Killing bed bugs is a task that requires both time and money, and if you’ve experienced dealing with this kind of infestation before, you know that it’s no fun.
Killing bed bugs is a timely and costly process, so before you’d have to experience this, it’s a good idea to invest in an effective deterrent.
Aside from the lack of moisture, there are scents that bed bugs seem to hate and can’t tolerate.
Peppermint (and other minty scents), citrus, eucalyptus, lavender, and rosemary are among the top natural scents known to repel bed bugs.
They also hate the scent coming from a rubbing alcohol solution, so that’s another option to keep them at bay.
Adding peppermint to your tea, coffee, or even in your baked goods is one thing, but adding it to a spray bottle of water and using it as an easy deterrent for bed bugs? That’s certainly quite the game-changer.
Although peppermint itself has bug-deterring properties, its scent alone is enough to repel these bed bugs from entering your home.
If you’re traveling, you may add a drop of peppermint essential oil to a cotton ball and keep it inside your luggage.
Not only will this make your clothes smell fresh, but this also prevents bed bugs from hitching a ride inside your luggage and, hopefully, not get the chance to step foot inside your home.
Citrus Scents Like Lemon
Have you ever wondered why most fresheners and cleaners contain lemon? Lemon and other citrus scents give off a strong aroma that can repel bed bugs and other insects.
Lemon essential oil, in particular, has a strong scent that helps keep them away.
Besides its effectiveness against bed bugs, lemon also has disinfectant properties, which make it extra useful when cleaning up after an infestation.
One of the best-known natural insect repellents is eucalyptus oil. It has a strong and pungent scent that bed bugs cannot stand and will help keep your home free from bed bug infestations.
Alternatively, you may also grow eucalyptus plant in your home and outside your window to enjoy the natural fragrance.
This plant doesn’t just repel bed bugs, but it’s also effective in keeping other bugs away from your home.
Citronella and Lemongrass
These two plants are well-known for helping deter mosquitoes and other bugs – and this includes bed bugs.
Citronella, a grass-like plant, and lemongrass are both able to give off a strong aroma that bed bugs simply can’t tolerate.
If you have a citronella plant, simply run your hands on its leaves during the morning or literally whenever you need to, and the scent will be your natural repellent.
One of the most common insecticides used to kill bed bugs is rubbing alcohol.
Considering the fact that bed bugs are already difficult to deal with, rubbing alcohol’s properties combined with the scent, makes it a great deterrent.
The scent of alcohol is quite strong, and it’s likely enough to keep these pests away. As a bonus, when bed bugs get in contact with alcohol, their exoskeleton will dissolve, slowly killing them.
Almost everyone is familiar with lavender’s sweet and relaxing aroma. For us humans, lavender can help in so many different aspects in our life.
Its aroma is often used in linen sprays to help relax and soothe us at night. But this same aroma is also effective in keeping bed bugs away.
Its calming scent helps in masking the smell of food that attract bed bugs, like sweat odors and other scents.
Besides its effectiveness as a deterrent, you can also use lavender-infused sprays or linen sachets to help you relax and sleep better.
Rosemary is a well-known aromatic herb that has many therapeutic effects. It is known to be an effective natural remedy for several illnesses and ailments, and it has been used in traditional medicine for centuries.
It’s most popular when used as a herbal ingredient, thanks to its anti-inflammatory and antispasmodic properties. However, it also doubles as a great natural insect repellent.
Its strong smell, when added with other scents like lavender or citronella, is an effective way to ward away bed bugs.
Moreover, rosemary oil can be applied directly onto your skin and clothes to help you repel them.
Can A Normal Perfume Keep Bed Bugs Away?
Now, it’s tempting to simply use various scents, hoping that bed bugs will just go away. However, that’s unfortunately not the case.
While it may help in masking your natural body odor, not all perfumes or scents will stop them from entering your home.
The USDA, however, has mentioned that using perfumes and other scents in the hopes of repelling bed bugs is more of a DIY method and hasn’t always shown 100% effectiveness in repelling these pests.
While there’s scientific evidence behind some of the natural repellents listed above, it’s difficult to say if a regular perfume can actually help in keeping them away.
At the end of the day, deterring bed bugs is one thing, and it doesn’t hurt to try one (or more) of the scents mentioned above. However, when the time comes that there’s an already existing infestation of bed bugs inside your home, these scents may not be enough to keep up with the number of pests and you’ll most likely need to call a professional exterminator.
Scents That Repel Bed Bugs Effectively: Final Thoughts
The United States Department of Agriculture has stated that the use of scents and fragrances are additional avenues that can be used in order to keep bed bugs away.
While it’s not a guaranteed solution, using natural essential oils like citronella, lemongrass, lavender, and rosemary are mildly effective in helping deter bed bugs – especially if you live in an area prone to these pests.
Always remember that these scents are only meant as deterrents and not as solutions for existing infestations.
When it comes to dealing with an infestation, it’s always highly recommended that you seek help from professional pest control companies to take care of the problem properly.