Four master tools for your bug repellent arsenal

Keep the mosquitos at bay with these stickers and sprays.

bug on a finger
This blood is my blood.The Nigmatic via Unsplash

Modern life has its comforts: air conditioning, pizza delivery at one in the morning, Facetime. However, venturing outside at dusk in certain areas still runs the risk of getting eaten alive by mosquitos. Some people seem to be more susceptible to bug bites than others (hi). If you're one of them (or love somebody who is) here are the best, tried-and-true bug repellents.

Garlic Barrier 2002 AG+ Liquid Spray

Garlic Barrier 2002 AG+ Liquid Spray
Oddly enough, garlic keeps the little bloodsuckers away.Amazon

My dad has an enormous backyard in suburbia—he likes to throw barbeques and pool parties, and to show off his grilling skills. At every single party, he’ll slyly ask if anyone has been bitten by a mosquito, to which every single guest will reply no. His secret: garlic concentrate, which he sprays around the backyard every few weeks. It works surprisingly well.

Repel Insect Repellent Sportsmen Max Formula Spray Pump 40 Percent DEET

Repel Insect Repellent Sportsmen Max Formula Spray Pump 40 Percent DEET
DEET doesn’t cause cancer.Amazon

DEET has a bad rap, but it's safe, especially if the alternative is risking Lyme disease, malaria, Zika, or West Nile virus. If you're spending time in a particularly buggy area, you will not regret this purchase.

Amrita Bugs BeGone Synergy Essential Oil Blend

Amrita Bugs BeGone Synergy Essential Oil Blend
For those who are anti-DEET.Amazon

If you're really against using DEET, you could try this essential oil blend, which I've used to fight off bugs in the past. It smells like sweet lemons and is made of six different therapeutic grade essential oils: citronella, rosemary, sweet lavandin, eucalyptus, peppermint, and catnip. Dab it on your temples, wrists and ankles—you can also add drops into water in a bottle for a quick spray.

Brellavi Mosquito Repellent Patches

Brellavi Mosquito Repellent Patches
DEET-free stickers to keep the bugs away.Amazon

I discovered these anti-bug stickers while traveling in Asia. They’re cute, all-natural, and effective for at least 12 hours. These stickers helped keep away all the bugs, even when I was hiking around very humid, lush parts of the world.