Fall is just around the corner and that means more nights outside and a trip to Yosemite with some friends and family. And with all of that time outdoors, bugs are bound to come with it. Bugs completely freak me out so when I heard that you could apply a spray to your clothes and it’d ward away the pesky things, I was all for it. This was especially perfect for my trip to Africa where the mosquitoes carry a host of diseases from malaria to West Nile to African sleeping sickness. Thank you to House, for terrifying me with the reality of that.
So I did some research online, talked with some folks at REI and Cabellas, and decided on Sawyer Premium Permethrin Clothing Insect Repellent.
This spray lasts for 6 weeks or six washes so eventually you will have to reapply, but it works great for camping trips or long safaris (or if you’re my mom, you love it because if keeps the mosquitoes away when you’re gardening). It also works against ticks, chiggers, and mites.
How it Works
- Find a space with open air (we did this on our small balcony, but open garage would work great too)
- Hang up your clothes on hangers and spray them in a sweeping motion from about 6 inches away until they are almost damp
- Hang each up and try to keep them from touching so they dry faster
- Note: Please don’t spray your clothes while they are on you. If you need instant protection, use regular bug spray like Off! I don’t want anyone ending up with weird rashes 😉
Don’t forget to spray:
- Shoes: Pay particular attention to the area around your ankles
- Socks: Just to ward away ticks and those times when your pants hike up exposing your ankles
- Shirt collars: Spray it in the up and down positions
- Backpack: If you know your gear is going to be put on the ground in grassy or forest areas, ward ticks away by spray the bottom and sides
It really is that easy! Here are some questions I’ve gotten, but let me know if you have more in the comments.
Did it ruin any of my clothes?
Nope. I sprayed this stuff on cotton, quick-dry polyester, fleece, and a bunch of other apparel and everything came out fine.
Does it smell?
When we sprayed it there was a light scent, but when it dried it was surprisingly odorless. I was worried at first because we had to hang these up in the doorways of our apartment with all of the windows open.
How long did the process take?
About an hour to spray outfits for three adults. Then we let them dry overnight before taking them down.
Did it really work?
I wasn’t sure about it at first, but this stuff was amazing! I only got ONE mosquito bite the entire THREE WEEKS I was in Africa.
Did Sawyer pay you to say this?
Nope, this is all me. When I was looking into this process, I didn’t find any articles that answered my questions so I thought I’d share my experience.