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Natural Ways to Repel Mosquitoes

Does Eating Garlic Keep Away Mosquitoes?

"If you think you're too small to make a difference, you've never been in bed with a mosquito."

The buzzing of a mosquito can interfere with your sleep and the bites can ruin camping trips and barbecues. If you avoid chemicals found in DEET or other bug sprays, you may be looking for a more natural way to repel skeeters. You may have heard that eating garlic can do the trick. Find out if it's true.

Garlic is thought to mask your scent so these bugs can't locate you, but unfortunately this method for repelling mosquitoes has been disproved in studies. The same goes for taking vitamin B supplements, or keeping a dryer sheet in your pocket. Here are some natural methods that may be more effective:

  • Remove any standing water near your home including buckets, recycling bins, and bird baths. Skeeters need standing water to reproduce.
  • Burn citronella or unscented candles where you're hanging out. The carbon dioxide they give off attracts the mosquitoes to the candles and away from you.
  • Hang a bat house on your home to attract bats. They feed on mosquitoes and can greatly reduce the amount in your yard.
  • Mosquitoes aren't around on windy days, so when there's no breeze, create one with a fan by placing it on your deck or outside your tent.
  • When outside, don't wear strongly scented perfumes, deodorants, or hair products. Also avoid hanging outside after you've been sweating.

Source: Flickr User adactio

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ekstor ekstor 7 years
Some people's internal body temperatures rise more rapidly than others in warm climates. I found that they seem to be attracted to those with higher levels of natural body heat. For me the majority of my body heat emanates from my hands and feet. One solution I found is to always have something cold in my hands (like ice cubes or a cold icy drink). I find the mosquitoes aren't able to track me as well since the cold drink or ice cubes helps to regulate my outgoing body heat.
insanitypepper insanitypepper 7 years
If this were true, then I wouldn't have all these mosquito bites.
prosecco-in-the-park prosecco-in-the-park 7 years
I always seem to get attacked by mosquitoes and the bites swell up to these huge, hard welts. I will give the garlic a try since I am currently covered and ridiculously itchy.
wolfjinx25 wolfjinx25 7 years
Hmm...looks like I need to eat more garlic.
bengalspice bengalspice 7 years
Eucalyptus is also an insect repellent.
Spectra Spectra 7 years
Treat your clothes with's made from chrysanthemums and it's all natural. It lasts through 3-4 washings and if you do it, you will not get a single bite. Garlic probably doesn't hurt either, lol.
Peggasus Peggasus 7 years
I tend to use a lot of garlic in my cooking, and I haven't had a mosquito bit in years, not even one when we were camping last weekend on a lake. I think it's true, no matter what the scientists say.
Beaner Beaner 7 years
I get eaten alive and have resorted to using DEET, sadly. Although burning candles has seemed to help a little.
FitZucchero FitZucchero 7 years
I'm not sure I believe this one. My husband and I spent a week in Zanzibar where there were tons of mosquitoes everywhere. For some reason, I seem to attract mosquitoes naturally and actually swell up quite a bit once bitten. When we arrived, a member of the dinner service staff told me to add garlic and ginger to my food for a natural repellent. I thought it was a long shot, but did so and spent the entire week there without a single bite. Granted, it could have been something else, but given my track record with mosquitoes, I have to think that it had something to do with it.
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