Scram Skeeters! How to Fight Off & Drive Away Mosquitoes

As promised from yesterday’s article about relief for itching bites, I’ve compiled a big list of recommendations for ways to deter and drive away mosquitoes (including some homemade insect repellent recipes).

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 breath.
  • 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 skeeter magnet while others around them don’t get a single bite, I suspect that there could be a personal body chemistry factor involved. That could explain why a remedy that works for one person, may not work for another.

This would help explain why some people swear by the Bounce dryer sheet method, or the Avon Skin So Soft solution, while others have a different experience. Neither Bounce nor the Avon SSS did a thing for me btw, but I did include them in the list below…too many people SWEAR by their effectiveness and that shouldn’t be ignored.

Basics For Success:

  • Wear light colored clothing, these critters are drawn to dark garments and it seems to be because dark clothing retains heat better (and the warmth is what’s attracting the mosquitoes).
  • Keep yourself covered as much as possible (including wearing a hat). Although they can find their way through the fabric, this will help cut down on bites.

Suggested Helpers & 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’s required, others say the real, pure Vanilla is the only thing that will work. Some advise applying it full strength, others recommend diluting it with water then spritz 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 because things will be a tad aromatic I’m sure ;).

Essential Oils: Mix choice of EO 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).

Another option is to add a few drops in baby oil or olive oil then rub on skin.

You can also apply along a strip of fabric (cotton) and tie around wrist. *Make sure to avoid mouth and eye areas.

I’ve listed the EO’s that promise best results in the chart below…

Citronella Lavender Catnip Eucalyptus *Pennyroyal *Tansy
Basil Thyme Cedar Tea Tree Peppermint Lemongrass

*Seems to be strongly recommended.

Homemade Mosquito Repellents

If you’re interested in experimenting with making your own concoctions, here are a handful of different recipes that you can try. Most of these have been sent in by readers and they’re all easy enough to make (thank you for sharing guys!).

The majority are made with assorted essential oils but there is one shared by Jennifer that requires only simple ingredients (garlic cloves, mineral oil, water and lemon juice) so the expense is really minimal.

Here’s a tip sent in by Angela for her tried-and-true solution:

This is a recipe given to me by my aunt, I find that it stores well but should be used within the year.

1/4 cup vegetable oil combined with these essential oils (mix and store in a spray bottle):

8 drops cedar
5 drops eucalyptus
4 drops lavender
2 drops rosemary
2 drops juniper
1 drop peppermint
1 drop cinnamon
1 drop clove

Here’s one from Mark:

I like this because it only needs a few items and it’s a breeze to put together. Make sure you shake it up for a few minutes each time before you use it.

I hope your readers try it because it does work just as well as bought and it’s better to use on your body than those poisonous sprays that they try selling us in stores.

2 cups witch hazel
1 teaspoon vegetable glycerin
20 drops citronella EO
20 drops lemongrass EO

Instructions: Mix in a spray bottle and shake well before use.

Jennifer sent this one in:

Mosquitoes hate garlic and so when I saw this in a magazine a few years ago I clipped it, tried it and found that it did a good job keeping me bite free.

Directions: Mince a few cloves of garlic then cover with mineral oil. Allow it to sit for at least 24 hours. Next you take a teaspoon of *just the oil* and mix it with 2 cups of water and 1 teaspoon of freshly squeezed lemon juice. Strain through a cheesecloth if you have any floaties then pour into a spray bottle. Shake before each use.

Here’s another recipe from Mother Earth News that was online at one time that I can no longer find:

Since the 1999 appearance of West Nile virus in North America, itโ€™s more important than ever to keep these pests at bay. You can outsmart them with this homemade, Earth-friendly solution.

It couldn’t be easier to make, ingredients needed are any combination of these EO: basil, cedarwood, citronella, juniper, lemon, myrrh, palmarosa, pine, rose geranium and/or rosemary mixed with 190-proof grain alcohol (Everclear). Quantities: 2 1/2 tsp of EO mixed with 1 cup of the alcohol. The combination of assorted EO’s makes this an effective option for fighting a variety of mosquito species and other insects.

Here’s one from another source no longer available online…

Yarrow Bug Spray

Fill a jar with fresh yarrow flowers and leaves (cut into small pieces) or use 1/2 jar full of dried yarrow. Cover with vodka, seal jar with lid and allow to brew for a week. Strain, fill a spray bottle 1/2 full with the infusion liquid then top up with water. Add a few drops of catnip essential oil (adjust as needed for effectiveness). Shake well before each use, may need to reapply every hour or so.

Plants That Drive Them Away

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 treat the tisane as a spritzer.

  • Lemon Thyme
  • Citronella
  • Lavender
  • Basil
  • Catnip
  • Pennyroyal
  • Tansy
  • Marigolds

Commercial Products

*(other than DEET items)

  • Avon’s Skin So Soft (straight or 50/50 ratio with rubbing alcohol)
  • Bounce Sheets (hanging out of a pocket or waistband)
  • Listerine (50/50 ratio with household vinegar then applied all over body)
  • Vicks VapoRub
  • You can purchase citronella torches to stand in the ground or set on table tops

Household Hacks

  • Spray garlic powder and water all over the yard and bushes. Use a fertilizer hose attachment. Will need to be done bi-weekly (approximately) or after a heavy rain.
  • Another trick you can try is to apply Listerine on the lawn or around the deck or campsite.

Consumables

*Daily

Apparently the smell that comes out of your pores from a steady diet of the below deters skeeters. The items aren’t meant to be combined, they’re just different suggestions.

  • Garlic
  • B1 Vitamins
  • Brewers Yeast
  • Lemons

Related Posts

Scritch-Scratch: Over 40 Mosquito Bite Itch Relief Tips Gentle Abrasive Scrubs To Tackle Scum & Dried Crusty Gunk

Comments

    • Womble
    Reply

    All great tips….mine is a South African repellent spray called “Tabard”. It contains Deet but doesn’t stink and works! Have tried every tip there is and although most can be effective this spray provides 100% protection, they absolutely hate it and won’t come near. The war continues….good luck soldiers!

    • Karin
    Reply

    A few things that have already been mentioned – don’t have any standing water around for them to breed; take brewers yeast — this works because it contains B vitamins, namely B6 which is a vitamin that has been recommended by nutritionists since the 60s for prevention of mosquito bites, but the taste is not mild! Mixing it with orange juice works well. But the easiest way to stop mosquitos from biting you is internally by taking vitamin B6 -You can start by taking 25-50 mg three times a day to get it into your system. It’s cheap (100 tablets for $2.50 or so) and easily available at any chain drug store – AND it WORKS.

    • Cathi
    Reply

    Haha. Had to comment on the cholesterol and sweets comment. I am the person everyone loves to have outside around the fire because I attract all the mosquito’s in the entire woods and my cholesterol is lower than normal and I don’t even eat sugar!! While watching your sugar intake and lowering your cholesterol is good this will NOT keep mosquitoes away.

      • QUE?
      Reply

      Thank you! I AGREE!!

    • Gracie
    Reply

    My friend Neil swears by eating garlic and onions all year long. The combination keeps mosquito and ticks away while he picks blackberries at the Lake of the Ozarks in summer-time: but it also wards off influenza and colds in the winter-time. No one wants to get close enough!

    • CandaceS
    Reply

    I have a “Mosquito Shoo” Geranium plant. The idea is you pick some of the leaves, crush them by wadding up and rolling around in your hand to start releasing the oils, and rub on your skin. My husband is a mosquito magnet, and I’ve tried it on him a few times. I try to rub in on pulse points first, and then I just make a few good swipes up and down the arms, legs, and neck. The smell is similar to citronella, but it’s a fresh, botanical smell–none of that yucky chemical-ness about it. It’s supposed to be all or part of what Citronella is made from anyway.

    So far, it seems to work!! Not 100%, but bug spray never is for us either.

    • Amanda
    Reply

    My husband got bitten on his cheek tonight and was afraid that his face would swell shut like his arm and hand swelled last week from a massive bite. He tried washing it immediately with soap and water, aviding scratching (which is really hard to do), rubbing a thick paste of baking soda and water (just to make it sticky), rubbing with hand liquid soap, icing it with an ice cube wrapped in paper towel, hydrocortizone cream and finally 2 benedrils and a tylenol… and his quarter sized bite mark has shrunk to a small red mark. Phew!

      • Melinda
      Reply

      I have a bite on my cheek right now. I used baking soda and water last night and slept with it on. It is swollen though, and I am miserable. Cant wait to go home and do what ever I can to get the swelling down!

    • Michelle
    Reply

    Just tried the Vicks Vapo Rub idea. Been itching all day with bites from several days ago. It worked!! And, it’s also the cheap grocery store knock off rub to boot! Crazy relief! Try it!

    • olivia
    Reply

    diaper rash cream is very soothing for bites from fleas or mosquitos

      • Bug-Eyed
      Reply

      Olivia- I just tried that and it worked great!!! Better than anything else I’ve tried so far.

    • starr
    Reply

    baby lotion works really good and fast

    • Lynn
    Reply

    Just a quick note that DEET also removes nail polish – so don’t use it if you want your nails to look nice!!
    ๐Ÿ™‚

    I really hope some of these things work! I can’t stand the bites anymore!!!

    • Clarice
    Reply

    Your list is very impressive, ut what works for me is baking soda and water. just mix until pasty then apply to bitr area, while it is drying it will cool down the bite area and decrease the itchy feeling.

    • Ann
    Reply

    Mosquitoes are terrible in the Hlll Country of Texas. Alot of moisture from so many trees and plants, etc. And if humid weather sets in….forget about going outside. They will literally eat you alive. I heard Bounce drier sheets might help and boy do they. If they are heavy around us while out and about…I rub the sheet over my skin and clothing, even shoes and then put back into my pocket or belt. I no longer have to hid in the car at the park while everyone else enjoys. Try them…..they work well! Keep a box in all your vehicles, won’t have to worry about leaving them at home then. And when the smell goes out of them…throw them in the laundry, not the trash…they will still work for in the drier when washing clothes. And the box in your vehicle, smells it up nicely too!

    • Diana
    Reply

    We bought a bug zapper. We’ve had a bug zapper for at least 4 years and we live in the country. I think it cost us around $99.00 on sale. But boy its worth the investmet. One friend says she didn’t want one cause someone told her it attracts bugs..Thanks my friend I sure hope you’re right.
    While my neighbour has bats living in between the walls of her house. ๐Ÿ™ she thought that those bats would do the trick to get rid of mosquitos..NOT !
    we sit on our deck in the evening and we don’t get bothered by mosquitos. We also burn citronella. So between the strategically place bug zapper and the citronella we are mosquito free.
    My neighbour comes here in the evening for her glass of wine, knowing full well that she won’t get eaten alive.
    We also use listerine as a bug repellent for our horses and it works like a charm. Our neighbour feeds garlic gloves (pre crushed she buys at a store) puts it in the oats for the horses. badda bing it works great.
    So I figure if I take the garlic everyday it would help us…AND IT DOES. I suspect anything with an antiseptic base will work. We also use anti bacterial soap (for dishes and pine sol mixture for mosquito spray) We tried it on the horses first. When I don’t see those tails swishing around madly I know I’ve hit paydirt.
    I wonder why God created mosquitos?????
    hugssssss
    Diana

    • Jim
    Reply

    Safest way to avoid the mosquitos is the wind. If there is no wind in your back yard or patio, try to get a couple of hosehold fans and startegically place them to get a nice breeze all over the place. Mosquitos cannot fly thru the wind.

      • Caty
      Reply

      OMG somebody else that thinks like me. I bought one of those large fans that you use to circulate a large amount of air and put it on my deck. The buggers don’t stand a chance and no stinky stuff on me. I thought of this the summer I tore all the ligaments in my knee and spent more time sitting on the patio then playing…an easy free meal for the skeeters.

    • Sally B.
    Reply

    u can use some kind of chinese smoke. works like a charm. the problem is that it smells like citarage

    • sally
    Reply

    what you do is put lavender oil and eucalyptus oil together to make a spray and you spray it all over your body and any kind of bugs will stay away because of the strong smell!!

    • ang
    Reply

    im curious to why theses mosquitos only bite my legs…i do not have any mosquito bites anywhere else and i think this is odd. iv never seen this before besides on me..maybe someone knows why or how to stop it. thank you

      • Leah
      Reply

      I get a leg-bites-only situation when I hang out on the back deck at my neighbor’s house – guess they just like easier access from their origin (under her deck it stays moist).

        • Debbie
        Reply

        I am not sure for both cases, but I read somewhere that mosquitoes only fly a maximum of 6-8 feet off the ground. Maybe the height of the deck and how tall you are has something to do with the leg bites only. They may only be flying as high as someones waist. :0)

          • Marilynm
          Reply

          Someone said they had a 2nd floor deck and would sit out there in the summers and never get bitten by mosquitoes. I said, how did you accomplish that amazing feat? He said, they don’t fly this high! Wow, I said, nice plan!
          Now, I suppose a mosquito could get transported up the stairs…(by having some larvae-filled water down below and carrying it upstairs or something)but otherwise they naturally stay lower than a 2nd floor deck! That also explains how I could leave my window upstairs open without a screen a whole summer(no downstairs windows open at all)and never get bitten! I was near a ground-floor source of mosquitos also, when this occurred.

          • shalom
          Reply

          That’s not true. My house is on piers (with a car port and store rooms under it). In nice weather we like to have the doors open, but we have to close them around dusk because the mosquitoes start coming in.

    • Scarycatlady
    Reply

    This is sort of pet related, but a vet told me that giving your pet (I have cats) a few brewer’s yeast and garlic tabs (they sell them in the dog section the pet aisles) repels mosquitos and other nasty bugs. I can’t say this is ironclad, but I haven’t had to pull a tick off one of my outdoor boys in years. Worth a try.

      • Eva
      Reply

      Garlic and onions are both mildly poisonous to cats. I would recommend you stop doing that.

    • bughater
    Reply

    Wow, I love this! When I was a kid we always used dryer sheets and they worked, and we smelled so good!! Now that I work in a state park and am around skeeters all day I realize the best thing to do is stand near a child in dark clothes. Yep, I use children to feed them so that they don’t want to eat me!

    vitamin b? I am going to start to try that one!

    • Nicole
    Reply

    I just tried the listerine in a spray bottle, I tried spraying it on the lawn and it didn’t work at all. Maybe if you put vinegar with it it may work, but the plain Listerine doesn’t work.

    • TipNut
    Reply

    Dr. Don I meant stay out of public places in terms of: you’re going to stink like garlic so you might not want to hang around groups of people.

      • Patty
      Reply

      What he means is, vampires will stay away from him ๐Ÿ˜€ lol sorry =[ I’m going off topic.

      btw, people said the scotch tape method works really well for itch, but it doesn’t at all for me…

        • Lucinda
        Reply

        I am at work right now and the only thing that is available to me is scotch tape and it’s working!! I look a bit silly with 8 pieces all over me but it’s working!!

    • Dr. Don
    Reply

    You really mean keep it off your PRIVATE PLACES don’t you – not you Public places!!

    DEET works best and you can buy 100% DEET over the counter, just be careful with it. Best for clothes, try to avoid 100% on skin. Lower concentrations are available for skin use.

    • Lia
    Reply

    Actually, I have found that when I lowered my sugar intake I wasnt bitten as much, as Im usually a major magnet..and its true, they love sweet blood. Watch what you eat..it may help.

      • Jenipher
      Reply

      I don’t eat sweets at all and I get eaten alive so that is not always true.

        • Haley
        Reply

        Yea i dont eat any sweets either and ever since i was a toddler iv got bitten head to toe it becouse we have a rare blood type is usually the reason we get bit if it isnt the sweets reason ๐Ÿ˜‰

          • Patty
          Reply

          The only rare blood type I know of is AB negative, and if unless you are super smart, I don’t think its the rare blood. More of the chemistry going inside your body. People react differently to everything.

            • denise

            Actually it’s O that’s rare. That’s why a lot of Red Cross wants O blood types….

            • funkygirli

            Actually, the Red Cross wants type O blood because we’re universal donors, and can donate blood to any blood type recepient…

            • QUE?

            ROFLMAO… moving on, back to the subject of MOSQUITO BITES…

            • toco

            Actually Patty is almost right about AB negative blood type being the rarest, it’s actually just the AB type. The positive or negative does not contribute to the rareness. O type is the oldest type and then A type then B type and finally the most recent is AB type and so the most difficult to find. They all have their positives and negatives, roughly balanced in each group.

            You can find out more about this in Dr. Peter J. D’Adamo’s books. The Main one being EAT RIGHT 4 YOUR TYPE (Great Book!). These books explain all about blood types and the best diets for each.

            JUST A LITTLE SIDE BAR. The science in these books is easily repeatable by anyone with a simple education in first year Med. All that is needed is a microscope drops of the different types of blood and samples of food. With this all the experiments could (if, one was so inclined) be easily repeated. So it’s really reliable science, (No opinion just observation) since the only reliable science is science that can be repeated easily, this shows it’s not someone’s opinion disguised in science jargon, to sound good. We really gotta think people. Sorry, I don’t mean to sound sarcastic. Just too many people out their saying they know science when they are just guessing with no real personal experience of the information they are sharing. That’s too dangerous and how

            His reasons for how the types came about is his own theory (and again should be taken with a grain of salt as they can’t be repeated. I don’t think he intended this to be the main focus anyway but rather the real science instead. This actual blood type stuff is really easy to understand and the diets are very easy to follow.

            Hope this helps y’all.

            • Esther

            Type O blood is the most common and the reason Red Cross wants it so much, is that it is compatible with other types and sometimes used in an emergency.

            Also, I read that Johnson’s Baby Oil Creamy works well with bites. The medics were pleased that I used the soda paste Y epsom salts on my son’s bug bites, then told me that meat tenderizer was coming to use (1980’s)

      • Scott
      Reply

      I’ve already stated but I’m diabetic. A healthy human being has a sugar level of 5.4 and if they eat loads of sugar they might get up to 6.5 to 7.
      On the other hand because my body doesn’t produce insulin, it’s now under control but when I first got diabetes I had a sugar level of 28, that’s 5x the healthy amount of sugar in my blood. And yet mosquitos never bit me, they always bit my friends and I was never bitten. At lower levels like 8 or so I still don’t get bitten so I don’t believe blood sugar is a main factor.

    • bob
    Reply

    o.k. Vera so where do i get one of these plug in thing a majiggies and what are they called

      • felicia
      Reply

      We get these little gadgets in South Africa which can be bought at the supermarket. It plugs into the electrical wall socket. It is used with mosquito ‘mats’. The trade name here is ‘Peaceful Sleep’. Magic little units. Do not get bitten during the night.

    • Vera
    Reply

    I am a total magnet! My bites are actually flashing like disco lights since I’m also allergic.

    For the home and the bedroom you can get these things that you plug into the electric socket. Some of those look like a light bulb and you put a tablet thing in them and it gives out a smell that keeps them away. Some of them use oils. The nice thing about these things is that you can always buy refills and you can have one of those in each room, since I guess most of us become victims when we are sleeping at night.

    I’m trying this for the first time now but I’ve heard from quite a few of my friends that this works. One of my mom’s work colleagues was in Spain and her you daughter was so terribly bitten (she looked like she had the chicken pox!), they bought these things you plug into the socket and she wasn’t bitten again!

    I’d like to note that where I am originally from (Iceland) we don’t have mosquitoes, as I am living in Austria now this is the first time I really have to “deal” with this horror!

    Good luck to us all in our fight against those buggers!

      • clare
      Reply

      yeah my mum swears by the plug in things you can get them in supermarkets or boots chemist etc

    • John
    Reply

    About the listerine spray… of course it takes away the sticky factor. You should use rice vinegar and probably fill 3/4 of the bottle with the vinegar. It may not smell great but it definately takes away the sticky factor. i just tried it.

    • FrankSymptoms
    Reply

    One thing to remember about DEET is that while it is a very good repellant, it also melts plastic.

    I am a ham radio operator and know several hams who have applied DEET, then picked up their handleld radios… and then found that the plastic faceplates become marred from the DEET.

    Just sayin’.

      • Omzain
      Reply

      …and if it melts plastic one can only wonder at the damage it is doing to our skin!

        • raini schauer
        Reply

        I.was 9 when I got my operators liscence and I can see how that can waste so much money spraying deet on Ur radio. Thanks for the tip!

    • N J
    Reply

    I just wanted to let everyone know that spraying yourself in Listerine is not the most pleasant thing…it’s very sticky and unless you aren’t gonna be touching anything, I wouldn’t recommend spraying it on your body or any surfaces that require alot of touching or handling…i’m not sure if that’s why you recommend using half with vinegar, does that take away the stick-factor?

    • Samantha
    Reply

    I received an email saying the Original Listerine (the yellow antiseptic kind) will repel them. Just use as is, do not mix with anything. You can spray on you, or in the yard or on your deck to keep them away.

    I personally haven’t tried it yet, but I plan on going out & getting a bottle this week! I will try the B1 as well, Thanks guys!

    • Tommy Plunkett
    Reply

    Regarding Jane Williams advice on lowering cholesterol, Exercise can not bring down any persons cholesterol reading. Watching your Diet is the only answer.

    Regards Dr Tommy Plunkett

      • Cindy J
      Reply

      Exercise wont decrease your LDL (bad cholesterol- low density lipoproteins)BUT exercise will increase your HDL(the good cholesterol- high density lipoproteins) so if your HDL is high it will help balance the ratio of LDL to HDL which is better than not exercising and having a low HDL.

    • nige_nz
    Reply

    thank you very much peoples! im going to thailand in 5 weeks and cant wait to tri some of these things:)

    • Evie
    Reply

    There are 35 species of mosquitoes in Alaska. (Two carry West Nile Virus) I have been skeeter bait for as long as I can remember. I’ve tried everything I can think of to keep the buggers from biting me. Short of bathing in DEET every day, here’s what works for me.

    Clear the area where you live or work of debris that might serve as a catchment system for water. (Rain, snow, sprinkler, etc.) The tiniest pocket of water is enough for a female mosquito to lay up to 200 eggs and that’s 200 more mosquitoes than I want to deal with.

    Use a mosquito control product similar to Mosquito Dunk in the spring to keep snow melt and rain puddles from harboring larvae for up to 30 days. Mosquito Dunk your bird baths, water features, fish ponds, or any other garden container than holds standing water. Even clogged rain gutters! Flip your child’s wading pool over when not in use and donโ€™t overwater your lawn.

    In areas with large swarms of mosquitoes, purchase a Mosquito Magnet or similar apparatus and let it run all summer long. One placed on either side of the area you are trying to protect from infestation will save you and your pets from biting insects all season long.

    Wear light-colored, tightly woven cotton clothing and a head net when outdoors. Stay indoors at dusk and dawn whenever possible.

    Make sure to keep window and door screens in good repair to keep from giving biting insects easy access to your house.

    Buy Buzz Off brand clothing to wear while working outside.

    When barbequing in the backyard, set up a screen tent to hide in while waiting to flip those burgers. Put a screen tent over your picnic or patio table as well.

    And as a last resort… hose yourself down with a bug repellant containing DEET, but be sure to wash your hands carefully before eating, drinking, or handling food.

    If you have done all you can to eliminate all possible water sources on your property and still have a mosquito problem… you may have to go further afield to find the source of your infestation.

    Mosquitoes that breed in permanent swamp habitats will travel 1-2 miles in quest of a blood meal. Mosquitoes that emanate from floodwater habitats can cause nuisance 10-20 miles from their breeding source. Call your local health department for suggestions on how to deal with mosquito breeding ground sources beyond your realm of influence.

    • Lucy
    Reply

    This year I am buying a cheap bottle of listerine and not putting any vinegar in it either. I am spraying me, the patio and whatever i feel necessary to keep the mosquitoes away. I am also going to spray my little dogs with it when they go out.
    I hear it works well, will let you know. Vitamin E makes sense too.

    • TipNut
    Reply

    How very clever Toby, but I think I’ll stick with the more pleasant alternatives. No one here claims they “know”, just sharing tips with each other that we’ve either come across or that we found helpful.

    • Toby
    Reply

    Here is the definitive cure all:

    1 part used motor oil
    1 part dog (or cat) feces
    1 part pickle juice
    2 parts radio active waste

    mix it all together and soak a hundred dollar bill in it then smear it all over your body.

    Not only will you repel all mosquitos, gnats, chiggers, and bugs but no human will come near you plus you’ve disintegrated $100 in the process. Congratulations your now just as smart as everyone else on here that ‘knows’ what works!

      • Mich
      Reply

      Wow. Real mature, Toby. Someone’s a pessimist.

        • Imasunbune
        Reply

        Mich, I agree TOBY you’re a SICKO! HOWEVER that was totally funny! C’mon Mich a bit of idiotic levity after reading so many remedies did give me a chuckle.

          • Squirrel
          Reply

          it… was.. KINDA funny… but I, personally, like humor that didn’t take a while to think of.. just sayin ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Bettie
    Reply

    To the person who wanted the devise for sucking out poison from insect bites, I bought one years ago at Eddie Bauers Expedition Outfitters..in the USA. They must have an online store.

    Bettie

    • Kar
    Reply

    I’ve tried bounce, only to find that the mosquitoes really liked the bounce. I just tried it – unfortunately I had dark clothing on in the yard. I’m going to try the listerine and vinegar and see how that works.

      • raini schauer
      Reply

      If bounce doesn’t work a cheaper solution is suavitel. I have dozens of mosquito bites right now and I have one hanging above my bed and I never get bit anymore. Also I had one in my pocket and I was standing in long grass and they didn’t get me.

        • starwitt
        Reply

        found bounce worked for black flys even but them in my shoes

    • Jane Williams
    Reply

    What you could do to lower your cholesterol is exercise, cut down on sweets like soda, brownies, candy…and so on

      • Marilynm
      Reply

      Just an idea: Maybe part of the reason different things work in different ways for people is due to the mosquitoes themselves. They may be different types (obviously) and therefore they have preferences just like people do for food sources. Only, the females bite and this is a food source for hatching their eggs. Also, factoring in what you have eaten for several hours prior could have some impact on what works, etc. and how many bites. !!!Avoid getting bitten!!!: West Nile risk is too big of a gamble to chance! If possible, if in your backyard, plant all of the above noted repellant plants plus put a couple of fans on you while you are out there! They can’t fly in a simulated fast wind! Use other protection to back this up a little too, for when you step out of the air current.

      • shalom
      Reply

      Low carb brings it down. It brought mine down almost 40 points in 3 months or less. BTW, cholesterol isn’t the problem claimed, inflammation causes the problems (a heart surgeon publicly said this based on what he has seen during surgeries).

    • Jane Williams
    Reply

    You know, when you get bitten by mosquitoes daily..(like me)…it means you have a higher cholesterol then others… you eat a lot of sweets and mosquitoes love blood that is sweet.

      • Toni
      Reply

      I have very low cholesterol and rarely eat sweets – and still, I am “the” mosquito magnet. I have been told it is because I have rare blood. I don’t know if that is true, but it kind of makes sense!

        • denise
        Reply

        I’ve also heard that it could be because we have a lot of iron in our blood….

          • Cindy
          Reply

          As for having a lot of Iron in the blood to ward off Mosquito’s it is not true for me. I always have very low Iron. I can go outside and I feel like they see me coming because I immediately start itching. I loved the Skin So Soft lotion but, it seems to be hard to find or maybe I just haven’t took the time to find it.

            • Scott

            I’m diabetic and when I have a high sugar level I hardly ever get bitten yet all my friends get bitten. So I don’t think blood sugar level affects being bitten.

            • anne

            Cindy, you can find the Skin So Soft through Avon.

            • Cindy

            I’ve tried the SSS remedy has never worked for me…either in the 50/50 SSS/vinegar form or the straight SSS form. I wish it would though, I love the smell!

            • Robyn

            My husband has been an insulin dependent diabetic since age 4 (now 58), we have always been avid tent campers, He never gets bitten!!! I on the otherhand am a magnet!!! I am going to try the B1 this year! Nothing has worked for me in the past… ๐Ÿ™

      • CC
      Reply

      Mosquito’s love what we breath out Carbin. That is why they bite. They don’t like the smell of vanilla. Put some in a spray bottle and spray youself. No bites.

      • Marilou
      Reply

      Until the mosquito bites you they don’t know WHAT your blood content is, so I am thinking that unless they have ways of letting their friends know, this may not be the reason. I think it has more to do with the scent that we give off.

      • Kara
      Reply

      I have great cholesterol and low iron and I’m the mesquito magnet! And I don’t eat sugar or bread ๐Ÿ™‚

      • Mary
      Reply

      Yes, I agree because I eat alot of sweets and I also have high cholesterol,(which my Dr. just told me last week.

    • sheila clark
    Reply

    I HAVE JUST BEEN READING THE LETTERS ON THIS SITE AND THE ANSWER TO CHRIS ABOUT THE VACUMN DEVICE IS CALLED ASPIVENIN IT DOES WORK. MY HUSBAND SCRATCH’S THE TOP OFF THE BITE AND THEN SUCKS OUT THE POISON HE GETS A LOAD OF BLOOD OUT OFF HIS WHERE AS I JUST GET CLEAR FLUID OUT OFF MINE BUT ONCE DONE THEY STOP ITCHING.I NOW LIVE IN SPAIN AND I BOUGHT MINE IN THE UK BUT I DO BELIEVE YOU CAN BUY THEM ON THE INTERNET. I BELIEVE THE BEST CURE IS NOT TO GET BITTEN IN THE FIRST PLACE. I TAKE VITAMIN BI AND USE TEA TREE OIL IN BABY OIL AND RUB OVER EXPOSED AREAS WORKS FOR ME.

      • Munchkin
      Reply

      The Aspivenin definately works. Boots sell them in UK. Comes in a lightweight box the size of a box of kitchen matches. Always take mine on holiday. If you can get the bite as soon as it starts to come up, it never does. Not as effective once the bite has spread. Also works on other bites.

    • Darlene
    Reply

    My grandchildren and I are mosquito magnets. This year we started taking one Vit B1 a day. I live in the Florida Keys. No bites yet. When going into the marshes, we take one tablet in the morning and one at noon. Works great. Can’t believe we suffered all those years.

    • Chris Ellis
    Reply

    Hi, Does anyone know the name of a vacumn device that you put on a sting to suck out the venom. I have seen it working and it works really well with out painful or smelly side effects. It works on ant type of sting.I have forgotton the name of and where I can buy one.
    Can anyone help.

      • Marc
      Reply

      That vacume sting suction tool is also used for snake bites ,camping section at walmart

      • Mary
      Reply

      The item you are looking for is called “The Extractor Pump”, though it’s main selling point is a suction device for snake venom, it also lists various other bites ie insects. It is to be used right away after bitten.

      I am part of the mosquito magnet club too since childhood. My husband introduced this device to me but I havent used it yet as it was in a cupboard at home….. I just returned with the bottom half of me bitten like crazy from camping- oh the itch! I am using it a day later but it is probably too late…not getting fast relief and it’s purpose is to suck the poison out right away.

      I take Vit B’s regularly now – not sure if that works..dont think so – I have also tried bee pollen bf the season and I think it might have worked? every yr seems different for me…this year I was surprised as it has been some time since I have had very itchy red swelts from bites. I have tried all sorts of remedies that left me dismayed and still itchy. The latest find is Aboriginal Gold cream I picked up from my father in law who sells Unicity products… handy family! He said put it on asap once bitten. It seems to work for me so far…

      Came home so itchy I immediately internetted, found this site and tried a very hot bath covering my legs entirely and put on the cream after. It has subsided – the heat did make the itching worse as I waited. It seemed better when I came out and then applied the cream I forgot to take camping ๐Ÿ™ Currently I still feel some subtle discomfort and will reapply cream or may experiment on the various bites with different solutions from this site that I havent tried yet.

      I was in Asia recently and only got one bite there and used the cream immediately and the itch went away. Unfortunately, while at the airport I obtained three bites on my feet and the cream was in the luggage as it is bigger than what is allowed on your carry ons these days.. hence no cream for over 15 hrs but when I got into the luggage applied right away – it took a few applications and was fine after that.
      After reading another comment in this list, I now wonder if the plug-in insect repellent put in my room not only helped with mosquitoes in there as I never got bit, but perhaps it got into my clothes etc and I carried the scent with me. I saw even some natives with welts from bits! I was so happy not to have to endure this on my vacation. Next time I go, I should investigate what it in this repellent.

      I hope everyone can find the treatment that works for them…
      not fun at all when you are suffering
      Empathically yours…

        • Kathryn
        Reply

        Mary, Many years ago I worked in New Guinea and a friend told me to rub Rum on the insect bites. I swear it works, takes the itch out and the swelling goes down. It doesn’t matter if it is light or dark rum, cheap or expensive but it will only work with rum, nothing else. I am never without my rum and no drinking it won’t help just rub it on the bite.

          • Cindy
          Reply

          If you drink enough of the rum you won’t have to worry about the itch! LOL

          Seriously though, thanks for the tip. I’m already being eaten alive so I’m going to be trying several of these tips to see what works best for me.

          • Judy
          Reply

          I can believe that. When my babies were cutting teeth, a dentist told me to rub Rum on their gums. It worked. Not so much make them drunk. just enough to numb the gums. a drop was enough.
          Cloves do the same thing, so I wonder if that would work for bites too.

        • Liz
        Reply

        Try your deodarant, seriously,it’s awesome, and believe me, I know the pain of the itch and now relief with something you already have and smells good! I had to put a couple of applications but I’m so relieved, I just can’t thank whomever enough!!!

          • Donna
          Reply

          I am at work and in agony from bites ALL over my feet and ankles!!! i have to wear knee high socks and boots. every step i take i want to die! My socks rub all over them, so its like im scratching! I am on my feet all day! I tried benadryl and hydrocorizone cream last night and this morning and it did not work. In despiration I found this site and the only thing i had was a travel sized secret stick deoderant in my bag. It was worth a shot…and it worked!!!!! Thank you thank you thank you to who ever posted that!! I would have never thought of it in a million years! Felt like an idiot appliying deoderant to my feet and ankles, but soooooo worth it!! Thanks!!

    • jane
    Reply

    Spray off or if it stings use aloe vera to smooth it and go outside and you will be fine.

    • Priti Nanda sahu
    Reply

    Dip your hands in lemon-juice to whiten your finger nails.

    • Priti Nanda sahu
    Reply

    Use baby-oil instead of cleansing-creams – they serve the same purpose and is a cheap alternative.

      • Kristy
      Reply

      Baby oil is pretty dangerous in the shower & bath & just makes for more house work, Soap is cheap & nnot oily.

    • Priti Nanda sahu
    Reply

    In case you burn your tongue drinking hot liquids, put some grains of sugar on the sore-spot; this should help in providing instant relief.

      • jean
      Reply

      Good tip about burning your tongue but what does this have to do with repelling mosquitoes?

        • katie
        Reply

        lol i must agree with jean. burning your tongue has absolutely nothing to do with repelling mosquitoes.

          • john
          Reply

          i agree that it has nothin to do with bites but it is very useful info to have and is relevant since it’s home remedies we are lookin for but in this case it is bites we need relief from. but thanks for the tips anyway i will remember them Priti Nanda

            • Brea

            Actually, what Jean is saying DOES have something to do with preventing mosquitos. One of the rememdies says something about hot tea. I don’t know if drinking it is on this page, but yeah.

      • cynthia
      Reply

      thank you i appreciate it

        • Jayna
        Reply

        I use cortisone creme for the itch totally gone in mins and I eat a lemon every day this keeps them from biting me unless I forget. Also rubbing ice over the bite takes the itch away also.
        We live on a farm and use citronella candles outside they work great.

    • Priti Nanda sahu
    Reply

    To prevent flies, take a damp cloth a sprinkle some salt on it and wipe your dining table with it.

    • jofo
    Reply

    To avoid getting bit in the first place, when walking say, down a trail, hold your breath. When you have to exhale do it over your shoulder and take a couple quick steps then hold again. Mosquitoes use CO2, moisture and heat (in that order) to find their host in the first place. I have used this method for years to separate myself from my breath-cloud and it really works. It wonโ€™t eliminate all encounters but will severely cut down on them. Once bit, use heat topically — it really works! I just use a bic lighter and let it burn for a few seconds until the metal gets hot enough (not TOO hot) and then hold it on the bite until it cools down. They sell little penlight-sized heaters expressly for this purpose btw. Search online and you can find them for around $10. They recommend holding it on a bite for 20-30 seconds as soon as you notice it. After that, no itch, no swellingโ€ฆ at least with most people, even we who are swelling-prone victims! Good luck!

      • Susan
      Reply

      How can you walk and do a cardio exercise and not breath properly?? Seems dangerous to me.

        • angelica parker
        Reply

        no this truly works with any form of heat but you do not have to put it on to your skin just as close as you can and hold it 30 secs . if you do this right as soon as you notice the bite no itch or swelling and it goes away fast. i am serve allergic to bites and for some reason all it takes is me outside ten min and i get ate alive. if i do not use this method , every bite swells up and almost spreads out into a large welt and extremely painful itch leaving scars at times. and no not from me scratching….

      • Squirrel
      Reply

      lol yea, i think my husband might want me to try the whole *don’t breath* thing, but for a totally different reason..

        • Bug-Eyed
        Reply

        Lmao Squirrel!!! I think your husband and mine are related.

    • Eve
    Reply

    I swear by vitamin E. I start taking it a little before mosquito season and as long as I take it at least 3-4 times a week, I never get bit. If I stop for some reason, I’m ok for a couple of weeks, but then I get eaten alive.

      • Dave
      Reply

      I’ve been taking Krill oil for a few months now and it has made a huge huge difference to the health of my skin, it’s a potent source of vitamin E. Guess what, hardly any mosy bites, I live in Thailand and there’s plenty of the little ba …..ds around, I’ve been bitten about twice in a month and when they have bitten me the usual swelling and itching is almost non existent. So Vitamin E ladies and gentlemen or even better Krill oil ๐Ÿ™‚

        • Judy
        Reply

        I was eaten alive in Thailand. Over here the Vit B complex worked pretty good but nothing there. Finally got a citronella spray and it helped. A Thai lady gave it to me so all in Thai language.

          • Paulette Jepsen
          Reply

          Where do you find citronella spray here in the United States?? I have welts the size of softballs up and down the back of my arms!! The doctors solution is vitamin B 1, but how long do you have to take it before it starts working?? From the looks of it, Mesquito season could be over before anything works!! I have used vinegar for itch relief and it seemed to work until it dried then I just smelled like a tossed green salad and itched again. Unfortunately I have had to resolve to using deet until I can find something that gets them to stop biting. I am off to the natural food store tomorrow so if I find anything that is not listed here I will be sure to return and let you know. Maybe sleeping with an herb salad will help. A mixture of basil, lemon thyme, marigold, catnip, garlic,lavender, and lemons???? I’m willing to try just about anything at this point!! I hope to find something natural today.

        • Mary
        Reply

        I take vitamin E everyday and have so for 30 years, and I am still getting eaten alive. They say if a person eats bananas the mesqutios will bite you more, and I kinda believe that because I eat a bananna once every day.

    • Kristen
    Reply

    My grandmother always used vinegar to repel mosquitoes. She rubs it on any exposed parts of her body. Sure, SHE repels everyone else, but she claims that it works. So I guess if you don’t mind smelling like a walking pickle…

      • Dustbunny
      Reply

      With 30 bites I have alot to test these methods on. Some are after the fact and are red and swollen. so far vapor rub did not work, The Calamine Lotition is brief relife and feels really good on the swelling. The nail polish was working great but I have sensitive skin soooo omg get it off get it off owie owie owie. Tape still waiting it seems to be doing something guess it’s keeping the air off it. Wet soap rubbed on seems to be working and the antipresperant deorderant is working faint itch left but at least I don’t have to peel it off my skin. Toothpaste kind of works. Ice pack is brief relife buuuuut it probably just prolongs the agony since it stops the blood circulating. I’m gonna try a hot bath to get the posien to cycle out which makes me wonder if nicane will work. Also sending the boyfriend out for oragel I know theres a limit on how long I can use it but i don’t care at the moment. S

      sooooo mesirable can’t sleep and one got my nipple T_T boyfriend did not even get one bite while sleeping next to me,. Makes me want to call up my best friend and ask if I can borrow his nephew who is the only person fleas and mosquitos think is tastier then me. I’m goign to try some of the prevention methods I had an awesome wall plug it that worked for mice/rats, spiders and other bugs/insects but the noise bugs some people that I live with. Bought the machine cheap at Fred Meyers 4 about $15

        • wendy
        Reply

        Try taking an antihistimine! When the itch starts, that is your body having an allergic reaction to the bite. This helps from the inside and keep using anything topical for the outside. This trick also works for anyone with chicken-pox.!!!It worked for me and my kids!!!

          • patti
          Reply

          I take antihistimines daily for allergies, and they don’t do dooddlie!
          I’m going to try lemon juice, ivory soap, mouthwash, ANYTHING to relieve the itching, & therefore the swelling. I MUST find something, I’m being eaten alive & my skin swells until it won’t stretch anymore! I’m miserable!

            • Shanae

            Oh if I could only figure out how to not be bitten when I am sitting at my computer! Ahhhh! I have a welt on my neck and two on my arms as I type. Usually I get bitten through thick wool sweaters on my back….so atleast this is a nice change. Use benzonite clay. Or “Aztec’ clay. Mix a bit into a paste with water and it draws the histamine out. If your welts look like human nipples, like mine do then it will be very helpful!,

            • danyell

            Get some green alcohol has menthyl in it you put it in your bath water and bath with aveeno body wash keep using till bites dry up sarna works to but is $11 dollars

          • Kim
          Reply

          Iagree with the antihistamine, I keep children’s liquid diphenhydramine on hand and dab it on the bites. Noxeema works too.

          • Shirley
          Reply

          Topical applications don’t do anything for me; they help for about an hour, then I’m back to itching–for a whole week. I take a Benadryl gel caplet as soon as I can after I get bitten and an hour or so later, I don’t itch at all. It’s amazing.

          • badwater bob
          Reply

          There is a product called acterbite. It is mostly ammonia. Household ammonia dabbed on bite stops itch

            • Kat

            Yes, have used that one and it does help.

        • Rose
        Reply

        Loved reading your reply on mosquito repellent, and sorry it didn’t work for you, lmao, I just gotta say I got a kick out of reading your stuff and literally laughed my ass off. Hope you find a repellent soon, lol. Thanks for the laughs.

        Rose

        • Holie
        Reply

        To get rid of the itch, try head and shoulders, works for me. When all else fails, I just use zinc oxide.

        • Squirrel
        Reply

        I get bitten soooo bad when outside by those little bast**ds, i found that Absorbine Jr.s works for me, once i have been bitten, to stop the swelling and itching… I need to find something that will KEEP them from biting me… I hope some of this stuff will work… and I dont find one til the bottom of the list! lol GL to all!

        • Jeanette
        Reply

        Mosquitoes love me, and my bites swell into huge whelps immediately. I mix meat tenderizer and water into a paste and apply it to fresh mosquito bites. It cannot be used on bites that have open skin of course. I have used this for years for myself and my children, and it has really worked. You will look a strange for a little while, but if you can get past that you will not even know you have had a bite in a few hours. I read about this home remedy years ago in a magazine.

          • Carol Burkes
          Reply

          The meat tenderizer paste also works at the beach on jellyfish and sea anemone.

        • kaite
        Reply

        i consider you lucky.. i have like 50

        • matilda
        Reply

        Aloe vera…mmagical medicine. Works for everything. Burns to bites to scars! Rip off a. Piece of plant, peel the in half and apply juice, puld onto affected area and wait a few secs. Cool to touch! Lasts long

        • Diane
        Reply

        Coming from South Africa which has heaps of mosquitos then moving to Australia which is just as bad and being allergic, they leave the most ugly marks where they bite, I am sure all the females wait for “breakfast” when I hang up my washing lol. I have found that by putting a bit of eucalyptus oil in my body cream and if ‘somehow’ they find untreated spot I may have missed, by applying it directly onto the bite helps it from itching and me attacking the area. I also make up a spray of the oil combined with citronella oil and spray the grass and shrubs [under the leaves] where they breed and this helps immensely. The only problem is, you have to repeat this after it rain but I don’t mind. In a 500ml spray bottle I use 1 cup of each oil then fill the bottle up with water, you have to shake the bottle well obviously, but works wonders for me. You can also dip earbuds into the eucalyptus oil and put it on your windowsills where they fly in. They hate the smell so it will keep out most of them. I doubt a koala bear has any bites considering the amount of eucalyptus leaves the eat ๐Ÿ™‚

      • baha
      Reply

      I also tried the calamine lotion,baking soda paste and the vinegar solution…THEY DID NOT GET RID OF MY ITCH!!..So in desperation I tried the deodorant stick and it DID WORK!!I used the MENS “SPEED STICK”
      BY MENNEN.”OH WHAT A RELIEF IT IS!!!!” LOL..HAPPY DE-ITCHING PEOPLE!!

        • wenny
        Reply

        Rid roll on prevents mosquitos biting, but if they happen to bite else where – rid roll on onto the bite stops the itching

          • Anna
          Reply

          Running out now to buy the roll on deodorant. I look like I was the target of a paintball game. I wore SSS from Avon and darn mosquitos must just like it on me. They didn’t even touch my boyfriend. What’s up with that.

            • Lonna

            I found that Deet and other repellents just attract mosquitos on me. The doctor said it is due to the chemistry of the body and the fact that I have some health issues does not help because they change the chemical makeup. One time the dryer sheets worked the next time it didnโ€™t. I am going to try some of these ideas on here but I always take the Benedryl along just in case.

        • briana
        Reply

        Deoderant DOES work! i got about 15 bites yersterday from tking a walk. Using Arm & Hammer Essentials Natuural Deoderant. Some of the larger ones are still tingling, but its not a must-itch-or-im-gonna-die feeling now! had no idea deoderant worked… wont bug anyone to run out and get pharmacy bug releif stuff now!

        • Tee
        Reply

        I did the same and it worked for me! High Endurance by old spice. Smells good too..I tried the vinger and hot water and it didn’t work then I read about the deodorantand it made the itch go away. Thanks!

        • Liz
        Reply

        I agree, thank you for the all the suggestions, but the one that worked was the deodarant! Oh, relief!!! I use suave invisible solid, and it instantly took the horrible itch away!! I’m also a mosquito magnet, and I get biten when noone else does! I’m definitely going to try some of the prevention suggestions also. Thanks so much again!!

          • yolanda
          Reply

          One of my sons is a mosquito magnet so he’s usually indoors. But, when he has a bite he makes a paste with table salt n water. He rubs it on the bite enough to ease the itch, leaves the salt grains on the skin until the water dries out. It relives the itch and the swelling comes down considerably.
          Hope this helps someone.

        • Chris
        Reply

        We use rubbing alcohol. Just saturate a cotton ball and rub over the bites, it’ll sting for a second, and then no more itch or sting! When I was 18 went to Brazil and was the only one who literally got ate up by those darn things (we lost count at 300 bites), went to the pharmacy and that’s what they told me to use, which is what we’d always used as a kid (just wasn’t sure it would be enough for so many bites).

      • jill
      Reply

      I swear by the dryer sheet method. But I rub the dryer sheet directly on my skin and clothes, not let it hang from my pocket. I think it works well. Also wearing loose fitting clothing prevents the mosquitoes from getting through the fabric to your skin. Calamine lotion and anti itch hydrocortisone hasn’t worked on these bites I have now. So ill try thy toothepaste and alcohol

      • Mariyah
      Reply

      With 75 bites or more. I heard B1 work as well as garlic . I personally know garlic works. The flower “marigold” they do not like. You can plant those around your house.

      • mike bobier
      Reply

      good one kristen. a walking pickle. still laughinh about that one.

      • Mary
      Reply

      With the vinegar suggestion, Can I use apple cider vinegar?, or does it have to be the white kind? And how often do i need to spray it on me? Thanks

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