The 4 best mosquito repellent lotions on Amazon
When it comes to mosquitoes, an effective repellent remains the best line of defense — and the best mosquito repellent lotions are an easy alternative to sprays. When shopping for a mosquito repellent lotion, your best bet is an option formulated with DEET or picaridin. You should also opt for a lotion that is registered with the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to ensure they’re both effective and safe to slather on your skin.
What to look for when shopping for the best mosquito repellent lotions
A mosquito repellent’s efficacy will depend on its ingredients, and according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), DEET, picaridin, and oil of lemon eucalyptus are all effective in warding off mosquitoes.
According to the State of Connecticut Mosquito Management Program, a formula with anywhere from 10% to 35% DEET will provide good coverage for most people, but you should keep in mind how long you will be exposed to mosquitoes (a higher percentage of DEET will offer longer protection). According to the CDC, DEET is safe for pregnant people and children at least two months old. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends using DEET concentrations under 30% on children. (Note: These are broad guidelines and may not take into consideration other ingredients in an insect repellent. For any given product, you should also closely read the manufacturer label and follow its exact usage instructions.)
A 20% DEET Premium Controlled-Release Lotion will work well against mosquitoes, but Dr. Zimring says he prefers the 20% Picaridin lotion since it also protects against ticks, gnats, chiggers, and flies. (In both instances, he recommends Sawyer brand.)
Part of spending time outside means battling ticks, mosquitoes, and other biting insects. For this, Nelson swears by permethrin.
And out of the products we tested, Dr. Zeichner highly recommends Sawyer Products 20% Picaridin Insect Repellent.