ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Bug Repellent: B1 vs DEET vs Lemon Eucalyptus

Updated on March 9, 2021
allergic reaction to DEET
allergic reaction to DEET | Source

On of the mythical alternatives to using DEET is taking large does of the vitamin B1. The recommended dosage for an adult is 1.5 mg and there is urban legend that taking 50 to 300 mg will repel bugs.

The theory is that the excess unmetabolized Vitamin B1 will secrete through your pores while sweating will repel the bugs. Several studies have showed that B1 has no value to repel mosquitoes. If B1 actually worked then how come there is no B1 bug spray?

Using garlic as a repellent doesn't work but might repel certain humans who find the smell of garlic abhorrent. Lemon Eucalyptus does work somewhat but do not need to mix with vodka to used as a spray on.

Avon's skin so soft is such a persistent myth that Avon now has a DEET free Skin-So-Soft Bug Guard Expedition SPF 30. If the original truly did work then why did Avon respond to the consumer demand with a separate line of bug guard? Although Avon's bug guard has no DEET, directions say not to exceed three applications per day

The new style of a 'clip-'on insect repellent with the batteries to run the fan works best if not moving and therefore useless to put on high energy children. It also can leave a bad taste in the mouth from the fumes.

Nothing works as well as the pesticide DEET, (dimethyl-meta-toluamide), but still has restrictions on not using it on children less than 3 years old. All DEET has a EPA number on the package for calling the pesticide poisoning center in a emergency. New York state bans any product that contains more than 30% DEET due to concerns of pesticide poisoning in children,

Repeated used of DEET can create a sensitization resulting in a rash of burning blisters that if get infected can cause permanent scars. The neurological damage of long term high concentration of DEET include headache, insomnia, mood swings, clumsiness, seizures or coma.

A person would have to choose the lesser of two evils when in a environment where West Nile virus, Dengue fever and malaria are prevalent.

Ary Type Insect Repellent 30% DEET Effectively Repels Mosquitoes, Black Flies, No See Ums, Deer Flies, Chiggers and Fleas
Ary Type Insect Repellent 30% DEET Effectively Repels Mosquitoes, Black Flies, No See Ums, Deer Flies, Chiggers and Fleas

Personal story that will make your skin crawl

This is the first time I had an allergic reaction to bug spray but I've never used so much as I did this year. After two years of drought and then the monsoon season of the Huachuca mountains on the Sonora border, the mosquito population exploded.

I have used Cutter DEET mosquito repellent more than I have ever did before on a daily basis for a month. At first I thought the bumps were from bug bites and then I would reapply more bug spray. A couple of times I lifted my arms and sprayed the back of my shoulders where mosquitoes would target. I ran out of the small bottle of Cutter brand 23% DEET repellent and refilled the tiny bottle with DEET army type 30% mosquito repellent.

I now know that with my personal experience and research, that I was doing everything wrong to repel mosquitoes.

  1. Wearing dark clothes.
  2. Spraying inside and breathing it in.
  3. Drinking beer.
  4. Applying underneath clothes than cover skin leaving in unexposed.
  5. Not showering and changing clothes when returning indoors.

I did everything wrong in using DEET that caused erythematous the medical term for inflamed red skin with burning blisters. I even had tiny bumps in the back of mouth that felt as is I gargled with fiberglass. Whatever you do - do not look up google images of acute erythematous, those pictures of cases a whole lot worse than mine made me feel how much worse it could've been.

Since I now know that I'm very sensitive to DEET and cannot use it on my skin anymore. What should I do if can't use the one product that out preforms all others for prolonged exposure to the mosquito infested outdoors? What am I to do? Wearing a burka is out of the question, but now I realize that the veil probably originated to keep bugs off and morphed into a modesty dress code for Muslims. I'm not going to sequester myself indoors in the Spring, Summer and Fall and I though of an idea.

The idea is to spray DEET on those little air fresheners pine trees that you hang in the car and attach them all over my clothing for protection but that would look crazy.

Once I'm over this severe rash I plan next time I hike in the woods to spray DEET on my hiking backpack, hat and shoes except the areas that make contact with my skin. Spraying ribbons with DEET and attaching these pennants onto my clothing may also be effective. I have already made a homemade mosquito netting from black lace to put on my face and attach and detach from my hat as needed.

My skin burst into splotchy itchy bumps and finally realized that I had an allergic reaction to DEET. I've tried soaking in Baking soda, cocoa butter lotion, aloe vera and none of that help. Antihistamine spray was not available at the store, so I took the pills for one day along with using baking soda as a lotion and aloe vera which both stung without any relief from the irritation.

DEET Rash Treatment

Wash first , remove DEET covered clothes but don't soak the tub with an entire box of baking soda like your grandmother told you nor Calamine or witch hazel because it will just dry out your skin and instead of a burning rash will have a stinging rash. Some say take a oatmeal bath, but I haven't tried that.

When I called the national hotline at 1-800-858-7378 they wanted to know the EPA number that is on all bottles that contain DEET. I couldn't find the bottle and told him I would call back. he said to call back the regional number 1-800-222-1222 who didn't want the EPA number.

FOn the phone for DEET rash treatment, I was told to use Eucerin skincare lotion which helps the itching, hydrocortisone cream as a topical ointment to reduce the swelling and the ingestion of antihistamine diphenhydramine HCI pills for the allergic reaction, the main ingredient in Benadryl.

The infamous 'two weeks' time frame was given but I had some relief from the itchy blistering after 2 days. If blisters become open and infected then it's time to see a doctor.


Health Conditions and Diseases Skin Disorders Hives Allergies Allergy


This website uses cookies

As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

Show Details
HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)