Beauty

Ask Jean: Does Clean, Non-Toxic Insect Spray Work?

Ask Jean: Does Clean, Non-Toxic Insect Spray Work?

Ask Jean: Spring Color?

Dear Jean, I love being outside on a summer evening, but I hate the bugs! I also don’t need all-out DEET for a half-hour sitting on my (not screened-in) porch. And I don’t want to smell awful. Is there a good, clean, non-toxic option?—Carol P.

Dear Carol, Though a mosquito is a hard little thing to love, it’s not the bugs of summer we loathe—it’s their bites, their buzzing, and the lengths we often have to go to avoid getting bitten. Obviously, if you’re worried about Zika or hiking in tick country, risk analysis might point to a potent, potentially toxic chemical repellent (particularly for the outside of your clothing). But sitting on the deck swatting away flies or mosquitos is a situation that can be dealt with non-toxically—even, believe it or not, glamorously.

My obsession with Goe Oil from Jao (it truly is the ultimate summer moisturizer) only intensified when I found out that the brand makes something called Patio Oil—Patio Oil! Patio Oil! Have you ever heard a more glamorous name for insect repellent?! I got very excited. It comes, like the Goe, in a silver tube that manages to be gorgeous yet gender-neutral; it smells softly of lemon-eucalyptus, plus a little chamomile and calendula, and it feels silkily super-moisturizing in precisely the vein of the Goe. It leaves your limbs gleamy and soft and alluring, whether you are in bug territory or not.

  • Ask Jean: Does Clean, Non-Toxic Insect Spray Work? Jao Patio Oilgoop, $30

    Infused with lemon-eucalyptus oil, think of this silky, supremely moisturizing, insect-repelling balm as summer (or tropical vacation) body cream: It leaves your skin plump, supple, and faintly gleamy, smells of lemon and herbs like chamomile and calendula, hydrates with oils like jojoba and hemp and manages, without toxins, to seriously discourage insects of all sorts. We love the chic silver tube, the feel, the scent, and our smooth, healthy, unbitten skin.

  • Ask Jean: Does Clean, Non-Toxic Insect Spray Work? Jao Patio Oilgoop, $30

    Infused with lemon-eucalyptus oil, think of this silky, supremely moisturizing, insect-repelling balm as summer (or tropical vacation) body cream: It leaves your skin plump, supple, and faintly gleamy, smells of lemon and herbs like chamomile and calendula, hydrates with oils like jojoba and hemp and manages, without toxins, to seriously discourage insects of all sorts. We love the chic silver tube, the feel, the scent, and our smooth, healthy, unbitten skin.

The true test of its effectiveness was not that it was able to prevent me from getting any bites, however; I am unappealing to most insects, for reasons known only to them. Instead, my daughter and my boyfriend are the always-stricken, always with an itch and the terrible smattering of red bumps and the fleeing inside.

I put out a tube for them and observed that the name Patio Oil intrigues all who happen upon it, regardless of age or gender—and that the scent and texture encourage even stingy appliers to really go for it. We went out on the porch, and had a delicious dinner as the sun set. Two hours later: no bites! The next morning, still no bites! Later in the week, a hike and a swim in the lake—this time we took the spray, which is lighter but still moisturizing—no bites. They say the most appealing thing to a human is a product that encompasses opposite qualities: Eat all you want and it slims you down, costs nothing yet makes you rich, that sort of thing. Enter Patio Oil: Wildly appealing and repellent, all in one.

  • Ask Jean: Does Clean, Non-Toxic Insect Spray Work? Jao Patio Oil Moisture Mistgoop, $32

    Infused with lemon-eucalyptus oils, this silky, hydrating insect-repelling spritz is brilliant (of course) on a porch or patio, but also on a hike, a run, or a tropical vacation: It sprays easily all over body, leaves your skin softly hydrated, smells of lemon and herbs, and manages, without toxins, to seriously discouraged insects of all sorts. We love the easy to use-spray and the pretty scent, not to mention our smooth, healthy, unbitten skin.

  • Ask Jean: Does Clean, Non-Toxic Insect Spray Work? Jao Patio Oil Moisture Mistgoop, $32

    Infused with lemon-eucalyptus oils, this silky, hydrating insect-repelling spritz is brilliant (of course) on a porch or patio, but also on a hike, a run, or a tropical vacation: It sprays easily all over body, leaves your skin softly hydrated, smells of lemon and herbs, and manages, without toxins, to seriously discouraged insects of all sorts. We love the easy to use-spray and the pretty scent, not to mention our smooth, healthy, unbitten skin.

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