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Most mosquito repellent products contain N,N-Diethyl-3methylbenzamide or commonly known as DEET, it is responsible for protecting your skin against insect bites. The downside is that it may negatively react to the other chemicals, which can make it more toxic. Natural mosquito repellents using 100% pure essential oils have safer side effects and are safer for families with young children.

Essential Oils for Repelling Insects

Citronella (more info | product) - Instead of scaring away mosquitoes and other insects with its scent, it seems to mask other scents that are attractive to them, making it difficult for them to locate their targets.

Fun fact: Did you know that Citronella is registered as a plant-based insect repellent in the U.S. since 1948?

Lemongrass (more info | product) – Often associated with Citronella, Lemongrass also contains insecticidal properties that repel mosquitoes and other insects.

Tea Tree (more info | product) – Protects and soothes painful bites from mosquitoes and bugs. Tea Tree is also popular for its antibacterial, antifungal properties which can double up as a skincare remedy for treating pimples and acne.

Lemon Eucalyptus (more info product) – Comprises of 85% citronellal and PMD (paramenthane-3,8-diol), which are the same ingredients found in some insect repellents.

Peppermint (more info | product) – Has a natural insect repellent property and the ability to relieve indigestion. Peppermint placed in the garden or on the patio will help keep nearby plants insect free.

Spike Lavender (more info product) – An effective essential oil for bug bites and mosquito bites. Moreover, the distinct lavender scent can also be used as an alternative of mothballs to keep moths and other insects away.

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Truth be told, only a select few may work for some, and each of these oils may differ in which bugs they are best at scaring away. The active ingredients in essential oils also tend to be highly volatile, so they may be effective for only a short period of time (usually about an hour). After that, they evaporate and leave the user unprotected. Frequent reapplication is often necessary.

Soothing Insect Bites

Here are some tips which you can try if you've been bitten by an insect.

  • Don't scratch the bite. That only irritates your skin further and could lead to infection. Give it a light wash with soap and cool water.
  • Apply a small amount of vinegar directly to the bite bump that can help to ease the itch.
  • Aloe vera is another excellent remedy for mosquito bites to ease the itching and swelling and also aid in healing the wound.
  • Apply some baking soda paste which will also relieve the itch.
  • Use a cold compress or ice pack. Cold causes the vessels to constrict so that the amount of blood is reduced around the bite.
  • Heat up a spoon and apply to the bite. The heat will destroy the protein that caused the reaction and the itching will stop.