BUYER’S GUIDE Top mosquito repellents for Zika/Dengue

Do your Mozzie Wipe Out while you protect yourself and your family from bites…


Apart from a good spray around your home with insecticides (which smell nasty and must not get into your kids’ eyes or noses) there are alternatives such as citronella oil/insect-repellent oil of lemon eucalyptus/catnip oil — these are all “natural” products that try to cover up your scent so mosquitos can’t “sniff” you out (your mileage may vary).
          Remember that oils should not be applied directly to your skin and not on children under age 3 and need to be refreshed every hour or two. Also note that “pure” oil of lemon eucalyptus isn’t the same as the insect-repellent version…which is what you need.
           If you’re wondering about DEET, it was developed by the USDA, is effective and has been around for some 50 years. Recent innovations that have been tested to be highly effective also are picaridin and oil of lemon eucalyptus.
           And of course there are the good old mosquito coils (such as Shieldtox).

*Remember that if applying any spray, don't spray too close to your child's skin, and do not let it get into eyes or the nose and mouth or on any open wounds.

Precautions to take especially if pregnant

  1. Wear light-coloured long-sleeved clothes when outside.
  2. Use mosquito netting around your bed, or insect screens at your windows.
  3. Avoid using perfume or scent — especially if it’s fruity/floral as it may attract mosquitos.
  4. Carbon dioxide in your breath and lactic acid from your skin and sweat both also attract mosquitos so where possible, wipe down quickly after exercising.
  5. Mask your scent with essential oils or with some of the following mosquito repellents from Watsons, Guardian or your well-stocked neighbourhood supermarkets...

Click to load our roundup of effective and safe repellents for adults, pregnant women and children...