Skip to content

What scent keeps wasps away? With essential oils and home remedies drive away insects from the house and garden

This year the talk is about a plague of wasps. The stinging insects are everywhere because of the dry spring and can ruin our stay outdoors, whether on the balcony, terrace or in the city. While there are many methods of driving away wasps, one of the most effective and harmless is with scent. But which scent keeps wasps away? We will show the best variants and how to use them properly below.

Why scents work against wasps?

Peppermint oil can drive away wasps

Wasps have a keen sense of smell, which they use to find food sources . You can take advantage of this ability by using scents that the insects don’t like.

What keeps wasps away? These scents they can not tolerate at all

What scents can you use to deter wasps and keep them at bay? We have listed the most popular ones below. Please note that only using these scents will not get rid of wasps for good. The best and safest way to keep the insects away is to find their nest and remove it .

Drive away the insects with peppermint oil

What scent keeps wasps away and how to use essential oils

Wasps especially hate the smell of peppermint. Peppermint oil does not harm wasps, but rather can deter them, keeping them at a distance. As convenient as it is, the scent doesn’t last very long and you have to apply it regularly to keep the prickly insects away.

To use peppermint oil as an insect repellent, you should spray the solution on entryways and areas where wasps might fly in and invade your home.

For example, if you are sitting on your balcony, you can spray the solution along the railing. The scent is pungent (but pleasant to you, unless you don’t like peppermint) and will hopefully deter wasps.

Wasps have a strong aversion to anything minty – which could be due to the menthol found in peppermint oil that gives it an aromatic minty smell. Thus, the plant in a pot can also do a good job against the insects.

What essential oils against wasps?

What essential oils are effective against wasps

Besides peppermint oil, you can also use other essential oils in the fight against wasps. Research has shown that a combination of clove, geranium and lemongrass oil effectively repels wasps. To make this natural remedy for wasps yourself, you can mix a few drops of each oil in soapy water and then put it in a spray bottle. Then, spray the solution on all areas of your property where the critters are likely to build a nest, such as roofs, eaves, sheds, ledges, shutter boxes, and any other cracks and crevices around your home.

You can also try the oils individually. Well-suited varieties whose scent repels wasps include lavender oil, basil oil, lemongrass oil (citronella) and clove oil.

How to use the essential oils?

Depending on where the insects are bothering you, you can use scented oils against the pests in different ways. In the house or on the patio, you can use a fragrance lamp to let the oils evaporate. You can also dissolve a few drops of the selected oil in water and put it in a spray bottle. With this homemade anti wasp spray, you can drive away the insects when they come.

You can also rub essential oils on yourself or the furniture in the seating area. If you use it on your skin, but you need to dilute the oil so that it does not cause skin irritation.

Vinegar keeps wasps away

How to keep away stinging insects with scent


There are also some home remedies whose scent can be used to repel wasps. One of them is good old vinegar.

Wasps are easily distracted by the strong acidic smell of vinegar. Spraying a mixture of vinegar and water around the house or on the patio is an effective remedy against the stinging insects. It not only irritates their sense of smell, but also masks other odors that wasps love because of their intensity. In our article on how to use vinegar against wasps, you will discover some methods of using the home remedy to repel wasps.

Important: Make sure you use white vinegar and not apple or wine vinegar. Otherwise, you can do just the opposite and attract the wasps.

How cucumbers help against wasps

Drive away wasps with cucumber slices

Another scent you can rely on to deter wasps is the acidity that cucumbers produce. The scent is naturally acidic, so it could eliminate any nearby stings. But beware: this scent keeps wasps away, but it can attract other insects like flies and bees.

If you use this home remedy, you don’t need to make cucumber mixtures and sprays. Simply slice the cucumber and spread it around your garden or in specific areas of your home. Indoors, you’ll get the best results by placing the cucumber in an aluminum pan or tray. When combined with aluminum, the vegetable creates a chemical reaction that is undesirable to wasps and delicious to us.

The scent of bay leaves keeps wasps away

How to use the scent of dried bay leaves against insects


Bay leaves contain the essential oil eugenol, which can also deter wasps. To use this home remedy against the pests, crush dried bay leaves and sprinkle them on any areas where wasps are common around your home.

It is important to crush the bay leaves. This releases the eugenol oil that provides the pungent odor. Also, the dried leaves need to be applied regularly to last longer.

You can also mix the ground bay leaves with cinnamon or chili powder to create an even stronger scent.