How To Make A Natural Anti-Dust Mite Carpet Cleaner

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How To Make Natural Anti-Dust Mite Carpet CleanerDust mites: They live in your carpet – and your bed. Photo – FDA (public domain)

Every so often the time comes when your carpet needs something more serious than vacuuming – and the typical strategy is either to pay for professional cleaning or to rent the “rug doctor” machine.

In addition to the dust, stains and grime that accumulate over time, carpets make a wonderful home for dust mites – microscopic beasties that eat dust. A dust mite is around 0.04 millimeters long – in other words, you don’t see them – but they are a real health hazard for millions of people.

This part is gross, but true – their poop is (as you can imagine) so small that it becomes airborne… and we breathe it in! Each dust mite produces around 2,000 of these particles in a 10 week lifespan… and there are thousands if not millions of the infernal things in most carpets, pillows and bedcovers.

Many people are allergic to dust mites and their poop – and they are considered one of the most common causes of asthma and allergies. [1]

This is one of the reasons why it’s good to give the carpet a deep cleaning – and cleaning fluids are designed to disinfect unwanted life-forms as well as cleanse dirt. However, as is so often the case, industrial / commercial cleaning fluids typically contain powerful man-made chemicals – and some have been found to have adverse health effects.

So if you are into the natural lifestyle and (rightly) concerned about the level of chemicals in the home, we have an alternative! It also happens to be very inexpensive.

The “basic” formula is really simple – a 50/50 mix of white vinegar and water. There is also a natural stain/spot remover and a carpet powder at the link at the end of the article.

However I’ve done some research and “upped the firepower” a bit: Did you know that numerous essential oils have been found to be natural dust mite killers? Oh yes! I found a brilliant scientific study from 2006 which lists several essential oils which have been found effective in this regard. [2] Clove essential oil was found to be (by far!) the most effective of the ones examined in this study; followed by matrecary, chenopodium, fennel, caraway, rosemary and eucalyptus.

Several other scientific studies have found good activity of other essential oils against dust mites: A 2009 study found juniper essential oil to be powerful against dust mites. [3] Tea tree and lavender have also been found by other researches to have a good natural anti-dust mite activity. [4] Also, tea tree has also been found effective against scabies mites. [5]

A further 2006 study found pennyroyal essential oil to be highly effective, and more so than ylang ylang, citronella, lemon grass, tea tree, and rosemary. [6]

So there are your weapons! Why not try concocting your own special anti-dust mite carpet cleaning fluid using 50/50 white vinegar and water – and adding a few drops of these essential oils to the mix? 🙂 If you are asthmatic, you might find an improvement in your breathing after giving your carpets a thorough cleaning. I would also suggest putting all bedding through a hot wash and hot tumble dry (assuming that is ok for the fabrics).

Here is the link to the original formula, including the stain remover and the carpet powder:


[1] House dust mite.

[2] Saad E, et al. (2006) Acaricidal activities of some essential oils and their monoterpenoidal constituents against house dust mite, Dermatophagoides pteronyssinus (Acari: Pyroglyphidae).

[3] Lee CH, et al. (2009) Acaricidal activities of major constituents of essential oil of Juniperus chinensis leaves against house dust and stored food mites.

[4] Williamson EM, et al. (2007) An investigation and comparison of the bioactivity of selected essential oils on human lice and house dust mites.

[5] Walton SF, et al. (2004) Acaricidal activity of Melaleuca alternifolia (tea tree) oil: in vitro sensitivity of sarcoptes scabiei var hominis to terpinen-4-ol.

[6] Rim IS & Jee CH. (2006) Acaricidal effects of herb essential oils against Dermatophagoides farinae and D. pteronyssinus (Acari: Pyroglyphidae) and qualitative analysis of a herb Mentha pulegium(pennyroyal).

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18 thoughts on “How To Make A Natural Anti-Dust Mite Carpet Cleaner

  1. If you guys can make all these natural things for dust mites or clogged drains, how’s come no one has come up with a natural way to get rid of cockroaches or bed bugs?? If you have please let me know so i can make it…thank you…:)

  2. Great new tips here. Additionally, with the above baking soda solution, Borax works too. Can use alone or combine with some baking soda. Both freshen the carpet odor too. Thanks for our great tips.

  3. if you make your own cleaning “solution”, how do you do the cleaning? would it be by putting it in the Rug Dr?

  4. I find all of your posts to be useful and easy to do. Thank you for sharing them with all of us!

  5. Just a note:
    This may not be a good idea for a lot of Asthmatic who have allergies.
    I have Asthma and I am allergic to Lavender. It brings on an Asthma attack.
    I have also had problems with eucalypti. My Asthma reacts to a lot of plants.
    Keeping all bedding in a dust mite cover,using a vaccuum with a HEPA filter and an air purifier with a HEPA filter running is your best bet to meet dust mites away.
    You need to remove them, not just kill them with oils. If they are dead but still there you will still react to them.
    Take your allergy/Asthma medications properly and regularly.
    I had allergy shots for dust mites. They were a pain in the butt to get, but I have been free of the allergy for 10 years and no I did not get a disorder or something horrible from the shots LOL!
    Above all else get allergy tests and find out if you are allergic to dust mites first.
    They live everywhere and that is normal. If you are not allergic don’t worry about them.

  6. Totally agree with by mary
    Lavendar and euculoptus are bad for asthmatics! Ive learned the hard way many attacks only to fi d halls cough srips have eucolputus – i guess i cant spell eucoluptus. Lol use hypoallergic beddings stay dust free best ya can and was bedding in hot water once at week. Good luck dust mites are everywhere!

  7. Christina, cedarwood has proven effective against bed bugs. At only 10% cedarwood mix, they have 100% mortality rate, larvae killed, eggs didn’t hatch and repelled. Look up study on go to research, key word cedarwood or bed bug.

  8. Never get ANY kind of shots! There are ALWAYS alternatives that have no chemicals and will produce a healthier and harmless approach in both healing and prevention. These are all natural and organic. There are also asthma things……

  9. Heya! I’m at work browsing your blog from my new iphone 3gs!
    Just wanted to say I love reading through your blog and look forward to
    all your posts! Keep up the fantastic work!

  10. A natural way to get rid of roaches and bedbugs is by using diatomaceous earth. Its tiny fragments have sharp pointy edges that appears the hardshell of the insect causing it to dry out. It is non-toxic to humans and animals, and works against all insects. Just dust a tiny amount on your boxspring and around the edges of your dwelling and this will kill any insects that come into contact with it. It is becoming quite widely available, some of it is even being sold by the big pesticide manufacturers. I have seen it at Home Hardware and Canadian Tire.

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