Outdoor Travel Tips




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Sunburn

The best way to treat sunburn is to avoid getting it in the first place. If you plan on spending more than 15 minutes in the sun, wear appropriate clothing and/or an appropriate sunscreen. A natural sunscreen can be made with helichrysum essential oil.

If you do get sunburned, the Essential Oils Integrative Medical Guide, by D. Gary Young, recommends applying 1-3 drops of neat or diluted (50-50) lavender or balsam fir oils on location for minor first-degree burns to help cool the tissue and reduce inflammation (pg. 298-299).

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Bugs

General Insect Repellants
According to Valerie Ann Worwood, author of The Complete Book of Essential Oils and Aromatherapy, lemongrass and citronella are great oils to use to keep insects out of the room. She recommends either diffusing these oils, or placing ribbons or strings with the oils on them by windows, doorways, or other places that insects might like to enter. To keep insects from landing on you, she recommends using 30 drops lavender oil diluted in 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil.

In the Reference Guide for Essential Oils, Connie and Alan Higley recommend using a blend of 5 drops lavender, 5 drops lemongrass, 3 drops peppermint, and 1 drop thyme blended with a cup of water and sprayed on to help keep bugs away (Valerie Ann Worwood also recommends a blend using these same oils, but with different proportions). The Higleys also recommend citronella, patchouli, lavender, basil, bergamot, cedarwood, and a blend of clove, lemon and orange as other insect-repelling oils.

Ants
One suggestion Valerie Ann Worwood gives for keeping ants out of your house is to place peppermint oil at places where ants are coming into your house, or spraying peppermint oil where the ants walk. Other authors suggest that most mint oils are effective for repelling ants.

Mosquitoes
According to Valerie Gennari Cooksley, RN, author of Aromatherapy: Soothing Remedies to Restore, Rejuvenate, and Heal, basil, cedarwood, citronella, geranium, juniper, and rosemary can all be effective for keeping mosquitoes away. She mentions in her book that her son will soak strips of cloth in a blend of citronella and geranium essential oils mixed with a vegetable oil base. He then ties the strips to trees around his camping site to successfully keep mosquitoes away.

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Poisonous Plants

Accidentally running into poison oak or poison ivy while outdoors is not very fun. In the Reference Guide for Essential Oils, Connie and Alan Higley recommend lavender, Roman chamomile, rose, rosewood, and palmarosa oils for helping to deal with the after-effects of poison ivy if you do run into it.

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Avoid Bears

Bears are naturally curious animals and have a sense of smell 2,100 times greater than humans. They are especially attracted to sweet smells found in many essential oils. Be careful using essential oils if you are in bear country. Many wildlife safety tips say to not bring anything with a strong odor if you are camping or hiking in bear country. Contact your local forest station for safety guidelines.

Additional Tips:

  • My husband and son went camping in the Boundary Waters. I used 5/8 dram amber vials to keep it light, and sent them with purification (repellant and for bites), lemon (dropped in every glass of water they drank), thieves (infection, and in water), lavender (bug bites and sleep), and peppermint (in case of stomach issues, muscle aches, or headaches). So perfect for backpacking! - Lisa Schneider

  • I have a designated "Restroom bag" contents include Thieves foaming hand soap ( I do not trust the pink soap in bathrooms) Thieves hand sanitizer and spray, and a bottle of purification. I definitely leave a bathroom cleaner and smelling nicer than the way I found it. - Anonymous, Twin Falls, Idaho

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