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bed bug spray made with lavender.

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jacklam349

New Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Portuguese coastal route
Interpit 2 bug spray made with lavander from Bulgaria - sold in amazon.
Is lavander effective for preventing the bed bug ?
I read that people use permethrin spray - but I hope that I can use less toxic solution. How bad will bed bug in albergues in March/April ? In case, my backpack and stuffs are infected with bed bug or their eggs - How difficult to get rid of them ? Thank you.
 
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dougfitz

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Spain: Mar 2010, Apr 2014, May/Jun 2016. Norway/Sweden: 2012, 2018. Other: 2011, 2019. CP (tbc)
Interpit Bed bug spray made with lavander from Bulgaria - sold in amazon.
Is lavander effective for preventing the bed bug ?
I read that people use permethrin spray - but I hope that I can use less toxic solution. How bad will bed bug in albergues in March/April ?
In case, my backpack and stuffs are infected with bed bug or their eggs - How difficult to get rid of them ? Thank you.
What is the active ingredient? Essential oils don't have any proven effect as a pesticide or repellent. Pyrethrum or permethrin based products do. Applied in accordance with established good practices, these are not toxic to humans.
I admire your desire to use something less toxic. To whom? You do want to kill the bedbugs, not send them home with a stomach-ache!
 

estorildon

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
CF11, CF12, CP13, CF14, CA15, S.Anton15, CF&CI15
Ditch Pig16, CF&CP17, CdN18, CM18, CF18, LePuy19
Over m eleven years only once or twice did I encounter them and they cleared up in few days. They are not my greatest fear walking the Camino.
 

Tincatinker

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2012

Interpit Bed bug spray made with lavander from Bulgaria - sold in amazon.​

Is lavander effective for preventing the bed bug ?​

I read that people use permethrin spray - but I hope that I can use less toxic solution. How bad will bed bug in albergues in March/April ?​

In case, my backpack and stuffs are infected with bed bug or their eggs - How difficult to get rid of them ? Thank you.​

Lavender, no. No known repellent effect. However bedbugs hate Heim 1854 cognac so you could try spraying that all over your bed 😉
Seriously, there is sound and accurate information about dealing with bedbugs on this forum and the best advice is “avoid”. So learn to identify the signs of infestation and go somewhere else if necessary.
Permethrin will help prevent infestation of your gear
 

trecile

Moderator
Staff member
Time of past OR future Camino
PAST - Francés, Norte, Salvador, Portuguese
It doesn't work, it can be very annoying to other pilgrims and
 
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sin dolor no hay gloria
Time of past OR future Camino
2018 Via de la Plata | next Francés again....
since 2010 sauntering on Caminos - neither had b(a)d bugs nor seen any. I know it isn't a rumour but it doesn't cross my mind to spray something on a mattress where I am going to sleep on! I don't even think about them....

probably I had to much of this cognac in my veins :)
 

davebugg

A Pilgrimage is time I spend praying with my feet
Time of past OR future Camino
2019
Interpit 2 bug spray made with lavander from Bulgaria - sold in amazon.
Is lavander effective for preventing the bed bug ?
I read that people use permethrin spray - but I hope that I can use less toxic solution. How bad will bed bug in albergues in March/April ? In case, my backpack and stuffs are infected with bed bug or their eggs - How difficult to get rid of them ? Thank you.
No, lavender and other essential oil concoctions are not effective. You might repel other pilgrims who are sensitive to scents with essential oils, though :)

Permethrin does not act as a repellent (keeping bedbugs from biting), but it does kill bedbugs that have not developed a tolerance. So if you use permethrin for a sleeping bag, they can still get dinner, walk off, and then die. You could spray permethrin inside your backpack bag and pockets - hipbelt pockets, too- and that might have an impact on keeping any unknown infestation from affecting other albergues.

Treatment is by exposing bedbugs to heat. Adult bedbugs die at 119F/48.4 C, but the eggs need to be exposed to heat above 125F/52C. An oven or a dryer will work, but I would do the treatment for several hours. Higher temperatures will take shorter amounts of time. No need to wash and then dry, it is the heat that kills.

Another option is freezing the critters. Put your stuff, like a sleeping bag or backpack in a sealed plastic bag, then place it inside the freezer at 0 F/ -18C for 4 to 5 days.
 
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Time of past OR future Camino
CDN, Primitivo, Sanabrés, Portugués, Ruta do Mar,
On my first Camino I made sure I had an Insect Shield 100% Silk Cocoon Liner. It proved useful and I had no problem with bed bugs. Since then I also have found out that a silk liner without any treatment provides sufficient protection against bedbugs.

Here is an article about that:


I now have the lightweight liner Sea To Summit100% Premium Silk Sleeping Bag Liner w/ Pillow Insert without the Permethrin treatment, and haven't had any trouble with bugs of any kind:

 
Time of past OR future Camino
CDN, Primitivo, Sanabrés, Portugués, Ruta do Mar,
I am happy to know that that is the case🧐 Silk works perfectly well for me and at 4.5 oz. I cannot complain. You take care of the ounces (grams) and the pounds (kilos) take care of themselves⚖️
 
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C clearly

Moderator
Staff member
Time of past OR future Camino
Most years since 2012
I am happy to know that that is the case🧐 Silk works perfectly well for me and at 4.5 oz. I cannot complain. You take care of the ounces (grams) and the pounds (kilos) take care of themselves⚖️
Yes, silk is great, mainly because it is light weight. But many people think it has some special bedbug repellant properties, when in fact it is just a physical barrier. I have sewn up the side that was open and added a drawstring. Now I can pull the liner up over my head to cover up better, or I apply a DEET insect repellent on my face.
 
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Kathy F.

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
CF 2013, CF from Lourdes 2015, CP Porto 2022
So nice that we are worrying about bedbugs once again.

BEGONE, COVID!!!

BTW, if you used something and you didn't get bitten by bedbugs, that doesn't mean it worked. I wore my watch to bed every night through 2 Caminos and I didn't get bitten by bedbugs. That doesn't mean my watch is a good bedbug repellant, LOL.
 

trecile

Moderator
Staff member
Time of past OR future Camino
PAST - Francés, Norte, Salvador, Portuguese
BTW, if you used something and you didn't get bitten by bedbugs, that doesn't mean it worked. I wore my watch to bed every night through 2 Caminos and I didn't get bitten by bedbugs. That doesn't mean my watch is a good bedbug repellant, LOL.
And, some people have no reaction to bed bug bites.
It's possible to be bitten on a part of your body that you can't see, and if you don't feel it, you would never know.
 
Time of past OR future Camino
CDN, Primitivo, Sanabrés, Portugués, Ruta do Mar,
Yes, silk is great, mainly because it is light weight. But many people think it has some special bedbug repellant properties, when in fact it is just a physical barrier.
That's right! As you mentioned before, it really has everything to do with the tight weave of the material - which in turn really acts as a bed bug repellent. And, silk is very lightweight compared to microfibers and cotton:)

Great idea to sew-up the sides. I might do the same!

Deet is great, and I do use it when I backpack, but only if there are mosquitos. Dabbing it on the brim of my hat, on my sleeves, pants and socks instead of my skin keeps them at bay and they either die on contact or are discouraged from sipping from my bloodstream. That makes me a happy camper 🎒⛺;)
 
Time of past OR future Camino
CF Spring 2022
CP Spring 2024
It doesn't work, it can be very annoying to other pilgrims and

To be fair, that unfortunate incident was due to one contaminated batch of product from one India-based manufacturer, not to anything inherent in lavender or any essential oil spray themselves.

But yes, many folks find any kind of scented insect deterrent to be unpleasant - I get an instant piercing headache from anything including citronella, which is common in many mosquito repellents. Maybe a good thing they tend to be mostly ineffective anyway.
 

Anamiri

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2016, 2017, 2019 Camino Frances
Any reasonably fine woven fabric will provide the same protecton. Bedbugs cannot penetrate the fabric. They walk around to gain access at the openings!
I can vouch for that! Sleeping in my liner, I cant seem to help putting my arms out during the night.
I would love to be one of those people who never got bitten, sadly I've been bitten twice in 2 different caminos.
Really unpleasant, and you do feel rather conspicuous covered in bites. And the hassle of dealing with them is no fun.
But fortunately the fact that I have to take antihistamines every day anyway minimises the itching.
 
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Time of past OR future Camino
CF SJPP-SdC Oct/Nov (2013)
Kumano Kodo Japan (2016)
Portuguese Coastal Mar(2019)
CF Ap/May (2019)
Interpit 2 bug spray made with lavander from Bulgaria - sold in amazon.
Is lavander effective for preventing the bed bug ?
I read that people use permethrin spray - but I hope that I can use less toxic solution. How bad will bed bug in albergues in March/April ? In case, my backpack and stuffs are infected with bed bug or their eggs - How difficult to get rid of them ? Thank you.
Number of Caminos = 3 (winter, spring, summer).
Number of bedbugs = 0.
Buen Camino!
 
Time of past OR future Camino
Us:Camino Frances, 2015 Me:Catalan/Aragonese, 2019
DEET is the most effective repellent against bedbugs in test conditions. Not so much for pilgrims though. Pilgrims would be putting it on around 10 PM but over a few hours the DEET loses a lot of its effectiveness. That's about the same time bedbugs are most active, with or without DEET.
 

John Gray

New Member
Time of past OR future Camino
SJPDP to Burgos from May 9th 2014
Interpit 2 bug spray made with lavander from Bulgaria - sold in amazon.
Is lavander effective for preventing the bed bug ?
I read that people use permethrin spray - but I hope that I can use less toxic solution. How bad will bed bug in albergues in March/April ? In case, my backpack and stuffs are infected with bed bug or their eggs - How difficult to get rid of them ? Thank you.
It will keep away the scorpions 🦂 but bed bugs I'm not sure
 

nidarosa

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Inglés 2009+2017, Francés 2012+2018, Astorga-Santiago repeatedly
Please don't bring oils and sprays - lavender scented or otherwise - and cover communal beds with them. It can be very overpowering and irritating to some of your fellow pilgrims, and as far as I can tell hasn't repelled a single bedbug. And imagine the buildup of the stuff on the mattresses over a season ...😲! Check for signs of bugs on, under and around the mattress and don't lie down on a bed that looks infested.
 

Meggins

Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Camino Frances - One complete St.J.P.P to Santiago plus twice more for 500km each time.
Many people seem to be unaware that not everyone has a reaction to a bed bug bite. In fact you can be bitten & not even know about it. Sadly I'm very reactive to insect bites. However, I never had a bite on the Camino except in a hotel we stayed at in Santiago. I got bitten and it was about a week to recover from the huge swelling. My friend did not get bitten - I checked her bed while she was un the bathroom & there were a couple of squashed bugs in her bed. Also I got bitten in a higher end hotel in Sardinia while my 2 friends did not, The Information desk did not believe me untilI showed by bite & rapidly swelling arm. ---)
 
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lt56ny

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
10/22 Aragones/Frances
I have a question about bedbugs. Thankfully after 6 caminos I have never been subjected to this vermin. It seems there is still alot of talk about bed bug prevention but I am seeing less and less posts or hearing less stories when I am on pilgrimage about bed bug infestation in albergues. With so many albergues having those plastic that covers the entire mattress bed bug infestations has been reduced significantly. Of course this is just observational and I have seen nothing in print that would confirm this. Just wondering if this is a correct assumption on my part.
 

mikebet

Active Member
Time of past OR future Camino
SJPdP to Pamplona (2016); Baiona to Santiago (2018); Sarria to Santiago (2018)
I've never had a bedbug problems in my travels (including nights in some pretty sketchy places) but if I found my clothes or backpack infested I think I would use the lethal heat method. Adult bedbugs die at approximately 115F so putting your things into a black plastic garbage bag and leaving it out in the sun for an afternoon might be a low-tech way to deal with the problem.
 
Time of past OR future Camino
2019
I have been in 4 different albergues where my fellow peregrinos were bitten. I wasn't, but I sleep on top of a silk liner treated with permethrin. This liner also covers the pillow. If the albergues are completo and I have to sleep in a pension or hotel I do the same, on top the bed. With the more universal availability of use-once bed and pillow covers, and plastic mattress covers, I think the bed bug problem is less than earlier. But it only takes a couple of eggs. I also spray my backpack and most of my clothes with permethrin before leaving for the Camino. Buen Camino
 

C clearly

Moderator
Staff member
Time of past OR future Camino
Most years since 2012
Just wondering if this is a correct assumption on my part.
I have never heard of a reliable study of bedbugs on the Camino, so there is no way to know if your assumption is correct or not. You will get people "voting" on whether or not it is true, and others like me gritting their teeth in frustration.

Here on the forum, we have purely anecdotal evidence, wherein people who haven't been bit often seem to conclude that there are/were no bedbugs. There is scientific evidence that many people do not react to bedbug bites, while others react strongly. Obviously those two groups will draw different conclusions from their different experiences.
 
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davebugg

A Pilgrimage is time I spend praying with my feet
Time of past OR future Camino
2019
I've never had a bedbug problems in my travels (including nights in some pretty sketchy places) but if I found my clothes or backpack infested I think I would use the lethal heat method. Adult bedbugs die at approximately 115F so putting your things into a black plastic garbage bag and leaving it out in the sun for an afternoon might be a low-tech way to deal with the problem.
The adults die at 119F/48.4c, but the eggs can survive those temps and so need to be expose to temperatures in excess of 125f/52c. The black bag might still work fine, but I would want to make sure that there was no balling up or folds in the clothing, or clothing laying on top of other clothing while in the bag that could insulate the eggs.
 

lt56ny

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
10/22 Aragones/Frances
I have never heard of a reliable study of bedbugs on the Camino, so there is no way to know if your assumption is correct or not. You will get people "voting" on whether or not it is true, and others like me gritting their teeth in frustration.

Here on the forum, we have purely anecdotal evidence, wherein people who haven't been bit often seem to conclude that there are/were no bedbugs. There is scientific evidence that many people do not react to bedbug bites, while others react strongly. Obviously those two groups will draw different conclusions from their different experiences.
So true all you said.
 

Wanderingfriend

Active Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2018
Interpit 2 bug spray made with lavander from Bulgaria - sold in amazon.
Is lavander effective for preventing the bed bug ?
I read that people use permethrin spray - but I hope that I can use less toxic solution. How bad will bed bug in albergues in March/April ? In case, my backpack and stuffs are infected with bed bug or their eggs - How difficult to get rid of them ? Thank you.
I did not encounter them on two caminos although I know they are out there. My initial response to spraying lavender, please no. For the sake of other pilgrims, the smells are intense as it is. I personally have asthma and hate the smell of lavender. Of course, I have to be gracious but spraying a scent of any sort is highly unadvisable. I do get your concern over pesticides but this spring, I am not going to spray my bags with anything. I will never put my bag on a bed and I will do the best I can. I have heard that laundries will take you bag and contents and take care of it. It may slow your walk down, and that’s not always a bad idea. Good luck fellow pilgrim.
 

Anamiri

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2016, 2017, 2019 Camino Frances
I have a question about bedbugs. Thankfully after 6 caminos I have never been subjected to this vermin. It seems there is still alot of talk about bed bug prevention but I am seeing less and less posts or hearing less stories when I am on pilgrimage about bed bug infestation in albergues. With so many albergues having those plastic that covers the entire mattress bed bug infestations has been reduced significantly. Of course this is just observational and I have seen nothing in print that would confirm this. Just wondering if this is a correct assumption on my part.
I wonder if the pandemic years have had an impact on breaking the cycle?
 
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F

Former member 91017

Guest
Nevermind spraying your stuff. It simply doesn't work. There is a tidal wave of information to show that spraying your bag, clothes, sleeping gear... whatever, is not going to save you from the new critters you will encounter each day.
Take an anti-histamine with you (Reactine/cetirizine works really well; some people use Claritin. A Benadry stick to apply...).
The "I never had any bites" person is generally unaware that in a dorm or hotel setting with an infestation the bugs are not choosey. They bite *everyone*. It is only that about 50% of people do not have an allergic reaction.
I am not among the lucky ones. I get giant welts.
But they do not carry infectious diseases (unlike ticks, or mosquitos). When people get infections, it's from the scratching and getting dirt into the wound.
So take the anti-histamine that works for you, and the Benadryl applicator stick.
Ditch the other efforts; they simply do not work when everyone is moving along every day. The added detractor is that they can make other pilgrims (or even you) quite sick.

Oh... and when you know you've been hit, gather up your gear and wash it *all* in the large tumbler in the laundromat on *hot*.

Dry it all in the dryer.

When you get home: strip at your door. Repeat the process above. Put your boots into a bag and put them in a chest freezer for 2-3 weeks if you can (even borrow space in a friend's freezer). I've been known to toss my pack into the freezer as well, but there isn't always room so I use the hot water wash and then the dryer.

My pack: Osprey Kyte 36L. It has never gone out of shape from the washing.
 
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Excursionista

happiest when walking
Time of past OR future Camino
De VdBierzo (2004)
Pamplona-Sahagún (2021)
Many people seem to be unaware that not everyone has a reaction to a bed bug bite. In fact you can be bitten & not even know about it.
Yes, this! It's so frustrating to hear people say that they "have never had a problem with bedbugs." People who react to bites are at least likely to notice and take appropriate measures. If you've spent a lot of time on Camino and "never had a problem," you might just be the bedbug Typhoid Mary. ;) Please inspect your bunk each time you stop and send everything through the dryer if you hear about an outbreak.

Although bedbugs are gross, it's important to remember that they aren't considered dangerous and the best prevention is to inspect your sleeping area for dark red or brown dots before you unpack your bag (especially under the corners of the mattress). Unless you're closing your pack tightly and closing your sleep sack or sleeping bag's drawstring overtop of your head, chemical treatments won't protect you -- the bugs will just walk around.
 

taigirl

Active Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Frances 2019
I made a lavender spray with lavender essential oil and water. I sprayed my legs every night and was bed bug free every night but once in a pension. I woke during the night to find that the top sheet crawling with bugs but none under the sheet and no bites. I don't make any claims for lavender. I may have just been lucky or not allergic to bugs. But I smelled nice! Be aware of your room mates who may not like the smell.
 

dougfitz

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Spain: Mar 2010, Apr 2014, May/Jun 2016. Norway/Sweden: 2012, 2018. Other: 2011, 2019. CP (tbc)
There is a tidal wave of information to show that spraying your bag, clothes, sleeping gear... whatever, is not going to save you from the new critters you will encounter each day.
Perhaps you would like to share just a small wavelet of objective information about this. I hope it's somewhat better than the so called 'hiking authority' which turns out to be one bloke who shares anecdotes rather that anything of more substance. Read @davebugg's writing instead of sources like that - at least he is prepared to explain how he gets to the advice that he gives, and appears to have a reasonably systematic approach to doing that.
 
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F

Former member 91017

Guest
Perhaps you would like to share just a small wavelet of objective information about this. I hope it's somewhat better than the so called 'hiking authority' which turns out to be one bloke who shares anecdotes rather that anything of more substance. Read @davebugg's writing instead of sources like that - at least he is prepared to explain how he gets to the advice that he gives, and appears to have a reasonably systematic approach to doing that.
No idea why I am biting when the post is so adversarial but fine, LMGTFY:




Logic dictates that if it takes *hours* for permethrin to be effective against bedbugs, that it is best used in situ, not in transit. Maybe a traveller might die in your backpack, but you are going to meet new, lively biters in the next location.

Early in the season, probably not so many, but by the height of summer with hundreds of people coming through day after day after day? There *will be* bedbugs.

On the issue of inefficacy, just for starters:

Permethrin is not even allowed to be sold where i live because it is so toxic (to smaller animals, etc).... I take that as reason not to act like a jerk about spraying an ineffectual product that can be an irritant to other pilgrims' respiratory systems, and which can be devastating when used in quantity. Imagine 400,000 pilgrims drowning the camino routes in this stuff. I would not want to be a cat, a dog, a chicken, a child living in the toxic plume.
 

Excursionista

happiest when walking
Time of past OR future Camino
De VdBierzo (2004)
Pamplona-Sahagún (2021)
Perhaps you would like to share just a small wavelet of objective information about this. I hope it's somewhat better than the so called 'hiking authority' which turns out to be one bloke who shares anecdotes rather that anything of more substance. Read @davebugg's writing instead of sources like that - at least he is prepared to explain how he gets to the advice that he gives, and appears to have a reasonably systematic approach to doing that.
Seems like the burden of proof should be on those who are proposing bedbug "solutions." I imagine many things would deter the wee critters in a lab, so I'd mostly be interested in field trials.
 

domigee

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2022 CF
Interpit 2 bug spray made with lavander from Bulgaria - sold in amazon.
Is lavander effective for preventing the bed bug ?
I read that people use permethrin spray - but I hope that I can use less toxic solution. How bad will bed bug in albergues in March/April ? In case, my backpack and stuffs are infected with bed bug or their eggs - How difficult to get rid of them ? Thank you.
No, it won’t work. As the French say ‘ça se saurait’ ie ‘it would be known!’. 😉
The main worry is not to be bring them home and there’s plenty of (very good) advice here on how to avoid it.
 
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