5 Camping DIY Recipes You Need This Summer

If you like camping, or just like being outside, you will love these DIY recipes for days on the lake or in the woods. Store bought options are improving if you like more natural options like I do, but in my opinion, the best way to ensure you know what is in your product is to make it yourself. Below you will find 5 of my FAVORITE DIY summertime recipes to last you through this season!

Bugs Are Gross

Who else HATES mosquitos?? They are so irritating and come out just when the night gets good – the sun goes down and the bugs come out. I have used a variety of non-toxic or less-toxic products to keep these guys away and have found my favorite combination. I find this specific mix of essential oils helps to keep bugs off of me, my pet, and I like the way it smells. My kids have used this combo on field trips in which they hiked through long grasses and while other students had upwards of 20 ticks on them, my kids had 1. Was it the spray? Who knows, but I’m going with spraying them with this either way.


Bugs Are Gross

Keep bugs away from your fun with this plant-based DIY spray.


  • 10 drops Thieves Essential Oil
  • 10 drops Peppermint Essential Oil
  • 1 tsp Vodka (or another emulsifier to spread oils throughout water)
  • Water


  1. Combine all ingredients in a 2 oz. spray bottle. Adjust ingredients to your preferences. Spray liberally. 


I use the spray on my clothes and skin (since I already know I can tolerate Peppermint and Thieves “neat” on my skin). If you are sensitive to either oil, you may want to only spray on your clothing or around you.

If you don’t feel like DIY-ing, you can always try Young Living’s Insect Repellent, which we LOVE around here too. It smells very citronella-y, so I still like my Peppermint/Thieves better, but to each their own. Get your Insect Repellent here.

Sun Spray

I usually get a little sun-kissed (burned, that is) on my face and shoulders during long days outdoors. I tend to forget to apply sunscreen and when I bring mine it’s a soupy mess. Plus I love the convenience of a spray-on choice. I made some sun spray for this purpose. If you do some research online, you can see that certain oils have reported SPF properties. Essential oils such as Carrot Seed, Lavender, and Raspberry Seed Oil have been reported to have SPF, but if you do a little more digging, you may find that there are articles that show there is no scientific backing to prove these oils actually have SPF properties. Nonetheless, I am including my Sun Spray recipe if you are interested in giving it a whirl: 10 drops Carrot Seed oil, 8 drops Lavender, 1 tsp. Vodka (or emulsifier) and fill with water in a 2 oz. spray bottle and spray on skin frequently throughout the day.

My personal opinion and experience have shown that when I apply coconut oil, carrot seed oil, and lavender to my face, I don’t personally burn. I usually don’t wear sunscreen though, because I am afraid of baking poison into my skin. I get regular skin checks and have not had trouble so far. These may not be results you get and may not be what you need. I have friends that FOR SURE need SPF 50 at a minimum on their skin. It really depends on genetics and how much time you spend in the sun.  You are in luck, though – Young Living has not one, but TWO options for Mineral Sunscreen Lotion. They have an SPF 50, both of which are approved by the FDA.

After Sun Spray

So after you’ve been outside all day and your skin is a little crispy, some cooling type of spray feels great. I put Peppermint in my After Sun Spray, so I’ve found that it works a little bit as a bug deterrent (because bugs hate Peppermint). It might not be as reliable as the recipe above, but it still works a little bit. So without further ado, a recipe for you:

After Sun Spray

A cooling skin spray to help soothe your sun kissed skin.


  • 8 drops lavender essential oil
  • 8 drops tea tree essential oil
  • 8 drops peppermint essential oil
  • 2 tbsp fractionated coconut oil
  • 1/2 cup aloe vera juice


  1. Combine the above ingredients in a spray bottle. Shake before each use. Spray on skin to cool it off. 

Want another option? Try the Lavaderm After Sun Spray.

Hand Sanitizing Spray

If you are outside camping and using public restrooms or porta potties (ish!) you will need this spray! Porta Potties are the absolute worst and I avoid them at all costs. So are those public restrooms at campgrounds that are a step above, but I get it, they are a necessary evil. So here’s a little Hand Sanitizer recipe for you: Fill a 2 oz. glass spray bottle with distilled water. Add 10 drops Thieves Essential Oil and 1 tsp of fractionated coconut oil. Spray away.

You can also get your hands on the Thieves Waterless Hand Sanitizer, which is a perfect option!

Go To Sleep

I don’t sleep well when I am camping. Between sharing a tent or camper space with other people, worrying about bugs, getting cold, and more. I highly recommend some type of sleepytime oil combination for your sleeping bag and pillow so that you can rest easy. Here’s my favorite blend: In a 2 oz. spray bottle, fill 1/2 with distilled water. Add 1 tsp vodka (emulsifier), 5 drops lavender oil, 5 drops cedarwood oil. Spray on sleeping bag and pillow. Relax.

Have a fun vacation!


If DIY is NOT your jam, you can order many of these above products already made for you from a trusted company – Young Living.  Click here to buy!!

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