Best Mosquito Repellent Spray
A mosquito and insect repellent are truly necessary whether you are overlanding, hunting, fishing, or camping. Luckily, there are hundreds of mosquito repellent sprays out there.
And, you know that you can’t get any ordinary insect repellent. You will need the one that is truly effective, lasts long, and is not harmful.
Quick Answer – Best Mosquito Repellent Spray:
- Safe for use on the whole family, long-lasting insect and tick repellent lotion deters a wide variety of pests — up to 14 hours against mosquitoes and ticks and up to 8 hours against flies, gnats, and chiggers
- Fragrance-free topical insect repellent with 20% Picaridin — more effective at repelling biting flies than DEET; repels disease-spreading ticks (Lyme, tick-borne encephalitis) and mosquitoes (West Nile, Dengue, and Zika viruses), chiggers, and more
- Very comfortable to wear on your skin, it's ideal for all your outdoor adventures, from camping, backpacking, hunting, and fishing to backyard BBQs, sporting events, days at the park, and more
- Non-greasy; dries quickly and won't damage plastics or synthetic coatings — safe for use on clothing, backpacks, watches, sunglasses, fishing line, firearm finishes, and more
- Top rated bug repellent by WireCutter/New York Times (May, 2020); maximize protection by pairing with Sawyer Permethrin tick and insect repellent spray for clothing and gear
Finding a mosquito repellent spray that checks all these boxes is quite tough. That is why we have compiled a list of the best mosquito repellant sprays you can buy right now.
And, in this post, we will be reviewing all these best bug sprays. Along with that, we will also share a complete detailed buying guide on the best mosquito repellent sprays.
Repel Insect Repellent Spray
Sawyer Products Premium Insect Repellent
REPEL Plant-Based Lemon Eucalyptus Insect Repellent
Cutter Skinsations Mosquito and Insect Repellent Spray
Sky Organics Organic Bug Repellents
Bullfrog SPF 50 Sunscreen and Mosquito/Insect Repellen
Best Mosquito Repellent Spray – Reviews
Repel has various kinds of mosquito and insect repellant sprays. Now, this one comes with the 40% DEET formula.
That means it contains 40 percent DEET concentration and 60% other ingredients. As a result, it is actually a powerful mosquito and insect repellent spray.
It can offer up to 8 hours of protection against insects and mosquitoes. This product is specially developed for outdoor enthusiasts.
So, if you are an overlander, you will like this one. These come in a ‘pack of 12’ and a ‘pack of 2’ package. Each bottle comes with a net weight of 6 Oz or 177 milliliters.
What Previous Buyers Said?
This is undoubtedly one of the best mosquitoes repellent sprays right now. The customers liked this because it is effective against all kinds of mosquitoes and other bugs as well.
Also, they talked positively about the long-lasting effects of this Repel spray. Some users even referred it to by saying it is a lifesaver.
On the other hand, some customers stated that it is a bit expensive. But they also added that the price is justified because of the effectiveness of the product.
- Designed by an artist. Can be a perfect decor addition to your house
- Contains high concentration of DEET, that can repel not only mosquitoes but other bugs as well
- Small and convenient size, easily fits in pocket or backpack
- Suitable for outdoor enthusiasts
- The ‘Pack of 2’ option is priced a bit higher
- It may damage leather, plastics, synthetic fabrics, varnished or painted surfaces, etc.
- Comes with more than 30 percent DEET concentration, which is not suitable for children
This is the ‘Sawyer Products 20 percent Picaridin’ insect repellent lotion. It comes in various styles and combos. However, we are talking about the ‘Twin Pack’ here.
This package has 2 bottles of anti-mosquito lotion, each containing 4 Oz or 118 ml. The lotion continues to protect you up to 14 hours against mosquito bites and ticks.
Additionally, it also helps in protecting against other biting flies, chiggers, gnats, etc. up to 8 hours. Now, they also have a spray version of this, which offers the user up to 12 hours of protection.
This product uses 20% Picaridin concentration as an active ingredient and 80% other inert ingredients. As a result, it is suitable for applying on skin and clothing.
Plus, it is highly effective against ‘A. aegypti’ and ‘A. albopictus’ mosquitoes that are responsible for spreading the Zika virus. Overall, this can be a great addition to your essential overland gear.
What Previous Buyers Said?
Almost all the previous buyers absolutely love this mosquito repellent lotion. They said that it is highly effective and as it is a lotion, it lasts a long time. Also, they liked that it doesn’t harm any clothing or other synthetic fabrics.
On top of this, they also told it is very skin-friendly. Even it is perfect for children as well. Many customers also reported that it doesn’t give rise to any allergic reaction while using it. So, they are recommending it without any hesitation.
- DEET-free mosquito repellant
- The lotion is more effective and long-lasting than sprays
- It doesn’t damage clothing, synthetic fabrics, backpacks, etc.
- Skin-friendly, non-greasy, and suitable for the whole family
- The price is a bit high
This is another mosquito and insect repellent spray from REPEL. But this is a different one from the previous one. This one uses the oil of Lemon Eucalyptus as the main ingredient.
To be precise, it comes with a 30 percent concentration of oil of lemon eucalyptus and 70% of the other ingredients.
This oil is extracted from the leaves of the ‘Eucalyptus Citriodora’ tree. Interestingly, this natural plant-based ingredient is skin-friendly.
At the same time, it can also repel mosquitos and other biting flies or bugs for up to 6 hours. Yes, it has a protection period less than usual DEET and Picaridin based mosquito repellent sprays.
However, this is suitable for any type of skin because of its plant based active ingredient.
What Previous Buyers Said?
The majority of the buyers were happy with this product. They liked it because it is recommended by the CDC (Centers for Disease Control).
Also, they liked it because this one is a plant-based mosquito and insect repellent. At the same time, other buyers recommend it as a good alternative to DEET and Picaridin based anti-mosquito sprays.
They said even if it lasts shorter than chemical based insect repellents, it works great against mosquito bites and other insects as well.
- Plant-based insect repellent spray
- No stickiness or no greasy feeling
- Highly effective and portable bottle
- Comes with a fresh fragrance
- Not suitable for children younger than 3 years old
- Doesn’t last long compared to the DEET and Picaridin based anti-mosquito sprays
The ‘Cutter Skinsations’ comes in 3 varieties of packages such as ‘Pack of 1’. ‘Pack of 2’, and ‘Pack of 12’. This one contains 7% DEET active ingredients and 93% other ingredients.
On top of this, this insect repellent also contains Aloe and Vitamin E. This ensures that the user will get a softer skin. This product is highly effective against mosquitoes that spread West Nile, Dengue, Zika, and Chikungunya viruses.
As this is made with an active ingredient of 7% DEET concentration, it lasts only about a couple of hours. So, you might need to reapply this frequently.
But as this one comes with less than 30 percent DEET concentration, it is suitable for your whole family including the children and pets.
What Previous Buyers Said?
The previous buyers of this mosquito repellent said that it is very effective. However, they said that it doesn’t last longer than other similar products.
Otherwise, it is a good option if you are going for a quick hike or you want to walk your dogs or pets. They also liked the fragrance of the mosquito repellent.
Furthermore, they also stated that a reasonable price also makes it a great choice.
- Comes with 360-degree pump, can be applied from any angle
- Not only repels mosquitoes but also soften skins
- Comes with a fresh scent
- Budget-friendly price
- Can damage synthetic fabrics, plastics, and leather materials
- Last for only a couple of hours
Next up, we have the ‘Sky Organics Organic Bug Spray’. From the name you can guess that it is made with organic ingredients.
This bug and mosquito repellent contains soybean, castor, citronella, lavender, peppermint, rosemary, and many other types of essential oils as the main ingredients. So, it is a 100% natural bug and mosquito repellent.
There is no DEET or Picaridin or any other harsh chemicals in this product. As a result, it is perfect for organics product lovers. Conversely, it doesn’t last more than a couple of hours.
Another great thing about this one is that it comes in a recyclable aluminum bottle. This is available in a 4 Oz or 118 ml bottle.
This could be one of the best mosquito repellent sprays if you are searching for a 100% natural one.
What Previous Buyers Said?
All the previous buyers are thrilled about this product. The primary reason they like this bug spray is that it is 100% natural. Also, they talked positively about the effectiveness of the product.
They said, even though it is a bit expensive, it actually works great as a natural bug spray. Most buyers are recommending this to the people that are looking for organic bug repellents.
- Chemical-free, DEET-free, Alcohol-free, all-natural mosquito repellent
- It is a vegan and cruelty-free product
- Pretty effective against all types mosquitoes and even bugs
- Comes in a recyclable bottle
- Less effective than other Picaridin and DEET based mosquito repellent sprays
- Might attract honey bees
- The price is a bit high
What if you could get a sunscreen and mosquito repellent combo? Interestingly, this is a 2-in-1 product. It can repel mosquito as well as protect your skin from the sun’s UV radiation.
For the record, this is an SPF 50 sunscreen. That means it can block about 98% of UVA/UVB radiation. This doesn’t contain DEET. Still, it can give you up to 8 hours of protection from various kinds of biting flies and mosquito bites.
This product works great against mosquitoes that are responsible for transmitting viruses like Zika, Chikungunya, Dengue, and West Nile, etc. This product is available in a ‘Pack of 2’ package.
Each of the bottles contains 4.7 Oz or 138 ml. Another great feature of this bug repellent is that it is water-resistant for up to 80 minutes. So, it is the best option if you go fishing or hunting outdoors.
What Previous Buyers Said?
Even though this is a highly-priced product, most of the current users have liked this bug repellent. They find it convenient as it works both as a sunscreen and a mosquito repellent.
Added to this, the users also liked that it is a DEET-free insect repellent. They also talked positively about the inclusion of ‘Aloe’ and ‘Vitamin E’ as ingredients on this insect repellent spray.
Additionally, they loved it because it can give hours of protection.
- It is a 2-in-1 product. Acts as sunscreen and mosquito repellent at the same time
- Comes with free ‘Tru Inertia’ nail file
- It is water-resistant up to 80 minutes
- Skin-friendly and suitable for the whole family
- Price is very high
- Might need to reapply after 2 hours for better results
Buying Guide – Best Mosquito Repellent Spray
Prior to choosing the best mosquito repellent sprays, you will need to be aware of some information about this product. As a result, we have brought together this buying guide section for you.
We hope, by the time you read it, you will be able to choose the perfect and the best insect and mosquito repellent spray for you. So, let’s go…
Main Active Ingredients
There are various types of ingredients used in mosquito and insect repellent sprays. But, mainly, we can divide them into 3 categories.
These are DEET, Picaridin, and Natural Ingredients. Here’s a quick rundown of each type of these active ingredients.
DEET or N,N-Diethyl-meta-toluamide is a chemical compound that was developed in the USA back in 1944. Initially, people used 75% DEET concentration to repel bugs, insects, and mosquitoes.
However, over time, scientists have developed new formulae to produce bug repellents. Nowadays, you will find most of the DEET based insect repellents use less than 40% DEET concentration.
This much is enough for protecting you against bugs and mosquito bites for up to 8 hours. It is a safe ingredient as well.
Due to its long-lasting and highly effective nature, it is suitable for people that will spend a longer period of time outdoors. Also, it works great against all types of mosquitoes, bugs, and insects as well.
Picaridin is a very new ingredient compared to DEET in America. It was introduced in the USA back in 2005. It also works similarly to the DEET based bug repellents.
Picaridin based mosquito repellent sprays last longer and create a barrier against most types of mosquitoes and insects. Plus, even though it is a chemical ingredient, this one has a clean and light feel.
As a result, it has become a new favourite to lots of outdoor enthusiasts.
If you don’t want to use chemical-based mosquito repellents, you can go with the organic bug repellent sprays. Most of those anti-mosquito sprays use different kinds of essential oils. Also, some of them use oil of lemon eucalyptus.
This is also a very effective way to repel mosquitoes. However, it doesn’t last as long as the other DEET or Picaridin active ingredients. By contrast, you are getting a natural and scented mosquito repellent spray.
Percentage of DEET
The percentage of DEET concentration is very crucial. DEET based anti-mosquito sprays come with various DEET concentrations.
Now, the higher the DEET percentage, the longer the spray will last. However, you should also keep in mind that more than 30 percent DEET concentration is not suitable for children.
Most of the chemical-based mosquito repellent sprays don’t have any added scent or fragrance. However, there are a few natural ingredients based bug and insect sprays that contain fragrance.
So, before you buy, you should check to see if the product you are going to get has a scent or not. Also, you should check whether you are comfortable with the smell or not.
How Long Does it Last?
Every mosquito and insect repellent sprays are different. Some last a very long time like 12 to 14 hours. Whereas, some others last just 2 hours. So, which one you are going to get will depend on your preference.
Let’s say, you are an overlander, who spends her/his time outdoors most of the time. Then, it is better to go with a long-lasting option and vice-versa.
Depending on the ingredients, the effectiveness of the mosquito repellents will vary. Researches show that high concentration DEET and Picaridin based insect repellents will last for more hours compared to natural ingredient-based ones.
On the contrary, the high concentration of DEET is not suitable for children. Due to that, low concentration DEET or Picaridin based mosquito repellents would be the best choice in terms of effectiveness and safety. However, for better results, you might have to reapply frequently.
Skin and Clothing Friendliness
Frankly, DEET is known for damaging synthetic fabrics, leather, watch crystals, etc. There were several reports that DEET has melted the plastic cover of smartphones, sunglasses, and even smartphones as well.
However, cotton, wool, or nylon are safe from DEET. Also, it is skin-friendly.
On the flip side, Picaridin is also safe for most types of clothing and materials. This active ingredient is also skin-friendly.
Conversely, the natural ingredients based mosquito repellents that are made with essential oils have mixed reviews.
Many users have reported skin irritation and allergy after using essential oil-based bug repellents. Similarly, many others stated that there were no issues with the 100% organic bug repellents.
So, it all depends on the person that will be using the mosquito and insect repellent spray.
Conclusion – Best Mosquito Repellent Spray
In this post, we have reviewed 6 different mosquito repellent sprays. All of these are some of the best top quality and highly effective bug sprays. However, that doesn’t mean that each of these ones is suitable for you.
In that case, choosing the best mosquito repellant depends on yourself. Because all of us have different preferences and requirements.
But for your convenience, we have shared all the major types of mosquito repellent sprays here. That way, it will be easier for all of our readers to pick the best one.
However, if you ask us for a recommendation, then our vote would go to the ‘Sawyer Products Premium Insect Repellent’. Why?
First off, it comes as both lotion and spray. Secondly, it is made with 20 percent picaridin, which is arguably more effective and safer than DEET.
On the other hand, if you are into organic mosquito repellent sprays, then you could go with the ‘Bullfrog SPF 50 Sunscreen and Mosquito/Insect Repellent’.
Although it might not be a 100% natural bug spray, it contains aloe and Vitamin E. And, it is a 2-in-1 spray. Lastly, for a 100% natural anti-insect spray, the ‘Sky Organics Organic Bug Spray’ will be the best option.
Ferenc Elekes has been a devout Overlanding enthusiast for many years. During that time, Ferenc has explored 75 countries on six continents, with overland travel involved in 40 countries on three continents. From his trusty 2006 Toyota Land Cruiser Prado with a roof-top tent, he’s blogged about experiences that can only be found in the remotest regions on Earth. Along the way, he's gained in-depth knowledge of the novel challenges overlanders encounter and practical ways to meet them. On his website, he shares informed opinions about everything from the best overland gear to how to get a vehicle unstuck. Ferenc has also written for Ih8mud, the Expedition Portal, the Overland Journal, and he is often invited as a guest to outdoors-related podcasts.
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