The Best Essential Oils to Help Repel Mosquitoes
While it’s damp and in the 30's here today, it was less than a week ago when I was sitting out on the patio on a warm evening with my husband. I found myself swatting away the mosquitoes already. It took me back to my childhood and I could clearly remember my mom spraying me like crazy with Deep Woods Off. I can almost taste that horrible smell and taste 30+ years later.
No one wants to be nibbled on by bugs. Keeping mosquitoes away is important to me. My younger son, Ben, is actually allergic to mosquito bites. It’s not that common of an allergy, but we need to be vigilant with him because bites have triggered reactions such as hives and his eyes swelling shut.
Standard insect repellents may be harmful to your health.
The bulk of popular mosquito repellents contain an ingredient called DEET. The chemical name for DEET is N,N-diethyl-m-toluamide. While this is proven to be effective at inhibiting mosquito bites, it also has been proven to be harmful and is linked to ailments as minor as nausea and vomiting to major injuries such as neurological damage, even coma and death.
DEET may be quite harmful to children as well.
As there is more awareness concerning the hazards of DEET, alternative ingredients are in products these days. One popular DEET alternative is derived from chrysanthemum and is called Pyrethrin. While one would assume this naturally-derived ingredient would be safe, it is potentially harmful as well. Think of it like this--Pyrethrin is used to kill bees and a small amount of this can be toxic to fish. Many studies show that this ingredient is potentially toxic to cat as well. If this natural, plant-derived ingredient can kill so easily, it may not be safe to use regularly on yourself. Breathing in pyrethrins may have major health implications down the road.
Today I'd like us to look at the MSDS of one of the most popular aersol spray insect repellents. The source for this information is the Consumer Product Information Database :
50-60% Ethanol (SD Alcohol 40)
Clearly, you don't want to be inhaling these ingredients. So what can you do to prevent mosquitoes from biting you and your family?
Consider natural essential oils to repel mosquitoes.
Essential Oils to repel bugs? Yes! Now before I go on, please be aware that I am not saying that products with essential oils will prevent all mosquito bites or that essential oils are as effective as DEET. We all need to be careful, especially with news about the Zika Virus. However, there is a continued interest in natural ingredients to cut down on the use of more harmful counterparts. In fact, there are more than 850,000 results on Google for the search “natural mosquito repellent.”
Which essential oils are most effective as a natural insect repellent? Three to note that we offer here for our Custom Blends include:
When creating your next Seed Custom Blend, why not try a blend of the three oils above? It’ll smell great and just may provide you with a bit more protection outdoors!
- Malar J. 2011; 10(Suppl 1): S11. Published online 2011 Mar 15. doi: 10.1186/1475-2875-10-S1-S11
- Bioresour Technol. 2008 May;99(7):2507-15. Epub 2007 Jun 20.
- Malar J. 2007; 6: 101. Published online 2007 Aug 1. doi: 10.1186/1475-2875-6-101
- Asian Pac J Trop Biomed. 2011 Apr;1(2):85-8. doi: 10.1016/S2221-1691(11)60001-4.
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Also in Lately I've been paying more attention
You sit staring at a computer screen all day at work. You text back and forth. You answer emails. You’d think that once the work day is over and the dinner dishes have been cleared that you’d be ready to sit and relax.
The reality, though, is that most people are still plugged into their phones in the evening. Texts continue. Work emails are read and answered long after the work day has ended. Then you just have to check your Facebook feed, order a new pair of shoes, pin recipes and DIY projects over on Pinterest, and share the latest photo on Instagram. And then there is the stressful reading of political posts that appear day after day. Honestly, it can be stressful!
It is almost as if we panic at the thought of missing out on something important if we put the phone down. What would happen if you stayed away from social media for an evening?
Would it be the end of the world? Absolutely not.
Have you ever noticed tiny white bumps that look like they are right under your skin? Perhaps you have. Milia can appear around the eyes, forehead, nose, and cheeks. They seem to linger and are resistant to most typical acne treatments. Just what is milia and how do you get rid of it? Let's find out!
What causes milia?
Milia can occur for several reasons. I know that I have heard so many women say, "but I wash my face thoroughly." The truth is that it is not because your skin isn't clean enough.
Our skin naturally sloughs off dead skin cells. Sometimes, though, the skin doesn't shed those cells and what happens is that sebum and keratin will get trapped underneath the epidermis. When this happens, they build up and get lodged in sweat glands and hair follicles rather than being shed. Before you know it, cysts form and you'll notice those little white bumps that do not seem to go away.
There are several skin care ingredients that may contribute to milia. I will share those with you in a moment.
Many parts of the country are about to see dangerously cold temperatures, thanks to the Polar Vortex this week. In fact, many meteorologists are saying that we could be experiencing some of the coldest weather in years. The brutal cold and snow can easily wreak havoc on your skin, so we thought this would be a great time to share some of our Polar Vortex skin care tips with you.
1. Layer your skin care.
Think of how we dress in this weather to keep warm: by wearing layers. Layering your skin care offers many benefits. Our skin is particularly susceptible to the harsh winter elements. Dehydration is common. Help protect the skin and lock in moisture by applying a dry body oil followed by a rich body cream or balm. Doing so will help seal all of the beneficial butters and plant oils into your skin, making them even more effective.