I sometimes tease my husband that he must be part pest because exposure to most bug sprays sends him to the floor, gasping for air. Needless to say, with a reaction that terrifying, we’re extremely cautious about what kind of products we use. Fortunately, we discovered Badger’s Anti-Bug Stick.
Although articles like this one from Popular Science make a convincing case for its safety, many people continue to be wary of DEET. Whether it’s the result of a misconception or merely an overabundance of caution after warnings from groups like the National Institutes of Health that overexposure to DEET can trigger seizures in small children, people are searching for organic alternatives. Certified organic by the USDA, Badger’s Anti Bug Stick uses citronella, cedar and lemongrass essential oils to repel insects.
Badger’s Anti Bug Stick is packaged much like an oversized glue stick. After removing the cap, users twist up the product and rub it against their skin. It feels kind of soft and waxy, which makes sense since beeswax and olive oil are inactive ingredients. But, once applied, you don’t feel anything. It’s not sticky or oily, and it goes on quick and easy, a big plus when dealing with impatient kids.
Personally, I think Badger is stretching it to call this “pleasant smelling.” While not exactly unpleasant, its aroma is kind of strong when you initially apply it. It does fade as you wear it, but you wouldn’t want to apply it immediately before getting into an enclosed space like a car.
Badger claims the product will repel mosquitoes for three to four hours, which has been our experience as well. It doesn’t stop every insect, but it definitely seems to discourage the worst offenders.
We’ve used Badger’s Anti-Bug Stick for a few years now. While the directions say to apply the product to all exposed skin, we’ve learned that a little at the wrists and ankles seems to work equally well. We’ve also discovered that this product can’t be left behind in the car when we go off adventuring because it will melt in the heat. Availability can also be a bit of a problem. None of my local stores carry it, so I have to order it online. Despite those few minor drawbacks, it’s a product we depend on. In fact, we’ve recommended it to several of our friends because it’s effective, comfortable to wear, and easy to carry and apply as needed.
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