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My Homemade DEET-Free Natural Insect Repellent

Author: Sandra C.
Skill: Herbalist
Date: 08-04-2014
Views: 11,197
Word Count: 289
Questions Received: 1
Testimonial ID: 10001-OR
Brand Neutral: Yes
Scientific Studies: 2

Note: Not all essential oil brands are the same, and you get what you pay for. If you expect to achieve results similar to those described in this testimonial, then ensure that you are using oils from pesticide-free plants. Also, the brand should use 100% pure, high-quality essential oils that do not contain any synthetic additives. Do your own research or ask a trusted friend to find a brand that is reputable. Buyer beware.

I was looking for something to repel ticks and mosquitoes.

So I distilled Lemon Balm plants also called Melissa for floral water using a stainless steel, 7-gallon distiller. Here is a little info about hydrosols:

Hydrosols, also known as "flower waters," are produced by distilling fresh leaves, fruits, flowers, and other plant materials. With similar therapeutic properties to essential oils, these aromatic waters are much less concentrated.

Their aromas are often soft and subtle when compared to their essential oil counterpart. These aromatic products usually have a scent similar to their essential oil, but also can have a greener note. This comes from the water soluble constituents in the plant material that are not present in the essential oil.

To the Melissa hydrosol I added Eucalyptus Blue at 1/2 to 1% (both dilutions have worked). Then I let this synergize for 2 days.

We have two fields with a path between them. I sprayed the area with a fine mist sprayer and then went to sit there at 10 pm. And I have got to tell you that nothing bit me, and the fields are beside a creek! This stuff works like a charm!

The next night I instead sprayed "Off! Deep Woods Insect Repellent" (containing the active ingredient DEET). It helped, but I still got bitten. I was told that Melissa is 10 times stronger than DEET without having a drop of DEET in it.

We have continued to use my hydrosol concoction in the woods and have never yet come out with a tick. The only things we have found that it does not work on are flies and gnats. Everything else in this area seems to be covered by it (even those little black things we refer to as flying teeth).

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Supporting Scientific Studies
1.Associated topics: ticks-/-chiggers,bugs-/-insects,bug-repellent-/-deterrent,bite-/-sting — "Thujaplicin, a minor component of Aomori Hiba [Hinoki], showed rather strong antifungal activity against seven kinds of plant-pathogenic fungi.... Thujaplicin and hinokitiol (the major component of Aomori Hiba [Hinoki]) also showed clear antibacterial activity against Legionella pneumophila SG 1 and L. pneumophila SG 3 [Legionnaires disease, pneumonia].... This compound showed strong insecticidal activity against Reticulitermes speratus [termites], and it also had clear acaricidal [ticks, mites] activity against Dermatophagoides farinae [house dust mites].... [T]he strong cytotoxic effect of Thujaplicin on murine P388 lymphocytic leukemia cell line [CLL, chronic lymphocytic leukemia] should be emphasized...."Link
2.Associated topics: bite-/-sting — "Topical 5% tea tree oil is an effective treatment for mild to moderate acne vulgaris.... Tea tree oil has broad-spectrum antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory activity in vitro. These properties have formed the basis of its use in the treatment of a range of superficial dermatoses such as cuts, insect bites, boils, and dermatophytosis [ringworm]."Link

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