Warm weather and increased daylight hours means more outdoor activities with family and friends — and those pesky insects, too. While it may be tempting to reach for your most powerful insect repellent — to ward off mosquitos and other bothersome bugs — you may want to consider a healthy alternative.
Our skin is our largest organ, and many products we use externally may be absorbed and disrupt hormone balance and overall health. DEET is one of the most common ingredients in many insect repellents. Not only does it have a distinct odor, but it’s known to irritate the eyes, can damage plastic, rubber, and vinyl on clothing and accessories. In high doses, it may also impact the nervous system.
The Environmental Protection Agency allows U.S. sales of repellents with up to 100% DEET, however other countries such as Canada have recommendations limiting DEET concentrations to 30%, and even weaker concentrations for young children. So, what are the alternatives that are free of harsh chemicals - Gentle on your skin, Tough on the bugs?Here is a recipe I made and it worked. So I am sharing it with you. Do let me know if it worked for you as well. If you need help finding any of the ingredients, you can contact me.
Lemon Neem Spray:
5 drops of lemongrass oil
6 drops of Neem Oil
2 drops Tea Tree Oil or Eucalyptus Oil
Crush some rosemary and lavender leaves using mortar and pestle and boil them in 1 cup water. Use the filtered water or use 4 drops each of the rosemary oil and lavender oil
Mix these into a base as follows: First mix 10 tablespoons water with 3 tablespoons corn starch or Potato starch. Stir until dissolved completely and heat in microwave for 15 seconds. To this with constant stirring, add 3 tablespoons of coconut oil. This is your oil in water base since we have oils and extracts in our active ingredients. Now add the premix to this base with stirring. Transfer into a glass bottle (if possible) with a sprayer. Use it on your exposed arms and legs to repel bugs from biting!!