Good night, sleep tight, don’t let the bed bugs bite – is a common phrase that many of you heard in your childhood.
But you know for sure that it’s impossible to sleep with bed bugs repeatedly inserting their fangs in your body to suck our blood.
It’s painful, it’s itchy, and lack of sleep makes the following day a mess. If you don’t do something to stop the bed bugs biting you, you won’t sleep at all.
There’s a no more significant, sinister (and sure-shot) sign of bed bug infestation in your home than bed bug bites all over your body.
The best way and the most reliable way to prevent bed bug bites, and to sleep free from the terror of bed bug bites, is to hire a bed bug controller to kill bed bugs in your home.
But by the time you hire a bed bug expert, should you endure the bed bug bites or hope that bed bugs won’t bite you anymore?
Of course not!
There are some proven ways to prevent bed bugs from biting you during your sleep.
We’ve come up with a list of stuff that you can use on your body to prevent bed bugs from biting you.
You’ll also get to know some cool hacks that you can do now to remove bed bugs from your clothes and bed.
Let’s dive in.
5 Things To Put On Your Body To Prevent Bed Bug Bites
This section has a list of 5 things that you can use on your skin before you go to sleep.
These are proven bed bug repellants, they don’t have any side effects, and they’re great ways to prevent bed bug bites naturally!
But before we get into it, there’s one rule that you must follow before you use them on your body.
Always wear clothes after using them on your skin.
A night suite with a pajama is essential to make these elements work against bed bugs. Do not wear any shorts and tank tops while sleeping till you’ve gotten rid of bed bugs.
The reason is that if your body isn’t covered, then the things we’re about to mention will get rubbed off from your body by the bed sheet or blanket.
So, let’s check them out one by one.
Vicks VapoRub repels not only cough and cold, but also bed bugs.
To stop bed bugs from biting you, use Vicks VapoRub on parts of your body that are prone to bed bug bites, like the neck, knees, lower back, belly, and elbows.
Many people complain that Vicks VapoRub is ineffective, which can be valid only in one case. It’s when you sleep with the bed bug bite prone body parts exposed.
If you sleep by wearing shorts or a tank top, then the bed sheet will rub off the Vicks VapoRub from your skin, exposing your body to bed bug bites.
So, to make it work, always wear pajamas and full sleeve soft upper while sleeping.
The clothing will hold the Vicks VapoRub on your body by acting as a shield against the bedsheet. And bed bugs can’t bite through fabric!
Ever wondered why Vicks VapoRub is a good bed bug repellant?
The pungent smell of eucalyptus and methanol in Vicks VapoRub repels bed bugs and many other bugs.
But you must keep in mind that you need to apply a generous amount of Vicks VapoRub on the bite prone areas of your body.
Research has proved that essential oils have insecticidal properties. But essential oils are not insects or bed bug killers.
Bed bugs don’t like essential oils. They hate them and the essential oils keep them at bay.
What types of essential oils work well in repelling bed bugs?
Four types of essential oils keep bed bugs away- Eucalyptus essential oil, Tea tree essential oil, Peppermint essential oil, and Lavender essential oil.
Essential oils can be tricky to buy unless you know how to buy a genuine essential oil.
If you use a poor-quality essential oil, you won’t protect yourself from bed bug bites while sleeping.
Choosing the right essential oil is a big topic. But to keep things short and simple, here’s what you should look for while buying essential oils –
- Essential oils are available in dark glass bottles. Avoid buying essential oils that are sold in plastic bottles. Plastic bottles degrade the essential oil.
- Always purchase 100% plant extract and cold condensed essential oil. There should be no additive like vegetable oils in the essential oils.
- Pure essential oils are expensive and very thick.
- Natural essential oils have the biological name of the element extracted from on the bottle. The country of origin is also mentioned on the bottle.
That’s all you need to know while purchasing essential oils. To learn more about it, you can check out this informative post by University of Minnesota later.
There are two ways to use an essential oil on your body.
The first way, and the most effective way, is to directly apply the essential to the places of your body where bed bugs bite.
But, if you do it daily, you’ll soon run out of essential oil. Quality essential oils are expensive. You’ll create a big hole in your pocket if you use this method every night before sleeping.
So, for a permanent solution, contact your local bed bug controller now. It makes sense to do a bed bug treatment for the entire home, and it’s economical in the long run.
The second way is to make a spray of essential oil and water.
Mix ½ an ounce of essential oil with ½ a gallon of water, and spray it around your bed, on the mattress and bed frame.
You can also spray a bit on your body.
If you can withstand the smell of vinegar, then vinegar is a cheaper alternative to essentials oils.
The acidic nature and pungent smell of vinegar repel bed bugs and many other bugs like ants, roaches, and centipedes.
But you don’t have to pour a bottle of vinegar on yourself.
All you need to do is take a piece of cotton, wet it in vinegar, and rub it on the parts of your body where bed bugs bite.
To keep bed bugs away from your bed, you can spray a mixture of vinegar and water around your bed.
The only adverse effect of spraying vinegar too often on your bed is that your mattress will start to smell like vinegar.
Instead of using vinegar spray around your bed, you can use the spray of essential oils. It smells great!
Bed Bug Repellents For Skin
There are some excellent bed bug repellents for skin that you can use before sleeping.
We highly recommend Avon Bug Guard. It’s water-resistant, PBA free, and it’s non-greasy, making it perfect for everyday use.
Use the bed bug repellent cream on your forearms, at the back of knees and elbows, neck, back, and on your feet. These are the common areas where bed bugs bite.
As we mentioned earlier, even if you use creams or essential oils, always wear clothes while sleeping.
If you don’t, then the bed sheet and blankets will remove the creams and oils from your skin, exposing you to bites from bed bugs.
According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, coconut oil has bug repellent properties that are stronger than DEET. (source)
The study showed that coconut oil has fatty acids that repel flies, ticks, mosquitoes, and bed bugs.
So, if you’ve mosquitoes in your home and bed bugs, then using coconut oil on your skin will stop them from biting you.
Just like the essential oils, the more natural the coconut oil is, the better.
Coconut oil is sticky, and it smells too. So, you, your clothes, and bedsheets might smell coconut-ty, which is better than the bed bug bites.
But there is some excellent quality coconut oil like COCO & CO and Purosonic that are non-greasy, non-smelly, and 100% pure. They work well in keeping bed bugs away.
Use Bed Bug Repellent For Clothes
Did you know that bed bugs can live even in your drawers and closets where you keep clothes?
Yes, they do.
So, if bed bugs have infested your clothes, then using bed bug repellants on your skin might not be as effective as they should be.
There are two ways to reduce the chances of bed bugs in clothes.
The first way is to get rid of bed bugs in the drawers, and the second way is to use bed bug repellant sprays on your clothes.
We highly recommend Repel Permethrin Clothing Insect Repellant. It odor-free and doesn’t damage your clothes.
Measures To Keep Bed Bugs Away From Your Bed
Till you hire a bed bug expert, you can use some effective measures to keep bed bugs away from your bed to get a good night’s sleep.
But remember, these methods are temporary solutions.
The most effective method is steam cleaning your mattress and bed frame.
Heat kills bed bugs. Bed bug experts use heat treatment to remove bed bugs from homes permanently.
To remove bed bugs hiding in the mattress and bed frame, use a steam cleaner slowly across the mattress and the bed frame.
While steam cleaning, make sure that you cover the mattress’s edges and the gaps in the bed frame and headboard. These are the hiding places for bed bugs.
The heat from the steam cleaner will kill the bed bugs hiding in your bed.
But what if you don’t have a steam cleaner?
Then you can use food grade diatomaceous earth and a vacuum cleaner to reduce the number of bed bugs in and around your bed.
Sprinkle a generous amount of diatomaceous earth on the bed’s mattress and the bed frame. Let it sit for a while.
Diatomaceous earth kills bed bugs by piercing through their exoskeleton.
After 20-30 minutes, vacuum-clean the mattress to remove the diatomaceous earth. By doing so, you’ll remove dead bed bugs too.
Like in steam cleaning, vacuum clean slowly along the edges of the mattress and in the bed frame and headboard gaps.
Spraying essential oils mixed with water also works well in keeping bed bugs way. Use any one of the essential oils that we mentioned to make a spray.
Spray the mixture on and around your bed 30-40 minutes before you sleep.
Will Vaseline On Your Skin Prevent Bed Bug Bites?
No, Vaseline, and any other kind of petroleum jelly, won’t stop bed bugs from biting you.
Many believe that if you use generous amounts of Vaseline on your body and around your bed frame, then the bed bugs will get stuck and won’t be able to bite.
Vaseline doesn’t have any insecticidal properties like essential oils and coconut oil, which can repel bed bugs.
Bed bugs can easily bite through the layer of Vaseline on your skin and suck your blood.
Bed Bug Remedies That DON’T Work
Bed bug bites are so painful and annoying that there are many unproven hacks and rumors that people claim to be effective.
In this section, we’ll bust all these myths.
These are just rumors. You must not waste your time and money on them.
Here are the top rumors and myths that people often believe, and follow, to stop bed bugs from biting them –
Burning Sulfur Inside Your Home Repels Bed Bugs
Please don’t do it. Burning sulfur doesn’t have any effect on bed bugs.
And burning sulfur is dangerous. Smoke from sulfur causes shortness of breath, sinus, and it can even damage your eye.
Bug Bombs Will Kill Bed Bugs
When it comes to getting rid of bed bugs, there’s one thing that you should never waste your money on, and that’s bug bombs.
Bug bombs are ineffective because they can’t seep into the gaps where the bed bugs hide.
Once you use the bug bomb, the bed bugs will escape and hide in tight corners and gaps. You might be successful in killing four or five of them, but not the entire population.
Also, bug bombs don’t have residual toxicity that can stick on the bed bugs’ skin and spread to other bugs.
That’s why it’s always a wise thing to do to contact a reliable pest controller to get rid of bed bugs.
Fire Extinguishers Will Freeze The Bed Bugs
It’s another rumor or myth. The CO2 from the fire extinguisher will not freeze the bed bugs to death.
In fact, CO2 attracts bed bugs.
So, don’t waste the gas inside your fire extinguisher to kill the bed bugs. Well, you can use the canister to smash the bed bug to death.
Sleeping With The Lights On Will Fool The Bed Bugs
The laughable belief is that bed bugs bite only when the lights are off. Therefore, many people sleep with the lights on, thinking that it’ll trick the bed bugs.
Unfortunately, it doesn’t!
Bed bugs bite when you’re stationary. So, it doesn’t matter to them if the lights are on.
Olive Oil On Your Body Will Stop The Bed Bugs From Biting You
No, it doesn’t. Even if you use virgin olive oil, it won’t.
It’s better to use olive oil for cooking rather than putting it on your skin to repel bed bugs. It simply doesn’t work.
Turning Off The Heat During Winters Will Freeze The Bed Bugs
No, it won’t. Bed bugs, like termites and roaches, are tough and hard to kill pests.
Bed bugs love the humid and tropical climate, but that doesn’t mean they’ll die in winters.
Bed bugs can go without a blood meal by laying low for 400 days.
So, if you think that if you freeze yourself during winters and it’ll keep the bed bugs away from biting you, then you’re unfortunately wrong.
Bed bugs will be back when temperatures are normal.
Why Bed Bugs Bite Only Me?
Isn’t it the question that you ask yourself or your partner after you wake up with red itchy, and painful lumps on your body?
Well, you’re right in asking the question. Below are two compelling reasons why bed bugs bite only you while the other person who slept beside is unscathed.
First, bed bugs will bite you if they’re raised on your blood type.
It means that if their first blood meal was AB+ and you’ve got an AB+ blood type, and the person sleeping beside you has a different blood type, then the bed bugs will bite you and not the other person.
Second, you’re more reactive to bed bug bites than the person who has slept with you.
Not everyone gets those rashes and lumps when bed bugs bite them. It’s because their bodies are non-reactive to bed bug bites.
If you’re getting those rashes after bug bites, then it means you’re sensitive to bed bug bites and even prone to get allergic attacks from bug bites.
So, next time if you see bed bug bites on your body, then rather than trying DIY stuff, contact a pest controller.
DIY ways are not permanent solutions against tough pests like bed bugs, termites, and roaches.
In this post, you’ve got to know the five things that you can use on your skin to stop bed bugs from biting you.
They’re Vicks VapoRub, Essential Oils, Vinegar, Bed bug repellants for skin, and Coconut oil.
You also got to know how to keep bed bugs away from your bed and clothes. Plus, we busted many myths surrounding bed bug bites.
As long as bed bugs exist in your home, bed bugs will bite. There’s no way that you can permanently get rid of bed bugs by using a few stop-gap arrangements.
Bed bugs are tough and nasty pests. You can’t get rid of them on your own.
Contact a bed bug expert now in your region to make your home free from bed bugs.
We’re Mark and Jim. We were serial pest killers for almost all of our lives. Through this blog we spread pest murdering tips to people like you who want to keep their homes pest free.