By Mary from AZ
Please use natural alternatives even if they don't work perfectly rather than Deet! About a couple of decades ago I used to go fishing 'a lot' and tried using Deet one summer and mid-way in to the Summer I started having breathing problems and weird body nervous sensations that happened only when using it. As soon as I stopped using it those things stopped but I believe to this day that breathing the chemicals in the Deet were part of the road to my current Emphysema :-(
Here are a couple of links of information regarding Deet and one of them has sound alternatives:
I am allergic to mosquitos and I have tried EVERYTHING. The ONLY thing that works for me is OFF or Cutter and it MUST be DEEP WOODS. Avon, Bounce and cintronella do not work for me. Luck!
I live in Northern Saskatchewan, and I will tell you that mosquitoes laugh at Skin so soft and Bounce sheets.
If you want to use a repellent, you need to get one with a high concentration of Deet. I use Deep Woods Off. In the green or blue can. Regular Off in the orange can does not have a high enough concentration.
If you wish to use something to keep them away from your campfire or picnic spot, you can use mosquito coils, which are partially effective, or for something that really works, the Off Lantern that has a candle and a small "repellent mat" that is heated by the candle and gives off a repellent OR you can get a Thermocell which heats the mats with a butane cartridge. The OFf lamp is good for patios and such; the butane burner Thermocell is good for taking into places where you don't have a flat surface to set a candle.
Other products DO NOT WORK. Citronella candles or spraying listerine or whatever is a total waste of time. If those products do keep away mosquitoes, likely waving your hand idly or the occasional slap will do as well. Don't bother.
There are a ton of recipes on this site, but I've been experimenting with one i found;
1 cup flat Coors beer (i used light miller genuine draft beer and i don't think it matters, but maybe further experimenting will prove wrong)
1 cup epsom salts
1 cup Listerine mouth wash-ONLY the brown, original kind. i used generic store brand.
mix it up really, really well in a spray bottle because I didn't know that the epsom salts take a while to dissolve. so i filled my bottle (I ended up trying three) and the bottle promptly wouldn't spray; undissolved epsom salts clogged the stem of the sprayer.
once they dissolved i had no problem spraying it.
I spray it in the area where I read in the back yard.
it does kill other things too. it doesn't seem to effect gnats and gnat-like bugs, but we have a lot of strange bugs in Texas.
For gnats and their other flying relatives, I'm using the apple cider vinegar and lemon Palmolive (only the lemon) dish washing liquid is supposed to work. I put it outside in a plastic plate and while i got a few gnats, mostly i got a moth and these weird beetles we have in Houston, Tx USA. (This recipe and others like it are on this site).
Bouce dryer sheets, Avon skin so soft, Avon sos plus rubbing alcohol, Avon sos and water all didn't work for me for some reason.
There's another one I'm still test driving and that is vanilla extract on my pulse points. I might have had a little luck, but I might just be wanting it to work.
One recipe says it should be mixed with alcohol or water, I can't remember, but will try both.
Then there was Caress soap that was recommended. I bathed in the shower gel, no luck. I wet the bar itself and smoothed soap and water on my skin, no luck.
Bounce sheets didn't work, but then I found out on this site that they have to be the original scent. Will try it again.
I bought one of those mosquito fans you attach to your belt or just lay it close to you. You turn it on and the fan sprays mosquito repellent around you, not a mist or anything just the fumes. The repellent disks fit into the fan. it's about as long as my hand. I don't think it works really really well though. I've been using it since it came out. Eats absolutely eats batteries, but then I'm outside using it a lot too.
Anyway, good luck and if you have good luck with a recipe would you please be kind enough to post it?
Try a Bounce fabric softener sheet. People who are outdoors a lot like mail carriers, golfers,etc. put one in their pocket to keep all the insects away.
Place a dryer sheet in your belt loop. It's supposed to stop mosquitoes from bothering you.
If you are into Avon products, you can use skin so soft it repels bugs or I also have found that if you use dryer sheets and tie on your clothes it also repels bugs.
Go to the pharmacy & ask for a bottle of citronella. Then before you go out put a dab on exposed skin. I live in Virginia where they are really bad. I have lived here 19 years and this has always worked for me.
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