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5 Best Mosquito-Repelling Lotions for Your Next Trip

Mosquitoes are no one’s friend. Their bites leave angry red welts that are itching and downright annoying. And worse than that, they are the carriers of many diseases like malaria and dengue, as well as viruses including Chikungunya, West Nile, and Zika. No matter where you travel, it’s a good idea to pack a mosquito-repelling lotion in your bag. Here are our five favorite lotions that really do keep mosquitoes from ruining your vacation.

Sawyer Products 20% Picaridin Insect Repellent

Sawyer Products 20% Picaridin Insect Repellent is one of the best mosquito-repelling lotions we’ve ever tried. This completely unscented lotion comes in a 4 oz bottle — a great size for stashing into your luggage or overnight bag. The lotion uses Picaridin instead of DEET as its main repelling ingredient. When applied, it offers up to 14 hours of protection from mosquitoes and flies, and up to eight hours of protection from gnats, flies, and chiggers. This non-greasy lotion also comes in larger sizes, as well as in a spray bottle and single-use lotion packets.

3M Ultrathon Insect Repellent Lotion

Another top-selling mosquito repellent lotion is Ultrathon Insect Repellent Lotion from 3M. This lotion contains about 34% DEET to repel not only mosquitoes, but biting flies, chiggers, deer flies, ticks, gnats, and fleas. 3M uses a specially-designed controlled release technology to keep protection going for up to 12 hours. And because the tube is only 2 ounces, it meets TSA requirements for fitting in your carry-on luggage.

Continue reading about the best insect repelling lotions by Ann Rapier here.

LAST UPDATED

June 4, 2022

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Ann Rapier

MEDIA MENTIONS

While DEET products may be more familiar by name and their chemical smell, sprays with 20 percent picaridin, like Sawyer Products, offer comparable protection without the harsh odor and oily feeling on your skin.

Kevin Brouillard
Travel & Leisure

MEDIA MENTIONS

The Sawyer Squeeze was (by far) the most common Pacific Crest Trail water filter this year – for the fifth year in a row. It’s a $39, 3 oz / 85 g hollow fiber filter that rids your drinking water of protozoa and bacteria (and floaties). It can be used with Sawyer bags (included with the filter) or with compatible water bottles (Smartwater is the bottle of choice for many hikers).

Halfway Anywhere
Media Mentions from Halfway Anywhere

MEDIA MENTIONS

SAWYER MINI WATER FILTER, $22 This has been my water filter of choice for years now. The bags can be iffy — I have had a few break – so carry a couple. However, the filter itself is reliable, light and inexpensive. -Logan

Bikepacking Team