Does Diffusing Essential Oils Help To Keep Spiders Away?

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While most spiders you will cross paths with are not venomous, finding one inside your house can still be unnerving if you fear them. Of course, locating an eight-legged trespasser inside your home now and then is normal and, in most cases, not a cause for concern — even if it completely freaks you out. However, if you consistently find them hiding in all areas of your home, you may want to take action to prevent them from entering and keep them at bay. 

While you may want a spider-free abode, that doesn't mean you want to deal with the toxic chemicals and insecticides that come with it. Though traditional pest control chemicals can help keep spiders out of your home, using them around your family and pets might not be the best option. Fortunately, natural options are available, as several essential oils have been proven effective at repelling spiders. Diffusing them throughout your home can help keep your living space spider-free.

Which essential oils help keep spiders at bay?

While several different types of essential oils have proven effective at repelling various insects, peppermint oil is regarded as the best at combating spiders. Despite limited research, a 2017 study found it highly effective in repelling two families of spiders. Though lemon juice and other citrus essential oils have long been touted for repelling creepy crawlies, the same study found these ineffective against spiders. So, as fresh and clean as your home may smell after diffusing lemon oil, peppermint is your best bet when dealing with eight-legged pests.

Though the effects of other essential oils have yet to be clinically tested, other studies found that thyme, sandalwood, and clove oil may be effective at repelling other arachnids, such as ticks and mites. Because spiders also belong to this family, these oils are thought to have a similar effect on them. One study found thyme and clove oil effective at repelling ticks, while another found thyme oil and its components highly effective at repelling mites. Studies from 2012 and 2016 also found sandalwood oil effective at combating ticks and mites. So while studies have shown that peppermint oil is effective against spiders, it probably won't hurt to use thyme, clove, or sandalwood oil to test the effects.

How to diffuse essential oils to repel spiders

If you notice one too many spiders lately, diffusing spider-repelling essential oils throughout your space is never a bad idea. Diffusing peppermint oil alone can help keep spiders out of a room. However, if you are sensitive to the smell, you can mix the peppermint oil with another scent to maximize the spider-repelling qualities while still filling your home with your favorite aroma. Thyme, clove, and sandalwood oil are also good options for those who are sensitive to peppermint or don't care for the aroma.

There are many different types of electric diffusers on the market, with the most common being categorized as either ultrasonic or nebulizing. Ultrasonic diffusers rely on water to diffuse essential oils into the air, while nebulizing diffusers use pressurized air. Though there are pros and cons to using each, when it comes to the purpose of repelling spiders, you may want to opt for a nebulizing model. This is because these don't require you to dilute the pure essential oil with water, so they can release a much stronger, more concentrated amount of the oil and fill the room with it much faster. This also allows you to actively diffuse oil for shorter periods of the day.