Summer Outdoor Essential Oils
Plants and essential oils have been used for centuries outdoors as repellents. Wise gardeners have been planting lemongrass to deter mosquitoes. So how exactly do essential oils work outdoors?
First, essential oils exist in plants. Plants use these liquids as a way to self-protect and pollinate by attracting or repelling insects and other plant species to or from them. The essential oils in plants can act as poison to other plant species, acting as a form of self-protection from disease-causing organisms and as defense compounds against insects and animals.
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While essential oils are not always registered with the EPA as repellents, research shows us that certain constituents act as repellents. Look at this study that found that diffusers with citronellol, gerianol, and linalool placed 6m from a female mosquito trap repelled mosquitoes 22%, 75%, and % respectively.
Citronellol is the main constituent in citronella essential oil, rose, geranium, basil, lavender, lemongrass.
Gerianol essential oil is one of the main constituents found in geranium, rose, palmarosa, citronella, and lemongrass.
Linalool is found in dozens of essential oils, but it has high amounts in lavender and coriander.
Enjoy your summer outside annoyance free with this DIY Outdoor Lotion.
DIY Outdoor Lotion
1/4 cup witch hazel
1/4 cup sesame seed oil or neem oil
20 drops citronella
20 drops lemongrass
20 drops lavender
20 drops geranium
10 drops peppermint
Mix ingredients and store in chemical resistant squid bottle. Rub lotion on skin, using caution around clothes as it may stain. Do not place on hands or face of children. I like to rub it around the neck and throat and ears and a little in the hair rather than all over the face. Keep in mind, aromatherapy advice is to avoid mint and eucalyptus oils on or near the face of children 6 and under.