DEET is Dangerous from Bug Repellent Myths

Bug Repellent Myths

Full Story

DEET is Dangerous

Not true! DEET has always been and remains to be the most effective repellent. It is recommended not to use more than 50% DEET on skin, as skin can be sensitive to this. But, the EPA recently reviewed DEET again in 2014 and continues to believe that DEET does not present any health concerns for general population or the environment.


Natural is Better

We often associate natural things with better quality (organic foods and drinks), but when it comes to bug spray, that is not necessarily true. Dr. Susan Stuart, an expert in dermatology and lasers finds natural remedies ineffective, “Some bug sprays which only contain plant oils like some essential plant oils like citronella oil, lemon oil, eucalyptus oil and soy bean oil are relatively ineffective.”


Stronger Repellent Means Fewer Mosquitos

False, stronger repellents only last longer, and calls for less reapplication. This does not enable it to repel more mosquitoes.

Flickr/Felipe Ernesto

You Should Spray Repellent Like Perfume

You should never spray repellent like perfume. It should be used similarly to sunscreen where you rub into all your skin. If you read the directions on any repellent bottle it will tell you how important it is to completely cover your skin.

Flickr/Sebastian Mary

Eating Garlic and Vitamin B Make You Less Attractive

There is a common myth that garlic and vitamin B make you less attractive to mosquitoes. This is not scientifically proven. The American Mosquito Control Association states that, “The attractant level of each individual to biting arthropods is based on a complex interaction of many chemical and visual signals.”

Flickr/Pyrrhos Papadopoulos

Mouthwash/Listerine Fights Off Mosquitoes

This common myth was put to the test by The Tangipahoa Mosquito Abatement District. They came to the conclusion, “Listerine is an ineffective pesticide to use against mosquitoes. While it may seem to kill them initially, those mosquitoes have a high probability of recovering. The initial knockdown is most likely due to the mosquitoes getting wet from the direct spray. Once the wings dry, they may recover and resume flight.”


Dryer Sheets Repel

Again, The Tangipahoa Mosquito Abatement District put another myth to the test. The conclusion was unanimous. The dryer sheets were ineffective, except for ONE less mosquito. So if you are worried about repelling just ONE, go for the dryer sheets.


Sound Drives Them Crazy

The AMCA answered the question, "Do ultrasonic devices work?" with a definitive no. While people still flock to buy the sound emitting devices, the AMCA states, “At least 10 studies in the past 15 years have unanimously denounced ultrasonic devices as having no repellency value whatsoever.“

Bug Repellent Myths