I am one of those lucky few who have blood that mosquitoes find repellant. I’m not complaining. Actually, I’m kind of bragging.

My kids, however, have that horrible combination of sweet sweet blood and a brutal reaction to mosquito bites. Watching their little bodies writhe with the sheer itch of the spots that cover their bodies is vicarious torture, and I will do anything to avoid it!

I generally try to avoid chemicals as much as possible, and prefer to go the natural route where I can. When it comes to repelling skeeters, there are several options to explore.

Bug off, naturally

I don’t know if these are the kind that repel mosquitoes, better ask someone from Salisbury Greenhouse.

Plant mosquito repellant plants

Rob Sproule educated us on some plants that could be used in backyard gardens or patio planters in an article in the Salisbury Greenhouse newsletter. In it he highlights citronella containing plants like Citrosa (citronella geranium) as well as plants that are less well known for their mosquito repellant qualities. I don’t claim to be much of a gardener, but the way he describes it, I feel like next year I’m going to be planting big pots filled with “Lemon Gem” marigold, colourful floss flower (ageratum) and catnip!

Essential Oils

Essential Oils often have powerful properties, and when those properties mean my favourite little arms and legs are better protected from the blood sucking insects, I am all for it! Oils you may want to use (in a recipe or with a carrier oil) are cajeput, catnip, cedar, citronella, clove, eucalyptus, lavender, lemongrass, mint, rosemary and tea tree. The Wellness Mama has a recipe on her blog we love, plus some other great ideas to try.

Outdoor ESsentials

E-scents Outdoor Survival Kit

We came across this great little kit from Escents and have been really pleased with how it works. The complete kit contains:
Outdoor Body Spray ($16) which I sent with my son for his last school fieldtrip and learned that it was lent out and kept the bugs off his whole group,
Outdoor Body Balm ($16) solid roll-on that won’t leak in your backpack!
Outdoor Aroma Blend ($26): a vial of concentrate that can be used on your body or put into an aromatherapy diffuser.
Each product contains lavender (but not in an old lady way) and lemongrass and it smells amazing!
Itch B Gone Roll On ($25): provides therapeutic benefits in two ways: through your sense of smell and through absorption into your skin.

And yes, I have been using mosquito repellent as perfume, and I consider it a step up from the usual “active fresh” deodorant smell I usually use as my complete parfum. Don’t judge me.

You can find the Outdoor Survival Kit at Escents on-line, while supplies last.

Here’s to a happy, bug free summer, naturally!