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Best Mosquito Repellents

last updated May 26, 2019

With the summer season quickly approaching, not only can we expect the sun and camping with the family but we can also expect some pesky critters to come out of hiding and make our time uncomfortable if we do not take the proper precautions. No critter is more annoying during the summer season than the mosquito. Mosquitos are silent predators that give you a nasty bite, which itches for hours and if we are planning to go camping or go into the woods, we can definitely expect mosquitos. Luckily for us, we have developed the first line of defense to fight back against this little buggers, and that is mosquito repellent. Every person who plans on going out this summer season. should have a couple of bottles handy and if you have not invested in any yet, the below guide is for you!

In a Hurry? The test winner after 15 hrs of research

icon
Sawyer Products
95/100 our score
Materials
96
Safety Hazards
95
Effectiveness
94
Use
95
Sawyer Products
Why is it better?

Family friendly

Easy to apply

Safe to use

In a Hurry? Editors choice:
Sawyer Products
Test Winner: Sawyer Products
Amazon Link
Researched Sources
18
Researched Sources
Reviews Considered
2.3k
Reviews Considered
Hours Researching
15
Hours Researching
Products Evaluated
19
Products Evaluated
Last Updated:
Jordan Coleiro
By Jordan Coleiro:

This list of mosquito repellents has been put together to show you the best researched and reviewed repellents to protect you against swarms of mosquitos this summer season. Some new additions to our list are the Sawyer Products, Mosquito Guard, and the Ben's Deet. We love these additions because they are highly rated, effective, affordable, and easy to use.

Sorting Options
Materials Safety Hazards Effectiveness Use By Default
Rank
PictureProduct
Name
Rating
Shops
#1
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
95
Materials
96 %
Safety Hazards
95 %
Effectiveness
94 %
Use
95 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (25.06.19)
Amazon Link
$8.50
#2
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
94.5
Materials
95 %
Safety Hazards
97 %
Effectiveness
93 %
Use
93 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (25.06.19)
Amazon Link
$15.95
#3
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
93
Materials
95 %
Safety Hazards
89 %
Effectiveness
94 %
Use
94 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (25.06.19)
Amazon Link
$7.96
#4
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
92.3
Materials
93 %
Safety Hazards
88 %
Effectiveness
94 %
Use
94 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (25.06.19)
Amazon Link
$12.62
#5
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
92
Materials
92 %
Safety Hazards
97 %
Effectiveness
90 %
Use
89 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (25.06.19)
Amazon Link
$27.50
#6
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
92
Materials
91 %
Safety Hazards
88 %
Effectiveness
96 %
Use
93 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (25.06.19)
Amazon Link
$10.99
#7
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
91.5
Materials
93 %
Safety Hazards
91 %
Effectiveness
91 %
Use
91 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (25.06.19)
Amazon Link
$29.95
#8
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
91.5
Materials
95 %
Safety Hazards
95 %
Effectiveness
88 %
Use
88 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (25.06.19)
Amazon Link
$24.99
#9
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
90.3
Materials
90 %
Safety Hazards
95 %
Effectiveness
87 %
Use
89 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (25.06.19)
Amazon Link
$19.03
#10
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
89.8
Materials
90 %
Safety Hazards
92 %
Effectiveness
88 %
Use
89 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (25.06.19)
Amazon Link
$11.95
In Depth Review Top 10
  • Sawyer Products Sawyer Products
  • Mosquito Guard Mosquito Guard
  • Ben's Deet Ben's Deet
  • Off Deep Woods Off Deep Woods
  • Burt's Bees Herbal Burt's Bees Herbal
  • Repel Sportsmen Max Repel Sportsmen Max
  • Murphy’s Natural Incense Murphy’s Natural Incense
  • Osana All Natural Soap Osana All Natural Soap
  • Babyganics DEET-Free Natural Babyganics DEET-Free Natural
  • Natural Citizen Natural Citizen
Table of contents
  • Criteria Used for Evaluation
  • Other Factors to Consider
  • Frequently Asked Questions
  • Sources

Top Ten Mosquito Repellents

1. Sawyer Products

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
95
Sawyer Products
Amazon Link
Materials
96
Safety Hazards
95
Effectiveness
94
Use
95
best offer for today
more shops
Amazon Link
$8.50
Pros:

Family friendly

Easy to apply

Safe to use

Cons:

Has an odor to it

This lotion from Sawyer Products is highly rated amongst previous customers and is family friendly so you can apply it to all the members of your family without worry. The lotion is also great, as it is able to be applied easily and conveniently.

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Materials
This lotion is safe to use on all members of your family and contains 20% deet.

Safety
This lotion is EPA approved and there are no notable safety hazards to mention.

Effectiveness
This lotion is highly rated amongst previous customers that decided to go ahead with this product. It is able to be applied with sunscreen so not only will you be protected against the sun but also against mosquitos as well.

Use
This lotion is easy to use and to apply you simply put on the skin and rub lotion in. The deet slowly is released which allows you to be protected against mosquitos for a total of 11 hours.

2. Mosquito Guard

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
94.5
Mosquito Guard
Amazon Link
Materials
95
Safety Hazards
97
Effectiveness
93
Use
93
best offer for today
Amazon Link
$15.95
Pros:

No lotions or sprays

Easy to use

Can be removed when no longer needed

Cons:

The picture shows orange but they come in a variety of colors

This method of repellent is a bit different than your ideal spray or lotion, these bracelets are easy to wear and effectively repel mosquitos without having to apply any chemicals to your body.

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Materials
This bracelet is made from natural materials such as essential oils, citronella, lemongrass, and geraniol, This is great as you do not have to apply any chemicals to your body or the body of your family members and will effectively still repel mosquitoes.

Safety
Since the materials of this bracelet are all made from natural materials, there is nothing to be worried about or that needs to be brought to your attention with regards to the safety of this product.

Effectiveness
This bracelet is highly rated amongst previous customers and even though it is not a spray or lotion still works well at repelling mosquitos.

Use
This product is very easy to use as when you want it to be effective, you simply need to wear the bracelet and when you no longer want to or no longer need to repel mosquitos, you can simply take off the bracelet.

3. Ben's Deet

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
93
Ben's Deet
Amazon Link
Materials
95
Safety Hazards
89
Effectiveness
94
Use
94
best offer for today
more shops
Amazon Link
$7.96
Pros:

Great protection

Affordable

Compact and easily transported

Cons:

Can be greasy on your skin

This mosquito repellent is quite popular amongst backpackers and deep wood campers as it contain quite ab it of deet which is the main ingredient that helps to fight back against mosquitos.

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Materials
This mosquito repellent contains 30% deet which is the main ingredient to repel mosquitos.

Safety
This mosquito repellent should not be used near hot surfaces or open flames as it can cause combustion, it should not be ingested, or applied to open wounds. It should also not be applied to your skin more than twice a day.

Effectiveness
This mosquito repellent is quite effective due to the amount of deet that is contained in this spray. If you are going deep in the woods where there has not been a lot of human presence or near water sources, this is a great and compact repellent to have as part of your gear.

Use
This repellent as stated above is quite effective but should only be applied twice a day. To apply simply spray and rub onto body.

4. Off Deep Woods

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
92.3
Off Deep Woods
Amazon Link
Materials
93
Safety Hazards
88
Effectiveness
94
Use
94
best offer for today
Amazon Link
$12.62
Pros:

Long lasting product

Dries instantly when applying

Inexpensive

Cons:

Not natural

This Off product is quite different than the others on our list. While most lean toward the natural or DEET-free category, this Deep Woods product definitely contains DEET. But that shouldn't put you off the product right away. There might be moments where you would like a bit stronger of a product and this is definitely the one you should look at.

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Materials
This spray contains 25% deet.

Safety
This spray contains deet so it is recommended to only be applied a couple of times a day and to keep out of reach of your children as it should not be ingested.

Effectiveness
Off is known for their repellent products and this spray is quite effective. It may be the most effective on our list as it is easy to apply and the effects occur immediately.

Use
This aerosol spray is fantastic for instantly drying on your skin. You won't feel weighed down or sticky after applying.

5. Burt's Bees Herbal

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
92
Burt's Bees Herbal
Amazon Link
Materials
92
Safety Hazards
97
Effectiveness
90
Use
89
best offer for today
Amazon Link
$27.50
Pros:

Works on various insects

All natural

Inexpensive

Cons:

Not as long-lasting as others

Burt’s Bee Herbal Mosquito Repellent, also given the name of The Defender, denies access to all sorts of bugs. From crawling to creeping, winging to stinging, to bugging and sucking. Rosemary oil, among other things, boosts the fact of it being 100% natural. Better yet, it’s very safe to apply.

Read more

Materials
Contains rosemary oil

Safety
It’s 100% natural. No need to worry about getting stuff on your body that your skin won’t appreciate much.

Effectiveness
This repellent is quite effective, some believe that mosquitos still get through the repellent as it only is able to stop some.

Use
14.4 ounces. It’s somewhat “heavier” in comparison to the two first products suggested. It is within the reach of anyone. Easy to get. And won’t really hurt your pocket.

6. Repel Sportsmen Max

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
92
Repel Sportsmen Max
Amazon Link
Materials
91
Safety Hazards
88
Effectiveness
96
Use
93
best offer for today
more shops
Amazon Link
$10.99
Pros:

The use of it is quite safe

Long-lasting

Very effective

Cons:

Must be careful when using around kids

Developed especially for campers, backpackers, fisherman, and other outdoor enthusiasts, the Repel Sportsmen Max formula is made with 40% DEET and repels mosquitoes for up to 8 hours. It is long-lasting, non-greasy and provides excellent protection for when it really matters.

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Materials
While not the most chemical-free on our list by any means, sometimes it's important to bring out the big guns for when it really counts. It's good to know that DEET, while many people want to avoid it, is safe when used properly and has been used as an insect repellent for more than 50 years. DEET is one of the most effective ways to avoid getting bit and the Repel Max lotion is just one option of DEET options on our list, though by far the crowd favorite.

Safety
This product due to having a large amount of deet should not be ingested and only be applied twice a day. With higher deet products they will do a great job at repelling mosquitos but you have to be safe while applying.

Effectiveness
The benefit of the lotion from Repel is the long-lasting and effective nature. Because the lotion lasts on the skin longer than a spray or candle, you can be assured that your skin will be protected from getting bit for up to 10 hours.

Use
Another benefit of the lotion is that it won't leave you feeling greasy like most sprays do. After being rubbed into the skin reviewers notice very little smell and no residue or oily feeling.

Not only does it work on mosquitos, but it also repels ticks, gnats, biting flies, chiggers, and fleas. So you can be assured that those nasty annoying bugs aren't going to be bothering you any time soon.

7. Murphy’s Natural Incense

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
91.5
Murphy’s Natural Incense
Amazon Link
Materials
93
Safety Hazards
91
Effectiveness
91
Use
91
best offer for today
Amazon Link
$29.95
Pros:

Great price

Lightweight

Long-lasting

Cons:

Strong scent

This product, like each of the ones suggested, is, in its form and effects different than the rest. Murphy’s are twelve incense sticks, which repels mosquitoes and other annoying bugs as they burn out. They take around two hours to burn.

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Materials
Made with essential oils. It's made from natural oils that are known to repel insects.

Safety
Since these are deet free, they are quite safe. You may want to watch out that you do not inhale the smoke as any smoke inhaled can be harmful to your health.

Effectiveness
These incense sticks are quite effective and after lighting a couple, you will start to see the effects take place and the mosquitos disappear.

Use
Strong scent. It has a scent that is strong and repellent to insects. To use simply light the stick and let the smoke do the work.

8. Osana All Natural Soap

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
91.5
Osana All Natural Soap
Amazon Link
Materials
95
Safety Hazards
95
Effectiveness
88
Use
88
best offer for today
Amazon Link
$24.99
Pros:

Safe for kids and adults

Proceeds help those with malaria

Healthy on the skin

Cons:

Expensive

Osana soap bars are great smelling soap bars that are 100% herbal, and that rid you immediately of mosquitoes. It is sufficient for you to use it in the shower to guarantee yourself a whole 24 hours mosquito-free. Getting a bar for yourself gets you another donated on your behalf to places most suffering from malaria.

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Materials
It is 100% herbal. It spares you the discomfort and bodily reactions that come with using chemicals. It is free of any animal products. 100% vegan.

It is natural. Osana soap is made from natural plant products and comes in two forms; Citronella and Menthol. You'll get to enjoy nature's way of fighting mosquitoes when you use it.
It carries out more than one function. Osana not only protects the skin from the nasty and irritating mosquito bites but cleanses it from any impurity that may be brought by sweat and other impurity and keeps the skin moisturized as well.

Safety
It is not toxic and friendly for children- this product does not contain any toxins that can harm the body in any way and it can also be used on children of all ages. It also does not contain any animal products.

Effectiveness
It helps in the fight against malaria- every time you buy it, many others benefit as well. This is because the Osana company donates soap to people around the world suffering from malaria. In addition to this, you also get a chance to be protected against malaria and other deadly diseases spread by mosquitoes.

Use
It has a really pleasant smell- unlike other herbal soaps, Osana has a fragrance that is pleasant to the nose and is also gentle on the skin. It'll leave you smelling fresh all day long and keep you protected.

9. Babyganics DEET-Free Natural

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
90.3
Babyganics DEET-Free Natural
Amazon Link
Materials
90
Safety Hazards
95
Effectiveness
87
Use
89
best offer for today
Amazon Link
$19.03
Pros:

Targets many insects

Safe for daily use

Pleasant smell

Cons:

Not useful for adults

Because babies aren’t meant to stay indoor 24/7, this insect repellent is very useful to give them a well-protected outdoorsy life. Its strong, yet great-smelling scent is very pungent to all insects out there, especially nasty, little blood-suckers. So, play smart, play safe, and keep your babies at ease.

Read more

Materials
100% natural essential oils—Citronella, Peppermint, Rosemary, Lemongrass & Geranium.
It is DEET-Free and grease-free as well.

Safety
With its base made upon 100% natural gentle-plant, you shall fear no chemical residue for your baby’s soft skin

Effectiveness
This spray is safe to use but could be more effective. Sometimes when dealing with all natural products they are safe for your skin but do not do as good of a job at repelling mosquitos.

Use
This product is easy to apply as you simply have to spray on your body and let the repellent do its job.

10. Natural Citizen

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
89.8
Natural Citizen
Amazon Link
Materials
90
Safety Hazards
92
Effectiveness
88
Use
89
best offer for today
Amazon Link
$11.95
Pros:

DEET-Free

Guarantees a bug-free area

Easy to use

Cons:

Not to be used by kids

Ours is a natural DEET-free insect repellent made to produce an essential oil based spray strong enough to match the bug’s synthetic counterparts. Our mixture of lemon eucalyptus, cedar, and other oils is a bug’s worst nightmare, but to you, is an alright, yet not-close-to-perfect perfume choice. With it filling the atmosphere, bugs shall immediately flee your territory. Should there be any bodily reaction to our essential oil based product, quit use straight away. Like any other bug spray, this one should be stored in a cool, dry place.

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Materials
DEET-Free

Safety
Natural spray guaranteed to rid you of bugs and insects.
Not recommended for kids under the age of 6.

Effectiveness
Lasts about four hours per use, so three uses per day, maybe four, are more than enough to keep you comfortable.

Use
To use this spray simply apply to skin and rub in.

Criteria Used for Evaluation

Materials

Mosquito repellent comes in so many varieties that you have to be cautious about the one you buy. They can be in the form of lotions, oils, foams, wipes or incense sticks. Examples of repellents are permethrin, citronella oil and picaridin. It is best to get the type that is fast and effective. Experts recommend the use of repellents with active ingredients such as oil of lemon eucalyptus, picaridin, and diethyltoluamide or DEET in short. Don’t be too quick to put all your trust in commercials and their endless songs of praise for various products. Take it upon yourself to prioritize your well-being and that of your loved ones.

Safety Hazards

Many people have the habit of using products without taking the time to study the information on the product. This is dangerous since it may have negative effects on you. You can learn how to use a mosquito repellent if you read the instructions. In addition to this, you’ll learn if it’s ideal for you and your loved ones. For example, products with DEET should not be used on young children below two months of age since their skin is still sensitive. Any false move could hurt them. Reading instructions helps to let you know if the product repels mosquitoes or not. You can know about the ingredients in the product and how much of them is contained in it to know if it’s safe for you or not. Mosquito repellents are supposed to help you, not harm you.

It is possible that the products may contain ingredients that are higher in composition than what your skin can take. The best way to determine this is by using it once. If it burns your skin, don’t assume that it’s working. Your skin is communicating with you. It’s saying that it’s uncomfortable. Marks and swellings on the skin are also an indicator that the product is doing more harm than good on you. The best way to test a lotion is spreading it on your hands first before applying it to the rest of your body. If it’s friendly to them then it’s alright for use. Also, if you’re still bitten even after applying the repellent, this means that it isn’t serving its purpose. Don’t waste your precious money on buying it.

Effectiveness

Different repellents have different durations of activity. Those that are made from plant ingredients, such as vanilla and citronella, have the shortest time. If you’re a heavy sleeper or you love spending time outdoors at night then these products aren’t the best for you. They last for approximately 20 minutes, meaning that you’ll use more of it within a short duration of time. Choose a product that offers over one hour of protection within the first application. Those with DEET offer up to 90 minutes of protection. The repellent you choose should suit the kind of lifestyle you live and how active you are at night. The one you use when you’re sleeping outdoors won’t be effective if you engage in sweaty activities such as jogging.

Use

A mosquito repellent should be applied in the right way based on what kind it is and the person using it. This means just the right amount should be used, they shouldn’t be used on cuts and wounds, adults should apply them on children, you should wash skin with soap and water before applying it once more, don’t use them near food and don’t use it on undergarments. If the repellent should be applied on clothes alone, use it in that manner only. These are just some of the directions given on repellents that you should look out for.

Different mosquito repellents are designed for a specific group of people only. If you’re pregnant, think carefully about the fetus inside. Some repellents can affect them and the mother as well. People with skin conditions and cancers can also be greatly affected if the wrong kind of repellent is used on them. If it gives you allergies or affects your health, consider another alternative. Old people and children have very sensitive senses of smell and their health is fragile. If the repellent has a strong smell, don’t buy it if you intend to use it on them. They will only be sharing in the pain of the mosquitoes. The good news is there is a mosquito repellent for everybody.

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expert tips icon
Look at different methods of application

Mosquito repellents have been made in different ways to suit different people. They come in the form of incense sticks that are lit and produce a smoke that repels mosquitoes, aerosols, oils, sprays, lotions, liquids, and creams. Each variety is similar in effectiveness. When buying a repellent, go for the one that you can use with ease. For example, if you love sprays, you can use the repellent that is in the form of a spray. Make sure to wash your skin before and after using them and use them according to the instructions given. Each has a unique instruction. Never use repellent with sunscreen because the sunscreen will reduce their effectiveness.

Make sure its effective

When looking for a mosquito repellent you want to make sure that the repellent does what it was made to do and will effectively repel mosquitos. The best way to ensure you are getting a product that is effective is to check the customer reviews to see how the product worked for other customers that actually used it in the field.

Other Factors to Consider

Brand

When looking for effective mosquito repellents there is many options on the market and all promise that they will do the best job at repelling the pesky critters of the summer season. Do not be swayed and make sure you do the research to ensure that the promises will be true and the mosquito repellent you have your eye on will be effective. The best way to ensure you are getting a reliable product is to purchase a repellent from a notable brand. These brands have spent years making a great product that has been tested and verified. So if you are having trouble or doubts as to which product you should go with, the safe bet is to go with a product from a known and trusted brand.

Frequently Asked Questions

q: Which is the most recommended repellent?

a:

The one that offers fast protection from mosquitoes within a short period of time. There are a variety of repellents but each has their own level of performance. When you’re buying a repellent, look at the ingredients in it and consider the time of the night you’ll use it. Mosquitoes are most active at dusk and dawn during the summer months. Also, it should be friendly to your skin. You’ll realize that though mosquito repellents vary from one individual to another, the uniting factor is their ability to protect from mosquitoes.

q: If I’m frequently attacked by mosquitoes, should I use a strong repellent?

a:

No. Using a strong repellent may harm you in one way or another. The best way to repel mosquitoes is by using repellent frequently or going for repellents that can protect for long periods of time, such as those with DEET. It’s important to note that the level of ingredients that repel mosquitoes doesn’t matter. Those with a high percentage of DEET offer similar results to those with a lower concentration. Highly concentrated repellents only last longer on the skin before being applied once again.

q: Which are the best repellents to use on babies and young children?

a:

There are several types that have been shown to be safe to young ones such as Endurance Cream that can be used on children who are 2 years and above, Mosi-Guard repellent that can be used on children who are 6 months and above and Expedition Sensitive repellent that’s best for children above 2 years. Always remember to read the instructions on the label and follow them to the letter if you want them to protect your lovely ones.

q: Is there any difference between a mosquito repellent and insect repellent?

a:

Not exactly. The only difference is the term ‘insect repellent’ is a more general term, meaning that the product not only repels mosquitoes but insects in general. Mosquito repellents deal with mosquitoes only. Insect repellents can be used even during the day and on clothing, but mosquito repellents are only to be used at night when mosquitoes are most active. But this can vary depending on your country. Some countries have a larger number of mosquitoes than others.

q: Can mosquito repellents be used at other times of the year apart from summer?

a:

Yes, they can. People mostly use them during summer time because this is when mosquitoes are in large numbers. The hot weather at this time is conducive for them. Summer nights are also hot and can attract many mosquitoes. It isn’t a rule that mosquito repellents are only for the summer. Feel free to use it even during autumn, spring or winter.

q: Why is mosquito repellent important?

a:

Well, for one, they drive mosquitoes away from you. But this isn’t the only advantage. Mosquito repellents protect you from bites that have been shown to cut the skin, therefore allowing bacteria from outside to get into the body. Mosquitoes spread a variety of sicknesses such as malaria, yellow fever, Zika virus, West Nile virus, chikungunya virus, and dengue. These, along with the uncomfortable feeling of being bitten and the scratching that results, should be reason enough to get a repellent as soon as possible. Even if you’ve never been bitten, don’t take chances. There’s a first time for everything.

q: Are repellents containing DEET safe to use?

a:

This largely depends on how they are used. DEET, which is diethyltoluamide in full, can be harmful to the skin. While this is true, it’s also the most effective ingredient in repellents. Don’t use these products more than once in a day. It is also advisable only to use them as a second option after a repellent with another ingredient. All in all, it deals very well with mosquitoes, so you should put your state of health first and the risks it brings a second.

Sources

  1. Sherri Swanson , 7 Mosquito Repellent Tips,