We’ve been there before: tobacco, lead, DEET, and now Picaridin! Big Box stores along with Big Pharma are selling lethal poison to consumers wrapped in sweet and shiny marketing. In recent years awareness of the health and environmental dangers caused by the chemical pesticide DEET has increased dramatically and it has led to a dramatic decline in sales of insect repellents containing the poisonous pollutant. The chemical industry had to synthesize something fresh, new, and cheap, so they did: marketed as a “safer alternative to DEET” pesticide Picaridin has become a staple in chemical insect repellents.
Turned out, Picaridin not only kills mosquitos, temporarily comforting consumers but also kills predators like salamanders that control the populations of mosquitos, hence permanently increasing the number of mosquitos in the habitat. What a clever idea! Spray Picaridin bug spray to get rid of bugs, then go back to the store and buy more since the number of mosquitos will increase.
By harming mosquito predators, picaridin may help mosquitoes survive
“Insect repellents containing picaridin can be lethal to salamanders. So reports a new study published in Biology Letters that investigated how exposure to two common insect repellents influenced the survival of aquatic salamander and mosquito larvae.
Insect repellents are a defense against mosquito bites and mosquito-borne diseases like dengue, chikungunya, Zika, and West Nile virus. Salamanders provide natural mosquito control. During their aquatic juvenile phase, they forage on mosquito larvae, keeping populations of these nuisance insects in check.”
Emma Rosi, a freshwater ecologist at Cary Institute of Ecosystem Studies and a co-author on the paper explains, “Use of insect repellents is on the rise globally. Chemicals in repellents enter aquatic ecosystems through sewage effluent and are now common in surface waters. We set out to understand the impact of repellent pollution on both larval mosquitoes and the larval salamanders that prey on them.”
5 Reasons Why Essential Oils are the Best Mosquito Repellent
Are you tired of putting chemicals on your skin to repel mosquitos? Essential oils offer a natural solution that’s healthier and more effective than synthetic repellents, and they also have the added benefit of smelling great! Read on to learn more about why essential oils are the best mosquito repellent.
1) Use essential oils
Picaridin, DEET, and any other synthetic insect repellents can leave your skin feeling greasy, smelling weird, and with a bit of a chemical tingle. Essential oils will not only keep mosquitoes away from you and your loved ones but also give you plenty of benefits in return—mental peace, relaxation…even extra vitamin C to ward off colds! If that’s not enough for you to give natural mosquito repellents a try then I don’t know what is.
2) Avoid DEET and picaridin
If you have to get outside during mosquito season, there’s no better way to avoid bug bites than by using a natural, all-natural mosquito repellent. Fortunately, there’s a whole bunch of effective alternatives out there—you just need to know where to look. We recommend focusing on essential oils and botanical-based repellents that contain picaridin and deet. These options are effective and still safe for use around people, children, and pets.
4) Wear light-colored clothing
Picaridin and DEET work in different ways. Picaridin is an odorless, colorless chemical that’s often used in personal-care products such as sunscreen and insect repellent. It works by disrupting your brain’s signal to your muscles to contract, meaning mosquitoes can’t sense you. While it doesn’t offer protection right away, it starts working after about 10 minutes and lasts up to 6 hours.
5) Wear closed shoes
If you’re outside, try to keep your arms and legs covered (mosquitoes really do like arms and legs). And wear natural bug repellents that don’t contain DEET. Many essential oils provide protection against mosquitoes without DEET, such as rosemary or eucalyptus oil. And if all else fails? Light up citronella candles! They may not be all-natural, but they work just as well when it comes to keeping those pesky mozzies away from your skin.