Updated: March 13, 2023

Earwigs are slender insects with elongated bodies and two pairs of wings. They are nocturnal and usually hide during the day. Earwigs feed on plants, insects, and decaying organic matter. They prefer moist environments and can be found in gardens, under rocks or logs, and in crevices around homes. While they do not pose any major health risks to humans, earwigs can damage crops and plants.

Common areas where earwigs are found:

  • Gardens
  • Under rocks or logs
  • Crevices around homes

Potential problems caused by earwigs:

  • Damage to crops and plants
  • Invasion of homes

Vanilla as an Insect Repellent

Vanilla is a flavoring ingredient extracted from the seed pods of vanilla orchids. It is commonly used in food and cosmetic products. However, vanilla also has insect-repelling properties due to its chemical compounds such as vanillin, eugenol, and coumarin.

Studies on the effectiveness of vanilla as an insect repellent:

Studies have shown that vanilla can repel a variety of insects including mosquitoes, ticks, and bedbugs. Researchers have also found that vanilla is effective against certain agricultural pests such as the cowpea weevil.

Comparison with other natural insect repellents:

Other natural insect repellents include essential oils such as citronella, peppermint, and lavender. While these oils have been found to repel insects as well, they may not be as effective as synthetic insecticides.

Does Vanilla Repel Earwigs?

While there is limited research on the effectiveness of vanilla against earwigs specifically, there is evidence that it can repel other insects. However, some studies have found contradicting results or limited effectiveness. Factors such as concentration, formulation, and application method may affect the efficacy of vanilla as an insect repellent.

Factors that may affect the effectiveness of vanilla as an earwig repellent:

  • Concentration of vanillin in the extract or oil
  • Formulation of the product (e.g. spray, gel)
  • Application method (e.g. direct application on skin or surfaces)

How to Use Vanilla to Repel Earwigs

If you want to try using vanilla as an earwig repellent, here are some ways to do so:

Different ways to use vanilla extracts or essential oils:

  • Add a few drops of vanilla extract or essential oil to a spray bottle filled with water and spray it around areas where earwigs are found.
  • Mix vanilla extract with a carrier oil such as coconut oil and apply it to your skin or surfaces.
  • Place cotton balls soaked with vanilla extract in areas where earwigs are present.

Precautions when using vanilla as a repellent:

  • Always dilute pure essential oils before use.
  • Avoid direct contact with eyes or sensitive skin.
  • Do not ingest vanilla extract or essential oil.

Other tips to prevent earwig infestation:

  • Remove decaying plant matter from your garden.
  • Seal cracks and crevices around your home.
  • Keep your home dry and well-ventilated.


While there is limited research on the effectiveness of vanilla specifically against earwigs, it has been found to repel other insects due to its chemical properties. If you want to try using vanilla as an earwig repellent, remember to dilute it properly and take necessary precautions. However, it’s important to note that natural remedies may not be as effective as synthetic insecticides. Further research or experimentation may be needed in order to determine if vanilla is truly an effective earwig repellent.