Updated: March 24, 2023

Earwigs are a common household pest that can be a nuisance. They are known for their pincer-like appendages and are often found in damp and dark areas. Many people want to repel earwigs in their homes, and air fresheners have been suggested as a possible solution.

Earwigs belong to the insect order Dermaptera and are characterized by their elongated bodies, pincer-like cerci, and distinctive hindwings. They are omnivorous and feed on a variety of plants and insects.

While earwigs do not pose any significant health risks, they can be a nuisance in large numbers. They can damage plants, eat stored food, and even crawl into bed with you at night.

Air fresheners have been suggested as a possible solution for repelling earwigs. This is because many air fresheners contain essential oils or other ingredients that are known to repel insects.

What are Earwigs?

Earwigs have a distinctive appearance and behavior that makes them easy to identify.

Physical Characteristics of Earwigs

Earwigs have elongated bodies that range from 5-25 mm in length. They have two pairs of wings, with the front pair being short and leathery, while the hind pair is membranous and folded underneath the forewings. Earwigs also have distinctive cerci (pincers) at the end of their abdomens.

The Behavior of Earwigs

Earwigs are primarily nocturnal and are attracted to light sources. They prefer damp environments and can often be found hiding in dark crevices during the day.

The Habitat of Earwigs

Earwigs can be found all over the world, but they prefer warm climates. They are commonly found in gardens, under rocks or logs, in mulch piles, and in other damp environments.

How Do Air Fresheners Work?

Air fresheners work by releasing fragrances or other ingredients into the air that mask unpleasant odors or repel insects.

Ingredients in Air Fresheners

Air fresheners can contain a variety of ingredients, including essential oils, synthetic fragrances, and chemicals like phthalates and formaldehyde.

The Mechanism of Air Fresheners

Air fresheners work by releasing volatile organic compounds (VOCs) into the air that interact with odor molecules or repel insects.

The Effectiveness of Air Fresheners

The effectiveness of air fresheners varies depending on the specific product and its intended use. Some air fresheners may be more effective at masking odors than repelling insects, while others may be designed specifically for insect repellent purposes.

Can Air Fresheners Repel Earwigs?

While some people claim that air fresheners can repel earwigs, there is limited scientific evidence to support this claim.

Scientific Studies on the Effectiveness of Air Fresheners

A few studies have looked at the effectiveness of specific air freshener ingredients like essential oils for repelling insects, but there is no research specifically on using air fresheners to repel earwigs.

Personal Experiences

Many people report success using air fresheners to repel earwigs, but it is difficult to determine if this is due to the specific product used or other factors like cleanliness or environmental conditions.

Alternative Solutions for Repelling Earwigs

If air fresheners do not work for repelling earwigs, there are other strategies you can try. These include sealing cracks and crevices in your home, removing sources of moisture, using diatomaceous earth or boric acid as a natural insecticide, or using specific insect repellents designed for earwig control.


Earwigs can be a nuisance in homes and gardens, but there is limited scientific evidence to support using air fresheners as a solution for repelling them.

While air fresheners may be effective at masking odors or repelling other insects, more research is needed to determine their effectiveness specifically for earwig control.

Further research is needed on specific air freshener ingredients or formulations that may be effective for repelling earwigs.