Vaseline For Ants [Can It Be Used For Everything??]

Vaseline is a household product that has been around for nearly two centuries. 

We use Vaseline as a skin ointment and body lotion. 

The product commonly referred to as Vaseline is a derivative of crude oil. 

Its main ingredient is the sticky substance petrolatum.

Petrolatum is the base product in all petroleum jellies we use as home remedies.


Can Vaseline control ants?

To us humans, Vaseline is an effective skincare product.

Interestingly, if you have an ant problem, you can vaseline to keep ants away.


In its natural form, Vaseline is greasy.

Ants find it impossible to cross sticky substances.

Applying it to places frequented by ants makes an effective barrier deterring ants from proceeding beyond where it smeared.

That way, applying Vaseline keeps ants at bay.

carpenter ants
Group of ants on the ground close up


Ant use pheromones to communicate.

A thick layer of Vaseline conceals the pheromone trails made by ants, making it impossible for the ants to reach food sources identified by foraging workers.

Finally, Vaseline is not edible, so ants entering your home looking for food will not get attracted to it.

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How effective is Vaseline in ant control?


One leading problem hummingbird hobbyists face is ants invading the hummingbird’s nectar feeders.

Ants crave sugary foods, and the nectar in the hummingbird feeder is irresistible.

Keeping Ants Off Hummingbird Feeder

Most feeders hang or are suspended at only one contact point, and ants use the feeder contact point to access the nectar.

Applying a layer of Vaseline at the point the feeder is suspended effectively prevents the ants from accessing the nectar.

…Not so effective

Vaseline is non-toxic, and it’s not an ant bait. Unlike lethal gel baits, it does not attract ants because it’s not food, and Baits are slow acting.

A gel bait kills even the queen when the entire ant colony is fed; this outcome is not possible when using petroleum jelly.

Again, petroleum jelly does not act like a substance such as diatomaceous earth that kills ants when they come into contact with it.

It only stops ants from accessing the house because of its greasy nature. 

Even though it effectively deters ants due to the greasiness, it’s not an ant trap either. 

toxic liquid

Due to these limitations, petroleum jelly works best as a barrier when applied around your house.

Further, this greasy gel may only be effective against tiny ants whose infestation is not invasive or aggressive. 

You may have to use large scoops of the jelly to control larger invasive ants. 

Large quantities of petroleum jelly applied in visible or regularly accessible house areas look unattractive and unpleasant to the eye.

Also, this method works best indoors or in shaded areas and has limited applications for outdoor ant control needs.

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Can I use Vaseline to control ants in my garden?

Most ant species do not eat or attack plants, yet you often notice ant trails on them.

Ants have a symbiotic relationship with aphids.

Unlike ants, aphids attack and damage garden plants, and they feed on the plant sap and excrete honeydew the ants collect for food.

Ants protect the aphids from attack by rival bugs and pests that prey on them and, in return, collect the sugary aphid excretions.

You can disrupt the aphid-ant relationship to protect your garden crops using Vaseline.

To deter ants from climbing on the plants, apply a barrier of Vaseline on the stem.

Since ants find it nearly impossible to cross sticky substances, they won’t crawl the plants to collect the honeydew.

In reverse, the aphids will lose protection, and predators will wipe out exposed aphids.

Unfortunately, Vaseline melts away fast, especially in hot outdoor conditions.

You may have to repeat the application every few days; otherwise, the ants will return.

This one quick trick!

How do I apply Vaseline to control ants?

Ants can use even the smallest holes, cracks, or crevices to enter the house.

You need to seal all identifiable points the ant’s use and follow the ant trails to locate these points.

Once you identify the crevices that ants use, apply a coat of goop.


For effectiveness, ensure the surfaces are well cleaned and are free from dirt and dust so that the jelly sticks.

Sealing visible entries may be done by hand. Smear the petroleum jelly to plug the holes, window sections, cracks, or door jambs.

Using a silicone caulk to apply the petroleum jelly to sections or areas hard to reach with bare hands is easier.

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Is Vaseline the only product effective against ants?

As the shortfalls in the previous section reveal, the effectiveness of petrolatum-based products in ant control is limited.

Depending on the severity of your ant problem and to achieve better results, you may have to use this technique alongside others.

One personal hygiene product you can supplement Vaseline with is Baby powder.

Sprinkle the baby powder dust on the ants or their trails.

You can also use chalk.

Draw chalk lines to erase ant pheromones, thus disrupting their movement.

Other alternatives are Cinnamon, vinegar, and other essential oils.

spray bottle

Wipe down surfaces or countertops with a solution of these products.

Doing so interferes with the ant trails.

Ants hate the smell of these products and will keep off treated areas.

Note, Vaseline is a trading name loosely used to refer to most of the lotions we use around the house.

All products labeled petroleum jelly contains the same chemical ingredient, the greasy petrolatum.

So, a surface application of any other petroleum jellies you use in the house, such as Revitale White Petroleum jelly or Johnson’s baby jelly, will deter ants.

As Seen Here

Ant control Vaseline trick

One way to get rid of ants without using poison is using Vaseline. It is not a pesticide, and it does not kill ants.

But, since ants find it nearly impossible to crawl in sticky substances, they won’t invade indoor food sources or pet food with a barrier of Vaseline around.

For minor ant problems in the house, use baby powder and Vaseline to keep ants away.

baby powder

Since Vaseline is not lethal and is only an ant-repellant, supplement its use with other home remedies.

Household products are not guaranteed 100 percent effective in ant control, but they keep these insects away.

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