Spider-repellent spray

I am not a fan of spiders.  I am very uncomfortable when I find them in my home…or inside any normal human-inhabited place  I try to live in harmony with the earth.  But sometimes I need the wonderful things of nature to stay outside, in nature.  I don’t want to kill the spiders, but I want to make them want to stay away from the inside of my home.  I needed a spider repellent. 

holding a bottle of homemade natural spider repellent spray


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I wanted to find a way to drive spiders away without harming them.  After doing a bit of research, I found that spiders dislike peppermint.  So I decided to whip up a simple essential oil spray using peppermint oil.  If you’ve made my DIY toilet spray, you’ll find these instructions remarkably familiar.

Spider Repellent Spray Ingredients

Spider repellent spray ingredients: castile soap, peppermint essential oil, spray bottle

  1. Drop several drops of liquid castile soap into the spray bottle.  Add 10 drops of peppermint essential oil for each ounce that the bottle holds.  I used a 2 fluid ounce bottle, so I added 20 drops essential oil.  Shake the bottle gently to mix the soap and oil.  The solution will look opaque.
  2. Fill the bottle with water.  Put the cover on the spray bottle, and shake gently.  The solution will look opaque.  

That’s it!  The oil should stay blended with the water (the solution looks opaque rather than clear like water with a layer of clear-ish oil floating on top), due to the castile soap used as an emulsifier.  

mixing the spider repellent: blending castile soap and peppermint oil
after step 1
How do I use the spider repellent spray?

I spritz this spray around windows and doors through which I do not want spiders to enter.  I know that I see spiders most frequently in my bathroom, so I periodically spray around the bathroom window.  I also see spiders in my kitchen so I spray around the exterior doors near my kitchen.  

Does it work? How do you know?

So I had to find out if this spider repellent spray really worked…and the only way I could think of to test the spray was to use it around a spider to gauge its reaction.  Yes, I feel like an evil awful person for terrorizing a spider for this experiment.  But I did it anyway.  There was a spider in my bathroom.  It was a species that usually doesn’t bother me, the kind that builds a little cocoon-like thing where the wall meets the ceiling and just chills out there all day.  The kind that usually leaves me alone.  My research shows these guys are called “yellow sac spiders.” 

Anyway, back to the experiment.  I sprayed plain water about a foot away from the spider.  It did not move.  Then I sprayed the peppermint spray in the same area, about a foot from the spider, and the spider moved away.  I sprayed again and it moved away again.  At this point I decided that the spray was effective.   I ended the experiment, then trapped the spider and set it free outside.  I thought the poor little guy had been tortured enough.  In the 6 months since my experiment, I have sprayed this around the bathroom window every few weeks and I have not found any spiders inside.  Victory!

bottle with spider repellent spray fully mixed


Cost for a 2-fluid ounce bottle of toilet spray, using lemon oil:

  • bottle: Available on Amazon for $9.46 for 12. $9.46/12=$0.788
  • castile soap: For ease of calculation, I’ll use the price from Amazon – $15.99 for 32 oz. ($15.99/32oz)x(1 oz/600 drops)x(5 drops)=$0.004
  • peppermint essential oil: Available on Amazon for $13.82 for 4 oz.  ($13.82/4oz)x(1 oz/600 drops)x(20 drops)=$0.115
  • Water: Where I live, water is $10.02 for 1000 gallons.  With 128 oz per gallon, 2 oz water costs: ($10.02/1000 gallons)x(1 gallon/128oz)x(2oz)=$0.00016 (essentially free)

Total cost: $0.91 for 2 oz bottle, including bottle.  But having a safe, natural way to keep spiders away is invaluable to me!


Do you let spiders live in your home?  Or do you try to keep them away?  Please share your spider repellent techniques in the comments below!

A light feeling homemade natural sunscreen

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homemade natural sunscreen

I wrote a post about cautions of homemade sunscreens which I recommend reading before deciding whether or not it may be something you want to try.

I’ve shared my favorite commercially available and homemade sunscreen recipes.  These both are water resistant sunscreens.  Today I want to share a lighter,  though not water resistant homemade natural sunscreen recipe.  It’s easy to make, only 2 ingredients (with an optional 3rd ingredient)!

Homemade Natural Sunscreen Ingredients
1/4 cup (54 grams) coconut oil
1 1/2 tsp (3.5 grams) non-nano zinc oxide powder (I use non-nano so the zinc ozide rests on the surface of my skin to form a physical barrier between my skin and the sun, rather than absorbing into my skin)
microwave safe container, such as a mason jar
popsicle stick or spoon to stir
homemade natural sunscreen
sunscreen ingredients
In all of my recipes (body products, soaps, and baking), I have found much better accuracy with weighing ingredients instead using measuring spoons and measuring cups.  I recommend investing in a digital kitchen scale.  I personally love this American Weigh Scales digital kitchen scale. 
1. Melt 54 grams coconut oil in your microwave safe container.  I like to use my storage container, a mason jar.  
2. Careful not to inhale any powder, add 3.5 grams zinc oxide powder to the coconut oil and stir to mix.  The zinc oxide has a tendency to sink, so as the coconut oil cools and solidifies, stir periodically.  If you forget and the oil solidifies completely, you should be able to soften with a few seconds in the microwave.  
3. Optionally, add 5 drops red raspberry seed oil, and mix again to evenly distribute the oil.
To use, I scoop (or scrape such as with a popsicle stick if the air and therefore coconut oil is very cold) and rub into my skin until the zinc oxide whiteness is no longer visible.  
I use coconut oil as a moisturizer, so I don’t notice much difference in feel of this sunscreen from coconut oil moisturizer.  
As I previously mentioned, this sunscreen is not water proof or water resistant.  Therefore, I do not recommend this for swimming or heavy sweating (I use my other sunscreen recipe for that!)  I like this light sunscreen for everyday use. 
Organic coconut oil – $14.99 for 54 oz (1458.99 g) at BJ’s Wholesale Club; (54g/1458.99g)x$14.99=$0.555 (or on Amazon for $16.99)
Organic red raspberry seed oil – $8.37 for 1.1 oz (650 drops) on Amazon; (5 drops/650 drops)x$8.37=$0.064
Zinc oxide powder – $8.95 for 1 lb (453.59 g) on Amazon; (3.5g/453.59g)x$8.95=$0.069
Total: $0.69 for 1/4 cup (57.5 grams = 2.03 oz), equating to $0.34 per ounce weight.  
Before I paid attention to the ingredients in my products, I used to use a Eucerine face lotion with SPF 30.  It’s currently on Amazon for $5.51 less 25% coupon = $4.14 for 4 oz,  which is $1.03/ounce.  My recipe is 1/3 the price, and all natural!
Do you have a favorite everyday sunscreen moisturizer?