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Last Updated on April 19, 2024 by Kiersten James

This natural anti-itch remedy for insect bites uses essential oils in a roller bottle to rapidly relieve the annoying itching caused by mosquitos and other bug bites.

With warm weather right around the corner, it’s time to stock up on our home remedy blends that are running low or have expired since last year. One of the most heavily used essential oil roller bottle blends for the kids is this natural anti-itch remedy for insect bites.

It’s hard to think of anything more annoying than gnat, mosquito, chigger, or ant bites and the relentless itching that follows – especially for the little ones who don’t understand that excessive scratching with dirty fingers can lead to broken skin and possible infections.

To nip it in the bud, I mix up a 30mL (2 ounce) size bottle of this anti-itch essential oils blend once the warm weather starts to arrive in early April. As the season continues, I just refill the smaller 10mL roller bottle as we run out.

Anti-Itch Remedy for Insect Bites (With Essential Oils)

The active ingredients in this natural blend are two very common and popular essential oils that you may already have in your home – lavender and peppermint.

Lavender Essential Oil

Lavender has been used in both religious and medicinal settings dating all the way back to the mummification practices of Ancient Egypt.

Its powerful antioxidant properties have been documented in several Chinese and Romanian studies to combat free radical damage. Lavender also has incredibly strong antimicrobial properties to combat infection when mixed with cinnamon leaf or orange essential oils.

For the purpose of this anti-itch roller bottle blend, we will focus on lavender’s ability to soothe allergic reactions on the skin which causes the bite to itch.

Peppermint Essential Oil:

Peppermint has to be my all time favorite essential oil. From stopping fevers to migraine relief and appetite suppression, the fact that it’s extremely effective to relieve itching is not surprising.

Combining lavender with peppermint essential oil offers both calming and cooling effects to combat skin swelling, itching, and redness.

Important Things to Know

  • Essential oils must always be diluted before applying to the skin.
  • Never apply peppermint oil near the face of infants.
  • I don’t use peppermint oil on or near our kids at all until 12 months of age. Some studies have shown that it can cause breathing issues in those who are sensitive to its effects when applied to the skin or in a diffuser too close to the bed.

Concerns About Hydrocortisone in Babies & Kids

Hydrocortisone cream is a very popular and familiar over-the-counter (OTC) cream used for a wide range of skin conditions such as itching, eczema, and inflammation. It’s very effective due to the steroid component of the cream.

The skin is that largest organ in the body and serves to protect us from outside threats like chemicals, injuries, or bacteria. Human skin is permeable which means that toxins and germs can squeeze their way into the body by entering the bloodstream through contact with the skin.

You can apply this to real life by thinking about lidocaine pain patches some patients wear over the course of a few days.

When steroid creams are used extensively over a long period of time (think 2 weeks or more throughout the entire day), the steroid from the hydrocortisone is continuously getting absorbed into the body through the skin.

This can lead to side effects and more serious problems, especially in babies and young children.

Side Effects of Long-term Steroid Exposure & Use

Thinning skin

This makes the skin much more likely to break and tear from simple contact with clothing or brushing up against a table.

Swollen blood vessels under the skin

These look similar to stretch marks but are actually enlarged vessels in the area of repeated exposure.


Steroids reduce inflammation and swelling by blocking the body’s immune system response to foreign invaders like germs or dirt particles. This greatly increases the risk of infection in the area treated by the hydrocortisone cream.

Suppression of the adrenal glands

Adrenal glands produce natural steroid hormones inside the body like cortisol and adrenaline. If the body is exposed to outside steroid sources for a long period of time like hydrocortisone, the body will stop producing its own steroids in response to obtaining too much artificially. This is by far the most serious side effect but thankfully, very rare.

The likelihood of experiencing any of the side effects or systemic whole body effects from using hydrocortisone on an insect bite is extremely low.

However, one of the reasons Natural Home Apothecary was created was to make sure that parents are educated on all aspects of “routine” recommendations. Not just the ones that offer desirable outcomes.

How to Make the Anti-Itch Remedy for Insect Bites

You’ll Need:

  1. Add the lavender and peppermint essential oils to the glass roller bottle.
  2. Fill the roller bottle with your choice of carrier oil. My roller bottles came with a tiny plastic funnel that makes this task a lot easier.
  3. Invert the bottle a few times to blend.

How to use the roller blend:

To use the roller blend, apply directly to the bug bite to relieve itching, swelling, and stinging as often as needed.

Other DIY Anti-Itch Remedies

Baking Soda Paste

If you aren’t able to mix up a batch of the essential oil blend, a quick fix can be made with a teaspoon of baking soda. Add a tiny bit of water to the soda until a paste forms, like the type used for cleaning.

Apply the paste directly to the bite and allow to air dry, do not cover with gauze or a Band-Aid.

Cool Compress

Another easy anti-itch remedy for insect bites is a simple cool compress. This can be in the form of a ready-made cold pack or a bag of ice cubes wrapped in a cloth or paper towel.

The cold is very soothing to the skin and will reduce any temporary redness or swelling associated with the bite or sting.

More Natural Family Home Remedies

Easy Fermented Garlic Honey Recipe

Elderberry Syrup for Toddlers

Ear Ache Pain Reliving Oil for Kids

Amish Cough Syrup (Safe for Kids)

Natural Diaper Rash Cream Without Zinc Oxide

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The statements made on are for educational purposes only. They are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any condition or disease. Please consult with your personal physician or healthcare specialist regarding any potential changes to your lifestyle or healthcare regimen.

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