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Summer is a great time – outdoor meetings, barbecues and daylong hikes with friends and family. Fresh summer air, blue sky, bright sun and obviously… mosquitoes! If you live somewhere where mosquitoes are common, you probably already keep mosquito repellent handy. But many of the conventional mosquito repellents contain the active ingredients DEET or picaridin, which can be allergenic and harsh to skin. Repellents that contain these additives are also not the best choice for children. Fortunately, natural, plant-based mosquito repellents work just fine and may be a reasonable alternative to the conventional ones! Here are 5 natural mosquito repellents you can use to keep mosquitoes away while limiting your exposure to dangerous chemicals.

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1. Catnip

Cat’s favourite, catnip is actually also very effective as a bug repellent. In 2001, researchers presenting to the American Chemical Society reported that nepetalactone (the essential oil that gives catnip its distinctive scent) is about ten times more effective than DEET when it comes to repelling mosquitoes. If you want to repel mosquitoes, rub catnip leaves directly onto your skin. You can also brew a catnip tea, wait for it to cool down and spray it on yourself before leaving the house. If you have a garden or terrace, the best remedy is to simply plant catnip leaves around it.

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This site offers information designed for educational purposes only. You should not rely on any information on this site as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, treatment, or as a substitute for, professional counseling care, advice, diagnosis, or treatment. If you have any concerns or questions about your health, you should always consult with a physician or other healthcare professional.