Leave Me Alone! Insect Repellent

My husband and I hike in the forest behind our house everyday. The forest borders a river and is surrounded by man-made lakes. There are tons of mosquitoes, horseflies, ticks and these flying bugs of dubious identity that latch on and crawl around our arms and backs. It is a true testament to how much we love nature that we venture into this madness daily.

We usually use a very strong commercial repellent that feels heavy and very chemically on my skin. The smell of this repellent makes me wonder what on earth we are spraying on our bodies. I really detest putting this stuff on my skin, yet the idea of 1,000 bites or not going into the forest at all are not good options either.

This summer I have been field testing a natural insect repellent. It has gone through a few iterations until I have a formula that I am satisfied with. I will continue to experiment with this and inform of any updates or improvements.

This repellent is good for your skin, feels amazing, smells wonderful and does a very decent job keeping the bugs off. It needs to be applied quite liberally and carefully.

Leave Me Alone! Insect Repellent

  • 100 ml spray bottle
  • 1/2 cup Neem Leaf decoction
  • 1/2 cup Catnip decoction
  • 20 drops each: Rosemary, Cedar, Lemongrass and Lavender essential oils
  • 10 drops each: Eucalyptus and Lemon essential oils


Decoct 1 oz each Catnip and Neem leaves. Simmer leaves in a covered pot for 15 minutes, take off the heat and then leave covered in the pot for 1 hour.

When the decoction is cooled, add the essential oils.

Decant into the spray bottle.

Shake very well before each use.

Store in a cool, dry place or in the fridge.

I would love to hear your experiences with natural repellents. I am currently field testing a different formula that includes geranium and citronella. I will keep you posted.

3 Comments on “Leave Me Alone! Insect Repellent

  1. I’m still interested in this product… please let me know when it is working well.


  2. Pingback: Stings and Bites Workshop – Krista's Herbarium

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