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All this Zika talk is just worrisome. But not just because of the mosquitoes, but due to all the bug repellents out there with controversial ingredients like DEET (N,N-Diethyl-m-toluamide).

“A 2013 analysis of about 4,000 DEET-related calls to poison control centers found that 450 people needed medical treatment after applying DEET; two died. Most cases of seizures, slurred speech, coma and other serious side effects have occurred in people who ingested DEET or applied it for three or more days in a row, or used products with 95 percent DEET or more. It’s unclear whether lower doses pose the same risks, especially if you follow directions. Still, our experts urge children, seniors and those with weakened immunity to use it with extra caution” As reported by the Washington Post

Two other harmful ingredients to look out for in the list of ingredients are: Cyfluthrin and Pyrethroids. Both are linked to Neurotoxicity and the latter to endocrine disruption.

There are Plant Extracts that are effective in repelling insects like Citronella, Lemongrass, Clove oil, Eucalyptus, Geraniol, Linalool, Neem, and Thyme. The Essential Oils do the same thing the DEET does, but essential oils do not put harmful chemicals into the body. The mosquito is smart enough to know that essential oils come from plants, trees, and flowers and since these items do not have blood moving through them, they move onto something else. The following bug repellents have safer ingredients like the ones mentioned above:

Parakito has two options if you don’t like spraying on your skin. A refillable band that can be worn around the wrist or ankle, or a refillable clip that can be attached to a purse, belt, or anywhere where is needed. A single refill pellet fits in the mesh pocket and as the natural oils’ active ingredients are released mosquitoes can’t find you.

Ingredients as listed on their website:
INERT INGREDIENTS:
Vanillin
ACTIVE INGREDIENTS: Citronella oil, Rosemary oil, Geranium oil, Mint oil, Clove oil, Peppermint oil

Aromaflage is a fine fragrance that combines notes of citrus fruit, warm cedarwood, and silken vanilla that also repels insects. They also produce soy wax candles with lead free cotton with the same formula and a ceramic bracelet that you spray with the fragrances in order to repel the mosquitoes.

Ingredients as listed on their website:
Alcohol denat, Water, Parfum (essential oils of vanilla, cedarwood, orange, patchouli, vanillin

Dr. Fedorenko True Organic Stick has the texture of a balm and its designed to protect and nourish skin at the same time, while keeping mosquitoes and other insects at bay.

Ingredients as listed on their website:
Active ingredients: 2.5%*Cymbopogon Shoenanthus (Lemongrass) Oil, 2%*Cymbopogon Nardus (Citronella) Oil, 2%*Mentha Piperita (Peppermint) Oil, 1.48%*Rosmarinus Officinalis (Rosemary) Oil, 1%*Cedrus Atlantica (Cedar) Oil, 0.81%*Eugenia Caryophyllus (Clove) Flower Oil, 0.10%*Pelargonium Graveolens (Geranium) Flower Oil

Inactive Ingredients: *Cera Alba (Beeswax), *Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Oil, *Vanilla Flavor, *Ricinus Communis (Castor) Seed Oil, *Theobroma Cacao (Cocoa) Seed Butter, *Nepeta Cataria (Catnip) Oil, *Citrus Aurantium Dulcis (Orange Peel) Oil, *Piper Nigerum (Black Pepper) Fruit Oil, *Prunus Dulcis (Sweet Almond) Oil, Mixed Tocopherols (Vitamin E), *Eucalyptus Citriodora (Lemon Eucalyptus) Oil, *Calendula Officinalis (Calendula) Flower Extract

Ingredients Marked (*) are Organic.

Palo Santo incense/sticks is an aromatic wood that after ignited, the smoke repels mosquitoes, ants and other insects. It can be used as an alternative to citronella candles around the house or backyard. The scent of Palo Santo is extremely soothing and transmits a powerful energy.

The most important is to be informed and know the risks around your area so you can choose the right bug repellent for you and your family. If you decide to stick to DEET, avoid those formulas that have more than 30 percent DEET and spray on your clothes instead of your skin.

 

Live green,

Nathalia

 

 

Palo Santo picture from The Colorful Dot Boutique
All other pictures from the brand’s website

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