People tell me I should make and sell this stuff, but nah, this recipe's free. :)
Rose geranium essential oil is very effective in repelling ticks. One of my mushroom hunting areas is heavily infested with ticks and I am very much NOT a fan of ticks! This mix I put together is aimed at both ticks and mosquitoes. I haven't had a single tick on me since using this recipe; it works fairly well for mosquitoes in open areas, but isn't effective enough for deep woods protection. So, without further adieu:
Natural Tick Repellent
4 oz spray bottle
2 oz vinegar - doesn't matter what type, I've used both white and ACV
2 oz water
5ml total essential oil blend:
Essential oils are not water soluble; you can of course use an emulsifier like polysorbate 20 to help keep everything blended together, but that you'll need to order online whereas the rest you can get at almost any natural foods and/or grocery stores since so many stores have now started carrying essential oils.
The rose geranium works for ticks and the cedarwood & lavender is for the mosquitoes. You can skip those two and use just rose geranium EO if you wish, but personally I like the whole blend.
Directions: Shake very well before use. Spray yourself head to toe. For extra tick protection in areas that are heavily infested, I keep the rose geranium EO bottle with me, soak a wee bit into a tissue, and then dab the tissue on my shoes, pants, and coat.
I have also used this spray successfully on my last dog (she passed away last fall and I haven't taken my new puppy out into the woods yet since she's still too young to go too far) - I sprayed down her chest, back, and legs. She never tried to lick it off, but if your pet likes to lick, you may want to spray only in areas they can't reach.