When I got to Thailand, I was getting attacked by mosquitoes every single day. My legs got covered in itchy red swollen bites. Since I don’t like using anything with harsh chemicals, I needed to find an all natural mosquito repellent. After trying out a bunch of other recommended natural “cures”, I found what works the best!
Mosquito Bites Suck
I’ve been a mosquito magnet pretty much all my life. It doesn’t matter if I’m out by myself or surrounded by 20 other people. They zone in on me and go into full attack mode. Mosquitoes just love my blood for some reason.
So, naturally, when I was preparing to move to Thailand, I was quite concerned about being eaten alive by mosquitoes.
We arrived in Thailand and I seemed to be fine for a couple of days. The thing is, I was in my hotel room most of the time during those first 2 days trying to get over jet-lag.
Once I started venturing out more in the evenings and nights, my fears turned into reality.
I would get multiple bites daily, which would later turn into large red welts the size of a quarter. I would get bit day after day and the red bumps and the itchiness got worse and worse. I tried to cover up my legs and use essential oils, which seemed seemed to help a bit, but it didn’t eliminate the problem.
With bites accumulating daily, my legs were starting to look horrible. I had new red welts that would pop up everyday, and the old ones would turn into dark pigmented spots with scabs in the middle. I looked like a freakin’ leper. I started to get self-conscious about showing my legs and I wanted to keep them covered, but the 90 degree weather in the tropics made that nearly impossible. I needed to find a better solution.
Mosquito Repellents with Deet
My skin is sensitive. It gets irritated very easily and rashes pop up all the time. Because of this, I try to steer clear of any harsh chemicals. I generally look for things that are more natural when it comes to medications, creams, ointments, etc.
The problem with most conventional mosquito repellent is that it has Deet in it.
Even though it is an effective mosquito repelling ingredient, deet is a harsh chemical that can be toxic when too much is absorbed into the body. When you apply the stuff on your skin, it gets absorbed into your body and into your bloodstream. The accumulated toxins can cause neurological damage which can cause problems in muscle coordination, muscle weakness, walking, and even memory and cognition. Since I was going to need something to apply daily, I didn’t want to take any chances with products containing deet.
Natural Mosquito Repellent Solutions
I needed something effective, natural, and non-toxic. I Google searched for ‘natural mosquito repellents’ and found the following options:
- Option #1 – Vitamin B1: The claim is that mosquitoes supposedly hate Vitamin B1 and won’t go near humans with high levels of Vitamin B1 in their blood. I got some Vitamin B supplements and tried taking it daily. Unfortunately, it didn’t do anything for me. I was getting the same amount of bites. It’s possible that I needed to up the dosage, but since I didn’t see any difference within 3 days, I decided to try something else.
- Option #2 – Garlic: Mosquitoes supposedly are repelled by garlic. I thought about starting to take garlic supplements or eating a bunch of garlic in my food, but the thought of stinking of garlic out of my pores was unappealing. I would go from the girl with red bumps all over her legs, to the girl who reeks. I decided to pass on this option.
- Option #3 – Essential Oils: Citronella, Lavender, Lemon Eucalyptus, and Tea Tree oils are some that were listed as effective essential oils for repelling mosquitoes and other bugs. I had brought 3 out of 4 of those mentioned essential oils with me, so I tried all 3. The thing with essential oils is that, they seemed to work, but only for a short duration. Maybe 30 mins to 1 hour. I didn’t want to have to constantly reapply.
Nothing’s Working, Now What?
I felt like I was trying everything and nothing was working. Do I have to resort to the conventional bug sprays? I really didn’t want to, but I also couldn’t handle the increasing amount of welts and unbearable itching.
Right when I was starting to feel defeated, a friend of mine suggested something new – Coconut Oil. She had just finished her trip to New Zealand and her recommendation couldn’t have come at a better time. I had just bought some coconut oil from the grocery store and was planning on using it as moisturizer for my body. If this could keep the mosquitoes away, too, it would be perfect!
I thought I was well versed in all the different uses for coconut oil, but I’d never heard of it being used as a natural mosquito repellent.
Could this really work for me? I was excited for the possibility, yet skeptical because everything else had failed miserably.
I did some extra google research to see what others had to say about it. It seemed that coconut oil is something many people use as a bug repellent. Maybe there is a light at the end of the tunnel, afterall. Ahhhhhhh.
Coconut Water Flush + Coconut Oil
One of the other info. I found was that drinking a lot of coconut water can assist in repelling mosquitoes, too. It’s a way of turning yourself into a natural mosquito repellent from the inside out. I figured it’s a much better option than stinking like garlic, so I decided to give this a go as well.
I bought several bottles of coconut water and started drinking about 3-4 bottles/day for 3 days. I also started applying coconut oil on my body after showers and some more on any exposed skin when I went outside in the evenings.
Lo and behold, within 2 days, I noticed a huge difference. I wasn’t getting bit anymore!
I had to pinch myself. I couldn’t believe that it had actually worked!
No more mosquito attacks! Hooray!!
I will say that I’m not 100% bite free. I have noticed 1 or 2 rare bites since starting the coconut oil method, but that’s nothing compared to how much I was getting bit before. Also, they haven’t turned into big welts, nor are they crazy itchy like they used to be. No toxic chemicals and hardly any bites. I can live with that!
So, just as a recap, here’s what you do.
Drink a ton of coconut water and slather on coconut oil all over your body.
That’s it! Who knew it’d be so simple! 🙂
Some Other Tips:
- Essential Oils: As much as I like coconut oil, I don’t always want to smell like coconuts 24/7. I’ve found that mixing a few drops of essential oils with the coconut oil is a great way to switch up the scent. I use lavender a lot (my fave), and on days when I want some added protection, I’ll use citronella or tea tree. Or mix all three.
- Clothing and Glasses: One downside of using coconut oil is that it is pure oil. It can be quite greasy. Use caution when applying and give it some time for it to soak into your skin. Watch for potential oil stains on clothing and if you wear glasses, don’t touch your lens with your greasy fingers. It’s not always easy to get it off.
That’s all for this post. Hope this helps in reducing your mosquito bite attacks.
Do you have other favorite ways to repel mosquitoes? If so, share in the comments. I would love to know!