It’s officially summer weather, and while the warm season provides the perfect weather for camping, outdoor games, and sporting activities, it’s also the prime season for bugs. Unfortunately, insects like mosquitoes enjoy the warmer weather just as much as we do, and these biting bugs can be more than a persistent nuisance, they can become a serious health hazard by transmitting diseases like the Zika virus, West Nile, and dengue fever.
Fortunately, modern insecticides such as DEET, along with electronic innovations like zapper lamps make mosquito management much less of a hassle than it used to be. To help you keep the biting bugs at bay, we’ve rounded up five of the most effective mosquito repellent products on the market today, from handy sprays to electric bug zappers.
Off! is the go-to brand for DEET-based bug sprays, and the Deep Woods Insect Repellent has been a staple for years. DEET is an incredibly effective chemical-based bug repellent and 25 percent of the Off! Deep Woods formula is made of the stuff, providing excellent relief from mosquitoes for as long as eight hours before needing to be reapplied. The aerosol spray is super easy to apply on the skin, as well. If you’re not interested in insect science and just want to put the mosquito-repelling into action, this is the spray for you.
Whether you’re going on a backpacking expedition or a camping trip, lounging on the beach, or just want to enjoy some peaceful (and bug-free) time on your porch, you can grab a two-pack of Off! Deep Woods Mosquito Repellent for just $15. This mosquito, tick, and all-around bite repellent has every active ingredient you need to fight the good fight.
If you don’t want to use DEET and prefer an all-natural bug spray instead, Repel is a fantastic choice for insect repellent. According to the product label, this natural repellent contains lemon eucalyptus oil which is a time-tested organic compound that mosquitoes hate (other natural oils that repel bugs are peppermint oil and lemongrass oil, if you’re looking for some to use along with this). It comes in a handy four-ounce spray bottle that easily fits in your pocket or bag and the natural formula repels mosquitoes for up to six hours.
The Repel Lemon Eucalyptus natural insect repellent is the top-rated DEET-free bug spray on the market, and it’s affordable, too, at only $5 per bottle. You can use this natural mosquito repellent as a lotion, pump spray, or lemony cologne if you so desire.
Topical bug sprays are essential, but if you want to go a step further, you can ward mosquitoes away from your property altogether with a spray concentrate like this one from Cutter. You attach this to your garden hose and spray it around your home, targeting areas where mosquitoes might be breeding or are more of a nuisance, and the repellent compounds linger for up to four weeks (even when it rains).
A single 32-ounce bottle is enough to treat an area as large as 5,000 square feet and rings in at just $9 from Amazon.
The iconic bug zapper has been around for decades now and remains popular for a reason: It’s simple and effective. Mosquitoes and other annoying flying insects are attracted to the glow of the Flowtron electronic zapper, only to meet their demise with that satisfying “clacking” sound that immediately lets you know there’s one less bug around to harass you and your loved ones.
The Flowtron electronic insect killer comes in a few different sizes which offer various area coverage.
One simple way to keep bugs away while staying cool in the summer heat is with a high-speed outdoor fan. This 20-inch floor fan from Lasko is just the ticket, putting out more than enough air to make it near impossible for small flying insects like mosquitoes to even get near you. It’s got three different powerful speeds and can also be easily mounted on a wall for optimal positioning to keep your porch or deck free of mosquitoes.
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