Summer camp is fast approaching and we are in desperate need of a non toxic mosquito repellent that actually works. We have tried many many brands that advertise natural and/or herbal ingredients — but THEY DON’T WORK! We all know that the conventional brands have extremely dangerous substances in them that can cause many acute events such as seizures, migraines, skin reactions, etc. Beyond that, there are the long term problems of hormone disruption and carcinogenicity. What’s a mother to do?
One of the most common active ingredients found in synthetic insect repellents is DEET (N, N-diethyl-meta-toluamide). DEET is a powerful insecticide used in many products. Although DEET is very effective as an insect repellent, it can be a neurotoxin. When applied directly on the skin, over half of DEET is absorbed into the bloodstream. It can cause side effects such as skin rashes, muscle spasms, nausea, lethargy, and irritability. Severe reactions can be seizures or even death. Studies have shown that DEET may not be safe for use in and around water sources.
First we tried Skin-So-Soft. The fragrance was too strong and it did not keep the mosquitoes away. Then there were the multitude of different herbal remedies from the health food store. Many have essential oils in them. Apparently mosquitoes do not like certain scents and that is what keeps them away. Many have citronella, lemongrass, and cedar, but those did not work for us. I have yet to find one that does work.
Does anyone have a brand or a home remedy for this application? If so, please leave a comment with your solution. If you blogged about it — please share the link.
I can’t wait to find a good solution for these pests!