Leave These Household Items At Home To Keep Ants Out Of Your Tent

The best thing about camping is having the chance to get out into nature and simply relax outdoors with your family or friends around the bonfire. However, the one annoying thing about spending time outdoors is that you have to deal with the presence of little critters who may try to get into your tent and food — and one of the most common of these pests is ants. You probably already know that you need to seal up all your food and clean up well after cooking to keep ants and other bugs away from your campsite. What you probably didn't know is that even if you are vigilant with food storage, ants may still be attracted to your tent by sweet-smelling toiletries.


In fact, the sweet scent of common products like deodorant, perfumes, lotions, and toothpaste could all be drawing ants to your campsite to check it out. So, when camping, it's best to try and bring unscented toiletry products and store your toothpaste in a sealed Ziploc bag. If you can't bring unscented, you can try and bring products that don't smell sweet or smell like things that ants don't particularly like such as lavender, peppermint, cinnamon, or citrus.

What do you do if ants have already found your tent?

If ants have already gotten into your toiletries and have found your campsite, more ants will already be on the way. This happens because ants leave behind chemical trails that lead others to possible food sources. So, in order to get rid of ants from your campsite, you need to disrupt those chemical trails. One simple trick to get rid of ants is to make a solution of water and vinegar and spray it around areas where the ants are congregating. If you don't have vinegar handy or simply don't like the smell, other options that work well are dish soap or orange oil mixed with hot water.


If you didn't bring any of these options or a spray bottle with you, you can also go old school and simply sweep up the ground and dirt around your tent to physically disrupt the ant's scent trails. You also don't need a broom to do this and can instead use a book, folder, or leafy branch.

Other ways to keep ants away from your camp

If you know you will be going camping somewhere that tends to have an ant problem, you can also bring some diatomaceous earth and sprinkle it around your tent or campsite. This works well because diatomaceous earth is a great insect-repellent and is also non-toxic to all fish and animal life making it the best environmentally-friendly way to repel the little critters. However, diatomaceous earth only works while dry and will become useless after getting covered with morning dew or rain.


Another thing you can do to keep the ants away is to make sure to wipe down your camping tables and chairs after eating and before going to bed. If ants are still trying to climb up your table and get to your things, you can make it unclimbable by placing each leg of the table in a lid or container full of water. This will make the table legs unreachable for the ants and they will likely move on to an easier target.