DIY Natural Bug Spray Using Essential Oils

Since summer started, I have been hearing so much about how bad the bugs are. We had a really mild winter, so ticks and mosquitoes, that are normally killed off, have stuck around this year. Plus, these little insects can carry some pretty nasty diseases. A mosquito bite is annoying enough, then add in all the scary stories you hear on the news about kids going to the hospital, and you’ve got a bunch of mom’s freaking out about bugs.

DIY Natural Bug Spray made with essential oils. Printable label for essential oils spray bottle.

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Protection From Bugs and Chemicals

Protecting yourself and your little ones from little critters is more important than ever. The majority of people run out and grab whatever they find on the shelf and spray it on their kiddos without one thought about how the spray itself may be causing some harm as well. I get it! This was me last summer. It’s quick, it’s easy, and I had never thought about it before. I just didn’t want my baby to get bit.

The chemicals in bug sprays can be harmful too! We should protect our babies in that area as well. There are safer, more natural ways to guard your kids against bugs. There are natural products for you to buy, or you can make one, yourself. I am always a big fan of making things yourself; that way, you know what exactly you are spraying on your kid. You don’t read the ingredients and go, “How do you say that?!” You can easily put together natural bug spray using essential oils and a few other ingredients. 

Enough rambling… let’s make this bug spray.

DIY Natural Bug Spray made with essential oils. Printable label for essential oils spray bottle.

Everything you need:

2 oz glass spray bottle

2 tbs Apple Cider Vinegar

Splash of Fractionated Coconut Oil or other carrier oil

5 drops Lemon Essential Oil

5 drops Cedarwood Essential Oil

5 drops Lavender Essential Oil

Labels for the bottle


What To Do

Once you have the apple cider vinegar, coconut oil, and essential oils in the bottle, you can fill it the rest of the way up with water. Make sure you shake it up before every use so that all of the ingredients are mixed together well.

Why I Used These Materials

I use a dark glass bottle because many essential oils need to be protected from the sun and they can eat away at plastic. I recommend these labels by Crinklee because they are water and oil proof. I love these labels. They work better than anything else I have tried. Also, I made the adorable labels you see in the pictures for my roller bottles and they work great on these 2-ounce bottles as well. Check out more about the roller bottles, their labels, and recipes here

DIY Natural Bug Spray made with Simply Earth essential oils. Printable label for essential oils spray bottle.

There are a ton of different oils that can be used to repel bugs. I chose these three specifically because they are safe for kids under 2 years. Do not use on a baby under 3 months and spray on clothing instead of skin, when possible. 

And… this recipe is safe for dogs as well
. We can’t forget to protect our furry friends.

I hope everyone stays safe from the bugs this summer. Let me know if you give this a try and how it works out for you.

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DIY Natural Bug Spray made with essential oils. Printable label for essential oils spray bottle.


  1. Belle

    June 28, 2017 at 10:27 am

    This is amazing! I didn’t know you can create your own natural bug spray using essential oils!

    Belle | One Awesome Momma

    1. KatiesKottage

      June 28, 2017 at 1:37 pm

      I actually didn’t know this until the season. Belle is seriously crazy how many uses their are for essential oils.

  2. Emily @ The Multitasking Mom

    June 28, 2017 at 10:27 am

    This is perfect timing as I just got my first mosquito bite of the season yesterday!

    1. KatiesKottage

      June 28, 2017 at 1:36 pm

      I just got one too Emily. Right on my knee. I watered the garden and didn’t wear any bug spray… I should listen to my own advice. Lol. I hope you try it out!

  3. Christine

    June 28, 2017 at 1:41 am

    I only use oils quite sparingly but this is a great idea! I’ll have to note it down as we’re currently in winter here in New Zealand. 🙂

    1. KatiesKottage

      June 28, 2017 at 1:32 pm

      New Zealand! That’s awesome Christine. I always tell my husband that’s the one place I really want to visit. A girl can dream. 🙂

  4. RM

    June 27, 2017 at 10:55 pm

    I love using essential oils for my family and I think this looks like a great thing to try

    1. KatiesKottage

      June 28, 2017 at 1:30 pm

      I hope you try it out. Using essential oils is something I’ve really gotten into in the past year.

  5. The Wordy Mom

    June 27, 2017 at 9:19 pm

    A friend of mine studied aromatherapy and made me something similar. It worked a charm. Stripped my spray-on tan right off (be warned) but no bug bites!

    1. KatiesKottage

      June 27, 2017 at 10:43 pm

      Thanks for the warning! I’m glad it worked for the bugs though. 🙂

  6. Shannon Dewease

    June 27, 2017 at 5:20 pm

    I have never used oils before but I was looking for an insect repellent! My son and I are both allergic to these buggers and they love us. I’m miserable! I can’t wait to try this on us and my dogs! Thank you so much!

    1. KatiesKottage

      June 27, 2017 at 10:38 pm

      You are so welcome Shannon! Let me know if you have any questions about the oils. Once you invest in a bottle it has so many uses so it is so worth it! I hope this works out for you guys.

  7. Erica @ Coming Up Roses

    June 25, 2017 at 3:44 pm

    I’ve been on the hunt for something natural AND I’ve been getting into oils lately, so this is perfect!

    Coming Up Roses

    1. KatiesKottage

      June 25, 2017 at 9:43 pm

      Perfect! I’m so glad you stumbled upon this. 🙂

  8. Jennifer L

    June 24, 2017 at 3:53 pm

    Wow this is absolutely fantastic and so in need for the summer. I have all the ingredients so I’m going to definitely make a batch of this asap.

    1. KatiesKottage

      June 24, 2017 at 8:08 pm

      Thats awesome Jennifer! I tried to pick easy ingredients that others may have already.

  9. Joscelyn

    June 24, 2017 at 12:37 pm

    Definitely going to try this soon! My daughter get eaten alive outside and I hate having to use those toxic bug sprays on her. Love that there’s a more natural alternative!

    1. KatiesKottage

      June 24, 2017 at 1:31 pm

      Me too! I hope this helps your little girl.

  10. Cait Weingartner

    June 24, 2017 at 8:15 am

    This is such a timely post. The ticks this year have been especially bad, but, as you stated, I’ve been even more concerned about toxic chemicals being absorbed into my body through my skin. I’m definitely going to be whipping up a batch of this natural bug spray!

    1. KatiesKottage

      June 24, 2017 at 1:30 pm

      Thanks Cait! I hope you enjoy it. 🙂

  11. Brittany

    June 23, 2017 at 8:11 pm

    I love essential oils and DIY projects! I love Young Living Essential Oils and I will have to try it! Have you tried to make sunscreen with oils? I am going to with some coconut oil, carrot seed oil, and lavender and its SPF 40.

    1. KatiesKottage

      June 23, 2017 at 9:03 pm

      I have not tried sunscreen. That sounds amazing. I will have to try it!

  12. Brooke

    June 23, 2017 at 10:26 am

    I read about this recently in the guide that came with my essential oils – but I didn’t know about the cedarwood oil! I will definitely be trying this. I’m already obsessed with using my Lemon Oil and Lavendar Oil in my diffuser – so I can’t wait to use it as a spray as well!

    1. KatiesKottage

      June 23, 2017 at 1:23 pm

      Lemon and Lavender are an awesome combo. It’s amazing how many different things you can do with essential oils.

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