Peppermint Oil for Roaches: How to Mix, Use & More

Imagine waking up one day to find a cockroach scurrying across your kitchen counter. The thought of these pesky pests invading your home is enough to give anyone the heebie-jeebies.

While many chemical-based solutions are available, you may prefer a more natural and eco-friendly approach to removing roaches.

Enter peppermint oil – a powerful and effective remedy for repelling and eliminating cockroaches.

This comprehensive guide will explore the science behind peppermint oil’s effectiveness, how to mix and use it, and how often you should apply it to keep your home roach-free!

Peppermint Oil’s Bug-Killing Properties

Peppermint oil is not just a refreshing scent; it has been scientifically proven to repel and even kill cockroaches.

A study conducted by researchers at Auburn University tested the effects of mint oil on two common cockroach species – American roaches and German roaches.

The results were astonishing – the mint oil repelled 100% of the roaches each day of the 14-day experiment.

Additionally, when the roaches were continuously exposed to the mint oil, it eventually killed them.

The active compound in peppermint oil, menthone, is believed to be responsible for its repellent and toxic effects on cockroaches.

Benefits of Using Peppermint Oil for Roaches

Peppermint oil offers several advantages when it comes to roach control:

  1. Natural and Non-Toxic: Peppermint oil is a natural and non-toxic solution, making it safe to use around children and pets. Unlike chemical-based pesticides, peppermint oil poses minimal risks to your health and the environment.
  2. Inexpensive: Peppermint oil is an affordable alternative to commercial roach repellents. You can purchase a bottle of high-quality peppermint essential oil at a reasonable price, and a little goes a long way.
  3. Eco-Friendly: Peppermint oil is biodegradable and environmentally friendly. Using it as a roach repellent helps reduce the reliance on harmful chemicals that can harm the ecosystem.
  4. Pleasant Fragrance: In addition to its pest-repellent properties, peppermint oil leaves a refreshing and pleasant fragrance in your home. Say goodbye to the unpleasant odors associated with traditional roach control methods.

How to Mix Peppermint Oil for Roaches

Now that we understand the science behind peppermint oil’s effectiveness let’s check out how to mix it for optimal results!

What You’ll Need

  1. Spray bottle
  2. High-quality peppermint essential oil
  3. Carrier liquid (water or white vinegar)

Water-Based Peppermint Oil Spray Recipe

  1. Add 10 to 15 drops of high-quality peppermint essential oil in a spray bottle.
  2. Fill the rest of the spray bottle with water.
  3. Secure the spray bottle cap tightly.
  4. Shake the bottle vigorously to mix the peppermint oil and water thoroughly.
  5. Your water-based peppermint oil spray is ready to use.

Vinegar-Based Peppermint Oil Spray Recipe

If you prefer a more potent solution, you can mix peppermint oil with white vinegar using a ratio of one part oil to two parts vinegar.

This mixture repels roaches and acts as a powerful cleaning agent. Here’s how to make it:

  1. Combine 10 to 15 drops of high-quality peppermint essential oil in a spray bottle.
  2. Add twice the amount of white vinegar as the amount of peppermint oil (e.g., 10-15 drops of oil to 20-30 drops of white vinegar).
  3. Close the spray bottle with its cap and ensure it is sealed properly.
  4. Shake the bottle well to ensure complete mixing of the peppermint oil and white vinegar.
  5. Your vinegar-based peppermint oil spray is now prepared.

Usage Tips

  • For a milder scent, start with 10 drops of peppermint oil; for a stronger scent, use 15 drops.
  • Before each use, give the spray bottle a good shake to distribute the oil evenly in the liquid.
  • Test the spray on a small, inconspicuous area before applying to fabrics or surfaces to ensure it doesn’t cause any damage or staining.

How to Use Peppermint Oil Spray for Roaches

Using the peppermint oil spray is simple and straightforward.

Step 1: Identify roach-prone areas.

Identify areas where you have observed roach activity or suspect they might be hiding. Common spots include cracks, crevices, gaps, and entry points like windowsills and door frames.

Roaches prefer dark, damp, and hidden areas. By identifying these spots, you’ll target their hiding places and potential entry points, maximizing the effectiveness of the treatment.

Step 2: Prepare the peppermint oil mixture.

In a spray bottle, create a peppermint oil mixture. Add 10 to 15 drops of high-quality peppermint essential oil for a water-based spray, then fill the rest of the bottle with water.

If you prefer a vinegar-based spray, use a ratio of 1 part peppermint oil to 2 parts white vinegar.

The peppermint oil mixture acts as a natural repellent and disrupts the roaches’ sensory cues, deterring them from the treated areas.

Step 3: Apply the peppermint oil spray.

Generously spray the peppermint oil mixture in the identified roach-prone areas. Make sure to cover cracks, crevices, and entry points thoroughly.

Focus on places like baseboards, corners, under sinks, and around pipes. Ensure even coverage without oversaturating surfaces.

The peppermint oil spray creates an environment that roaches find unpleasant, encouraging them to pack up their things and find somewhere else to live.

Step 4: Target high-risk areas.

Pay extra attention to areas where roach infestations are more likely.

Concentrate on your kitchen, where they seek food, and your bathroom, where they are attracted to moisture. These areas are commonly roach hotspots.

Step 5: Use peppermint-soaked cotton balls.

For added effectiveness, soak cotton balls in the peppermint oil mixture. Place these dampened cotton balls in cabinets, walls, or closets.

Focus on areas close to known roach activity.

Roaches dislike the strong scent of peppermint, and placing peppermint-soaked cotton balls in their hiding spots can discourage them from taking up residence.

By following these steps, you’ll be strategically applying peppermint oil to create an environment that roaches find inhospitable, helping to deter them from your home.

Remember to reapply the treatment as needed and regularly monitor the treated areas for any signs of roach activity.

Apply the spray at night when roaches are most active for optimal results.

How often should you spray peppermint oil for roaches?

To keep your home roach-free, it’s important to apply peppermint oil regularly. The frequency of application depends on the severity of the infestation and the specific needs of your home.

As a general guideline, we recommend spraying the peppermint oil mixture every few days or as needed.

If you notice increased roach activity or if you live in an area with a high roach population, you may need to apply the spray more frequently.

It’s also a good practice to reapply the spray after cleaning or wiping down surfaces to ensure continuous protection against roaches.

Remember, consistency is key to maintaining the effectiveness of peppermint oil as a roach repellent.

Combining Peppermint Oil with Other Pest Control Measures

While peppermint oil is an effective roach repellent, it may not eliminate a serious infestation on its own.

For severe roach problems, seeking professional pest control services or using additional pest control measures in conjunction with peppermint oil is recommended.

These measures may include setting up roach traps or using roach baits to attract and eliminate roaches.

However, be cautious not to spray peppermint oil directly on baits or traps, as it can repel roaches and render them ineffective.

Instead, use peppermint oil and baits in separate areas of your home to maximize their effectiveness.

Wrapping it Up

Peppermint oil is a natural and effective solution for repelling and eliminating cockroaches. Its strong scent is a deterrent, making your home less inviting to these unwanted pests.

By mixing peppermint oil with water or vinegar and applying it to roach-prone areas, you can create a safe and eco-friendly barrier against roaches.

Remember to reapply the spray regularly and integrate peppermint oil with other pest control measures for optimal results.

With peppermint oil, you can reclaim your home from roach infestations while enjoying its crisp, refreshing fragrance.


  1. Appel, Arthur & Gehret, M.J. & Tanley, Marla. (2001). Repellency and toxicity of mint oil to American and German cockroaches (Dictyoptera: Blattidae and Blattellidae). Journal of Agricultural and Urban Entomology. 18. 149-156.

DIY Spotlight