Citrus essential oils to keep away mosquitoes, fight dengue and zika virus
There are countries where mosquitoes find it easier to breed because of the climate conditions. Asian countries in tropical and sub-tropical areas like Singapore and India know these insects can be significant health threats. Their bites cause skin irritations and also cause significant diseases. Fortunately, with the help of medical science, malaria no longer scares us as much as it used to.
But dengue and zika virus still remains worrying concerns. Unfortunately, the number of dengue in Singapore 2022 is expected to be high as the dengue vector mosquito population is very high currently. Dengue can be debilitating, and it can be life-threatening if a person gets affected severely. Not surprising that Dengue fever is also known as break-bone fever. But do not get apprehensive thinking about how long dengue fever last. Usually, people recover after one week, and the symptoms don’t last beyond two to seven days. Zika virus is very similar to dengue and harmful to pregnant women.
One of the easiest ways of protecting your loved ones from mosquitoes is to use citrus essential oil. Before drug store mosquito repellants were invented, humans used natural remedies like essential oils to drive away insects. Citrus oil has been successful in repelling insects from homes and gardens for thousands of years. Wondering how? The natural essential oil has distinct scents and consists of volatile organic compounds. The citrus plants have hydrogen, carbon, and oxygen compounds that evaporate and dispense a strong aroma.
In this blog, we will share tips and tricks about the best natural and organic alternatives like Citronella oil and Lemongrass essential oil.
Lemongrass vs Citronella - what's the difference?
Many people consider lemongrass (Cymbopogon citratus) and citronella (Cymbopogon nardus/Cymbopogon winterianum) grass to be the same because they smell and look alike. But it is a misconception. The leaves of a citronella plant are wider than lemongrass and have a blade-like shape.
Lemongrass is entirely green, whereas there are reddish-coloured pseudostems in citronella. The other visible difference is that a citronella plant can grow up to 6 feet tall and 4 feet wide. Lemongrass grows up to 2 feet and has 4 feet in width.
Also, lemongrass works better than citronella oil, contrary to popular belief of citronella is the best. In fact, citronella is a lemongrass companion plant, and you will be surprised to know that lemongrass contains citronella.
However, as mosquito repellants, both lemongrass and citronella are effective. But just growing them is not enough. To get their benefits quickly, you have to crush them and rub the grass or leaves against your skin. Or you can spread it on the ground. But the most modern method of enjoying their benefits is choosing essential oil products from a home fragrance and aromatherapy brand like Shiora.
Citronella vs Lemongrass smell
We have mentioned above that both citronella and lemongrass have a similar smell. Citronella, like lemongrass, smells like lemon too. But when Citronella is crushed, it gives out a pungent odour that is quite strong.
Lemongrass gives out a pleasant citrus smell when crushed. Thus, citronella is largely used only for making mosquito repellants. Lemongrass is used in making medicines, perfumes, and also in Asian cooking.
The smell of Citronella essential oil and Lemongrass essential oil repels mosquitoes, but the insects react differently to the smell. Lemongrass works better against malaria-transmitting mosquitoes and citronella against yellow-fever-inducing mosquitoes. But overall, both the smell of citronella and lemongrass works supremely against mosquitoes. In fact, essential oil from any citrus plant usually works as a bug and insect repellent.
Natural mosquito repellent essential oils
The probability of getting bit by a mosquito depends on a few factors like humidity, light, smell, and heat. If you find yourself to be more attacked by mosquitoes than others, you must be tired of the bumps on the skin and the irritation. In that case, natural mosquito repellant essential oils are the remedy you need. You do not have to burn any plants to smoke out the mosquitoes. Natural repellants are also beneficial and safer if you are sensitive or you have a child at home. Find out about the top 4 citrus essential oils which are great as natural mosquito repellants:
1) Citronella essential oil
Citronella oil is one of the top 2 mosquito repellant essential oils. And the Citronella Pure Essential Oil by Shiora is one of Singapore’s best. It is pure oil, meaning no additional ingredients have been used to enhance the smell. The oil is Java citronella oil, which is extracted from Cymbopogon winterianus. It is 100% organic and high-quality essential oil.
Dilute citronella essential oil to prevent insects from attacking you, which you can apply topically. Or you can mix it with water in a spray bottle and spray it as required to keep your home free from mosquitoes and ants. Or you can also use an aroma reed diffuser, and turn this natural mosquito-repellant into an aromatherapy experience for everyone at home too.
2) Lemongrass oil
Shiora's Lemongrass Pure Essential Oil is undeniably one of the best mosquito-repellant essential oil. The hint of citrus flavour makes it an ingredient of Asian cuisines, including tea. Furthermore, when mixed with olive oil, lemongrass oil has proved to be more than 90% successful in driving away southern house mosquitoes. The plant in itself is an insect repellant.
So drop a few drops of the mildly sweet and citrusy-smelling lemongrass oil in your diffuser, add water and keep it indoors. In addition to its lemony fragrance, it has an earthy and ginger-like smell. This robust smell makes it a perfect energizing scent too. Lemongrass repels not only mosquitoes but also houseflies, cockroaches, and other insects.
The downside of this great bug repellant is that whether you use the oil as a lotion or a spray, you need to reapply frequently.
Try Lemongrass Skinsafe Essential Oil Roll-on to apply topically on your skin; small areas on your wrist, neck, or behind your ears. Get this citrus smell to keep mosquitoes away from your body!
3) Eucalyptus essential oil
The next best citrus essential oil to fight dengue and zika virus is Eucalyptus Pure Essential Oil. It has a wood and camphor-like aroma.
FYI, a particular type of eucalyptus plant, known as lemon eucalyptus, is used for making a stronger mosquito-repellant.
Lemon eucalyptus oil can fight different mosquito species for over three hours at a stretch. This oil is actively used in making many insect repellants. Compound citronella is present in high quality in Lemon eucalyptus, making it a successful bug-repellent.
One way to make homemade mosquito repellant is by mixing eucalyptus oil with coconut oil and/or water in a spray bottle. Shake it and then spray it around your house. And if you want to apply it directly to keep away mosquitoes, get the Eucalyptus Skinsafe Essential Oil Roll-on.
Shiora eucalyptus oil has a smell that can remind you of rosemary. It releases a fragrance that is a mix of citrus, honey, and mint. The smell adds energy to any space and will make you feel more assertive if you have had a draining day.
4) Peppermint oil
The primary ingredient of peppermint oil is menthol. Thus, in addition to being a repellant, you can also use it to soothe mosquito bites on your skin. The Peppermint Pure Essential Oil has a Camphoraceous and minty smell. Apart from its health benefits, peppermint oil is well-known for its insecticidal properties.
It is a lot safer than many other natural bug repellents which can be toxic. Peppermint has no adverse side effects, and the strong smell is pleasant for humans but is repulsive for mosquitoes and other insects.
Use an essential oil diffuser to spread the aroma of peppermint oil in your office or home. For the oil to be effective, you must use it with a higher concentration. This oil helps in destroying mosquito larvae.
A good quality peppermint pure essential oil like Shiora’s may give full protection against mosquitoes for almost two and half hours. You can also use a peppermint reed diffuser in your home to enjoy the benefits of peppermint fragrance.
4 ways how to keep away mosquitoes but keep your home smell good
Being a resident of a tropical country, it is almost impossible that mosquitoes don’t manage to enter your home. There are multiple ways of keeping mosquitoes away from your home. Won’t it be great if you could do that and also make your home smell great? We have enlisted 4 perfect methods which you can use to drive away mosquitoes and simultaneously keep your abode smelling wonderful:
1) Essential oil mosquito repellent recipe: vaporize, spray, or apply directly
DIY essential oil mosquito recipes are budget-friendly and easy to prepare. Apart from citronella, lemon eucalyptus oil, and peppermint, you can also use Lavender pure essential oil, catnip, or rosemary. So get hold of any essential oil or a couple of them to make a blend and create your very own natural mosquito repellant. You can use a diffuser to diffuse the smell of your homemade repellant or apply it directly to your skin after diluting it with a carrier oil.
There are different ways of making a spray repellant. You can make it by using essential oil, carrier oil, and a small spray bottle. Fill half of the bottle with boiled water. Then fill 1/4th with rubbing alcohol. To keep the repellant completely natural, you can use Witch Hazel instead of alcohol. And then add the essential oil or oils of your choice.
When you want to use the repellent in a diffuser, simply mix different quantities of essential oils or about 8 drops of each essential oil.
2) Reed diffuser: looks good, smells good, and keep away unwanted insects
An essential oil reed diffuser is another effective way of getting rid of mosquitoes. Additionally, your room will keep smelling fresh too. Use Shiora Reed Diffuser aroma oils. We have Lemongrass, Sandalwood peppermint, and Citronella scent reed diffuser bottles which are perfect for repelling mosquitoes.
You will also be able to get excellent quality Black Fibre or White Fibre reed diffuser sticks at Shiora too. Using these reed diffuser sticks will also ensure that your space smells good for a long time while keeping unwanted insects away. You can select the length of the reed diffuser sticks and quantity while ordering.
And when using them with aroma oils, you can choose how many sticks you want to use simultaneously. Fiber sticks are better than rattan reed diffuser sticks as they are better at diffusion. The cold diffusion method is one of the best ways of using the benefits of any essential oil.
3) Call pest control hotline
When you live in an area with many mosquitoes, using only essential oils might not be enough. You should reach out to a professional licensed pest control operator. Rentokill is one of the leading pest control services available in Singapore. They will offer you great advice and also use safe methods to repel mosquitoes. Rentokill has an integrated mosquito management system. They will use eco-friendly ways of dealing with mosquitoes and will use chemicals only when strictly necessary. Reach out to the experts who follow all safety standards while using the best tried and tested methods. Compromising the health of your loved ones is not an option when you are facing the risks of dengue or zika virus.
4) Get the plants that repel mosquitoes
A simple method to keep mosquitoes away from your home is to keep plants that repel mosquitoes. You can either place them in a corner or corners of your home or place them on tables. Some plants stop both insects and rodents from visiting your home. Mosquito-repellent plants are generally small, so you shouldn’t have any problem placing them anywhere inside your home. Plants which we can suggest you get to keep your home smelling good too are citronella and lemongrass. You can also keep the marigold, mint, holy basil, or catnip.
Singapore faces an intense mosquito problem every year, especially during a particular season. So you must always be ready to counter this and the zika virus in Singapore 2022 threat by preparing bug repellant sprays using essential oils. Also, please be aware of the zika virus symptoms like mild fever, muscle and joint pain, and rash, as the first case of zika virus has already been reported this year.
Shiora’s essential oils are excellent as a solution for repelling insects on a day-to-day basis. You can bask in the refreshing smell of lime fruit while fighting mosquitoes, Follow Shiora on Instagram to stay updated about exciting discounts and the launch of even better products. Currently, you will be able to buy some essential oils for almost half their price!