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Microsan reveals the story behind its essential-oil based spider repellant spray, just in time for the invasion of our eight-legged friends.

As we bid goodbye to the summer sun and thoughts turn to dark nights and log fires, it's not just us humans who are honing the hibernating instinct.

The warm, wet weather of recent weeks has cast a spell on young spider communities who have equally retreated inside and although we don't want to hurt the little darlings, most of us would rather not share our office space or homes with them.

So it is with a collective sigh of relief that many companies have turned to us for the answer, as we specialise in essential oil-based air sprays that deliver a mist of repellent smells into the air and sends our armchair arachnids running for the hills.

This year it's safe to say the young males are back and they mean business! Residents in one Northern town reported finding spiders as big as mice and fear they are looking for a spot to lay hundreds of eggs.

Don't be fooled, these giant house spiders have a bite similar to a bee sting and although their fangs are often not long enough to pierce human skin, they don’t mind showing you them as they're not shy.

Vicki Jackson from Microsan knows to be well prepared for the hike in enquiries and orders this year: "We know that what we have in our Zephair sprays is gold dust because it's natural and essential oils won't harm any human it comes into contact with but because of its highly floral scent it sends spiders fleeing.

"Initially you will see more of them because they have an ant mentality and will pack their bag and get on the


move to another area of safety but if you've ensured that you've sprayed in every part of the office or home they won't have anywhere to bunk up and will simply move out".

And it’s not just the bugs we can see that Microsan products successfully target. It’s the invisible bugs that cause coughs, colds, influenza and that horrible winter vomiting bug, where the East Yorkshire firm have equally gained notoriety.

Like most monumental discoveries, Microsan realised the power of their essential oils by sheer chance.

All of their products are incredibly fragrant and were designed after a series of collaborations with scientists from Manchester Metropolitan University, who undertook trials with various blends of essential oils. These trials were undertaken at the Burns Unit at Wythenshawe Hospital. The objective being to reduce the spread of Airborne MRSA by diffusing the oils into critical environments.

After six months of trials, they



concluded that a 90% plus success rate was achieved

The whole psyche behind protection and prevention is an interesting one though. In the case of the spider spray, it's only at certain times of the year that we need to control the number of insects around us.

It was over a decade ago when Prof Edwards-Jones and her colleague Dr Anna Doran first developed the unique mixture of essential oils found to be most effective at killing bugs. They experimented using the oils in wound dressings and cream, before hitting on the idea of spraying oils into the air to kill germs present in that space.

Their products have been shipped and sent off to countries as far away as the US, Australia, Singapore, France and Dubai - and all from a little industrial park on the outskirts of Hull. Who’d have thought - this essentially British product could one day be used across the world - as our global population grows so will the need to keep one step ahead of the game.

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