The 20 Best Mosquito Repellents to Keep Your Family Protected
We found the best mosquito repellent products for bite-free summer adventures.
The sweet summer months are upon us, which means picnics in the park, fun BBQ ideas, backyard games, days at the pool…and mosquitoes. Whether or not you live in one of the most mosquito-infested cities in the U.S., if you consider your backyard an oasis and love to lounge on outdoor furniture, chances are you’ll get bitten. That’s where the best mosquito repellent products come in.
Mosquitoes can ruin even the most gorgeous patio decor scenes and leave you itching and scratching for days. Luckily, there are plenty of safe and simple ways to keep mosquitoes at bay, from mosquito-repellent plants and natural bug repellents to mosquito repellent clothing, lawn treatments and EPA-approved bug sprays. The challenge is to pick the right one.
“When choosing a personal repellent, make sure you match your insect repellent to the environment you are going to be in, as well as your activity,” says Tania Elliott, MD, an internist, allergist and immunologist. “Different repellents offer a varied range of active ingredients, strengths, and lengths of protection.”
Keep in mind: “The higher the percentage of the active ingredient (i.e. DEET), the longer one application will last,” Elliot adds. Choosing a longer-lasting formula may prove useful, especially in areas with extended warm seasons that allow mosquitoes to live longer.
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.