Does Oregano Oil Kill Bugs?

Plenty of pesticides used today, even those for use on skin, contain too many harsh chemicals. Oregano oil is a great way to repel bugs and is a completely natural substance. The best way to repel bugs using this plant is to purchase an oregano oil and prepare a holistic bug spray. 

Oregano oil may not kill all bugs, but is an effective way to repel bugs like mosquitoes, beetles, fleas, cockroaches, and an entire array of other common pests. Oregano oil can be mixed and used in a spray bottle as a bug repellant on skin or act as a barrier around homes. 

Oregano oil is a compound that has a higher concentration of oregano than simple essential oils and can be used on skin. These oregano oils can be used orally, topically, or mixed and sprayed depending on your needs and how you plan to use the product. If you want to learn more about using oregano oil for a natural bug repellent, keep reading. 

Fresh Oregano Versus Oregano Oil

Most know what oregano is and have probably consumed the herb at some point as it is a common taste in most Italian cuisines. Oregano itself can be a great addition to your herb garden and is fairly easy to grow. In fact, adding oregano to your garden can help repel insects like mosquitos, cucumber beetles, cabbage butterflies, and more from eating your plants. 

Comparatively, oregano oil uses oregano in high concentrations and through a distillation method that makes it even more beneficial to bug repellents. To create the oregano oil, the leaves of the plant and stems are distilled and the oil is extracted. The two main bug fighting elements found in oregano are:

  • Thymol – This is often found in thyme but is also in oregano. In addition to bug fighting, this also can be used to fight fungal infections.
  • Carvacrol – This is the most abundant compound in oregano. This is a great bug repellent. 

Does Oregano Oil Really Work?

The biggest reason that many shy away from using holistic bug sprays is because they feel that they will not work properly. However, many natural options are great for bug repellent and oregano is one of the most effective herbs you can use. Whether you want to use the oil topically or around your home, these homemade bug sprays can work magnificently. 

If you live in an area that has mosquitoes that are commonly infected with diseases like West Nile, you may want to try out the natural bug spray first before using it for an extended period of time. We will further discuss how to make your natural repellent, but it can take some tweaking to get perfect. 

Trying out your bug spray for a shorter period of time before taking it on hikes or longer outdoor activities can ensure proper protection. 

Just like other forms of bug repellent, you want to reapply the spray quite often to ensure you are having continuous protection against bugs:

  • If you use oregano oil topically on skin or clothing, you want to reapply every few hours or as you notice bugs reoccurring. 
  • For protection around your home or garden, reapply after any heavy rains or as soon as you notice new bugs entering the area. 

In nature, there are many plants with incredible insecticidal properties. Find out what they are in this article about botanicals.

How to Use Your Oregano Oil

Once you have oregano oil, you can use it in a huge variety of ways and only a few drops goes a very long way. You can use the oil for bug repellent in a variety of forms and very few materials are needed. Some ways to repel bugs naturally with the oil are:

Create a Bug Spray 

Creating a natural bug spray for topical use is super simple with oregano oil. You do want to remember that oregano oil is not the same as oregano essential oils, which cannot be taken orally and should not be used topically without a quality carrier oil. Before beginning your bug spray, you want to ensure that you are in fact using oregano oil and opt for a quality brand. 

Once you have your oregano oil, follow these steps to create your spray:

  • Purchase a spray bottle or thoroughly clean out a spray bottle that you have around your home. 
  • Fill the spray bottle with distilled water. Ensure that you do have a small space at the top of the bottle to add your oil and mix properly. 
  • Add a couple of drops of your oregano oil to the spray bottle with the distilled water. 
  • Mix the spray well by shaking the bottle thoroughly. 
  • Now your spray is ready to be lightly sprayed on exposed skin and protect against unwanted pests. 

If you have very sensitive skin, you do want to be careful as you may have a reaction to the spray. The active ingredients in oregano oil, carvacrol and thymol can cause a warming sensation. If you notice a rash or reaction occurring, quickly rinse off the spray and monitor your skin to ensure all reactions end. 

Those who are worried about unwanted skin reactions can add a carrier oil to the mix that will help protect against this. Throwing in a lavender or tea tree oil will help protect against any reactions, but you should always monitor your skin upon using the spray. Of course, you want to avoid using the spray anywhere near mucus membranes, such as your eyes, mouth, and nose. 

Wipe Down Surfaces with Oregano Oil

If you have noticed an increase in bugs in common areas of your home, oregano oil can come to the rescue. It can be difficult to use strong cleaning chemicals in your kitchen or other common areas, but these are also the areas that tend to see bugs. However, oregano oil is a natural way to stop these bugs in their track. 

To use oregano in your home, follow these steps:

  • In a bowl or container, add enough water to wipe down the hard surfaces in your home. 
  • Add a few drops of oregano oil to the water and mix well. 
  • Using a rag or sponge, wipe down any hard surfaces in your home that may be subject to bugs entering the home. You can use this mixture on windowsills, counter tops, tables, the inside of cupboards, and practically anywhere bugs frequent. 
  • Allow the mixture to dry fully on these surfaces. Bugs like cockroaches and fleas will be deterred from areas that smell like oregano, which can help rid your home of these pests. 

Use Oregano Oil to Protect Plants

If you are hoping to use the oregano oil to protect plants around your home from unwanted pests, simply create a similar spray to the natural repellent above. You can create a larger bottle of plant spray by simply using a bigger spray bottle, additional distilled water, and a few more drops of oil. Simply spray your plants and around your gardens with this spray. 

Youll want to reapply the spray regularly, especially after major rains. While the oregano oil can be quite effective, it can be washed away easily. You can also grow a few oregano plants in your garden to help protect against bugs. 

Safely Protect Against Bugs

If you are tired of using chemical filled bug sprays, reach for oregano oil to protect you fully in a natural way. Oregano oil is a natural and very versatile product that can be mixed with distilled water to safely protect against mosquitoes and other bugs. You can also use oregano oil in your cleaning routine to stop bugs from entering your home! 

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Anat Goldberg

Hi! My name is Anat and I have lived all my life in the countryside. I grew on a farm in Northern Italy and from an early age, I took care of the animals on the farm and the family garden. Over the years I have developed a growing passion for organic cultivation and pest control.

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