▷ Natural Remedies for Silverfish

Natural Remedies for Silverfish

By Sabrina Wilson / February 8, 2017

People that are afraid of bugs are really not going to like silverfish. This long bug is shaped like a carrot and can resemble a centipede. They have enough legs to make anyone feel pretty squeamish. It’s one thing to come across one of these bugs outside in the wild, but another to see one in your home.

The good news is that these little pests don’t harm people, but the bad news is that they can be rather rough on your home as they may damage books, foodstuffs, boxes, wallpaper, clothing and more. These natural remedies for silverfish can help you to keep these creepy crawlies out of your home for good.

Our Top Recommendation 

Almost regardless of which insect is infesting your home or yard, our top recommended solution is the same. Cedar oil is a safe, non-toxic and all natural solution for killing and repelling most insects.

Cedar oil does not harm beneficial insects like bees and butterflies, but it is a contact killer and effective repellent for most insects you’d want to get rid of. See this article to learn more about cedar oil or to see the full range of cedar oil products, click here.

#1 Plumbing Issues

One of the easiest natural remedies that exist for dealing with silverfish is dealing with the natural conditions that attract them into your home. Silverfish thrive in a damp environment, especially if that damp environment has their favorite food, paper products. Silverfish will be less likely to try to invade your home if they no longer have the environment they enjoy.

You’ll want to have any leaking pipes fixed, ensure that your appliances and fixtures do not have any leaks, and deal with any foundation leaks. If your home is just damp without a reason behind it, a dehumidifier may be something that you’ll need to look into to get the dampness out of the air.

Note: Don’t just look in your basement as these critters can also take up space in bathrooms around your home along with hiding in your attic where your roof may have a leak.

#2 Book Upkeep

Readers beware, unless you only read eBooks, your books are a smorgasbord for these critters. If you’ve found silverfish in your home, it’s time to do a little upkeep on your books. You’ll want to inspect your books for damage or signs of infestation. Take all of your books out, and vacuum them very well.

Old book spines are a key spot that you need to check for bugs and their eggs, so vacuum these as well as you can. Continue vacuuming all around your shelves in any cracks or crevices nearby to suck up any lingering bugs or eggs in the area. You may want to take a page out of the next item’s book, and put some dried lavender sachets around your bookshelves.

#3 Essential Oils

When it comes to essential oils as a natural remedy for silverfish, there is one that stands out from the crowd: lavender oil(buy it here)​​​. Silverfish are repelled by the scent of lavender, and you can create a great spray to keep your home smelling nice for you while making it smell bad to the unwanted creepy critters. You can take a teaspoon of lavender essential oil and add it to a small spray bottle of water. Spray this around your home, and you’ll get all the benefits of a nice smelling home minus silverfish. Talk about a real win-win for everyone involved.

The other fantastic essential oil for killing all sorts of bugs, including silverfish, is cedar oil. You can buy it in spray bottles just for this purpose and spray it in the areas where you see the silverfish. ​

Where to Buy Cedar Oil

For a full range of cedar oil products for use on yards, pets, livestock, humans and more, visit Cedarcide.

#4 Diatomaceous Earth

Diatomaceous earth is another great option for dealing with bugs like silverfish. This appears to be harmless dust to the naked eye, but it’s fatal for bugs to crawl through it. This natural dust is actually crushed up fossils of diatoms, and what it does is act like a natural desiccant. The exoskeleton of the silverfish will have the lipid moisture sucked away which ultimately will result in their death.

The best thing about this dust is that when applied in a dry area, it will remain forever. After an area gets wet and the diatomaceous earth is also wet, you will need to reapply it to continue getting the same effect. One trick that book lovers can use is to sprinkle a small amount of food grade DE around your bookshelves to help keep silverfish away from your precious books.

#5 Lemon Water Mix

Silverfish don’t like the smell of citrus, so you can use this smell to help keep them away from your home. You can either use a citrus essential oil blend, or you can make your own lemon water to chase away these creatures.

You can take a lemon, juice it, add it to a spray bottle along with some water, and you’ve got your own juice. You can also use lemon juice in the bottle if you don’t have any lemons on hand. Now, you can always use the juice to make your own homemade lemonade to sip in your pest-free home.


At the end of the day, you want your home to be free and clear of pests like the silverfish. It can be hard sometimes to not reach outright for the chemical solution to your pest problem in your home, but knowing that these chemicals can be in many instances more harmful than the silverfish themselves can give you an extra incentive in trying a different route. Your peace of mind in not coming across a slithering little bug is worth taking the time to try out some of these natural remedies for silverfish.

Have you tried any of these natural remedies yourself? Do you have something else that works like a charm for keeping the silverfish away? Let everyone know below in the comments, and share your success with others.

About the author

Sabrina Wilson

Sabrina Wilson is an author and homemaker who is passionate about a holistic approach to health. When she is not writing she can be found tooling around in her garden with the help of her appropriately named dog Digby, bicycling in the park, and occasionally rock climbing…badly. Sabrina is a staff writer for the Organic Daily Post.

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