If you’re having trouble with too many spiders, you can use essential oils. Essential oils are well known as effective bug repellents. But they don’t work the same on all spiders. And some essential oils don’t work at all. Here are the best essential oils for spiders.
The best essential oils for spiders include peppermint, chestnut, thyme, clove, and tea tree oil. Many essential oils (like Lemon oil) are commonly cited as spider repellents but actually have no effect during controlled tests. In this guide, you’ll learn how to make peppermint oil spider repellent.
If you are experiencing a surplus of spiders in your home, you can use essential oils to repel them! Spiders smell through their legs and get repelled by strong scents.
The nature of essential oils is fragrant and toxic, making them an excellent natural option for repelling spiders.
Can Essential Oils Really Repel Spiders?
Do essential oil sprays really repel spiders? Yes, some essential oils are proven to be effective spider repellents.
A 2018 study, Natural Compounds as Spider Repellents: Fact or Myth?, published in the National Library of Medicine, asked this very question.
After testing three common essential oils, here is their conclusion.
Chestnuts (Araneae: Araneidae) and mint oil strongly repelled L. geometricus and A. diadematus. S. grossa was less sensitive to these chemicals but had a slight tendency to avoid chestnuts. However, lemon oil, the substance most likely to be cited as a repellent (over 1,000,000 hits on Google), had no effect on any of these spiders.Natural Compounds as Spider Repellents: Fact or Myth?, published in the National Library of Medicine.
We conclude that volatiles released by mint oil and chestnuts may be effective in deterring spider settlement in two different families of spiders, but lemon oil as a repellent is a myth.
So while not every essential oil will repel spiders, some are very effective.
10 Essential Oils That Repel Spiders
So, what essential oils repel spiders? While there are plenty of options for fragrant essential oils to repel spiders, we are going to focus on ten essential oils.
- Tea Tree
The great thing about using essential oils for repelling spiders is that you can also choose your favorite-smelling essential oil to spray around your home! Freshen the scent of your home while repelling those nasty spiders!
Peppermint oil is toxic and will kill most insects and spiders, including roaches. Using peppermint oil is an effective way to repel spiders in your home.
Spiders avoid peppermint oil. Peppermint oil doesn’t kill the spiders but deters them from the area treated.
Chestnut oil has been proven to repel some spider varieties (Latrodectus geometricus and Araneus diadematus). But had no effect on S. grossa.
Both chestnut and peppermint oil showed apparent repellent effects on Latrodectus geometricus and Araneus diadematus, with the two species avoiding those substances in more than 75 percent of tests, but they did not have any significant effect on S. grossa.Entomology Today
Thyme oil has been shown to be effective in repelling spiders, along with sandalwood oil.
4. Tea Tree
Tea Tree oil is another very aromatic essential oil. The smell of tea tree oil is not as popular as peppermint, but it still does the trick to repel spiders.
Tea tree oil can leave your home smelling clean while doing its job to repel spiders.
Citrus essential oils are another excellent way to repel spiders. This citrus oil can be lemon, orange, or lime.
Any citrus essential oil brightens up a room and leaves it smelling fresh and clean. Citrus oils are great to use in the summertime to repel spiders while getting into the summer mood.
Lavender is known for its calming properties. People use it in diffusers or applied directly to the skin to help ease anxiety and restlessness. Because of its strong scent, it is also great for repelling spiders.
Lavender will leave your home smelling like a bed of flowers while repelling spiders!
Eucalyptus oil is similar to tea tree oil in scent and use. It has a strong aroma that is loved by some and hated by others.
Even though its scent isn’t always loved, it is very efficient in deterring spiders from your home.
Eugenol is a component of clove oil that can kill insects on contact.
Most essential oils used as pesticides work by disrupting an insect neurotransmitter that is not present in people, pets, or other vertebrates.Clemson University
Clove oil is also a good essential oil for repelling wasps.
Cinnamon oil is another good option for repelling spiders. Because of its well-known scent, it reminds people of a cozy home. Thankfully, the spiders don’t like this scent quite as much and tend to steer clear of areas treated with cinnamon oil!
Cedarwood is a favorite among the essential oils to repel spiders because of its fresh, woody scent. It has a strong odor that is efficient in repelling spiders.
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How Do I Use Essential Oils to Repel Spiders?
The best way to use essential oils to repel spiders is to dilute the oil in water and use a spray bottle to spray around your home.
Peppermint Oil Spray Recipe
To make your natural spider repellent spray, you will need your oil of choice (or a mixture of oils!), a glass spray bottle, dishwashing liquid, and water.
- Drip 5-10 drops of peppermint oil into your empty 16 oz. spray bottle.
- Fill up the rest of the bottle with water, then add a couple of drops of dishwashing liquid.
- The dishwashing liquid will help distribute the oil evenly throughout the mixture.
- Give your bottle a good shake, then get to spraying!
Spray your mixture around windows, doors, and baseboards.
If you have a specific place that is always overrun with spiders, give that area a good dousing of your new anti-spider spray.
Will Essential Oils Kill Spiders?
Before using essential oils for spider control, you should know that essential oils will not necessarily kill spiders.
Depending on the oils you choose, you might be able to kill them if you directly spray them. But if the oil is just sprayed around windows and basement corners, you won’t kill them.
If you want to rid your home of spiders by killing them, essential oils are not the route to go. Using essential oils is a fantastic, natural maintenance routine to repel spiders from your home.
If you have an old home that is infested with spiders and other insects, using chemicals to kill the bugs first may be a good option. Then, after the harsh chemicals have faded, using essential oils to maintain a spider-free home is an excellent alternative.
Can I Use Essential Oils to Repel Other Insects?
Yes! Essential oils do not only repel spiders but other insects as well. Just like citronella candles are used to repel mosquitos, essential oils can be used to repel all types of insects.
Most insects are deterred by strong scents, so the essential oils mentioned earlier will be excellent options for repelling other insects. Get creative and try mixing different types of essential oils to make your favorite-smelling, most potent essential oil insect repellent.
Is a Spray Bottle the Only Way to Repel Spiders?
While putting your mixture into a spray bottle is the most direct way to treat specific areas, there are other ways to repel spiders with essential oils.
A great alternative is using a diffuser. You can buy diffusers at most retail stores or online for relatively cheap.
Add water to your diffuser and a few drops of your favorite spider-repelling essential oil, and let the natural oils diffuse into your home. This is a fantastic way to freshen your home while deterring spiders!
3 Risks Using Essential Oils to Repel Spiders
Essential oils are much safer to use in your home than harsh chemical cleaners. This does not mean there aren’t still some risks when using essential oils in the home.
- Essential Oils are Toxic: Essential oils such as peppermint can be harmful to young children or pets because most are toxic.
- Harsh on Skin: Undiluted essential oils can be harmful to the skin. These oils are made up of highly concentrated compounds, so it is important to be mindful of that.
- Possible Allergen: Before treating your home with essential oils as a spider repellent, ensure that no one in the home is allergic to that essential oil, as some people are allergic to certain essential oils. Make sure everyone in the house is safe.
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Are Essential Oils the Right Choice for Me?
If you are looking for a safe, effective way to repel spiders from your home, essential oils are a good route for you to go. After reading this article, you should be well versed in what essential oils repel spiders.
While there are still some inherent risks, essential oils are much milder than toxic chemicals used to exterminate spiders from your home. They are a lot cheaper too!
Freshen your home with fantastic scents while repelling spiders with these eight essential oils!
- About the Author
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Dena Haines is a co-founder and writer at The Buginator. And is working to make it the best resource for taking back the outdoors from biting, stinging pests.
She also blogs about travel at Storyteller.Travel and photography at Click Like This. Dena is a partner at Storyteller Media, a publishing company she runs with her husband, Bryan.