Blogs » Your Advocate: an editor's blog » How do you keep mosquitoes from biting you when you go outside?


Paula and I like to take a walk most evenings to unwind after the day and spend a little time away from the world's distractions.

This week, though, we found ourselves fleeing blood-thirsty varmints. Paula let out a yell when she saw the back of my shirt covered in mosquitoes and then we ran through the meadow like middle-aged deer.

The city is fogging our streets this week and apparently not a moment too soon. We will risk disease from pesticides if we can get a moment's peace from mosquitoes.

On the Advocate's Facebook page, we asked readers what steps they take to avoid being devoured when they go outside. The answers delighted us with their creativity, but we can't vouch for their effectiveness.

Quite a few offered dryer sheets as a solution. I wasn't sure what to make of this home remedy. Do you pin the sheets over all exposed areas of your skin? Do you swat the mosquitoes with them?

Fortunately, one reader clarified: You keep the dryer sheets in your pocket. Another said to rub a sheet lightly over your skin and then tie it to your belt loop. Somehow, the scent scares off the skeeters.

Other suggestions also left me scratching my head:

-- Skin So Soft Avon

-- Essential oils dabbed on your legs, arms and head

-- Mint Listerine in a spray bottle

-- Lavender oil

-- Body Dew by Pure Romance

-- Johnsons and Johnson Baby Oil Gel

-- Rosemary plant rubbed on your skin

-- Rags soaked in ice water tied around the wrist and neck to keep your body cool

-- A ginger tree in your yard. The sweet scent will attract the skeeters, and the plant's essential oils will kill them.

The last suggestion is appealing for its use of nature vs. nature. Oddly, though, no one mentioned bats. A special nod, though, goes to Advocate reader Nelson Jackson, who offered this gem: Wear a purple martin house as a hat.

Others also showed we can still smile through our pain:

-- Run and do ninja moves

-- Roll around in a plastic bubble

-- Duct tape

-- Wrap yourself in trash bags

-- A flame thrower

Did I miss anything -- other than those thousands of mosquitoes chasing us?