From what I understand, DEET has proven to be the most effective mosquito repellent. DEET is pretty crazy stuff though, so if you’d like to try less harsh solutions, there are plenty of tips below for you to give a shot.
Something to keep in mind: Since some people seem to be a mosquito magnet while others around them don’t get a single bite, I have the suspicion that there could be a personal body chemistry factor involved. And that could explain why a remedy that works for one person, may not work for another.
I suspect that’s why some people swear by the Bounce sheet method, or the Avon Skin So Soft solution, while others have a different experience. Bounce nor the Avon SSS did a thing for me btw, but I did include them in the list below. I know a few people who SWEAR by them.
Basics for Mosquito Bite Prevention:
- Wear light colored clothing, mosquitoes are attracted to dark clothes
- Keep your body covered as much as possible (including wearing a hat), although mosquitoes can find their way through the fabric–it does cut down on bites
Mosquito Bite Prevention Home Remedies & Tips
Vanilla Extract: A few different recommendations for this one, each contradicting the other. Some say to dab Vanilla Extract on your pulse points, others say to rub it all over your skin & dab your clothes. Some say the cheap stuff is what you have to use, others say the real, pure Vanilla is the only thing that will work. Some say to apply it full strength, others say you can dilute it with water and spray it on. Play around with Vanilla to see what gives you best results–there are plenty of believers for this one as a mosquito deterrent so I think there’s something to it.
Garlic: This isn’t a favorite thing to do day-to-day, but if you’re going camping or hiking through heavily mosquito infested areas, try a garlic powder and water paste. Apply to pulse points, behind knees, on shoes and ankles and a dab or two on your cheeks or somewhere on your face and kneck. Remember–keep out of eyes. And maybe stay out of public places too ;).
Essential Oils: Mix choice of essential oils with rubbing alcohol, or witch hazel, or distilled water and spritz on body or directly on cloth to rub on body (shake before each use). Or add a few drops in baby oil or olive oil then rub on skin. You can also apply drops along a strip of fabric (cotton) and tie around wrist. *Make sure to avoid mouth and eye areas when using essential oils.
- Citronella oil
- Lavender oil
- Catnip oil
- Eucalyptus oil
- Pennyroyal oil
- Tansy oil
- Basil oil
- Thyme oil
- Cedar oil
- Tea Tree oil
- Peppermint oil
- Lemongrass oil
*Seems to be strongly recommended
*Seems to be strongly recommended
Plants: Break off leaves and crush them roughly, rub them all over your clothes and skin. Toss the bruised leaves around the perimeter of your deck or patio. Also plant these in pots and arrange them around the patio. You could also infuse these in water and then use that as a spray.
Commercial Products (other than DEET items)
- Avon’s Skin So Soft (straight or mix 50/50 with rubbing alcohol)
- Bounce Sheets (hanging out of a pocket or waistband)
- Listerine (mixed 50/50 with household vinegar then sprayed all over body)
- Vicks VapoRub
Spray garlic powder and water all over the yard and bushes. Use a fertilizer hose attachment. Will need to be done bi-weekly (approx) or after a heavy rain.
Items to Eat (daily): Apparently the smell that comes out of your pores from a steady diet of the below deters mosquitoes. The items aren’t meant to be combined, they’re just different suggestions.
- B1 Vitamins
- Brewers Yeast