8 Home Bug Bite Remedies: Fight the Zap

8 Home Bug Bite Remedies: Fight the Zap

Insects are unnerving enough but when they bite, it can either be annoying, itchy, or sometimes a more serious, painful result. If you get snacked on at places like the beach, a picnic or while simply enjoying nature try these 8 home bug bite remedies to fight the zap. These fixes are worth a try even if some of them make you stink a little. However, when that itch starts nagging, you’ll pretty much do anything to stop it.

Always use topical remedies first on a small patch of skin to make sure you are not allergic. Talk to your doctor about any concerns.

Tea Tree Oil 

This pungent topical remedy is derived from the narrow-leaved tea-tree, native to Australia. The oil from this tree is believed to have anti-microbial, anti-fungal and anti-inflammatory properties.

Soak a cotton tip or cotton ball with tea tree oil and dab on the bug bite. It is said to sterilize it immediately reducing infection and easing itch.

Available in many health food stores. Be sure not to touch eyes when using.


Yup, here’s an easy one because most homes have an onion lying around. Simply slice one in half and rub it on the bite. Onions contain sulfur which has been shown to neutralize itch compounds. After a few rubs cover the onion and refrigerate. When reapplying, cut a thin slice off the outside to open up the healing onion oils once again.


Another easy to find remedy is toothpaste. It just so happens that the menthol spirits in non-gel, mint flavored pastes reduce bug bite itches like a charm.


The high acidity content of vinegar has shown to not only enhance your salad dressing but also knock out pesky bug bite itches. Pat a little bit of this versatile liquid onto each abrasion. For multiple bites, take a bath with 2.5 to 3 cups of vinegar.


It’s not just a sweet treat as honey has been used for centuries in the healing community. Like a liquid bandage this golden nectar sports anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory properties, a one-two punch for stings and bites. Spread a small circle of honey over and around the wound. Let it air dry or cover so as not to get on clothing or be attacked by sweet seeking pests.

Neem Oil

Produced from the seeds of the neem tree this oil has multiple medicinal properties. It contains a compound called Azadirachtin, an anti-microbial linked to repelling and killing insects. Apply a small amount on arms, legs and neck (not the face) to stop insect attacks.

If a tick is found burrowed under the skin do not attempt to remove it (the head could detach making it difficult to detach). Instead, drown it in neem oil by applying several drops as soon as the tick is discovered. Some also suggest other viscous oils such as olive, sunflower or vegetable although neem also possesses antibacterial and antiseptic properties.

Neem oil can be found in good health food stores. Do not give to infants or ingest.


The leaf from this savory herb can simply be crushed and rubbed on a bug bite for instant relief. It contains thymol which is classified as a biocide, a naturally occurring compound capable of rendering harmful organisms inactive.

Basil also contains camphor, the ingredient used in mothballs and is considered toxic to pests. Therefore, it can also be used as a quick and dirty pest repellant.


Yes, this conventional remedy found in most homes holds a good amount of salicylic acid, a useful anti-inflammatory when crushed and applied to a sting. Just make a paste and generously apply. As the inflammation reduces so will the itch. If you can’t crush the aspirin, wet the bite and press the aspirin onto it.

Suffering from bug bites before you can run to the store for an over-the-counter remedy is unnecessary. Fight the zap with one or more of these 8 home bug bite remedies for fast, convenient, safe relief.