Does Vicks VapoRub keep Bed Bugs away?

Vicks vaporub to repel bed bugs

In this article, we will answer the question: Does Vicks VapoRub keep bed bugs away?
Bed bugs are pesky insects that can cause discomfort and frustration when they infest our living spaces. In the search for solutions, some people have turned to unconventional remedies like Vicks VapoRub, a popular topical ointment.

Known for its soothing properties, Vicks VapoRub has been used for various purposes, from relieving coughs to soothing muscle aches. But can it be effective in dealing with bed bugs?

In this article, we will get into the relation of bed bugs and Vicks VapoRub to separate fact from fiction.

What is Vicks VapoRub?

Vicks VapoRub is a popular topical ointment commonly used for relieving cough, congestion, and muscle aches. It contains a combination of active ingredients such as camphor, eucalyptus oil, and menthol, along with inactive ingredients like petrolatum and turpentine oil. When applied to the chest or throat, Vicks VapoRub produces a cooling sensation and releases aromatic vapors that can help alleviate nasal congestion and provide temporary relief from coughing.

It is important to note that cold relief balms such as Vicks VapoRub are meant for external use only. You should not ingest it or use it on broken skin or wounds. As with any medication, it is advisable to read the product instructions and consult a healthcare professional if you have any concerns or specific medical conditions.


Does Vicks VapoRub attract Bed Bugs?

There is no scientific evidence or research to suggest that Vicks VapoRub attracts bed bugs. They are attracted to the heat and carbon dioxide coming from humans. They are not specifically drawn to products like topical decongestants. Such as Vicks Vaporubs.


Does Vicks VapoRub keep Bed bugs away?

Vicks VapoRub is not specifically formulated or proven to repel insects. While it contains ingredients such as camphor, eucalyptus oil, and menthol that produce a strong scent. These scents alone are not sufficient to effectively repel a wide range of bugs or pests.

Some people may claim anecdotal success in using chest rub as a repellent for certain insects like mosquitoes or flies. However, the effectiveness can vary depending on the specific insect species and individual reactions.

For reliable and proven insect repellents, we recommend you to use products specifically designed and tested for that purpose. Look for insect repellents that contain active ingredients like DEET or picaridin. Which have been extensively studied and shown to be effective against a range of insects.

Moth balls are also frequently mentioned as a home remedy with potential for repelling bed bugs. If this topic piques your interest, we encourage you to read our article on the subject of Moth Balls and Bed Bugs.


Does Vicks Vaporub relieve itching from Bed bug bites?

Vicks VapoRub may provide temporary relief from itching caused by bed bug bites due to its cooling and numbing effects. The menthol and camphor in this inhalant rub can produce a soothing sensation on the skin and help alleviate some discomfort. However, it is important to note that Vicks VapoRub is not specifically designed or tested for treating bites. And its effectiveness in providing long-lasting relief may vary from person to person.

If you have been bitten by bed bugs and are experiencing itching or discomfort, there are other options you can consider. Over-the-counter anti-itch creams or lotions containing ingredients like hydrocortisone or calamine can help alleviate itching. Additionally, taking oral antihistamines as directed by a healthcare professional may provide relief from allergic reactions caused by bed bug bites.

If you have concerns about bed bug bites or any skin condition. We recommend you to seek advice from a healthcare professional for appropriate diagnosis and treatment options.


How to use Vicks VapoRub for Bed Bugs?

Vicks VapoRub is not a recommended solution for treating or eliminating bed bugs. It is primarily intended for temporary relief of cough, congestion, and muscle aches. It has not been proven effective in eradicating bed bug infestations.

To effectively address a bed bug problem, it is best to use proven DIY methods to get rid of such infestation.

DIY Steps to Get Rid of Bed Bugs:

  • Identify infested areas: Thoroughly inspect your living spaces, including beds, furniture, and cracks, to find where they are hiding.
  • Clean and declutter: Clean infested areas and remove clutter to eliminate hiding spots for these insects.
  • Launder and heat treat: Wash infested bedding, clothing, and fabrics in hot water and dry them on high heat to kill them and their eggs.
  • Seal cracks and crevices: Seal cracks and crevices in walls, furniture, and baseboards to prevent them from hiding and spreading.
  • Use mattress encasements: Cover mattresses and box springs with bed bug-proof encasements. In order to trap any remaining bugs and prevent future infestations.
  • Apply residual insecticides: Use insecticides specifically labeled for bed bug control. Apply to infested areas, following the instructions carefully.
  • Steam treatment: Use a steamer to treat infested areas with high heat, as it can effectively kill them and their eggs.
  • Repeat and monitor: Repeat the cleaning and treatment process regularly. Then, monitor for any signs of their activity to ensure total extermination (source)


Can Vicks VapoRub kill Bed Bugs?

No, Vicks VapoRub is not designed or proven to kill bed bugs. Relying solely on chest rubs such as Vicks VapoRub or similar remedies will not eliminate bed bugs or control their population.


What are the best repellents for bed bugs?

When it comes to bed bug repellents, it’s important to note that there is limited scientific evidence supporting the effectiveness of repellents in completely preventing bites. They are highly resilient pests, and relying solely on repellents may not provide reliable protection or control. However, here are some options that may help to repel them to some extent:

  • DEET-based repellents: Products containing DEET (N,N-Diethyl-meta-toluamide) have shown some repellent effects against them. These are commonly used insect repellents and can provide temporary protection when applied to exposed skin.
  • Essential oils: Some essential oils, such as lavender oil, peppermint oil, tea tree oil, and eucalyptus oil, have shown potential repellent properties against bed bugs in laboratory settings. However, their effectiveness may vary. So, it is important to use them properly and in combination with other pest control methods.
  • Silica gel: Silica gel desiccants, commonly used for moisture absorption, have demonstrated some ability to repel and kill bed bugs by drying them out. You can place them strategically in infested areas or near potential entry points.



In this article, we answered the question: Does Vicks VapoRub keep bed bugs away?
While Vicks VapoRub is a popular ointment with soothing properties, it is not a proven solution for dealing with bed bugs. They are resilient pests that require professional pest control methods for effective elimination. Although this mentholated ointment may provide temporary relief from itching caused by bed bug bites, it does not address the underlying infestation.

When it comes to dealing with these insects, it is best to employ proven methods. Such as cleaning, vacuuming, steam treatments, and the use of appropriate insecticides are more reliable approaches to tackle bed bug problems effectively.

If you want to find the insecticides that are proven effective against bed bugs. You can check our Bed Bugs Insecticides Buying Guide.