How to Prevent Mosquito Bites
As promised from yesterday’s post for How To Stop Mosquito Bites Itching, I’ve compiled a big list of recommendations and home remedies for repellent suggestions.
A few things to note first:
- You pretty much have to stop breathing to not attract the attention of these annoying critters, a big attractor for them is the carbon dioxide from your breathing.
- It also seems they are attracted by scents like perfumes, sweat, body odor as well as body heat. Unless you stop using shampoos, soaps, deodorants and detergents–it’s hard to be scent free.
- From what I understand, DEET has proven to be the most effective 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.
- Wear light colored clothing, these critters are attracted to dark clothes
- Keep your body covered as much as possible (including wearing a hat), although they can find their way through the fabric–it does cut down on bites
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 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 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 neck. 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. I’ve listed them in the chart below…
*Seems to be strongly recommended. Also see this list of recipes for homemade repellents using a mix of essential oils.
Plants That Repel Them
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.
- Lemon Thyme
*(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
- You can purchase citronella torches to stand in the ground or set on table tops
- 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.
- Another trick you can try is to spray Listerine on the lawn or around the deck or campsite.
Items to Eat
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