5 Natural Bug Repellents That Actually Work!

We found some natural bug repellents that really work and don't contain toxic ingredients.

Summer fun has no time for the itchy bites that bugs can bring, but the harmful effects of DEET and other chemicals in repellents don’t sit well with Mama and her family.

Related: Natural Remedies for Summer’s Common Woes

We found some natural bug repellents that really work and don’t contain toxic ingredients. Check them out:

repel works against bugs with lemon eucalyptus

1. Repel Lemon Eucalyptus Repellent: Studies show that Lemon Eucalyptus is comparable to the toxic DEET that so many swear is the best out there. This spray has 30 percent by weight Citriodiol as its main active ingredient, and while there are other non-proprietary or non-hazardous ingredients, the safety data sheet shows it does not contain any ingredients that violate the rigorous safety standards of the state of California. It is strong-smelling, so some littles may not love it as much, but it works!


All terrain is a kid friendly bug spray2. All Terrain Herbal Armor: This is one of our summer staples. In clinical studies, it has been shown to be 100% effective in preventing bug bites for two hours, and 95% effective after three. It does require regular application to ensure longevity in efficacy, but that’s a small price to pay for neurotoxic-free repellent!

Related: Top 6 Natural Sunscreens (That Really Work!)


Well known bug spray in the south3. Greenbug All Natural: This plant-based spray is a must in the southeastern U.S. (and anywhere bugs live, reallly!) as it’s super effective in repelling those nasty gnats, no-see-ums and chiggers that tend to dominate that region! Greenbug is an environment-friendly company that claims you can even use this spray on hotel sheets for Bed Bug Protection!


This is a natural way to repel bugs4. Cinnamon Leaf Oil: This essential oil has been found to be even more effective than DEET in studies with regard to bug repellency. It’s what is considered a ‘hot’ essential oil, which means you’ll want to be sure you use a good carrier oil when using as bug repellent, but it’s like a little bit of Christmas that kills bugs at the same time!


These bands repel bugs on kids5. Invisaband Repellent Bracelets: The only repellent bands that are backed by science from the University of Florida (and they know mosquitoes and bugs, trust us!), these bands are microfiber and release geraniol, which has a pleasant smell and can be found in geranium, rose and Palmyra oils.  Great for kids  (and adults!) who just can’t stand to be sprayed!


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