What are some vitamins that repel mosquitoes

Successfully repel insects

DEET when staying in the tropics


Diethyltoluamide (DEET, Meta-Delphene, N, N-Diethyl-3-methylbenzamide) is an insect and tick repellent against a wide range of ectoparasites. The effectiveness was tested on humans against insects such as flies, mosquitoes, mosquitoes, horseflies, mites, ticks and against leeches. The protective effect against mosquitoes, ticks and horseflies, tsetse flies and other flies is good, against some arthropods such as bees, bumblebees, wasps and hornets it is weak or absent.


10 to 35 percent preparations are applied locally once or twice a day, and more frequently in lower concentrations. Special precautions apply to extensive use, i.e. on more than 20 percent of the body surface, as well as to applications on more absorbent areas of the skin (skin folds in the bends of the joints, between the fingers and toes, intertriginous areas, wounds, skin lesions, sunburn), at the skin and mucous membrane borders as well as near the eyes and nostrils.


The use of DEET should be avoided during pregnancy and breastfeeding, as there is no information available on this. DEET should not be used in babies either. DEET can be used to repel insects in children, but repeated, multi-day or large-scale use should be avoided.


Local skin irritations (burning, redness and contact urticaria) and sensitization disorders were observed as side effects in individual cases after frequent use. At concentrations above 30 percent, blistering, ulceration and necrosis can occur. DEET is neurotoxic and, on very rare occasions, has resulted in fatal encephalopathies in children.


It should be noted that DEET attacks some plastics. Contact with sunglasses, plastic bottles, telephone receivers and possibly support stockings should therefore be avoided.


Due to its very good benefit / risk documentation, DEET is recommended by the WHO. Depending on the form of application and concentration, it works long enough: for example against mosquitoes for up to eight hours, against ticks for up to two hours.


Icaridin: No plastic problem


Icaridine (2- (2-hydroxyethyl) -1-piperidine-carboxylic acid methylpropyl ester, Bayrepel®) was examined in different ectoparasites. It turned out to be as effective as DEET, and even superior to some species. The spectrum of activity includes, among others, Anopheles, Aedes, Culex and Simulium species, the common biting fly (Stomoxys calcitrans) and the common wood tick (Ixodes ricinus). 10 percent formulations reliably repel mosquitoes and horseflies for up to four hours. 20 percent preparations protect against mosquitoes and horseflies for up to eight hours and against ticks for up to four hours.


Studies on laboratory animals gave no indications of embryotoxic or teratogenic effects. In a two-generation study, the substance was also given during the lactation phase without any negative effects on the offspring being found. Thus, no risk is to be expected when used during pregnancy and breastfeeding. In the absence of specific data, however, icaridin is not recommended for children under two years of age.


Icaridin is neither irritating nor sensitizing on the skin. Compared to DEET, it makes the skin feel better and smells more pleasant. Slight local irritation of the mucous membranes is possible. Unlike DEET, the active ingredient does not attack plastics.


DMP mostly in combination


Dimethyl phthalate (DMP, dimethyl phthalate, palatinol) was the least effective in a controlled in vivo study on rats aged three to four days compared to other repellants. A protective effect exists against house mosquitoes (Culex species), mosquitoes (Aedes species) and fever mosquitoes (Anopheles species). Data from clinical studies on dosage and duration of use as an insect repellant are not available. DMP is often combined with other repellants.


An assessment of the embryotoxicity is not possible, which is why its use during pregnancy and breastfeeding is not recommended. Insufficient data are also available for use in children, so that its use is not advisable.


DMP irritates the skin only insignificantly, but the eyes after prolonged contact. It is mutagenic in the Ames test. A risk / benefit assessment is not possible due to incomplete toxicological data. There are no controlled clinical studies with regard to the claimed areas of application.


Repellent 3535 too weak for the tropics


According to the manufacturer, Repellent IR 3535 (ethyl butyl acetyl aminopropionate) is effective against mosquitoes (Aedes aegypti, Anopheles), tsetse flies (Glossinae), ticks, fleas and horseflies (Tabanidae). Although the substance has been used as a repellent in Europe for more than 20 years, there is hardly any data on undesirable effects. The same applies to information on chronic toxicity, carcinogenicity and mutagenicity. The acute toxicity of the substance and its potential for side effects are low.


The substance is less effective against Anopheles species than DEET or Icaridin and therefore not recommended for stays in the tropics, more precisely in malaria areas.


Repellent 3535 is used in concentrations of 10 to 20 percent. In children, use is only recommended after they have reached the age of one.


Essential oils not reliable


Repellants based on essential oils, despite their natural origin, are neither more effective nor better tolerated than their synthetic competitors. They usually only work for a short time and have a limited spectrum of action. They do not provide reliable protection against ticks and aggressive mosquitoes (Anopheles species). The effectiveness can usually not be increased by mixing different essential oils.