Does Irish Spring Repel Fleas? - Pest Control Sleuth (2023)

Using common household items to repel and kill insects is nothing new. Lots of the products we use have ingredients and scents that either attract or repel certain critters and can come in handy in a pinch.

I always thought it was crazy when my parents would do things like hanging Irish Spring soap in the garden, but they swore it kept deer and other mammals from eating their vegetables. This thing about bars of soap helping with garden pests wasn’t the only soap hack I had heard about.

In This Article:

(Video) Home Pest Control : How to Kill Fleas in 24 Hours

How Does Irish Spring Soap Repel Fleas?

One thing I have seen a lot is that Irish Spring soap can repel the common flea. Unfortunately, the criteria for what constitutes flea repellents depends on there being no fleas around, to begin with, and so the details and studies on soap repellents are murky at best. But we can take a look at the properties of Irish Spring soap to see if there is any way it could act as flea control and prevention method.

Bars of soap often contain ingredients that are regularly found in insect repellents, just not in high concentrations. On their own, most bars of soap will not stop fleas or other insects from biting you or living on pets. However, aspects of the soap can be used to discourage or repel pests if appropriately applied.

Does Irish Spring Repel Fleas? - Pest Control Sleuth (1)

(Video) How to get rid of fleas fast


The natural scents and distinct smell of Irish Spring make it handy as an air fresher or fabric protector. The original scent can deter closet and drawer pests without the smell of mothballs. Strong scents in dry places last for a long time, and most insects and pests find Irish Spring soap and the smell of mint to be overpowering.

The scent of the soap on a person or pet with flea issues will not be enough to remove or repel pests. Bar soap used as directed will not repel insects and will just clean your skin as directed; however, the smell can prevent pests from nesting in corners of basements and is a cheap method of mice deterrent.


The texture of the soap may not kill a single flea as a bar, but when Irish Spring soap is made into a pile of shavings, it can become a critter control hack. The more surface area exposed to air, the more spicy scents the soap will give off. A handful of shavings placed strategically around the home can deter the sneaky basement mouse and has been a useful pest-repelling method for decades.

Creating a finer shaving of Irish Spring soap can increase the chance of any flea treatment formula in the soap coming into contact with flea eggs and full-grown adult fleas. Flea biology shows that a cluster of flea eggs exposed to many non-toxic cleaning products can be rendered inert and not produce viable flea offspring. Cheap soap can repel fleas.

(Video) SECRET BAKING SODA HACK || The Most Powerful Organic Pesticide Mixture

Fats and Oils

The fats and oils in soap have long been used as a suffocate to protect plants from critters. Aphids, white flies, and countless other creepy crawlies have been destroyed by the fats and oils in a piece of soap. Animal fats and plant oils are combined to create a rich lather, and when a leaf is coated with that, pests never stand a chance.

Dissolving soap in the water and spraying it where house fleas hide or enter the home are good options for flea prevention. These soap hacks have been used for years and work as a non-toxic pest control solution. Most gardening books have whole sections on using dish and other soaps to kill pests on plants.

Ways to use Soap As a Pest Repellent

The way the soap is processed can make a huge difference regarding how pests are repelled with soap. The list of scents on the ingredient label on the bar of soap can be a good indicator of what pests it can treat. Anything with clove oil, eucalyptus oil, or a lemongrass product will have a greater impact as a pest repellent. Some ways to use soap bars are:

Hanging a Bar of Soap

Wild animals like mice and squirrels and larger animals like deer can be kept out of gardens by simply hanging or placing bars of soap around your garden. Foraging animals search for food by scent, and the pre-formulated scent of Irish Spring soap can be a natural deterrent

(Video) How To Get Rid Of Fleas Guaranteed (4 Easy Steps)


Shavings made from grating soap can be more easily placed in hard-to-reach places. Much like conventional pesticides are placed inside of walls, soap shavings can be sprinkled into dry, pest-friendly corners and gaps of your home, keeping insects and rodents out. This is effective in keeping the harbinger of fleas and mice out of your crawl spaces.

Made into a Solution

Adding water to soap shavings can create a liquid solution for application on indoor and outdoor pests. If you spray common entry points, you can keep ants and other insects from passing your threshold for a few days. When sprayed onto insects or eggs, the chemicals are sufficient to kill or immobilize most pests. Adding soap with other insecticidal or repellent oils can increase the effectiveness, while the stickiness of the dried soap allows longer treatment periods.

Broken or Cut into Pieces

Does Irish Spring Repel Fleas? - Pest Control Sleuth (2)

Sometimes slight discouragement is all that is needed to keep your space free of pests. Breaking or cutting a chunk of soap off of the bar and tossing it around your garden can deter skunks and other pests. This technique will not repel a determined animal but can be enough to dissuade the casual feeder from entering your garden

Other Pests Irish Spring Repels

Aside from fleas around your home and inside your couch, Irish Spring soap can be used to repel other pests. Knowing what creatures your household soap is effective against and which ones it isn’t can save you time and money when dealing with pests.

(Video) Verify | Does Irish Spring Soap work to ward off mosquitoes?

PestRepellent MethodEffectiveness
DeerHang bars of soapVery Effective
MiceShavings in cornersEffective
InsectsSpray on surfacesSomewhat Effective


Larger wildlife like deer can be very hard to keep out of gardens. In most cases, when plenty of food is available, a simple deterrent like Irish Spring soap can be enough to send the critters away from your garden and back into the wilderness. When food is scarce, fences and other wildlife exclusion methods will need to be incorporated with bars of soap to stop pests.


These critters are the leading cause of fleas in the home. Most pets are treated for fleas or have a flea collar making it hard for any adult fleas to survive on them. Rodents, however, are not treated and can carry the bugs into our homes that give flea bites and possible diseases. Shavings in places where mice move around can keep these pests out of your home.


Dry soap in drawers and closets can act as a deodorizer and pest deterrent. Without the camphoric smell of mothballs, Irish Spring soap can keep insects out of your home. The soap made into a spray solution can also be used as a repellent outdoors. Keep harmful insects at bay the non-toxic way by spraying soap at home entry points and on bug-infested plant leaves.


Will Irish Spring get rid of fleas? ›

Dear People's Pharmacy: I noticed when washing my dog that Irish Spring soap kills fleas instantly. You can see them start dying immediately. The fleas will come back if you don't treat the yard, but I don't really like the thought of exposing the environment or the animals to pesticides.

What bar soap kills fleas? ›

Dawn (and other soaps like it) creates a kind of surfactant, or surface tension, that will compromise the exoskeleton and make adult fleas sink,” he says. So essentially, the soap drowns the fleas.

Does Irish Spring soap keep animals away? ›

We've asked garden pest experts on why this particular soap is so effective. According to Leslie Vincent, a gardening expert from Atkins (opens in new tab), animals simply hate the smell of Irish Spring soap, and will leave your veggies alone if it's present in your backyard.

What is good to put on ground for fleas? ›

Use Diatomaceous Earth

Spread a thin coat of diatomaceous earth all over your lawn. diatomaceous earth, or DE, as it's more commonly called, is one of the most effective insect killers in the world. It's non-toxic and kills fleas quickly and effectively.

What is the best thing to keep fleas away? ›

Tips for managing fleas include vacuuming and dusting, washing all bedding, using topical flea treatments on pets, and, using EPA-registered insect repellents, and more. Fleas are some of the most annoying pests to deal with.

What is the best homemade flea killer? ›

Create a flea spray by mixing 4 liters of vinegar, 2 liters of water, 500 ml of lemon juice and 250 ml of witch hazel in a large spray bottle. Before applying the product around your home, you should vacuum properly, emptying the contents into an outside bin, and wash any bedding/cushions that could be infested.

What house cleaner kills fleas? ›

You will want to disinfect surfaces, and hot water can help to do just that. You may choose to use additional disinfectants, but hot water is phenomenal at killing fleas.

Do fleas like Dawn dish soap? ›

Yes, as with many other soaps and shampoos, Dawn dish soap will kill fleas on your pet. It works by reducing the surface tension of water, causing fleas to sink and drown. Dish soap also affects fleas by damaging their waxy exoskeletons.

What animal eats Irish Spring soap? ›

The Stricklands used Irish Spring soap as a deterrent to keep critters away but apparently possums like the flavored soap.

How Long Does Irish Spring last? ›

Irish Spring® body wash contains a unique, clinically-proven Odor Neutralizing Technology that provides 24 hours of long-lasting freshness.

What critters Does Irish Spring repel? ›

Irish Spring soap is a staple around this house, as it can help repel mice, spiders, chipmunks, and even DEER!

Why should you scatter soap in your yard? ›

It allows us to preserve beneficial insects in the garden. It also means that not every insect will be bothered by soap. Small, soft-bodied insects are the best candidates for management with soapy water. Aphids, whiteflies, thrips, and mites are all good candidates for soapy water sprays.

Is Irish Spring soap harmful to dogs? ›

Consuming soap that has pine oil in it can cause vomiting, skin irritation, drooling, weakness, loss of muscle control and can potentially harm their kidneys and liver. Soaps may also cause chemical burns in your dog's mouth, esophagus and stomach.

What can I spray on my bed for fleas? ›

Spray Vinegar and Water Solution Onto Sheets

You can easily make a flea-killing solution at home. Combine equal parts water and vinegar and spray over the fleas. Then, sprinkle salt all over the affected area. This helps keep the area dry, which aids in killing the fleas and larvae.

What time of day should I spray for fleas? ›

Answer: It is always advised to make your application either in the early morning or early evening time.

What can I rub on myself to repel fleas? ›

To protect yourself from fleas:
  • Use Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)-registered insect repellents containing DEET, picaridin, IR3535, Oil of Lemon Eucalyptus (OLE), para-menthane-diol (PMD), or 2-undecanone. ...
  • Covering skin with long-sleeve clothing and pants will minimize exposure to bites.
Aug 13, 2020

What kills fleas on carpet instantly? ›

Sprinkle Diatomaceous Earth

Once the diatomaceous earth attaches to the flea's body, it absorbs all moisture causing the flea to dry up and die. Sprinkling diatomaceous earth on your carpet is a highly effective way of killing fleas, and it's safe to use around humans and pets.

Does Vicks Vapor Rub repel fleas? ›

Deter Insects

It is also an insect repellant and kills fleas," says Jose. "This is the major substance in Vicks, aside from Vicks use in upper respiratory infections, that can be used to repel mosquitoes and even fleas."

How do you get rid of fleas when nothing is working? ›

Even when you don't see fleas, it's a good idea to regularly launder anything your dog sleeps on, and to vacuum floors and furniture at least weekly; a monthly steam-cleaning can also help. More than 90% of the flea population in the home is in the home environment in the form of eggs, larvae, and pupae.

How to get rid of fleas in the house fast with baking soda? ›

Baking soda does not kill adult fleas and will do nothing to protect your pets. It is excellent at absorbing smells and has been suggested by some online pet sites for use as a flea killer because it “may” dry out flea eggs and larvae. But there is no evidence that using baking soda to kill fleas is effective at all.

What is an all natural flea killer for house? ›

Natural Remedy: Diatomaceous Earth

This talc-like powder is made from silica, the same stuff that makes up sand. You can sprinkle it on carpets, bedding, and furniture. Let it sit for several hours, then vacuum it up. It kills fleas by drying them out.

What kills flea eggs? ›

Mopping and steam cleaning can help to kill flea eggs, and washing linens, bedding and pet beds in the washing machine on the hot cycle is also advisable. If possible, declutter your home so that it's easier to clean and there are fewer places for flea eggs to hide.

Does spraying vinegar keep fleas away? ›

Apple cider vinegar can't kill fleas, but it can help to repel them. Fleas don't like the smell or taste of it, so they're likely to avoid your pet if they have it on their fur. Dilute apple cider vinegar in water and add it to a spray bottle.

Can fleas live in hardwood floors? ›

As far as wooden floors are concerned, fleas won't survive on their surface for a long time, as they have nothing to attach themselves to. But, they will probably be hiding in small nooks and crannies in the floor. They can survive there and breed in the dust and debris which is hidden.

Can vinegar get rid of fleas? ›

While Apple Cider Vinegar does not kill fleas, it may repel them because fleas dislike its smell and taste. One of the most simple ways to use this natural flea repellent is to make a solution out of equal parts apple cider vinegar and water.

Why do fleas jump into soapy water? ›

Fleas are so light weight that they can bounce right off the surface of the water because the surface tension of the water prevents them from breaking through. Adding the dish soap reduces the surface tension so the fleas slip through and drown.

What is the best homemade flea shampoo? ›

Using a clear squirt bottle (found here), add equal parts of vinegar, dish soap, and water depending on the size of your container. Prepare a warm bath for your dog. Let the dog soak so that all of his/her hair is completely wet. Apply the shampoo and lather the dog.

How long until dawn dish soap kills fleas? ›

Allow about 5 minutes for the dish soap to completely kill the fleas before you begin rinsing. Use a cup of water or a handheld shower head to wash the soap off. Start from the top of your pet's body and work your way down towards the tail.

Does Irish Spring soap attract mice? ›

Irish Spring Soap has a strong fragrance that helps to repel mice. Their sharp sense of smell finds this fragrance to be too strong. Many testers say that putting soap shavings strategically keeps their home mice free.

Does Irish Spring keep mice away? ›

The bottom line is the perfumes in this soap tell mice, rats, chipmunks, and other critters to stay clear. Irish Spring comes in different scents and varieties, and I have found that as long as it is Irish Spring in general it will work just fine.

Do raccoons like Irish Spring soap? ›

Soap the yard

Raccoons use their superb sense of smell to forage for food, and some scents are really effective at keeping them away. The ingredients in Irish Spring soap are generally effective in keeping raccoons and other small mammals out of your yard.

Why does Irish Spring smell so good? ›

But the most important thing is the aroma, which has been produced by the same Irish family for centuries (probably), a family that picks nearby clover and digs up local peat to give the soap its distinctive and pleasant odor.

Why did Irish Spring change their scent? ›

We have decided to update our original fragrance while keeping our legacy in mind. This change was necessary as we believe it was time for Irish Spring to step up and bring new and exciting experiences to our loyal users. We're so sorry our scent didn't hit the mark for you.

Is Irish Spring harsh? ›

Many soaps are also filled with a variety of irritants that can exacerbate dry skin. Fragrance (Irish Spring, the entire Axe line, everything Bath and Body works has ever made) is often irritating. Anti-bacterial agents are also often very irritating.

What is special about Irish Spring soap? ›

Irish Spring Original bar soap delivers the original formula you love, with a fresh and clean scent to leave you feeling refreshed. It provides 12-hour deodorant protection, so you can feel fresh throughout the day.

Does Irish Spring deter spiders? ›

Irish Spring can help repel not just mosquitoes but mice and spiders as well. Break it up into chunks and place it around your tent and campsite for some added protection. You buy this soap at your local dollar store, making this a cheap and effective option.

Can I wash my hair with Irish Spring bar soap? ›

The answer is yes you can. But it will not feel the same as when you wash your hair with shampoo. Natural soap will clean your hair but it will leave your hair feeling slightly waxy.

What soap repels insects? ›

SALLYEANDER Sallye Ander No-Bite-Me Soap - Bug & Insect Repellent Soap - 1 Bar - Safe for Kids and Infants - Repels Mosquitoes, Black Flies, Fleas, and Ticks.

Do squirrels like Irish Spring? ›

Keep Squirrels Out of Your Garden

Protect it by grating some Irish Spring soap around your plants. Squirrels can't stand the smell of it and will stay away.

Do animals like Irish Spring? ›

To keep pesky mammals at bay, Irish Spring soap can be added to your garden as an inexpensive repellent, since animals find the stench unpleasant.

What does Dawn dish soap do to your yard? ›

Dish detergents disrupt the cell membrane of these soft, small insects and smother them to death. Grubs drown in dish soap and are suffocated by the fluid coating them. Dish soap has been shown to kill other lawn insects as well, and even dries out and kills fungus in lawns.

Will Irish Spring hurt my plants? ›

Irish Spring soap does not always eliminate pests completely but can be a helpful tool to reduce the rate of attack on plants. Irish Spring won't hurt your plants, either, so if you're growing edibles you won't have to worry about contaminating your produce with chemicals.

Can you dump soapy water on grass? ›

Many people use their lawns to wash their vehicles or similarly, will pour their used buckets of soapy water on the lawn afterward. Unfortunately, excess soap to harm your lawn. While the water and dirt are perfectly fine for the yard, some soaps may be doing you more harm than good.

What scents do fleas stay away from? ›

Natural flea repellents such as citronella, eucalyptus, peppermint, and geraniol may naturally repel fleas. If your pet doesn't mind a spray bottle, dilute a few drops of your chosen repellent into 10-13 fl oz of water and spray directly onto your pet's coat.

Can I bathe my dog with Irish Spring? ›

You shouldn't use it for bathing your dog if that's what you are implying. Dogs have a different PH level in their skin than humans.

What will smother fleas? ›

Sprinkle Diatomaceous Earth

Once the diatomaceous earth attaches to the flea's body, it absorbs all moisture causing the flea to dry up and die. Sprinkling diatomaceous earth on your carpet is a highly effective way of killing fleas, and it's safe to use around humans and pets.

What lotion do fleas hate? ›

Geranium oil, or rose geranium oil, has long since been used as a natural means of getting fleas to flee.

What animal would take Irish Spring soap? ›

The Stricklands used Irish Spring soap as a deterrent to keep critters away but apparently possums like the flavored soap.

Can Dawn be used on dogs? ›

"Dawn dish soap can be a safe choice to bathe your dog in rare circumstances, but it is not recommended as a regular shampoo." Your dog's skin can be sensitive to allergies, have different coat conditions, and even different pH levels than human skin, so this strong soap can be very irritating to their skin.

Can I wash my hair with Irish Spring? ›

Description. Irish Spring 5-in-1 Men's Body Wash and Shampoo for Hair, Face and Body gives you an all-over clean feeling. This body wash washes away bacteria and retains skin's natural moisture, and is made to be used on your hair, face, and the rest of your body.

What dish liquid kills fleas? ›

Yes, as with many other soaps and shampoos, Dawn dish soap will kill fleas on your pet. It works by reducing the surface tension of water, causing fleas to sink and drown. Dish soap also affects fleas by damaging their waxy exoskeletons.

Will vacuuming everyday get rid of fleas? ›

According to extensive studies conducted at Ohio State University, vacuuming is indeed an effective way of getting rid of fleas! Through these studies, scientists discovered that vacuuming killed 96% of adult fleas from carpets and 100% of the flea pupae and larvae.

How do you keep fleas off me while I sleep? ›

Covering skin with long-sleeve clothing and pants will minimize exposure to bites. Flea bites often occur on the lower legs and feet, protect these areas with long socks and pants. Treat clothing and gear with products containing 0.5% permethrin.


1. SIMPLE & EASY-Kill All Your Pesky Rodents without poison or snap traps: As easy as making a PB&J
(- Cougar Ridge Ranch)
2. 10 Organic Ways to Control Pests in the Garden
(Self Sufficient Me)
3. Pest Control : How to Repel Squirrels
4. Watch Bed Bugs Get Stopped in Their Tracks | Deep Look
(Deep Look)
5. TRY THIS 4 CLUSTER FLIES! Use RAPID release AEROSOLS & kill cluster fly infestations! UK pestcontrol
(Pest Interceptors)
6. Get Rid of Pest INFESTATION for Cheap - Here's How
(Hume Builds)
Top Articles
Latest Posts
Article information

Author: Duane Harber

Last Updated: 04/14/2023

Views: 5367

Rating: 4 / 5 (71 voted)

Reviews: 86% of readers found this page helpful

Author information

Name: Duane Harber

Birthday: 1999-10-17

Address: Apt. 404 9899 Magnolia Roads, Port Royceville, ID 78186

Phone: +186911129794335

Job: Human Hospitality Planner

Hobby: Listening to music, Orienteering, Knapping, Dance, Mountain biking, Fishing, Pottery

Introduction: My name is Duane Harber, I am a modern, clever, handsome, fair, agreeable, inexpensive, beautiful person who loves writing and wants to share my knowledge and understanding with you.