Essential Oils For Ticks: Do They Work As A Natural Repellent?

Human-to-mosquito transmission efficiency increases as malaria is controlled - Nature Communications Human-to-mosquito transmission efficiency increases as malaria is controlled - 웹This article was medically reviewed by Shonda Hawkins, MSN, a nurse practitioner and member of the Prevention Medical Review Board, on May 8, 2019.

Tick season is right here, and naturally you need to do every thing you’ll be able to to maintain the bloodsucking critters away from you and your loved ones. Tick-borne ailments, equivalent to lyme illness, have greater than doubled within the final decade, in keeping with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Applying an efficient tick repellent to your pores and skin, clothes, and kit is among the finest methods to guard your self earlier than you head open air.

Still, some individuals are cautious about utilizing chemical-based pesticides and like to show to pure choices. One declare you’ll see so much on-line: Essential oils can act as a chemical-free tick repellent.

But are they a dependable strategy to repel the disease-carrying bugs? Here, specialists break down what it’s best to know earlier than you flip to important oils as a tick repellent.

Are important oils a protected strategy to repel ticks?

First, slightly background on insect repellents: Before a product can go in the marketplace, it needs to be registered by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), which suggests it’s evaluated and authorized as protected and efficient for folks to make use of on their pores and skin, in keeping with the CDC.

In the nineties, the EPA evaluated the energetic substances in some pure oils for security (however not effectiveness) when used as an insect repellent. The following oils have been evaluated by the EPA for security, and still have some analysis to again up their capability to repel ticks. It’s not identified precisely why these oils may also help, but it surely’s probably as a result of the ticks don’t just like the scent or really feel of them, says Howard Russell, an entomologist at Michigan State University.


This is the important oil from the leaves and stems of the wild tomato plant. It repels blacklegged and lone star ticks, and is protected to make use of in your pores and skin, clothes, and kit. Worth noting: 2-undecanone is the one oil on this checklist that the EPA additionally discovered to be efficient, says Nancy Troyano, PhD, a board-certified entomologist with Ehrlich Pest Control. (BioUD Insect Repellent is the one 2-undecanone product registered by the EPA.)

Garlic oil

You’re higher off utilizing the important oil from garlic vegetation in your garden or backyard (until you need to scent like contemporary Italian meals). There is a few proof that garlic oil could also be efficient in repelling blacklegged ticks.

Mixture of rosemary, lemongrass, cedar, peppermint, thyme, and geraniol important oils

A mixture of these important oils could repel blacklegged ticks and can be utilized in your pores and skin, garden, or backyard.


Nootkatone, which repels blacklegged ticks and different arthropods, is the important oil from Alaska yellow cedar bushes, some herbs, and citrus fruits. It is protected to make use of in your pores and skin, garden, or backyard.

So, do you have to depend on important oils as an efficient tick repellent?

While you’ll be able to check out sure important oils as a tick repellent, specialists normally attain for one thing else.

“There’s lots of people who will attempt issues that they’ve heard about, however actually probably the most preventative insect repellents are ones with energetic substances like DEET, picaridin, IR3535, oil of lemon eucalyptus (OLE), para-menthane-diol (PMD), or 2-undecanone,” says infectious illness professional Amesh A. Adalja, MD, senior scholar on the John’s Hopkins Center for Health Security. “All of these work and, if you need to have one of the best safety, sticking to these makes probably the most sense.”

25% DEET

30% DEET

20% picaridin

20% IR3535

30% oil of lemon eucalyptus

TIL - Damn Mosquito U scary

Howard additionally tends to steer folks towards man-made repellents. “I usually advocate DEET- and permethrin-based repellents, in addition to picaridin” he says. “DEET can be a really efficient mosquito repellent, and these merchandise last more than the pure compounds.”

But, whereas Troyano prefers to make use of DEET, she says that 2-undecanone can be a good suggestion if you wish to follow a pure possibility. “I completely give {that a} thumbs up as a result of it was evaluated for efficacy,” she says.

That means you shouldn’t depend on most important oils alone to behave as an efficient tick repellent. “Ticks are so filled with illness,” Troyano says. “Who needs to take that likelihood?”

Before you buy a tick repellent, make certain it’s authorized by the Environmental Protection Agency, which you’ll be able to seek for right here.

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