With all of the tick scares and the constant avoidance of mosquitos, I thought it was interesting when I saw that Consumer Reports did a study on the best repellents on the market.

Whenever I'm in a situation where I may be attacked by various insects, I usually just grab whichever repellent is closest or borrow a friend's. Granted, I also usually end up completely covered in mosquito bites (I hate them). I couldn't wait to read what Consumer Reports had to say about repellents, after serious testing, these are apparently the best and worst to use.

They tested them honestly the only way possible. Testers stuck their arms in a cage of disease-free mosquitos and watched as they were bit. If a tested was bit twice in a five minute session, the repellent failed. For ticks, the testers had three lines on their arms and five deer ticks were released. The repellent failed when two ticks crossed into the treated area.

Generally, any repellent with the three active ingredients: deet, oil of lemon eucalyptus, and picaridin tended to do well. Their overall top three brands, starting with the best to buy were:

  1. Total Home Woodland Scent Insect Repellent
  2. Off Deep Woods Insect Repellent Dry
  3. Repel Plant-Based Lemon Eucalyptus Insect Repellent

The three worst brands to buy from worst to not as bad, where:

  1. HOMS Organic Bite Blocker Insect Repellent Itch & Sting Relief
  2. Up & Up (Target) DEET-free Insect Repellent
  3. Sawyer Picaridin Insect Repellent

Other name brands I recognized didn't do too well either. Cutter & the Clean Feel Off were both rated very poorly. What makes #1 Total Home great is that it repels both mosquitoes and ticks with 30% deet. Granted, I didn't test them or put my arm in a cage of bitey bugs but this is what the experts say. What do you think?