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Menthol as Insect Repellent

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It's approaching summer here in the USA, and that unfortunately means that the mosquitoes will be out in force. As someone with apparently delicious ankles as far as mosquitoes are concerned, this is a difficult (and itchy!) time for me. But there is one remedy that I stand by that is easy, readily available, and very effective: menthol!


Menthol is the stuff that makes mint feel cold. It powers Vicks Vapo-Rub, Mentholatum, and every minty concoction in the health aisles at your favorite store. I keep a jar by my bedside for congestion, and another in my bathroom to soften my feet. But in the summer, I smear just a little of the ointment on my ankles before venturing outside. Why? It's not exactly a repellent. Instead of repelling the insects with an objectionable smell, the menthol in the ointment covers the smell of carbon dioxide-- irresistible to mosquitoes-- so that they literally cannot detect you as well. If they don't smell you, you don't become a target. Hooray for a bite-free summer!


Be sure to reapply every 30 minutes at least, or suffer the itchy consequences!


Photo: Pixabay


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