Chigger Relief


My girls and I were devoured by chiggers recently. If you have ever been eaten alive by chiggers than you understand how irritating a chigger bite can be. If you haven’t been bitten by a chigger than let me put it this way; imagine a mosquito bite, now enhance that itchy feeling by 1000 and add molten lava oozing from the bite when you scratch it.

I think the worst part about chigger bites is how long they last. They stay with me for weeks. But not this time! I couldn’t stand to see my babies in discomfort so I came up with a healing recipe.

Let me clear a few things up first. Chiggers are tiny mites. They usually enter by the sock line. They love warm, moist, soft skin (imagine sock and panty lines). They do not bury themselves in your skin. Their saliva is the irritant that causes the terrible, welts and molten lava feeling. Nail polish will not smother them (as lots of people assume) because they are not buried in your skin. In fact, I believe that the nail polish will cause the irritant to stay in the skin longer.

My thought process was this “Oh my God! My skin is on fire! How can I suck out the toxic acid saliva from this blood thirsty spawn of satin?” . I tried it all. I slathered it all on me. I even bought ChiggerRid, which did relieve the itch for the longest but I later found the barrier it leaves on your skin to be irritating and cause me to scratch, which in turn made the volcano erupt.

Then it hit me. The clouds parted. Angels sang. And a vision of Calcium Bentonite Clay almost brought me to tears of joy.

I whipped up a batch with Apple Cider Vinegar and added tea tree oil. I covered the bites. Waited 20 minutes then removed the clay. The itch was gone for hours at a time and I also saw the bites shrinking. I am on day 4 now and the bites I treated and almost gone and the itch is only that of a boring ol’ mosquito bite. The bites I haven’t treated (some places you just don’t want to slather with clay) are still the size of a quarter and burn like crazy when I scratch them.

I’m assuming that you are reading this because you are trying to find a cure for your lava skin. Here it is.


Chigger Relief:


2 tblspns Calcium Bentonite Clay (buy it hereΒ or at the vitamin shoppe)

1/4 teaspoon tea tree oil (buy it here, or Any pharmacy)

Apple Cider Vinegar (ACV) to desired consistency (I like about 1.5 tblspns)

In a glass jar add clay and slowly add ACV to desired consistency is achieved. Mix well with a plastic utensil. Add Tea Tree Oil. Mix well.

Apply concoction to bites just thick enough of a layer that you can’t see the bites any longer. Sit back and enjoy the relief for 20-30 minutes. When time is up remove the clay with a with a wet wash rag. Or you can go hose off outside. DO NOT WASH CLAY DOWN YOUR HOMES DRAINS IT WILL CLOG YOUR PIPES.

Do this a minimum of twice a day. Keep remaining clay mixture in the fridge (ITS EVEN BETTER WHEN ITS COLD!!!!!).

I like to apply plantain salve to the bites after the clay is removed. If you don’t have plantain salve Aloe is a great alternative. It relieves itch and helps the skin heal.

The clay mixture has cut my healing time by more than half. How has it worked for you?

23 thoughts on “Chigger Relief

    • Chrissie, that is a great suggestion for temporary relief of the bites you’ve scratched.
      I am severely allergic to chiggers and stay itchy for weeks, if not months.
      My recipe reduced the reaction time to days!
      Thanks for the suggestion!

  1. I don’t know where your home i located or if you have a wildflower called Jewelweed (Old fashioned name i “Touch me not.) Fill a canning jar with the plant and cover with your favorite oil-olive etc. Allow to steep for at least a week, a month i better. Drain the oil out warm (jut warm) it and mix with a little beewax. When the wax i melted into the oil pour into jelly jar or other container. The Jewelweed infusion i a wonderful relief for skin irritation, especially insect bite and poison ivy!

    • Jo! I have been looking for jewel weed everywhere. Supposedly its native to Georgia but I haven’t been able to find it anywhere!
      I make plantain salve for my bug bites that works miracles. But it is still no competition against chigger bites for me.
      My mixture seems to be the only thing that helps.
      I would love to get my hands on some jewelweed though. We have poison ivy everywhere and my husband is very allergic.
      Maybe I’ll find some this season?
      *fingers crossed*

  2. It’s 10pm. I am frantically searching for a remedy. Yours looks so hopeful. I wish I had the clay on hand. I have the vinegar and tea tree oil. Tomorrow….first thing… food store. I’m desperate. This is my first ever experience with chiggers. What fresh hell is this?!?!

    • Honey, its the seventh level!
      Until you can get the clay, try rubbing the bites with rubbing alcohol. And if you have plantain salve, that helps some.
      The clay recipe is the only thing that gave me results and I highly recommend it!
      Please let me know how it goes. I hope you find relief. Until then, know that I feel your pain!

      • Girl, you deserve a knighthood or a Congressional Medal of Honor or sainthood or something. I’m starting a petition to the Pope for early beautification. You have saved my sanity! I was at the health food store when it opened this morning. Got the clay. Went to church and suffered through. As soon as we got home I made the mix. The relief was so beautiful!!!! I actually took a nap. And last night I couldn’t sleep at all. So, THANK YOU!!! We have shared it to our Facebook page and will pin this and keep it close to our hearts. πŸ™‚

      • Fantastic!
        Thanks for letting me know that it worked for you as well.
        It was created out of the desperation of being in the same situation that you are in.
        I will dedicate my sainthood to all those suffering this terrible itch.

  3. Thank you! I haven’t used your recipe yet, but I plan to, and I *was* able to use the information you shared to get quick relief. In my town, bentonite is just not available right now — the only place which stocks it was out. I was hiking over the weekend and even though I had pants with elastic cuffs covering tight socks, the chiggers got in and I probably have a hundred bites on one leg, with a dozen on the other, and bites in ones-ies and two-sies along my midriff. Ugh. For me, chiggers are a delayed reaction kind of thing. I was hiking Saturday, but it wasn’t until Sunday night that I realized I’d been eaten up. Anyway, after reading your article and being unable to find bentonite clay, I *did* find a clay mask made by Freeman where the first ingredient is water and the second is bentonite. Yay! This gave me some immediate relief and proved the value of the bentonite. But I believe the ACV and tea treel oil you recommend will heal more quickly, so I’ve ordered clay online and plan tNEVER to be without it. Thank you for sharing!

  4. My little boy has them bad. Every spring they get him. I will try this in the morning -if he manages to sleep through the night. He is highly allergic too and they have lasted for weeks each year.

    Fingers crossed!

    • Oh no! I’m sorry It’s terrible watching your child suffer. Try putting it on him when he goes to bed as well. You have end up with some clay in his sheets but the more often you use it, the quicker he will heal. Please let me know how it works for him. I hope he feels better quickly.

  5. I am trying this as I leave this comment. It feels really good right now. I hope it releaves the itching. I don’t have plantain salve or plantain salve aloe. What else can I put on after the concoctions is removered?

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  7. Hi Chrissie,

    Thanks so much!

    I just ran to the store and bought some clay (already had the ACV and TTO) – just put it on. So far so good!

    For those who don’t have immediate access to the clay – – – Prior to this I was using a baking soda and water paste, or baking soda and ACV paste. Both worked well to alleviate the itching, but i’m hoping your concoction speeds the healing process.

    My first run-in with chiggers, so this is “interesting”.

    Thanks Again!

  8. Chrissie, many thanks for your chigger-itch-relief-concoction! I do use tea tree oil for bug deterrents but my daughter happen to get some really bad chigger bites(I didn’t realize how bad they could get until now) and I will definitely try this on her bites as her itching is quite terrible!! I really appreciate the info.. And Thank again! πŸ˜€

  9. Thanks, you’re a woman after my own heart.
    If you don’t have the clay, you can definitely use aluminum free baking soda or just make a plantain poultice in your blender with the ACV & TTO & baking soda or the clay. All of the above. Also I discovered my organic hand sanitizer made by Humboldt Distillery esp. for these COVID times that has 65% vodka, glycerin & peroxide works great for all bug bites. Just put a little in a small spray bottle. Spray a small amount on the bites & instant relief. Do this two or three times. It will kill the chiggers & cleanse the wound. Then follow up with aloe to moisturize. Made esp. for these COVID times by Humboldt distillery as their drinking vodka is only 40% (but organic). Less than $20 for a quart of it. Also been spraying my door knobs & surfaces. Just don’t use on wood. I also added my favorite essential oils to it. Love it. Very astringent so moisturize after using on skin & don’t inhale spray. Use sparingly & be safe. Please share. OKay.

  10. I really appreciate your work and helpful guidance on a Ways to Ease a Chigger Bites rashes and pain, awareness & Prevention that is very helpful to everyone!
    it is imperative. Reading this post will make everyone feel better about the Chigger Bites.

  11. ACV and Tea Tree only(no clay here) worked wonders! I had scratched several open. Got some sting from the ACV, but it was worth it!!

  12. Pingback: Chigger Relief | Homestead Heroine – Your Ideas Matter

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