Witch Hazel; Your Key to Repelling Bugs

Wild Witch Hazel

Wild Witch Hazel

Heeyyyyya how ya doin? I know I said Spring is finally here last week, but I think the season has already turned to Summer. That’s at least how we’re feeling after a 75 degree (fahrenheit) sorcher up at Stowe Mountain yesterday. It’s time to break out the hot wax cause it doesn’t look like too much of that cold stuff anymore (sad face)… But let’s not focus on that since the spring riding is all time and that’s the only thing that matters!

One thing I noticed yesterday about the warmer temps is that the bugs are starting to come back out. Gnats and other winged creatures are again flying among us. I even saw a spider on the snow. A decent sized spider. Not even on the edge of the trail, it was on the knuckle of a kicker about 100ft from anything but snow. I didn’t think a spider would be able to pull that kind of traverse. Weird.

Anyway, with that said the bugs are out and you all know what means; bug spray. If you’re anything like me, then you hate bug spray. From the stickiness that ensues after spraying it on, to getting it in your eyes when you sweat, or accidently getting it in your mouth, at times bug spray can be the absolute worst. Not to mention, the chemical bases that these sprays are made out of can’t be the best for your skin. So let’s talk about an alternative option that’s a bit more friendly for yourself and the environment.

Witch Hazel is a shrub that inhabits the understory of forests all throughout America and is a rather hardy plant, but for this Green Tip you’re going to need it in liquid form. This can be found at most pharmacies. You should also stock up some essential oils like peppermint, lemon eucalyptus, citronella, and lavender. Oh yeah, and one empty spray bottle.

Now, take that spray bottle and pour a cup of witch hazel in that bad Larry. Next, pour a few (by a few I mean ten) drops of lavender oil and peppermint oil into it. After, pour a bunch (20) of drops of citronella and lemon eucalyptus oil into the bottle. Finally, shake vigorously. Boom, there you have it, your very own, homemade, all natural insect repellent. Yup, I know, it really was that easy. Now you’re going to smell like some neat-o essential oils and you won’t get all sorts of sticky. One of the best parts about using this insect repellent is that it is actually really good for your skin!

Hate to break it to you folks, but that’s it for this week! I know, until next time. In the meantime get out there, make some bug spray, make your skin feel better, reduce weird chemical usage in this world, and take on bug-season like the champion you are.