Nothing can ruin your fun summer day like getting eaten alive by mosquitos. Aside from staying inside 24/7, you may be wondering about other ways to prevent bug bites that don’t involve harsh chemicals found in most manufactured bug repellents – but do natural bug repellents work? How do they work?
Every living thing, from viruses to animals, has evolved certain defense mechanisms, and most plants produce chemicals meant to deter bugs and animals that want to eat them. Interestingly, despite mosquitos being decidedly not vegetarian (unfortunately), mosquitos are still daunted by these chemical compounds. Studies of plant evolution, and especially their production of volatile defensive chemicals, suggest this response may be because mosquitos have kept an outdated olfactory response from a plant-eating ancestor. This happy accident gives us a small advantage against the biting pests!
In fact, humans have been utilizing these plants to discourage bugs for thousands of years all over the globe, using various methods such as bruising the plants and hanging them in their homes, burning plants, and of course, making plant extracts and oils. The efficacy of using plant extracts and oils as bug repellents varies greatly, but the most effective of the extracts (lemon eucalyptus) is actually registered with the Center for Disease Control as a recommended mosquito repellent.
The greatest difficulty in using extracts is that most of them are highly volatile, meaning that they evaporate and lose effectiveness much more quickly than synthetic compounds made to mimic the action of their natural chemical sisters. Additionally, many essential oils can be skin irritants if not properly delivered via a carrier oil. However, when applied every 60-180 minutes and the extracts are properly mixed according to their active properties, there is evidence that they can be just as effective as commercially produced synthetic repellents.
Our natural mosquito repellent works – and works better than any other natural mosquito repellent – because we do just that. Our formula features a delicate composition of natural repellent plant extracts like rosemary, thyme, lemongrass, and geranium and is blended with our skin softening therapeutic body oil, leaving your skin feeling soft, nourished, and most importantly, bite-free. Money-back guaranteed! You can buy it online here, or at The Mercantile and The Village Market in Three Rivers.
Of course, as with all things regarding your health, being familiar with the disease risks in your area and your own health considerations is critical when choosing body products such as these. Choose wisely, and enjoy your summer!