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Best Bug Sprays Reviewed & Rated for Quality

last updated Jul 17, 2019
If you’re on the hunt for the best bug sprays, then you have come to the right place. Here you will find the best options currently available on the market as well as their Pros and Cons and what to look for before making your purchase.

Bug bites are never fun to deal with, even if it’s just a few, which is why the best bug sprays can literally be a lifesaver! Whether you like to run in the early mornings or in the evenings, using the best bug sprays can literally make or break your experience!

With all the selections to choose from, narrowing down the best bug sprays can definitely be a difficult feat, which is why we have taken the time to do it! Below you will find our list of the top 10 best bug sprays, check them out!

In a Hurry? The test winner after 11 hrs of research

icon
Repel Eucalyptus
97.4/100 our score
Materials
99
Effectiveness
98
Value
98
Safety Hazards
96
Ease of Use
96
Repel Eucalyptus
Why is it better?

DEET free

Naturally, plant-based

Protects for up to six hours

Great price

Refreshing, cool scent

In a Hurry? Editors choice:
Repel Eucalyptus
Test Winner: Repel Eucalyptus
Amazon Link
Researched Sources
2
Researched Sources
Reviews Considered
1.2K
Reviews Considered
Hours Researching
11
Hours Researching
Products Evaluated
16
Products Evaluated
Last Updated:
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By Giselle Killebrew:

Our most recent update brings a lot of new information to our page to help you find the best bug spray to fit your needs. We also streamlined all of our product reviews and added more information to all of them to ensure that you can easily navigate between the different options you have available to choose from below.

Sorting Options
Materials Effectiveness Value Safety Hazards Ease of Use By Default
Rank
PictureProduct
Name
Rating
Shops
#1
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
97.4
Materials
99 %
Effectiveness
98 %
Value
98 %
Safety Hazards
96 %
Ease of Use
96 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (17.07.19)
Amazon Link
$5.66
#2
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
95.2
Materials
96 %
Effectiveness
96 %
Value
95 %
Safety Hazards
94 %
Ease of Use
95 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (17.07.19)
Amazon Link
$19.04
#3
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
94.8
Materials
95 %
Effectiveness
97 %
Value
95 %
Safety Hazards
94 %
Ease of Use
93 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (17.07.19)
Amazon Link
$20.00
#4
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
94.2
Materials
95 %
Effectiveness
90 %
Value
94 %
Safety Hazards
97 %
Ease of Use
95 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (17.07.19)
Amazon Link
$5.00
#5
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
92.2
Materials
93 %
Effectiveness
90 %
Value
93 %
Safety Hazards
93 %
Ease of Use
92 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (17.07.19)
Amazon Link
$10.81
#6
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
89
Materials
90 %
Effectiveness
90 %
Value
90 %
Safety Hazards
85 %
Ease of Use
90 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (17.07.19)
Amazon Link
$7.99
#7
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
84
Materials
85 %
Effectiveness
85 %
Value
83 %
Safety Hazards
84 %
Ease of Use
83 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (17.07.19)
Backcountry Link
$9.95
See Deal
Amazon Link
$16.45
#8
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
80
Materials
80 %
Effectiveness
80 %
Value
80 %
Safety Hazards
80 %
Ease of Use
80 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (17.07.19)
Amazon Link
$7.97
#9
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
79
Materials
60 %
Effectiveness
90 %
Value
80 %
Safety Hazards
75 %
Ease of Use
90 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (17.07.19)
Amazon Link
$18.82
#10
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
76.4
Materials
78 %
Effectiveness
77 %
Value
77 %
Safety Hazards
75 %
Ease of Use
75 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (17.07.19)
Amazon Link
$13.98
In Depth Review Top 10
  • Repel Eucalyptus Repel Eucalyptus
  • Sawyer Products Sawyer Products
  • Natrapel Natrapel
  • Cutter Lemon Eucalyptus Cutter Lemon Eucalyptus
  • Cutter Skinsations Cutter Skinsations
  • Coleman Coleman
  • Ben's Spray Ben's Spray
  • Bullfrog Coast Bullfrog Coast
  • 3M Ultrathon 3M Ultrathon
  • Off! Off!
Table of contents
  • Criteria Used for Evaluation
  • Other Factors to Consider
  • Frequently Asked Questions
  • Sources

Our Favorite Bug Sprays

1. Repel Eucalyptus

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
97.4
Repel Eucalyptus
Amazon Link
Materials
99
Effectiveness
98
Value
98
Safety Hazards
96
Ease of Use
96
best offer for today
more shops
Amazon Link
$5.66
Pros:

DEET free

Naturally, plant-based

Protects for up to six hours

Great price

Refreshing, cool scent

Cons:

Many users reported the bug spray doesn't work after sweating

Many customers reported the sprayer itself as faulty

Repel Eucalyptus is an outdoor product bug protector that protects you from insects that might transmit the Dengue, West Nile, Zika, and Chikungunya viruses. With six-hour protection from bugs, you have plenty of time to get your run in, whether it's early morning or late at night. Featuring a cool, refreshing scent, this bug spray also contains oil of lemon eucalyptus.

Read more

Materials

This plant-based spray is perfect for those who run during the mornings or at night. So, if you are looking for a bug spray that is free of harmful chemicals and only uses organic ingredients, then you will love this option.

Effectiveness

In terms of effectiveness, this bug spray is capable of protecting you from a variety of different diseases that are transmitted via insect bites. if you want to ensure you are well-protected while you are enjoying your time outdoors, then this is a great bug spray to use.

Value

With its ability to protect against biting insects and their possibly dangerous bite for up to six hours, this bug spray is perfectly priced. If you are worried about bug bites during your run, especially if you live in a bug-filled area, this is the right outdoor bug spray for your needs.

Safety Hazards

This DEET free bug spray repels bugs for up to six hours, making it possible for you to get your run in, safely and without the spray wearing off, leaving you threatened by insects that could be dangerous to your health.

Ease of Use

The Eucalyptus in this product gives off a cool refreshing scent that doesn't irritate your nose and bothers you during your run. This way, you can concentrate on the run ahead of you, instead of the horrible smell that is featured with some bug sprays.

2. Sawyer Products

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
95.2
Sawyer Products
Amazon Link
Materials
96
Effectiveness
96
Value
95
Safety Hazards
94
Ease of Use
95
best offer for today
Amazon Link
$19.04
Pros:

20 percent picaridin, more effective than DEET

Spray lasts up to 12 hours

Affordable

Extremely effective

Cons:

Some users report the spray sweating off easily

Some customers reported feeling sticky or oily after application

Sawyer Products Premium bug spray is the perfect solution as a long-lasting topical outdoor product bug protector for everyone from runners to hikers and even for just hanging out in the yard on a warm summer day. It is 20 percent Picaridin and safe for your gear as well.

Read more

Materials

This bug spray is 20 percent picaridin, which is more effective at warding off biting flies than DEET is--so if you want to stay away from DEET then this is a great bug spray to consider using.

Effectiveness

This bug spray is incredibly effective and an excellent option for anyone who wants a more organic and natural option to choose from. It is also number one protection against insects that are known to carry the Zika virus that has become more prevalent with each passing year.

Value

This bug spray comes at a great price and is definitely an excellent option for those of you who want an all-natural option that isn't too expensive.

Safety Hazards

Even though this bug spray protects against a few different kinds of pests, such as biting flies, sand flies, chiggers, gnats, and midges, it won't damage plastic or synthetic coatings and the spray last up to 12 hours.

Ease of Use

This bug spray is incredibly easy to use and an excellent option for those of you who hate to rub in lotions or just want a spray that you can easily use when necessary.

3. Natrapel

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
94.8
Natrapel
Amazon Link
Materials
95
Effectiveness
97
Value
95
Safety Hazards
94
Ease of Use
93
best offer for today
Amazon Link
$20.00
Pros:

Easy to carry

Easy to apply

Contains 20 percent picaridin, making it DEET-free

Affordable

Last up to 12 hours

Cons:

Some users complain that the floral fragrance is overwhelming

Some customers reported it leaving a heavy, greasy film when it is applied

Natrapel is a DEET-free bug spray that provides up to 12 hours of protection against not only against multiple types of bugs and ticks as well. It is a CDC-recommended spray and protects against other biting pests for up to eight hours. It is also safe to use and won't melt jackets or your other running gear, and is picaridin based.

Read more

Materials

The ingredients in this bug spray are completely safe and backed by the CDC and it does not contain any DEET--so if you are looking for a great DEET-free spray you will love this product.

Effectiveness

To figure out the overall effectiveness of this product we made sure to take a look at reviews from actual users to see what people have to say. When we did this we found out that this product is actually really effective and an excellent option for anyone looking for a bug spray that will keep the insects at bay.

Value

With the ability to take it easy with you on your run and the fact that it is DEET-free, this is one of the most affordable bug sprays on the list. The floral scent and easy to apply spray bottle for wider coverage makes it a great value as well.

Safety Hazards

This is a bug protector spray that is DEET-free, instead, it contains 20 percent picaridin, which is said to be better and more effective than DEET. This product is also recommended by the CDC as being safe and effective.

Ease of Use

This bug spray is easy to apply with a pump spray bottle that allows for wider coverage with complete protection. The bottle is easy to carry with you on your runs and has a pleasant floral scent that is not overpowering.

4. Cutter Lemon Eucalyptus

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
94.2
Cutter Lemon Eucalyptus
Amazon Link
Materials
95
Effectiveness
90
Value
94
Safety Hazards
97
Ease of Use
95
best offer for today
Amazon Link
$5.00
Pros:

Natural ingredients

Deet-Free

Effective against mosquitos that may carry Chikungunya, Zika, Dengue and West Nile viruses

Great smell

Cons:

Some users find they need to reapply more often.

If you want a bug spray that is safe to use and naturally based, then you will love the Cutter Lemon Eucalyptus bug spray. It is most comparable to the Repel Lemon Eucalyptus spray on our list and smells great--so you don't have to worry about dealing with any unpleasant smells.

Read more

Materials

This bug spray is all natural, so it is free of harmful ingredients that can be linked to cancer or birth defects. Its main ingredients are Oil and Eucalyptus--and if you didn't know, the Eucalyptus plant is highly effective at repelling insects so consider getting one for your outdoor patio or seating area.

Effectiveness

This spray is really effective and can repel mosquitoes that can transmit the Chikungunya, Zika, Dengue, and West Nile viruses--this is especially important if you are pregnant and find yourself in a part of the world where these diseases are found.

Value

This bug spray is really affordable--which is great given how safe it is. Overall, this bug spray is incredibly effective and free of Deet, so you get the best of both worlds.

Safety Hazards

It is completely Deet-free and safe for your little ones to use--just make sure you apply it on them with your hands so you don't risk them rubbing their eyes or face after applying it.

Ease of Use

The pump spray is also really easy to use so you can reapply with no trouble at all. So, if you want to make sure you invest in a spray that won't fail you when you need it most, then you will love how easy to use this spray bottle is.

5. Cutter Skinsations

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
92.2
Cutter Skinsations
Amazon Link
Materials
93
Effectiveness
90
Value
93
Safety Hazards
93
Ease of Use
92
best offer for today
Amazon Link
$10.81
Pros:

360-degree spray pump

Non-greasy formula

Protects against many pests

Fresh, clean scent

Affordable

Cons:

Some consumers reported the product not working past a couple of hours

Many users report that this product is not effective against any type of insects

Cutter Skinsations is a six-ounce pump spray that is made of a non-greasy formula. As a runner, you don't want to be concentrating on your skin feeling greasy or sticky first thing in the mornings. This bug spray contains Aloe and Vitamin E to ensure that doesn't happen. It features a 360-degree spray pump and a fresh, clean scent that is appealing to your senses but won't draw the bugs you are trying to protect yourself against on your runs.

Read more

Materials

Overall, the ingredients in this bug spray are incredibly effective--but the best part is that they also contain soothing ingredients that will ensure that your skin stays feeling great and that it doesn't get itchy.

Effectiveness

The outdoor product protects against a host of insects, including bugs that carry diseases, ticks, biting flies, fleas, no see ums, and chiggers. It protects against insects that carry the Zika virus, the Dengue virus, the West Nile virus, and the Chikungunya virus as well.

Value

The non-greasy formula itself lends to the value of this bug spray, as no one wants to feel sticky or greasy after applying an outdoor bug spray product. Add the addition of the 360-degree spray pump that allows you to spray upside down and at any angle and you have a winner.

Safety Hazards

When it comes to safety hazards, there isn't much to watch out for with this product. However, it should go without saying that it is important you keep this bug spray out of reach of children to prevent any time of ingestion or contact with their eyes.

Ease of Use

This outdoor product for insects features a non-greasy formula that makes it possible for you to go on your run in the mornings or the evenings without feeling sticky or greasy after the application of the bug spray.

6. Coleman

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
89
Coleman
Amazon Link
Materials
90
Effectiveness
90
Value
90
Safety Hazards
85
Ease of Use
90
best offer for today
Amazon Link
$7.99
Pros:

100 percent DEET

CDC recommended DEET product

Unscented formula

Affordable price

Made for heavy insect infested areas

Cons:

Many consumers report the DEET is too strong and melted their fingernail polish or other products

Many customers reported that the bug spray is oily and leaves a sticky residue behind

This Coleman bug spray is a 100 percent DEET outdoor product that deters ticks and others. DEET is CDC recommended. This is the perfect bug protector for runners who run in severe conditions with heavy insect activity. The formula is unscented, so you don't have to worry about your bug spray attracting insects and comes in a spray pen, so it is easy to carry with you. It is also one of the only products out there that are effective for up to 10 hours.

Read more

Materials

This 100 percent DEET formula protects against many different pests along your running path. So, if you want a more organic and natural option to keep the insects and pests at bay then this is an excellent bug spray to consider.

Effectiveness

Some of those insects include bugs that could carry the Zika, Encephalitis, Dengue fever and the West Nile virus, as well as ticks, chiggers, ticks, fleas, gnats, and biting flies.

Value

This 100 % DEET formula is worth every penny and comes in three sizes, which makes it convenient and easy to carry. Along with the fact that it is unscented and effective up to 10 hours, it's no wonder this product made it onto the list.

Safety Hazards

Overall, this product is pretty safe to use and you won't have to worry about it exposing you to any safety hazards you would want to avoid.

Ease of Use

This bug spray is available in three different sizes to meet your lifestyle and make it easy for you to carry this outdoor product with you on your frequent runs.

7. Ben's Spray

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
84
Ben's Spray
Amazon Link
Materials
85
Effectiveness
85
Value
83
Safety Hazards
84
Ease of Use
83
best offer for today
more shops
Amazon Link
$16.45
Backcountry Link
$9.95
See Deal
Pros:

Contains 100 percent DEET

10 hours of protection

Easy to use

Can be applied anywhere along the running path

Protects from ticks and other bugs

Affordable

Cons:

Some consumers report that the container leaks

Some consumers report that the sprayer nozzle clogs easily

Ben's tick and insect bug spray contains 100 percent DEET and lasts up to 10 hours, making it perfect when you need all-day protection or even if you just need it to go for a quick run in the evenings. It deters bugs and ticks that carry the West Nile virus and Lyme disease as well.

Read more

Materials

This product does not contain any Deet whatsoever and is safe even for your kids to use.

Effectiveness

Another of the products on the list that provides up to 10 hours of protection, this 100 percent DEET formula is perfect for when you are going to be out all day long and need protection from the insects.

Value

With the ability to protect you from insects for up to 10 hours and the 100 percent DEET formula, this bug spray is worth the money asked for it. It is easy to use and can be applied anywhere you are along your running path, making it well worth it in value as well.

Safety Hazards

All in all, this bug spray is safe and free of harmful ingredients, however, it is important to remember to keep this spray out of reach of children.

Ease of Use

This outdoor product for ridding yourself of insects is easy to use and easy to carry with you in its 1.25-ounce bottle for protection anywhere along your run that you feel you need it.

8. Bullfrog Coast

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
80
Bullfrog Coast
Amazon Link
Materials
80
Effectiveness
80
Value
80
Safety Hazards
80
Ease of Use
80
best offer for today
Amazon Link
$7.97
Pros:

Two in one product

DEET-free formula

SPF of 30 for sun protection

Affordable

Works great

Cons:

Many users report that the bug spray doesn't work against most insects

Some customers report having an aversion to the strong smell

Bullfrog is not only a bug spray, but it is also sunscreen as well. When you are about to go out for a run, the last thing you want is to have to put on a bug spray and then a sunscreen. With this two in one product, you don't have too.

Read more

Materials

This is a DEET-free formula that offers protection from the sun and insects for up to eight hours. It is infused with Aloe leaf extract and Vitamin E to help soothe your skin as well.

Effectiveness

This bug spray also includes Vitamin E and Aloe leaf extract to ensure your skin is not irritated by the sunscreen or the bug spray in this product. If you are always in a hurry to get out on the running path, then this is the right combination for you!

Value

For the cost, this outdoor bug spray product is well worth it. The fact that it is a two in one product containing sunscreen and protection from the insects on your running trail is enough to recommend it at the price asked for it.

Safety Hazards

Although this is a DEET free bug spray, you will need to make sure you clothes your eyes to ensure you don't get the bug spray in your eyes.

Ease of Use

This is a two in one product that is DEET-free to help deter those annoying critters when you are running. It also contains a sunscreen to keep you safe from the sun on your run as well. It is an SPF 30 sunscreen that deters insects for up to eight hours.

9. Ultrathon

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
79
 Ultrathon
Amazon Link
Materials
60
Effectiveness
90
Value
80
Safety Hazards
75
Ease of Use
90
best offer for today
Amazon Link
$18.82
Pros:

Effective

Long-lasting

Easy to use

Affordable

Cons:

Has harmful chemicals

Cannot touch the skin

If you are a long-distance runner, or if you love to run outdoors or hit your favorite trails, then the 3M Ultrathon bug spray is the perfect option for you.

Read more

Materials

Overall, this product is effective but it does have chemicals and ingredients that are harmful--especially if overused.

Effectiveness

It is specifically designed to be applied to your clothing and gear, without it touching your skin. In fact, it can last up to 6 wash cycles--to put into perspective just how potent this spray really is.

Value

Pretty affordable, however, if you want something without any harmful chemicals then this is not the way to go. Since you just apply this spray to your clothing and gear, it is really easy to use. It effectively repels insects and ticks from anything you spray it on and does not need to be sprayed on your skin.

Safety Hazards

This spray is really potent and cannot be applied directly to the skin because it has chemicals that have been shown to cause cancer as well as birth defects.

Ease of Use

It also comes in lotion for if you prefer that, however, the spray is much easier for your runs since you apply it to your clothing and don't have to worry about spraying them again--which makes this one the better option if you are going to use it during runs or your speed-training sessions.

10. Off!

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
76.4
Off!
Amazon Link
Materials
78
Effectiveness
77
Value
77
Safety Hazards
75
Ease of Use
75
best offer for today
Amazon Link
$13.98
Pros:

Deep woods ready

Easy to use

Easy to carry with you on a run

Affordable

Mild scent

Cons:

Some users report the bug spray left them with a white residue on their skin

Many users reported not realizing how small the canister really was until they received it

Off is a deep woods outdoor bug spray that goes on dry and deters ticks and other pests you might meet on the trail during your run. This bug spray is designed for people on the go, making it perfect for runners that are on the go constantly.

Read more

Materials

This outdoor bug spray is deep woods ready with DEET featured that makes it perfect for runners who tend to take the trail less traveled and more populated with pests. This bug spray contains DEET and has a nice mild scent.

Effectiveness

This bug spray is incredibly effective. It does have Deet to ensure that you keep the bugs off so that you can enjoy the outdoors and no worry about catching any disease from an insect bite.

Value

One of the more expensive bug sprays on the list, this product is worth it just because it is deep woods ready. Add in that it is a DEET product and the nice, mild scent and you have a winner here.

Safety Hazards

When it comes to safety hazards, this bug spray does contain Deet so you will want to make sure to only use it in a situation where you need heavy duty coverage from the insects outside.

Ease of Use

This outdoor product is designed for people on the go, just like you. Compact at 2.5 ounces, it's easy to use and easy to carry with you on the running trail.

Criteria Used for Evaluation

Materials

There are three active ingredients that the top-rated on this list have and it's important to know about them.

The first thing you need to do when searching for the best bug spray for runners is to read the label of the outdoor product you are considering. There are three active ingredients that the top-rated on this list have. Those ingredients are DEET, picaridin and eucalyptus oil or other essential oils.

These ingredients have been determined to be the best and most effective at preventing insects from attacking when you are on your run. Remember, you don’t need to just protect yourself from a bunch of different insects, and ticks as well. On top of that, who wants to be annoyed by chiggers, gnats, or no see ums during their run!

It’s also important to look at the amount of these ingredients in the bug sprays as well. Some people are sensitive to certain chemicals and product ingredients, so it is important to know not only what is in the spray but how much is in it so you can have a better idea of whether it is a good match for your needs and your unique situation.

Effectiveness

In today’s world of insect-borne viruses, it’s important to judge the effectiveness of the bug spray you are choosing very carefully.

The top-rated on the list usually had an effectiveness of six to 10 hours, with a couple saying they lasted up to 12 hours. DEET and Picardian based bug sprays usually last for longer than many natural or plant-based insect sprays do. You need to determine if the product you are considering is EPA approved and many of the products on this list are CDC approved as well.

It is important to note, that the effectiveness of bug sprays can be different, according to the user and other factors as well. And again, sometimes it comes down to the individual- how much spray did they apply, did they apply it correctly, what was the temperature like, di they get wet right after applying, and are they dealing with insects and bugs that particular spray is not designed for specifically?

These are just some factors that can affect the effectiveness of a spray, even if it is of the highest possible quality. So, before you make your final choice and move forward with your purchase just make sure that you cover all of these factors to ensure you are getting the perfect bug spray for yourself.

Value

Most of the top-rated on this list were around the same price, though there were a few that were a tad bit more expensive.

Many of these products are on the more expensive end, This is because of the number of ounces that came in the can and other factors had to be considered. As for the value of the product, you can’t put a value on protecting yourself from the diseases that many insects spread these days when you are on your runs.

However, we did try to include a decent range when it came to the bottom line cost for these sprays. if you need something for a little protection during a quick 15-minute walk around the neighborhood, you may be able to get away with a cheaper variety than if you need protection for a 2-day camping and hiking trip.

We tried to keep these kinds of factors in mind as well because they do play a part in the final decision people make about the bug spray they end up purchasing. At the end of the day, however, the most important thing to look out for when it comes to value is that you ensure you that you invest in a bug spray that you works best for you.

Safety Hazards

There has been a lot of concern recently over the chemicals used in insect sprays, especially DEET.

There's been a lot of concern recently over the chemicals used in outdoor insect sprays, especially outdoor products that contain DEET. The concern comes from the chemicals ability to strip or melt plastics and other products or even jackets that runners use. However, the EPA has done extensive research and come to the determination that DEET is safe to be used at certain times of the year in moderation.

Since some insects are more prevalent than others in the summertime, using DEET is not something that can harm you. The other top-rated bug sprays have active ingredients that though they haven’t been studied as long as DEET has, has proven to be safe to use as well. So, if you have no allergies when it comes to DEET picaridin, or essential oil, plant-based products, you should be fine with these products.

But if you do have allergies you are concerned about or have sensitive skin or other chronic health issues, you should discuss your concerns with a health care provider and ask what products are the safest for you to use- especially if you are going to need to use the spray on a fairly regular basis or for an extended period of time.

Ease of Use

When you are out running the trails, you want a spray that is wuick and easy to use and that gives you fast coverage.

Since you are a runner, you don’t want an insect spray that is hard to put on. That is why the top-rated on the list are easy to open, easy to apply, and easy to take on the trail with you, in case you need to reapply the bug spray at any time. Be sure that you check to see how easy the spray is to apply and if the bottle is lightweight enough to carry with you on your runs.

Also, check for easy open and close or on-off controls to prevent accidental misfires when you are transporting or before you are ready to actually use the spray. The most important thing--especially if you get a more organic or natural bug spray--is that you can easily access it to reapply it when you need it.

This is especially important in the summer months and during tick season because the last thing you want to do is run the risk of getting Lyme disease or any other disease that may be transmitted via insect bites. So, regardless of what you choose, just remember that you get a bug spray that you won't mind using when you need it and that is easy for you to use.

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There are many strategies out there to help you avoid being attacked by insects when you are on your run.

Avoiding morning and dusk runs to wearing the proper clothing when you are on the running path, some of these just aren't feasible for a serious runner, so having a good quality outdoor product to protect you from insect bites is extremely important.

The Centers for Disease Control recommends using a bug spray with either DEET, picaridin, or a plant-based ingredient such as lemon eucalyptus or essential oils for the best protection and performance.

If you can get a bug spray that is also a sunscreen, that is even better.

Repellents are Pesticides by Law.

A pesticide is often thought of as something that kills something, when in fact by law a pesticide is a mixture of substances that, prevent, destroy, repel or reduce the effect of something.

Repellents are not designed to eliminate pests they are designed to make us less attractive to the pests. Back in the day, the strongest bug sprays contained Deet, which can now be linked to adverse side effects when used in excess.

If you know you are going to use your bug spray a lot, and not just every once in a blue moon, take a look at some of the Deet-free bug spray selections--they are now really effective and sometimes just as strong as those that contain Deet as the main ingredient.

Other Factors to Consider

Features

Smell

The way an outdoor insect spray smells is also important to many people. In the past, runners have complained about how awful the chemicals smelled in their bug spray and many people were hesitant to use bug spray at all because the smell affected their eyes and nose, especially people who were sensitive to strong smells.

Today and the top-rated on this list have tried to correct this problem by having mild or fresh scents, though many bug sprays have no scent at all instead. This is a big improvement over just 10 years ago when almost all bug sprays had chokingly strong odors that lingered and got into everything and were hard to wash out. Things have gotten much better in the smell department thankfully.

Skin Feel

The top-rated bug sprays on the list have Vitamin E and Aloe, among other things to help keep your skin soft. No longer, do you have to deal with your skin feeling sticky or greasy after you spray on your outdoor product to keep the insects away. Now, you can choose from a variety of scents that are attractive smelling to humans but tend to send insects flying the other way.

Thankfully many natural aromas and fragrances act as natural bug repellents and are used in bug sprays today.

Advanced Features

The last thing you want when you are running is to sweat away from your insect spray before you have even gone a mile. The top-rated on the list can stand up to sweat and keep your protecting you from any insects you might run across on your path. Since most insects are out during the hot and humid weather, you should search for a bug spray that will stand u to the humidity and the heat.

It is important to note that there are many reasons you want reliable protection against fleas, ticks, and other biting insects during your runs. This is the criteria used to find what are considered to be the best products on this list. Making sure to judge what you purchase by the metrics above will ensure that you are protected whenever you decide to take your runs.

Below--in our FAQ section--you will find a few of the top questions asked about insect spray and the answers to help you make the right choices. Make sure to take a close look at everything each of the bug sprays on our list and what to look out for before buying them--and we feel pretty confident our FAQ section will help you make your final decision as well.

Bottom Line

This rounds out the top 10 best bugs spray on the market today. While you now know what the best insect sprays are, it is important to know the metrics and criteria used to choose the best as well. When you are searching for an effective bug spray to take on your run with you, the following things are important to consider:

  • Ingredients in the insect spray
  • Safety
  • Effectiveness
  • Ease of application
  • Smell
  • Price

For this top ten list and review summary, we looked at all of those metrics, criteria and even more when researching and writing our reviews and recommendations for you. If you are searching for an effective bug spray to take on your runs with you, then the ones on this list are the best. Below you will find the criteria used to find, rate, and review these insect sprays so that you don’t have to research and find them yourself!

We know that every individual is different and every person will react to things like sprays and insect bites differently, which makes a list like this a challenge. But we are up to the task and believe we have presented a well-rounded summary of the top bug sprays that are available to you that should help you fight off the annoying and painful bites and stings.

Frequently Asked Questions

q: Which is better: Picaridin or DEET insect spray?

a:

It has been decided through research by the EPA and the CDC that either picaridin or DEET insect spray can be effective when it comes to protecting you from biting insects on your runs. Neither is better than the other, it is a preference and according to the amount of protection you need.

q: Are most bug sprays sweatproof?

a:

The top-rated bug sprays on the list are sweat proof, as you need them to be when you are on a run. Most biting insects come out in the humid and hot time of year, ensuring that you sweat during your run. Look for the insect sprays that say they are sweat proof before you decide on one.

q: How many hours do most bug sprays last?

a:

The hours that bug sprays last before needing to be reapplied varies according to the brand and the ingredients in that brand. DEET bug sprays tend to last longer than other combinations do. This is also according to the amount of DEET, Picaridin, or natural ingredients in the product as well.

q: Is DEET harmful?

a:

It was once thought that DEET was extremely harmful to humans and pets. However, EPA studies have shown that the chemical is fine if used in small quantities. Since most biting insects, such as ticks, and gnats are more prevalent during the hot and humid months, you couldn’t use enough DEET to harm you, if it is used correctly.

q: Can I use insect spray on my dog?

a:

It is well-known that many runners take their loyal canine companions with them on their runs, it is not recommended that you use the same insect spray that you use on yourself on your pet. There are pet-friendly products that you can use instead. It is especially important not to use a DEET product on an animal, as it can be highly toxic for them.

q: How safe is bug spray?

a:

The best bug spray are effective and safe, as long as you use it the way it is intended to be used. The top-rated on this list come with instructions as to how the bug spray should be used. Make sure that you follow the directions to the letter when it comes to using any type of bug spray. It is also a good idea to shower when you get home from your run to ensure you get all of the insects spray off of exposed areas.

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