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Deet or Deet Free | I Used Natrapel Instead of Off and The Mosquitoes Won



Family Camping Adventures

We’ve been doing quite a bit of camping this summer and decided to try another campground.  Years ago when the kids were little we took the kids to one of Connecticut’s State Parks down at the seashore, and this year DD26 wanted to go back and take her kids. Normally we go to Hammonasset State Park Beach Campgrounds.

When the reservations were made, she booked for “tent site.” I think we were in the RV-Camper & tent site last time when we went as a group.

Well, tent site is what we got.  We had to park the car in the parking lot, and hoof it with all the gear to the middle of a field with some shade, along with some shady campers who weren’t aware that lanterns in tents at night cause shadows.

The walk to the bath houses was along a dirt and gravel path, about ¼ of a mile.  Not too bad in the daytime, but darn scary at night.

It was bug-infested and Pepe Le Pew  skunk heaven, with a smattering of wild turkeys and who knows what else thrown in.

Best Insect Repellent


I’ve always used Off Insect Repellent, but it has Deet in it.  This year my daughter had a brand called Natrapel 8-hour Deet Free Insect Repellent. The Active Ingredient is Picaridin (20%).

We used it on the kids, and everybody else, including me put it on.

Mosquito BitesIt doesn’t work.  This is what I looked like – everybody said I must have at least 100 bites on my legs.  And these are only the pictures of the bites that I could show you.  I wore shorts that night and a short-sleeve top.

This is not a sponsored review.  This is my review.  The stuff is awful.  I would rather take my chances with one shot of Deet over the weekend, because I wonder how much I’ve now increased my chances of getting West Nile.  I think I’m going to get checked out this week.

Apparently though, some people have a tendency to be Bug bitesBefore I was able to get to Walgreens, I used my mom’s old-fashion remedy and slathered soap on me and let it dry.  It helped somewhat.

Then everybody said to make a little ‘x’ with your fingernail on the spot that was puffing up like a little pimple/blister.  If I did that, I probably would have needed 2-3 people to help me with all the bites.

I ended up talking to a pharmacist at Walgreens, who said to use Hydrocortisone  and Benedryl.  I bought the Walgreens brand products, and had minimal relief.

Salt water from the ocean was the only thing that appeared to offer some relief and I was going to try to bring a bucket of salt water back with me but everybody talked me out of it.

We still had fun camping, but with no air-conditioning and this heat and humidity, it’s pretty tough.

The camping trip before this I ended up with a wicked sunburn, and I did use suntan lotion.

I can’t wait for the next and last camping trip this season. You might not hear from me again if I keep going like this.

Give me your best home remedies to stop these mosquito bites from itching.

Update – Tuesday 8/25 – Trip to Dr. because allergic reaction to one of the “remedies.”  Doc said I have 300 bites – and now I’m on Rx Prednisolone.  Yay me.

This is not a sponsored post, just a rant.

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About Cindi Moomettes

New England blogger and influencer from Connecticut and author of the multi-generational Moomettes Magnificents where she writes about Family, Grandparents and Grandchildren, home decor, Crochet, Knitting, DIY, crafts, family travel familiarization trips (FAMs), photography, social media and reviews. You can also find her at Moomettes Crochet Shop for the latest Handmade Fashion trends, Home Decor, Handmade Crochet Wash Cloths & Accessories. For food and recipes visit at her blog Frugal New England Kitchen ***Products and/or companies featured on Moomettes Magnificents may have provided product samples and/or compensation for consideration. All opinions are my own. Posts may contain affiliate links. See also Disclosure***


  1. OUCH. That really sucks!
    .-= Gena Morris´s last blog ..Multiply Media Sharing Review and Discount Code =-.

  2. I actually heard somewhere that DEET isn’t bad after all.

    Try Avon’s Bug Guard if you are still afraid of DEET though. It works. In my post you can watch a news report with different products being tested against mosquitoes.

    Sorry – if I had the link to the video I would do that. I don’t mean to sway you to my site. LMAO. But watch the video – honestly.
    .-= erin´s last blog ..Underwater Surfing with the SubSurfer =-.

  3. I am a mosquito magnet too. It is awful, so thanks for the heads up on this stuff. i will avoid it like the plague. I hate it when products don’t work the way intended.

  4. Hi Whitney – My DD26 and her DH are hoping to buy a pop-up camper some day! Hope there’s room for me in it!

  5. Hi Natalie – we used to boat and the squeeters never bothered me when I was younger!

  6. Hey Kim – I’m always game for an adventure, but think I’m asked to go camping to be the extra set of arms to help out with the grandkids!

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