The Holistic Mom: Safe Insect Repellent

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With summer finally here, there is a lot to look forward to – trips to the beach, eating and drinking at Pier 13, farmer's markets, yogurt from 16 Handles.

One thing none of us look forward to is the return of mosquito season. Over the last few years, the concern over mosquitoes and ticks has increased and not just because of those itchy red patches they leave behind – there is legitimate concern over the diseases these bugs can possible carry.

When I first connected with Little Hoboken, we discussed my contributions to be “realistic holistic”. Yes, you may find crystals charging in the windows of my apartment or rubbing peppermint oil on my temples before reaching for an Advil, but when it comes to serious health risks, this mama don’t play!

There are natural insect repellents – everyone has heard of Citronella candles, but citronella is actually an essential oil. You can look for this ingredient in products such as Badger Anti-Bug Balm. Planting lavender or basil in your garden can keep bugs out. However, after doing my own extensive research, I found that these won’t quite cut it in the age of Zika. I turned to the Environmental Working Group (EWG) – a non-profit organization who’s mission is to provide information to the public to live healthier lives in a healthier environment. The EWG is my go-to for finding safe beauty products, learning what produce to buy organic and more. Their top choices for insect repellents include ingredients such as DEET and Picaridin as our best defense against disease carrying insects.

After a lot of research and product comparison, I have chosen a combination of Badger Balm and Cutter All Family Wipes to keep my family as bug-free as possible this summer. The Cutter wipes are 7.15% DEET which is safe according to the AAP who recommends 10-30% for children – babies 2 months and younger should not be exposed to DEET at all.

For more information from the EWG visit their website here.

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