bottle or; 1.60+1.58=$3.18 if you can find another bottle to reuse. Commercial brands cost $4 for 6 ounces that’s on the cheap end. So you can save minimally $5.26 per 16 ounces of repellent (6oz*2 1/3*$4=$10.68-$5.42=$5.26) or $7.50 if you reuse a bottle. Most brands cost much more.
There you have it. Cheap, effective and super simple bug repellent recipe in minutes that is safer and much less expensive than the commercial brands. Go out and Make it Homemade.