DIY: Natural Lice Spray |

DIY: Natural Lice Spray

Katie September 24, 2013

Written by Katie

Oh no — lice!

I can just see you now squirming on the other side of the computer screen. Ya, you. I know you are. I bet you are also feeling itchy all over and can’t resist scratching your head. Why? Because I just did, too.

Whenever you hear the dreaded word, something just wants to curl up and die within you or at least send you running for the hill screaming.

Lice, there’s nothing like them to bring fear to a parent’s heart. Believe me, I’ve been there many times. It isn’t fun to deal with, but the good news is that you can handle it naturally. Many of the items you may already have around your house.

Articles on handling lice:

One of the best ways to manage lice is deterrence. Enter lice spray. No, not the stuff you find in the store — please never spray pesticides over anyone’s head!

When you or your kids are going to be in a setting where you khat there is a risk of being exposed, you can start spritzing your head with an easy-to-make natural lice spray. It not only deters lice but can kill them as well.

You can have this spray whipped up and ready to go in 5 minutes or less, depending on which recipe you choose to make.


Natural Lice Spray with Essential Oils


  • 4 cups apple cider vinegar
  • 20 drops of lavender essential oil
  • 20 drops of rosemary essential oil
  • 20 drops of Tansy essential oil
  • 20 drops of tea tree essential oil


Step 1: Pour your apple cider vinegar into a 1-quart canning jar.

Step 2: Add the oils, screw on the lid, and give it a good shake.

Step 3: Pour into a spray bottle, and you are ready to go!

Natural Lice Spray with Herbs


  • 3 cups apple cider vinegar
  • 1/2 cup dried lavender flowers
  • 1/2 cup dried tansy
  • 1/2 cup dried or fresh rosemary
  • 20 drops of tea tree essential oil


Step 1: Add your herbs to a 1-quart canning jar. Cover with the apple cider vinegar. Add the tea tree oil and screw on the lid.

Step 2: Shake the jar for about 1 minute or until all the herbs float in the vinegar. Store in a dark place, like a cabinet, for at least two weeks. Shake once a day.

Step 3: Strain through a fine sieve or cheesecloth. Pour into a spray bottle.

Lice Deterrent Usage: spray all over the head whenever you think you have/or will be exposed to lice. Don’t drench the hair; just spray lightly. Leave in and continue on your day. The smell will evaporate within the hour.

Lice Management Usage: spray all over the head, concentrating on the nape of the neck and behind the ears until the hair is damp. Let dry in your hair. Once dry, follow up with a natural lice oil.

What is your best tip for preventing lice?

This is the writings of:

Katie is a dorm “mama” to 16 amazing girls ages 5 to 18 at a home and school for the Deaf in Baja California, Mexico. She is happiest in the kitchen creating nourishing meals and home remedies or outside with at least one of her girls at her side. She grew up using herbal supplements but didn’t discover the joy of making her own until 2008. Katie is passionate about real food, herbs and simple living. You can find her blogging about all these things and more on her blog, Mexican Wildflower where she is living simply by God’s grace.MexicanWildflower


  1. […] hate this spray! Not only does it kill the nits but it helps keep them away as well. This lice spray over at Modern Alternative Health is great for spraying on heads that have lice or have/will be […]


  2. To me there’s to much risk in using Tansy oil. You should include a warning with your recipe.

    BLUE Tansy is safe to use.


  3. Thank you for this post! My oldest daughter got head lice last year which was my worst nightmare!! I have been using essential oils in a spray bottle this year and so far so good! 🙂


  4. Can the spray be used daily? Ive dealt w lice for way too long w my eight year old. Have tried so many things, including converting her head in a completeness of mayonnaise! Yuck. Thank you for posting!


  5. Does this work only on lice? Does it work on other parasites as well? Like fleas and ticks? I’m wanting to make this for Girl Scout campouts.


  6. I have been dealing with lice off and on for over a year now. i get rid of them, but they comback. Recently i used apple cider vinager and coconut oil. it worked great, but I didnt read the fine print, i was supposed to do it again within a few days and I didnt. … i do have a 50 hr at week job! :/ any way, i am dealing with these pests again. i have not been actively checking beds. i have been washing sheets and pillows and hats and all the things that might touch their head in hot water with tee tree oil. i even put tee tree oil in their shampoo. Will the oils in the spray stain the sheets or make them oily?


  7. Can I use something instead of the Tansy essential oil? I am having trouble finding it where I live. Thanks!


  8. Interested in preparing this remedy, but I wonder if it smells like vinegar? I would hate for my daughter to be teased because of the smell.


  9. Can you leave out the tansy oil? Im in the uk and its really expensive! I can get the others really cheaply. Thank you x


  10. You can substitute Frankincense oil for the Tansy oil. I use the apple cider vinegar and essential oils as a spray also for my sofa, chair, bedding, etc. when my grandkids have gotten the lice and it works very well. Also for my hair, I used 2 ounces of olive oil with 13 drops each of Tea Tree and Lavender and spray it into my roots and hair, making sure I massaged it in all over my head then tightly clipped a plastic grocery bag over all my hair and let it set for an hour before washing it out. You can also add about 5 drops of tea tree to your shampoo and conditioner bottles that you use daily for added protection. You can wash the olive oil mixture out of your hair first using Dawn Dishwashing Soap to make it easier to remove.


  11. Will the essential oil version be as good/effective in water instead of the apple cider vinegar? Put another way: what does the vinegar contribute? THANK YOU!


  12. There’s an insertion in the paragraph before the first pix that one of you should remove (between brackets below):

    “When you or your kids [[Rebuck known as his proposal “Powerball for interstate slot machines play,” by having an idea toward producing exactly the same type of excitement that surrounds that lottery’s mega-awards, which often enhance individuals who otherwise wouldn’t consider purchasing a ticket.]] are going to be in a setting where you know that there is a risk of being exposed you can start spritzing your head with an easy to make natural lice spray. If not only deters lice but can kill them as well.”


  13. […]  purchase a great spray from Nit  Free For Me or other similar places.  Or you can make your own from essential oils.  Both work – it just depends on how you roll with things like […]


  14. […] Homemade Apple Cider Vinegar Lice Spray […]


  15. […] you know that there are herbs that repel and kill lice? A natural lice spray full of herbs or essential oils like lavender, tansy, rosemary, and tea tree oil is just what your […]


  16. We had a lice warning from school so I spray my children’s hair with tea tree oil every morning when I brush their hair. I buy tea tree oil in an aerosol can, and it works really well. So far so good. Tea tree oil and eucalyptus oil are really popular ‘solve-all’ oils here in Australia, I’d never really used them before I moved here.


  17. Hi Kate
    What is the shelf-life of the lice – essential oil spray? Should it be kept in a dark bottle (brown or blue)? Can it be kept in while opaque bottle?
    And is it pretty harmless if the spray mist gets into your eyes!


  18. […] hate this spray! Not only does it kill the nits but it helps keep them away as well. This lice spray over at Modern Alternative Mama is great for spraying on heads that have lice or have/will be […]


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Hi, I’m Kate.  I love medical freedom, sharing natural remedies, developing real food recipes, and gentle parenting. My goal is to teach you how to live your life free from Big Pharma, Big Food, and Big Government by learning about herbs, cooking, and sustainable practices.

I’m the author of Natural Remedies for Kids and the owner and lead herbalist at EarthleyI hope you’ll join me on the journey to a free and healthy life!

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