15 Ways to Repel Bugs Naturally (and Affordably)
Insects such as mosquitoes, fleas, and wasps have always been a major drawback of the summer months, but knowing how diseases such as Zika proliferate in hot vacation spots raises the stakes. It's worth remembering that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention tracked that mosquito-borne disease -- linked to birth defects and potentially fatal neurological disorders -- to Gulf Coast states including Florida and Texas as well as to U.S. territories including Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, and American Samoa.The need to steer clear of mosquitos and other disease-carrying insects is clear, but slathering skin with chemical-laden products isn't the only alternative to risking disease. There are simple and cheap ways to repel bugs naturally. Use these tips and DIY antidotes to minimize the ick factor this season.
Related: 13 Cheap, Natural Ways to Rid Your Home of Pests
The Anti Mosquito app for iOS uses a high-frequency noise to supposedly deter mosquitoes (and potentially other small insects, such as ticks, flies, and fleas) and there are Android apps for the same purpose. The average human ear doesn't pick up these audio frequencies, so users won't be pestered by constant noise while the app is activated -- but while some reviewers call the apps effective, there's no rigorous science to back them up. Downloads are free, so disappointed users may get bitten but won't feel ripped off.
Some decorative plants have natural bug-repelling chemicals and aromas. Lining an outdoor space with these plants is both aesthetically pleasing and practical. Garden Design magazine lists six plants that work as natural mosquito repellents, including herbs such as basil and rosemary, which offer an added culinary benefit.