So can we all agree that tiki torches are only good for a 70s-themed pool party or a Gilligan’s Island Revival? Stinky, smoky, and unattractive, they do not belong on your gorgeously decorated deck! But they do have one redeeming quality: the bug fighting power of essential oils (yes, citronella is an essential oil). Mosquitoes just hate that lemony smell and it’s a great non-chemical, non-toxic solution to keeping our outdoor spaces bug free.
More About Essential Oils . . .
If you’ve been on Pinterest (or even to a grocery store these days), you’ve heard about essential oils. They seem to have downright magical properties! We couldn’t possibly list them all but we do know one thing for sure, there are a few essential oils that work fantastically to repel bugs. For centuries, folks have been using plants to deter bugs and unwanted critters. In Victorian times, herb and plant sachets were not only pretty but widely used to keep homes free of pests. But once modern science got involved, everyone turned to chemicals like DEET (which we know now is potentially toxic to kids and pets). With the recent popularity of essential oils, people have come back to a more natural (less toxic) approach and have found that they really do work!
These plants -- Citronella Geranium, Lemongrass, Eucalyptus, Lavender, and many herbs -- have been proven to ward off pesky insects. And the essential oil of these plants is the super concentrated form. But a vial of essential oil can be hard to find, expensive, and comes with a bit of learning curve if you’re going to use the raw form. Unless you want to learn how to mix and match or blend and diffuse, you’re really unable to harness the power for your family. And besides, who has time for another DIY project?
The trick to using essential oils for bug protection is to get the scent spread around so it creates a “bubble” of mosquito protection. And burning it is a great dispersement method (which is why our grandmothers liked tiki torches!). Luckily, candlemakers have improved on that idea and we now can infuse a normal candle with the essential oil and that lovely, subtle scent will hover around your spaces. Even better, mixing them into a soy- and citronella-based candle gives us a longer burn time and a lot less smoke.
. And, of course, if you want to go true Pinterest-worthy, you can choose a color and scent that actually matches your deck décor. Check out our four gorgeous scents here (lemongrass, eucalyptus, lavender, and rosemary & sage). Want some fun decorating ideas for your deck or patio? Click here . . .