Does Tea Tree Oil Attract Bugs or is it an Insect Repellent? Know Now!

The world has been talking about an essential oil that has a wide range of applications. Imagine there is an oil that can treat acne, skin inflammation, heal wounds, and can be used as a deodorant due to its pleasant smell. This oil isTea Tree Oil. But there is a debate going on and people wonder does Tea Tree Oil Attract Bugs or kill them? Here, we are diffusing the confusion about its role regarding insects.

Tea tree oil, also called Melaleuca oil, is a popular oil extracted from Melaleuca alternifolia, a native plant found in Australia. It is known for Antiseptic, antimicrobial, and anti-inflammatory actions.

But Does Tea Tree Oil Attract Bugs? The answer is No. In reality, it acts as an insect repellent.

Recent studies on tea tree oil show that it may be an excellent pest repellent. It is found to repel mosquitoes, flies, lice, and some stinging insects. But you have to be careful in its Application. In this article, we are discussing every aspect of tea tree oil as an insecticide. But first, let’s start with the general introduction of this essential oil.

What is Tea Tree Oil?

Tea tree oil is an extract of Melaleuca alternifolia plant. It should not be confused with the plant from where we get leaves to produce different kinds of tea like black or green tea. The tea tree plant has its own benefits and features.

Does Tea Tree Oil Attract Bugs
Tea Tree Leaves

The tea tree oil we are discussing is not new to mankind. Natives have been using tea tree oil for medicinal purposes for centuries. It can cure cough, cold, and skin rashes effectively.

Due to its wide range of benefits, its demand is worldwide. Today, tea tree oil is available in almost every part of the world in the form of 100% undiluted or neat form.

Diluted products are also available which are mainly for the skin.

Does Tea Tree Oil Attract Bugs
Naturally extracted Tea Tree Oil

Now, let’s have a look at the reason why this oil is popular.

Tea Tree Oil Benefits

The main reason for the popularity of tea tree oil is the benefits it brings to the table. The benefits of this essential oil are immense. Let’s have a look at some of them:

1) It has shown tremendous effectiveness against skin rashes, acne, and other skin problems. It also treats insect bites. As a lot of people suffer from acne, that’s why this oil is widely purchased. Most people prefer natural remedies instead of any chemical solution. So, this oil is one of the first things people buy to cure acne.

2) Tea tree oil is an excellent hand sanitizer as it can kill different kinds of bacteria and viruses. Due to the Covid Pandemic which emphasized the importance of hand sanitizers, the tea tree plants are now commercially cultivated.

3) It also performs the role of Anti-Septic. When you get a minor cut or scrape, immediately apply tea tree oil. It does not allow bacteria (especially S. aureus) to infect the open wound.

Mix 1 tablespoon tea tree oil with 1 tablespoon of coconut oil. After cleaning the wound with water, apply this mixture and then cover with the bandage. This mixture also has the ability to boost the wound healing process as well.

4) Tea tree oil is also effective in curing Nail Fungus.

5) It has a pleasant scent which improves the mood. Due to the scent, it is also used in making Deodrants.

6) It is an all-purpose cleaner which means you can clean almost everything with this.

7) It’s one main emerging role in the world is an insecticide which we will be discussing in this Article.

Does Tea Tree Oil Attract Bugs
Tea Tree Oil Dripping

Does Tea Tree Oil Attract Bugs or Kill Them?

Bugs hate tea tree oil to their core and quite rightly so. They hate how this oil smells and they also hate the fact that if this oil falls on them, they will die very shortly. Wondering How does tea tree oil kill insects? Then carefully read the next section!

How Does Tea Tree Oil Keep Bugs Away?

Due to the confusion, people keep searching Does Tea Tree Oil Attract Bugs, and the answer is the exact opposite. It does not attract bugs, but in fact, kills them. But how?

When the solution of tea tree oil falls on the exoskeleton of insects, it starts doing its role to kill them. The solution starts suffocating the insects leading to their deaths.

Due to the scent, this oil is considered a bug repellent method. One study found that after applying tea tree oil on a cow, flies infestation decreased by 61%.

One benefit of this oil is that it is replacing the chemical insecticide sprays.

But there is a little setback to this solution. It is Effective only if the infestation is low. If insects are present in a large number, then we recommend you use another insecticide measure along with tea tree oil spray.

Does Tea Tree Oil Repel Mosquitoes too?

People also search online does tea tree oil attracts mosquitoes and then answer again is opposite. It acts as an insect repellent (including mosquitoes).

No one wants to see mosquitoes nearby him especially after the emergence of dengue, malaria, and the West Nile virus. These three diseases can cause deaths. That is why it is in the best interest to keep the mosquitoes away as far as possible.

A test-tube study was conducted to check tea tree oil effectiveness against mosquitoes. It was found that tea tree oil is even more effective than DEET (a common ingredient found in chemical insecticide).

How does it act as a repellent? Well, mosquitoes don’t like the scent of this oil. They can’t stand how tea tree oil smells. On the other hand, humans find the smell pleasing. Thus, you can apply tea tree oil to your skin without any worry.

To protect yourself from mosquitoes, apply the tea tree oil solution on those body parts which are not covered by cloth.

After knowing the answer to does tea tree oil attracts bed bugs question, it is now time to talk about how you can apply this oil for this purpose. Want to know How to make Tea Tree Oil Insecticide? Then the next section is for you!

Tea Tree Oil Insecticide Recipe

The tea tree oil insecticide recipe is quite simple. Every ingredient is easily available in the market at a very cheap price. That is why it is quickly replacing other insecticide measures.

Quick Tip: Use diluted tea tree oil for better results.

There are three recipes for an insecticide that involves tea tree oil.

1) It is the simplest recipe that involves tea tree oil. In this, to make a tea tree oil insecticide, add 20 drops of the oil to a spray bottle already containing water. That’s it! Apply this solution to the infested areas or on your body to repel insects.

2) Second and Third recipes are for mosquitoes as these are some of the dangerous insects that can even cause death. We already answered your question does tea tree oil repel mosquitoes? But how you can make an effective mosquito repellent solution.

If you want to make a strong insect repellent, then mix 1/4 cup almond oil, 3 drops of tea tree oil, and 2 drops of eucalyptus oil in a bottle. If you are using it as a mosquito repellent, then spray it on your skin. Here, we used eucalyptus too as an ingredient which may be surprising to some of you. People ask does eucalyptus repels bugs and it is a big yes!

3) Let’s have a look at a more effective recipe for mosquito repelling. You will need 20 drops of tea tree oil, 20 drops of citronella oil, 20 drops of lavender oil, 20 drops of lemongrass oil, 20 drops of geranium essential oil, 1 tablespoon of neem oil, and distilled water. Mix it and add it to a spray bottle. Apply the solution to the parts which are not clothed. You will notice that mosquitoes are not even near you after applying this solution.

You might be wondering does tea tree oil repel rats. Well, Yes. Just like bugs, rats too hate the scent of tea tree oil. So, spray it on the mice entry points and observe mice running away.

Side Effects of Tea Tree Oil

This oil does not have any side effects. However, a handful of people may well be allergic to tea tree oil. Some people may see rashes on their skin after applying this oil. Some may develop acne, and some may show different skin problems.

Also, use safety precautions while spraying tea tree oil solution. If it is swallowed, it may prove to be toxic.

What Other Smells do Bugs Hate?

Want to know what smells do bugs hate in addition to tea tree oil? Here is the list:

  • Lavender
  • Rosemary
  • Clove
  • Lemongrass
  • Neem
  • Eucalyptus

These are essential oils for flies and mosquitoes. Did you notice we didn’t put Peppermint on this list?

Another question people ask is Does peppermint oil attract bugs? Well No! Most Insects hate the scent of peppermint. But some insects love peppermint. So, What does peppermint attract? It attracts bees, hoverflies, wasps, and tachinid flies. Luckily, most of them are beneficial insects.

Let’s have a look at some other oils bugs love!

Essential Oils that Attract Bugs

There are a few essential oils that attract bugs. These are:

  • Lemon Oil
  • Cinnamon Oil
  • Melissa Oil

But these essential oils do not attract every insect. Check out what kind of insects they attract:

  • Lemon oil attracts mealybugs, fungus gnats, thrips, and beetles
  • Cinnamon oil attracts thrips, Japanese beetles, and leaf miners
  • Melissa oil attracts fungus gnats, thrips, and some flies

We recommend that you use those oils that bugs hate in your home and avoid those oils that attract insects. Insect infestation is not a sight you want to see and getting rid of them is even more hectic.

Final Words

All in all, it is no secret that everyone hates bugs infestation. Considering the recent organic trend, it is wise to choose non-chemical measures to deal with this situation. You asked Does Tea Tree Oil Attract Bugs? And we answered by saying No. In fact, this oil can be used as an insect killer and pest repellent.

We recommend that you use this oil with other essential oils for quick results. Make the solution according to the instructions we have provided above and you won’t have to see irritating insects again.


What insects are attracted to tea tree oil?

No insects are attracted to tea tree oil. In fact, the opposite happens. Insects repel tea tree oil as they don’t like how they smell. Moreover, this oil can also kill insects. When it falls on the exoskeleton of insects, it causes suffocation, and eventually, death occurs.

Does tea tree oil attract spiders?

In addition to Does Tea Tree Oil Attract Bugs question, people also ask the same thing about spiders. Tea tree oil repels spiders, just like they repel every other insect. So, if you hate spiders and don’t want to see them in your house, we suggest that you apply tea tree oil solution in those areas where you are seeing spiders the most. Moreover, you can also spray the solution directly on the spiders as well.

Do bugs like the smell of tea tree oil?

No, bugs don’t like the smell of tea tree oil. That is why if you apply tea tree oil solution to your skin or in your home, you are not going to see any insects. So, if anyone asks Does tea tree oil repel mosquitoes, You reply with a Yes.

Does tea tree oil repel bugs?

Yes, tea tree oil repels bugs because insects don’t like the scent of it. You have no idea how many people search can tea tree oil keep bugs away. This is why we have categorically mentioned numerous times in this article that tea tree oil is an excellent insect repellent that repels a wide range of insects.

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I am a graduate in Agriculture Sciences and have been doing gardening for over 7 years. I am also a professional and certified Article & Blog Writer. I am happy to share my years of experience in gardening with all of you through my writings. In addition to this, I do extensive research on every topic to enrich readers with valuable knowledge.