Does Patchouli Oil work for Bed Bugs?

patchouli oil to kill and repel bed bugs

In this article, we will answer the question: Does Patchouli Oil work for Bed bugs?
In the battle against bed bugs, finding effective and safe solutions can be a top priority. Indeed, many individuals look for natural alternatives to address these pesky insects.

One such option that has gained attention is patchouli oil. This article explores the potential benefits and limitations of using patchouli essential oil as a natural remedy for bed bug infestations. We will get into its properties, application methods, and considerations for those considering this alternative approach to pest control.

What is Patchouli Oil?

Patchouli oil originates from the leaves of the patchouli plant (Pogostemon cablin) found in Southeast Asia, primarily Indonesia. Through steam distillation, the aromatic compounds are released from the leaves.

With its earthy and musky scent, patchouli essential oil is popular in perfumes, incense, and cosmetics. Alongside its fragrance, it has been utilized for its therapeutic properties for many centuries.

This essential oil has calming and grounding effects, making it beneficial in aromatherapy for relaxation, anxiety reduction, and stress relief. It could possess antidepressant qualities and can uplift the mood. Patchouli oil also serves in skincare due to its astringent and anti-inflammatory attributes, potentially aiding in the treatment of conditions like acne, eczema, and dermatitis.

Furthermore, patchouli essential oil has a traditional reputation as an insect repellent, particularly against moths, mosquitoes, and other pests. It can be found in natural insecticides and insect-repellent products.

It’s always advisable to consult with a healthcare professional or aromatherapist before using essential oils for therapeutic purposes.


Does Patchouli Oil work for Bed bugs?

Patchouli oil is often associated with insect-repellent qualities and has a history of traditional use for this purpose. However, its effectiveness in repelling bugs can vary depending on the type of insect and the specific situation.

Compounds like patchouli alcohol, alpha-bulnesene, and alpha-guaiene are present in patchouli essential oil, and they possess insect-repellent properties. It has shown some repellent effects on insects such as mosquitoes, flies, moths, and ants to some degree. However, there is limited research specifically on the repellent effect of patchouli oil against bed bugs.


Does patchouli keep bugs away?

While patchouli oil has the potential to repel bed bugs, its effectiveness may not be on par with commercially available insect repellents. These commercial products often undergo scientific testing and contain active ingredients specifically chosen for their proven efficacy against bed bugs. Therefore, relying solely on patchouli essential oil may not provide the same level of effectiveness as these specialized insect repellents.

If you’re searching for another natural way to repel bed bugs, consider using chamomile oil. Discover more details in our article about Chamomile Oil and Bed Bugs.


How to use patchouli oil for bed bugs

If you wish to try using patchouli oil as a natural remedy for bed bugs, here is a suggested approach:

  1. Dilution: Patchouli oil is highly concentrated, so it is essential to dilute it before using it. To do this, combine a few drops of patchouli essential oil with a carrier oil, such as jojoba oil, in equal parts. This creates a diluted mixture that is safer to apply.
  2. Direct application: After diluting the patchouli essential oil, directly apply it to areas where you suspect bed bug activity or have observed signs of their presence. They typically hide in cracks, crevices, and seams of mattresses, furniture, and other areas in close proximity to their hosts. (source)
  3. Repeat application: The scent of patchouli oil may diminish over time, so it is important to reapply the diluted mixture regularly. They are known for their resilience, so consistent and frequent application may be necessary to maximize effectiveness. Be sure to follow the recommended frequency for reapplication as indicated on the product or based on your own observations.


Can you use Patchouli Oil to treat Bed bug Bites?

Although patchouli oil has soothing and anti-inflammatory properties that may offer relief for bed bug bites, it is important to note that it does not directly treat the bites themselves. While it may offer some respite from the itching, redness, and swelling commonly associated with bed bug bites, it does not directly address the underlying cause of the bites or the infestation itself.


Some essential oils could attract bed bugs?

Yes, there is some anecdotal evidence suggesting that certain essential oils may attract bed bugs rather than repel them. The available research on this topic is limited.


Can you mix patchouli oil with Peppermint oil to get rid of bed bugs?

Yes, mixing patchouli essential oil with peppermint oil may potentially help as a natural remedy for bed bugs. Patchouli oil and peppermint oil are known for their insect-repellent properties, and some individuals have reported success using these oils to deter them. When combined, they may have a synergistic effect.

Peppermint oil is known for repelling bed bugs. To learn more, you can read our article on Peppermint Oil and Bed Bugs.


Will bed bugs die if they get in contact with essential oils?

Some studies have shown certain essential oils to have insecticidal effects on bed bugs, but they typically require direct and prolonged contact with high concentrations to have any significant impact.


Are there any Flower scents that repel bed bugs?

Some flower scents have emerged as potential repellents for various insects, and they could potentially exhibit a similar effect on bed bugs. These include:

  • Lavender: Researchers have suggested lavender as a potential bed bug repellent due to its pleasant fragrance. Although limited, some individuals have reported success in using lavender-scented products to deter bed bugs.
  • Mint: Mint, particularly peppermint, has a strong scent that is disliked by many insects.
  • Eucalyptus: Eucalyptus has a strong and distinctive scent that you can use to repel insects.


It’s important to note that relying solely on flower scents as a bed bug repellent is unlikely to provide complete protection.



In this article, we answered the question: Does Patchouli Oil work for Bed bugs?
While some individuals have reported positive experiences, the effectiveness of patchouli essential oil in eradicating bed bug infestations remains uncertain. Scientific research on its efficacy is limited, and further investigation is needed. If considering patchouli essential oil, it’s crucial to prioritize comprehensive strategies, such as thorough cleaning and targeted treatment.