No items found.

The 5 best bug sprays and repellents for deterring mosquitos, ticks, and other insects in 2021

Reliable bug spray is invaluable when on a camping trip or hanging out in your backyard. While general mosquito repellents will keep the little biters away, bug repellent deters ticks, chiggers, mosquitos, and other bugs — along with the diseases they may carry.

The most effective kind of bug spray is one with DEET (diethyltoluamide), which decades of research proves is the best for protecting humans from these bugs. However, DEET is toxic to aquatic creatures like fish and breaks down synthetic clothing or treated fibers, meaning it can de-waterproof your favorite rain coat or cause your hiking tank to wear out sooner.

DEET alternatives like picaridin and permethrin are less toxic and potentially very effective as a bug repellent. However, the scientific community is still testing these alternatives. For anyone sensitive to DEET or other chemical sprays, I've found a few natural bug repellents that won't hurt you or the environment.

A note to parents for bug spray for kids: The nonprofit Environmental Working Group (EWG) does not recommend using any bug spray on children under 6 months old. It does suggests treating clothes with permethrin. After a child reaches 6 months, picaridin is the safest choice as the best bug spray for kids.

If you are interested in learning more about the best bug sprays, you can continue reading the complete article written by Owen Burke here.

LAST UPDATED

December 3, 2023

Written by
Photo thumbnail Blog Author

Business Insider

Media Mentions from Business Insider

What you want to know about business. A section of Insider.

Explore More Content

Media Mentions

Sawyer Insect Repellent is a versatile picaridin spray recommended by the Center for Disease Control (CDC) as safe and effective for most people. Our testers liked the evaporating smell and how the spray feels once it dries.

Media Mentions

Insects and arachnids that bite in self-defense instead of to feed -- such as yellow jackets, bees, wasps, hornets, certain ants or spiders -- cannot be repelled with insect repellents.

Drugs.com
Media Mentions from Drugs.com

Media Mentions

The number of bug-borne diseases is increasing, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. And the number of places they're spreading to is also on the rise.

WXYZ Detroit 7
Media Mentions from WXYZ Detroit 7