Updated: March 18, 2023

Earwigs are nocturnal insects that belong to the family Forficulidae. They have long, slender bodies and pincers on their abdomen. Earwigs are commonly found in gardens and can cause damage to plants by eating leaves and flowers. They can also enter homes through small crevices and cause a disturbance.

The problem with earwigs is that they reproduce quickly and can infest an area in no time. In this article, we will explore how vetiver can be used as a natural repellent for earwigs.

What is Vetiver?

Vetiver is a perennial grass that belongs to the Poaceae family. It is native to India and is widely cultivated in tropical regions of the world. Vetiver has been used for centuries in traditional medicine and perfumery due to its unique fragrance.

The roots of the vetiver plant are rich in essential oils, which have a range of therapeutic properties. Vetiver oil is extracted from the roots through steam distillation and can be used in various ways.

The Origin of Vetiver

Vetiver has been used for thousands of years in India, where it is known as khus. The plant is mentioned in ancient scriptures such as the Vedas and Ayurvedic texts.

The use of vetiver spread to other parts of Asia and the Middle East, where it was used for its fragrance and therapeutic benefits. In the 19th century, vetiver was introduced to Western countries, where it became popular in perfumery.

Uses of Vetiver

Apart from its use in perfumery, vetiver has many other uses. It is widely used in aromatherapy due to its calming and grounding properties. Vetiver oil is also used in skincare products for its anti-inflammatory and antiseptic qualities.

In traditional medicine, vetiver has been used to treat various ailments such as fever, digestive issues, and insomnia. It is also believed to have aphrodisiac properties.

How Vetiver Repels Earwigs

Vetiver contains compounds that repel insects, including earwigs. These compounds work by disrupting the insect’s nervous system or by masking their pheromones, which makes it difficult for them to locate their prey or mates.

Scientific Explanation

Studies have shown that vetiver oil has insecticidal properties that can repel various insects, including mosquitoes, flies, and ants. The main compound responsible for this effect is called sesquiterpenes.

Sesquiterpenes are volatile compounds that are released when vetiver oil is exposed to air. These compounds interfere with the insect’s olfactory receptors, which makes it difficult for them to locate their prey or mates.

The Smell of Vetiver

Earwigs are attracted to damp and dark areas, which is why they are commonly found in gardens and basements. The scent of vetiver oil can help repel them by creating an environment that is not conducive for their survival.

Vetiver oil has a distinct earthy aroma that is pleasant to humans but repulsive to insects like earwigs. The smell of vetiver can mask the pheromones that earwigs use to communicate with each other, which makes it difficult for them to find their way around.

Other Properties of Vetiver That Repel Earwigs

Apart from its scent, vetiver has other properties that repel earwigs. For example, vetiver has antifungal properties that can help prevent the growth of mold and mildew in damp areas.

Earwigs are attracted to damp areas because they provide a suitable environment for them to breed and feed. By using vetiver in these areas, you can create an environment that is not conducive for their survival.

How to Use Vetiver to Repel Earwigs

There are several ways you can use vetiver to repel earwigs. Here are some methods you can try:

Planting Vetiver in Your Garden

You can plant vetiver in your garden as a natural way to repel earwigs. The roots of the plant release essential oils into the soil, which creates an environment that is not favorable for earwig survival.

Vetiver is a low-maintenance plant that requires little water or fertilizer. It grows well in warm climates and can provide a natural barrier against pests like earwigs.

Using Vetiver Oil as a Natural Insect Repellent

You can use vetiver oil as a natural insect repellent by applying it directly on your skin or diffusing it in your home. To apply vetiver oil topically, mix a few drops with a carrier oil like coconut or jojoba oil.

To diffuse vetiver oil in your home, add a few drops to your diffuser or humidifier. You can also add vetiver oil to your laundry detergent or fabric softener to repel insects from your clothes.

Making a Homemade Earwig Spray with Vetiver

You can make a homemade earwig spray with vetiver oil by mixing a few drops with water and vinegar. Spray this mixture around your home or garden to repel earwigs naturally.

To make this spray, mix one cup of water with one cup of vinegar and ten drops of vetiver oil. Shake well before using and spray around areas where earwigs are commonly found.

Other Benefits of Vetiver

Apart from its use as an insect repellent, vetiver has many other benefits. Here are some examples:

Stress and Anxiety Relief

Vetiver oil has calming properties that can help reduce stress and anxiety. It has a grounding effect on the mind and body, which makes it useful for meditation or yoga practices.

Skincare Benefits

Vetiver oil has anti-inflammatory properties that make it useful for treating skin conditions like acne or eczema. It also has antiseptic qualities that can help prevent infections or irritations on the skin.

Perfume Ingredient

Vetiver oil is widely used in perfumery due to its unique fragrance. It has a woody aroma with hints of citrus and spice, which makes it an ideal ingredient for masculine fragrances.


In conclusion, using vetiver as a natural repellent for earwigs can be an effective way to keep them at bay without using harmful chemicals. Whether you choose to plant vetiver in your garden or use its essential oil as an insect repellent, there are many benefits to incorporating this versatile plant into your life.

By using vetiver, you not only repel earwigs but also enjoy its other therapeutic benefits such as stress relief and skincare benefits. So why not give it a try today?