Natural Bug Repellent Lotion: How to Repel Insects Naturally

Combating insects with a natural bug repellent lotion is easier than you may think. In this blog post, I will go over why you want to use a natural bug repellent over a commercial one, what options there are for you today, and also my recipe with a step-by-step guide that works great for my family. 

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Natural bug repellent lotion in aluminum tin

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Insects are Annoying

As the summer season kicks in, so does the prevalence of bug bites. Did you know that the average person can get up to 17 bug bites in just one evening outdoors? With the increasing awareness of the importance of using natural products, many people are seeking safer alternatives to chemical-laden bug sprays. This shift has led to the growing popularity of natural bug repellent lotions and sprays.

Natural bug repellent lotions effectively protect against pesky mosquitoes, black flies, and other insects without exposing yourself or your family to harmful chemicals. These lotions utilize the power of plants, leveraging natural ingredients like cocoa butter, coconut oil, and essential oils to create a protective barrier against bugs.

In this blog, we’ll explore the benefits of natural bug repellent lotions, discuss common and effective ingredients, provide tips on how to choose the best product for your needs, share DIY recipes, and review some of the top natural bug repellent lotions available on the market. Join us as we delve into the world of natural repellents and discover how you can enjoy the great outdoors without worrying about bug bites.

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Why Choose Natural Bug Repellent Lotion?

Health Benefits

One of the primary reasons to choose natural bug repellent lotion is to avoid the harmful chemicals commonly found in conventional repellents. Many traditional bug sprays contain DEET, a powerful chemical that, while effective, can cause skin irritation and has been linked to other health concerns with prolonged use. In contrast, natural bug repellent lotions use ingredients that are not only safe but also beneficial for your skin.

Natural ingredients like cocoa butter and coconut oil are gentler on the skin, making them ideal for people with sensitive skin or allergies. Cocoa butter, derived from the cacao bean, is a natural emollient that hydrates and nourishes the skin, providing a smooth application and a protective barrier. Coconut oil (Cocos Nucifera) is known for its moisturizing properties and ability to soothe irritated skin. Together, these ingredients ensure that the repellent lotion not only keeps bugs at bay but also leaves your skin feeling soft and healthy.

Moreover, essential oils such as tea tree oil, lavender oil, and eucalyptus oil have natural antiseptic and anti-inflammatory properties. These oils can help prevent skin irritation and reduce the risk of infection from bug bites, offering the dual benefit of repelling insects and promoting skin health.

Environmental Impact

Choosing natural bug repellent lotions also contributes to a healthier environment. Synthetic repellents often contain chemicals that can be harmful to ecosystems when they wash off into waterways or leach into the soil. These chemicals can affect wildlife and disrupt natural habitats.

Natural bug repellents, on the other hand, use eco-friendly ingredients like organic beeswax and essential oils. Organic beeswax is a sustainable ingredient that helps in forming a protective layer on the skin, locking in moisture and repelling bugs without harming the environment. Essential oils are derived from plants and are biodegradable, posing less risk to the environment.

The sustainability of these ingredients is another significant advantage. Many natural repellents source their ingredients from organic farming practices, which prioritize environmental health and reduce the use of pesticides and synthetic fertilizers. This sustainable approach helps in preserving biodiversity and supporting eco-friendly agricultural methods.

Effectiveness

When it comes to effectiveness, natural bug repellent lotions can be just as potent as their synthetic counterparts. Numerous studies have shown that certain natural ingredients are highly effective in repelling a variety of insects, including mosquitoes and black flies.

Tea tree oil and lavender oil are two such ingredients that have been extensively studied for their insect-repelling properties. Tea tree oil contains compounds that are toxic to insects but safe for human skin, making it an excellent natural insect repellent. Lavender oil, known for its pleasant aroma, is also effective against mosquitoes and other biting insects, offering both protection and a calming scent.

Other effective natural ingredients include citronella, eucalyptus, and lemongrass oils. Citronella oil (Cymbopogon Nardus) is a well-known mosquito repellent, while eucalyptus and lemongrass oils have been shown to deter a wide range of insects. By utilizing these powerful natural essential oils, natural bug repellent lotions provide a high level of protection against pesky bugs, allowing you to enjoy the great outdoors with confidence.

Active Ingredients in Natural Bug Repellent Lotion

Essential Oils

TerraShield:

TerraShield is a special blend of essential oils specifically designed for repelling mosquitoes and ticks. This blend includes sesame oil, citronella, lemongrass, geranium, cedarwood, thyme, and peppermint, each chosen for their potent insect-repelling properties. TerraShield provides broad-spectrum protection against a variety of pests, making it a popular choice for those looking to avoid bug bites while enjoying the great outdoors. The combination of these essential oils not only repels insects but also offers a pleasant, refreshing scent.

terrashield doterra essential oil for natural bug repellent lotion
Adding in the essential oil blend TerraShield

Other Natural Ingredients

Cocoa Butter (Theobroma Cacao):

Cocoa butter is a natural emollient that soothes and nourishes the skin, making it an excellent base for bug repellent lotions. Derived from the cacao bean, cocoa butter provides a smooth, creamy texture that is easy to apply and absorbs well into the skin. Its moisturizing properties help keep the skin hydrated, preventing dryness and irritation caused by environmental exposure.

natural cocoa butter
natural cocoa butter

Shea Butter:

Shea butter is a deeply moisturizing ingredient derived from the nuts of the shea tree. It is rich in vitamins A and E and has anti-inflammatory properties, which help soothe and nourish the skin. Shea butter provides a creamy consistency to the lotion, making it easy to apply and highly effective in protecting and hydrating the skin.

shea butter
Shea butter

Mango Butter:

Mango butter is a rich and creamy butter derived from mango seeds. It deeply moisturizes the skin and has soothing properties that can help reduce inflammation and irritation from bug bites. Mango butter is high in antioxidants and vitamins A and E, which help protect and nourish the skin, making it an excellent addition to natural bug repellent formulations.

Coconut Oil (Cocos Nucifera):

Coconut oil is renowned for its moisturizing and skin-soothing properties. It enhances the efficacy of natural bug repellent lotions by helping the active ingredients adhere to the skin, providing long-lasting protection. Coconut oil also has antibacterial properties, which can help prevent infections from bug bites, making it an essential component of an effective natural repellent.

Beeswax:

Beeswax is a natural thickening agent that helps in creating solid repellent lotion bars. It forms a protective barrier on the skin, locking in moisture and enhancing the longevity of the repellent. Beeswax adds a layer of protection, making it harder for insects to penetrate the skin and providing a natural alternative to synthetic ingredients.

natural yellow organic beeswax on a scale
Organic Beeswax pellets

Optional Ingredients

Sweet Almond Oil (Prunus Amygdalus Dulcis):

Sweet almond oil is a gentle and nourishing oil that aids in the application of bug repellent lotions. Rich in vitamins A and E, it helps to soothe and soften the skin, making it an ideal carrier oil for essential oils and other active ingredients in the lotion.

Avocado Oil:

Avocado oil is known for its deep hydration properties, providing intense moisture to dry and sensitive skin. It is rich in vitamins and antioxidants, which help to nourish and protect the skin from environmental stressors, including bug bites.

Hemp Seed Oil:

Hemp seed oil is packed with essential fatty acids that provide extra moisturizing properties. It helps to maintain skin health and can soothe irritation caused by bug bites. Its light texture makes it an excellent addition to natural bug repellent lotions.

Including these additional ingredients enriches the formulation of natural bug repellent lotions, ensuring not only effective protection against insects but also optimal care for your skin. By choosing products that incorporate these natural oils and extracts, you can enjoy outdoor activities without the worry of bug bites, all while promoting skin health and well-being.

natural bug repellent lotion ingredients coconut oil, shea butter, beeswax, terrashield essential oils,

How to Choose the Right Natural Bug Repellent Lotion

Choosing the right natural bug repellent lotion is essential for effective protection and skin health. Here are key considerations to help you make an informed decision.

Natural Bug Repellent Lotion – Pioneer Health (pioneerhealthministry.org)

Skin Type Considerations

When selecting a natural bug repellent lotion, consider your skin type and any sensitivities:

  • Sensitive Skin: opt for lotions that include soothing ingredients like cocoa butter and sweet almond oil, which are gentle on sensitive skin.
  • Children: Choose formulations specifically designed for young children, ensuring they are free from harsh chemicals and potential allergens.
  • Allergies: Conduct a patch test before use, especially if you have allergies to certain botanical ingredients like essential oils.

Activity Level

The level of outdoor activity you engage in can influence the type of repellent you need:

  • High Activity: For activities like hiking or camping, look for long-lasting formulations that include potent essential oils such as citronella or eucalyptus.
  • Everyday Use: If you need everyday protection, consider a lighter lotion that absorbs quickly and can be reapplied as needed without feeling heavy on the skin.

Specific Needs

Consider any specific needs or preferences you have when choosing a bug repellent lotion:

  • Fragrance Preferences: Some lotions incorporate pleasant scents from essential oils like lavender or lemongrass, which can enhance your outdoor experience.
  • Dual Benefits: Look for lotions that combine bug repellent properties with additional skincare benefits, such as moisturizing or soothing irritated skin.

Application and Convenience

Evaluate the application method and convenience of the bug repellent lotion:

  • Lotion vs. Spray: Decide whether you prefer a traditional lotion application or the convenience of a spray, which can be easier to apply on the go.
  • Ease of Use: Ensure the packaging and application method fits your lifestyle, whether you need a travel-friendly size or a lotion bar for a mess-free application.

Safety and Effectiveness

Ensure the bug repellent lotion meets safety and effectiveness standards:

  • Natural Ingredients: Verify that the product uses natural ingredients you are comfortable with and avoids harmful chemicals like DEET.
  • Effectiveness: Check reviews and testimonials to gauge how well the lotion works against various insects, ensuring it provides the protection you need.

Natural Bug Repellent Lotion Recipe

Creating your own DIY natural bug repellent lotion allows you to customize ingredients and ensure the product meets your specific preferences. Here’s a simple and effective recipe to try!

Natural Bug Repellent Lotion

Equipment Needed:

  • Double boiler (or a pan with a towel at the bottom and a glass jar or measuring cup)
  • A jar or tin container for storage

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup coconut oil
  • 1 cup cocoa butter, mango butter, or shea butter (or a combination of these)
  • 1 cup beeswax
  • 30 drops bug repellent essential oils (TerraShield from doTERRA)

Optional Ingredients:

  • 2 tablespoons Sweet Almond Oil (Prunus Amygdalus Dulcis)
  • 2 tablespoons Avocado Oil
  • 2 tablespoons Hemp Seed Oil

Instructions:

Prepare Ingredients:

Measure out all ingredients and ensure you have everything ready. You can use either cocoa butter, mango butter, shea butter, or a combination to make up the 1 cup.

Melt the Ingredients:

In a double boiler, combine the coconut oil, cocoa butter/shea butter/mango butter, and beeswax. If you don’t have a double boiler, place a towel at the bottom of a pan and set a glass jar or measuring cup on top. Fill the pan with water until it reaches halfway up the side of the jar or measuring cup. Heat gently, stirring occasionally, until all ingredients are completely melted and combined.

melting natural bug repellent lotion

Add Optional Ingredients:

Once the main ingredients are melted, stir in the optional ingredients (2 tablespoons of sweet almond oil, 2 tablespoons of avocado oil, and 2 tablespoons of hemp seed oil). Mix thoroughly to ensure even distribution.

Remove from Heat:

Once everything is melted and combined, remove the mixture from the heat and let it cool slightly, but not so much that it begins to solidify.

melted natural bug repellent lotion removed from heat

Add Essential Oils:

Stir in 30 drops of TerraShield essential oil blend, mixing thoroughly to ensure the oils are evenly distributed throughout the mixture.

terrashield doterra essential oil for natural bug repellent lotion
Adding in the essential oil blend TerraShield

Pour into Container:

Pour the mixture into a glass or tin jar for storage. Ensure the container is clean and dry before use.

poured into container melted natural bug repellent lotion

Cool and Solidify:

Allow the mixture to cool and solidify completely. This can take several hours at room temperature or about an hour in the refrigerator.

Store Properly:

Store the lotion in a cool, dry place. For convenience, keep a small jar or tin container for easy access.

Natural bug repellent in tin container

Natural Bug Repellent Lotion – Pioneer Health (pioneerhealthministry.org)

Application:

To use, take a small amount from the jar and rub onto the desired skin area. The warmth of your skin will melt a small amount of the lotion, providing a protective layer that repels insects.

Enjoy the benefits of a natural, homemade bug repellent lotion that protects your skin and keeps insects at bay without harmful chemicals.

Benefits of DIY Natural Bug Repellent Lotion

  • Customization: Control over the ingredients allows you to adjust the scent and potency of the repellent.
  • Cost-effective: Making your own bug repellent lotion can be more economical compared to purchasing commercial products.
  • Natural Ingredients: Ensure your lotion is free from harmful chemicals and suitable for all skin types.

By following this simple recipe, you can create effective natural bug repellent lotion bars that protect against pesky insects while nourishing and soothing your skin. Enjoy the benefits of a natural and customizable bug repellent solution for your next outdoor adventure!

Natural Bug Repellent Lotion

Creating your own DIY natural bug repellent lotion allows you to customize ingredients and ensure the product meets your specific preferences. Here’s a simple and effective recipe to try!
Prep Time5 minutes
Active Time15 minutes
Total Time19 minutes
Keyword: bug, lotion, natural, repellent

Equipment

  • 1 double boiler or a pan with a towel at the bottom and a glass jar or measuring cup
  • jars or other airtight containers

Materials

Ingredients

  • 1 cup coconut oil
  • 1 cup cocoa butter mango butter, or shea butter (or a combination of these)
  • 1 cup beeswax
  • 30 drops bug repellent essential oils TerraShield from doTERRA

Optional Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons Sweet Almond Oil
  • 2 tablespoons Avocado Oil
  • 2 tablespoons Hemp Seed Oil

Instructions

  • Prepare Ingredients: Measure out all ingredients and ensure you have everything ready. You can use either cocoa butter, mango butter, shea butter, or a combination to make up the 1 cup.
  • Melt the Ingredients: In a double boiler, combine the coconut oil, cocoa butter/shea butter/mango butter, and beeswax. If you don’t have a double boiler, place a towel at the bottom of a pan and set a glass jar or measuring cup on top. Fill the pan with water until it reaches halfway up the side of the jar or measuring cup. Heat gently, stirring occasionally, until all ingredients are completely melted and combined.
  • Add Optional Ingredients: Once the main ingredients are melted, stir in the optional ingredients (2 tablespoons of sweet almond oil, 2 tablespoons of avocado oil, and 2 tablespoons of hemp seed oil). Mix thoroughly to ensure even distribution.
  • Remove from Heat: Once everything is melted and combined, remove the mixture from the heat and let it cool slightly, but not so much that it begins to solidify.
  • Add Essential Oils: Stir in 30 drops of TerraShield essential oil blend, mixing thoroughly to ensure the oils are evenly distributed throughout the mixture.
  • Pour into Container: Pour the mixture into a glass or tin jar for storage. Ensure the container is clean and dry before use.
  • Cool and Solidify: Allow the mixture to cool and solidify completely. This can take several hours at room temperature or about an hour in the refrigerator.
  • Store Properly: Store the lotion in a cool, dry place. For convenience, keep a small jar or tin container for easy access.
  • Application: To use, take a small amount from the jar and rub onto the desired skin area. The warmth of your skin will melt a small amount of the lotion, providing a protective layer that repels insects.

Notes

Benefits of DIY Natural Bug Repellent Lotion

  • Customization: Control over the ingredients allows you to adjust the scent and potency of the repellent.
  • Cost-effective: Making your own bug repellent lotion can be more economical compared to purchasing commercial products.
  • Natural Ingredients: Ensure your lotion is free from harmful chemicals and suitable for all skin types.

Your Turn!

Creating your own natural bug repellent lotion bars is a simple and rewarding way to protect your skin from pesky insects while avoiding harmful chemicals. With just a few natural ingredients, you can enjoy effective protection and nourish your skin at the same time.

Ready to take control of your bug repellent needs? Gather your ingredients and start making your own lotion bars today! Share your DIY journey and results in the comments below or on social media using #NaturalBugRepellentLotion. Let’s embrace the power of natural ingredients together!


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