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Top 10 Best Mosquito Repellents For Babies (2020 Review)

Unless you know what you’re looking for, finding a good mosquito repellent that is safe for your children can feel overwhelming.

You don’t want your children exposed to harmful chemicals but you also want to protect them from mosquitoes and other biting insects.

So what can you do? You keep on reading, that’s what.

In this guide you'll learn:

  • What's in mosquito repellents?
  • How do mosquito repellents work?
  • How to use mosquito repellents
  • Our top 10 picks for Baby-Safe Mosquito Repellents.

Click here to jump right to our recommended mosquito repellent for your babies!

Best Mosquito Repellents for Babies Reviewed!
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Cutter All Family Mosquito Wipes
  • Unopened wipes last for several years
  • Safe for use on children of any age
  • Will not damage cotton, nylon, or wool
  • Unopened wipes last for several years
  • Safe for use on children of any age
  • Will not damage cotton, nylon, or wool
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Avon Skin So Soft Bug Guard Plus Towelettes
  • DEET-free formula
  • Safe for baby's skin
  • Long-lasting protection
  • DEET-free formula
  • Safe for baby's skin
  • Long-lasting protection
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Cutter Lemon Eucalyptus Insect Repellent
  • All-natural formula
  • 6 hours of protection
  • DEET-free
  • All-natural formula
  • 6 hours of protection
  • DEET-free
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US Organic Anti-Bug Spray
  • Convenient travel size
  • USDA approved as safe
  • Dermatologist tested
  • Convenient travel size
  • USDA approved as safe
  • Dermatologist tested
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Badger Anti-Bug Balm
  • 100% organic
  • Easy to apply
  • Moisturizes as it protects
  • 100% organic
  • Easy to apply
  • Moisturizes as it protects
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Honey Guy Bite Free Beeswax Cream
  • Natural, organic ingredients
  • Doubles as a skin cream
  • Safe for babies
  • Natural, organic ingredients
  • Doubles as a skin cream
  • Safe for babies
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Bugout Waterproof Mosquito Repellent
  • DEET-free
  • Waterproof
  • Completely baby safe
  • DEET-free
  • Waterproof
  • Completely baby safe
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Mosquito Guard Kids Repellent Bands
  • DEET-free
  • All-natural ingredients
  • Recommended by the CDC
  • DEET-free
  • All-natural ingredients
  • Recommended by the CDC
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The Original Drawstring Baby net
  • DEET and chemical-free
  • Near-100% protection
  • Reusable
  • DEET and chemical-free
  • Near-100% protection
  • Reusable
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NEQUARE Baby Beach Tent with Mosquito Net
  • Compact
  • Set up in seconds
  • Net keeps out bugs
  • Compact
  • Set up in seconds
  • Net keeps out bugs
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Our Overall #1 Rated Pick

(updated as of 1/30/2020)

  • Unopened wipes last for several years
  • Safe for use on children of any age
  • Will not damage cotton, nylon, or wool

Our #1 pick is Cutter All Family Mosquito Wipes. These towelettes are impregnated with a proven 7.15% DEET formula to repel mosquitoes, biting flies, chiggers, fleas, gnats, and ticks. Towelettes give you a controlled way to apply DEET to exposed skin.

The wipes are not greasy or oily. Instead, they feel light and clean when you apply them. Individually wrapped in resealable packets, they remain moist for a long time. Toss a few in your pocket or picnic basket and you can use them as needed.

Top 10 Best Mosquito Repellents

What Are Mosquito Repellents?

Common repellents (for mosquitoes and other biting insects) are DEET, Picaridin, and Oil of Lemon Eucalyptus. All three are registered with the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) as effective repellents.

Oil of lemon eucalyptus is referred to as a biopesticide, which means it is made from living things (plants or animals) and consequently are generally regarded as safer than using man-made chemicals. It is the only essential oil that is registered as a repellent.

Mosquitoes and ticks are attracted to the carbon dioxide in our breath and our body heat, as are many other biting insects and flying insects. Repellents work to confuse a mosquito’s senses so they can’t detect us.

Read More: How to Get Rid of Mosquitoes

Mosquitoes are attracted to our body heat!

Menacing Mosquitoes

Mosquitoes are vectors, carriers, for a wide array of diseases. They carry Dengue fever, West Nile virus, Lyme disease, and Zika, among others. The Centers for Disease Control website lists thousands of search results for mosquitoes, Zika and Dengue are always the top two on it.

Mosquitoes lay their eggs in stagnant water. The larvae hatch and swim around eating algae until they mature into flying mosquitoes.

After mating, the male mosquito dies and it’s the female that needs to feed on blood before she lays each set of eggs. She’s the one biting you and your baby.

Read More: Keeping Mosquitoes Away

Chemicals or Au Naturelle?

Do you want a mosquito repellent that is based on chemicals or one that is au naturelle? There are advantages and disadvantages to both.

  • DEET

DEET was discovered by the Army in 1946 and has been in use for decades. It is the safest, most effective mosquito repellent on the market today. Many modern mosquito repellents use it as an active ingredient.

Contrary to popular opinion, DEET is safe for use on children of any age. The EPA says there is no age restriction for using DEET on children nor is there any restriction on the concentration that can be used on children.

  • Picaridin

Picaridin is a synthetic compound developed in the 1980s as a substitute for DEET. It is formulated to resemble piperine, a natural compound found in plants that produce black pepper. It is almost as effective as DEET, and in some cases just as effective.

  • Oil of Lemon Eucalyptus

Also known as OLE or PMD, oil of lemon eucalyptus is the only essential oil that has been tested and confirmed to have repellent properties against mosquitoes and other biting insects. It is registered as safe and effective for use on human skin and clothing.

  • Essential Oils

There are a number of popular essential oils that users claim are effective against mosquitoes and other biting insects. Among them are soybean, castor oil, lemongrass, citronella, cedar, rosemary, peppermint, and geranium.

Although each of them does have some repellent power, they are only partially effective. They might repel up to 50% of the mosquitoes that approach. But that means the other 50% are still getting to you and your baby.

For this reason, many manufacturers will combine two, three, four, or more essential oils are combined into one product.

Check out the video below for more information on which mosquito repellents are baby-safe.

How To Use Mosquito Repellents: Wipes, Sprays, Balms, and Bands

When most people think of repellents they envision a bug spray but repellents are also available in towelette wipes, balms that can be rubbed in, and wearable wristbands that are impregnated with a repellent.

  • Spray

Sprays are quick and easy to apply but offer the least amount of control regarding where the repellent goes. Sprays tend to spread out and it’s easy to spray something you didn’t mean to – such as eyes, nose, mouth, etc.

  • Wipes

Towelette wipes offer excellent delivery control. The individually wrapped towelettes last a long time in their wrappings, but once you open them they dry out quickly. This limits how long you can use one before you have to open another.

  • Balms

Balms, ointments, creams, and lotions are easy to apply and give you excellent delivery control. They also tend to be oily or greasy and can leave stains on your clothing.

  • Bands

Wearable bands are the quickest and easiest to apply, just put them on. They also offer the least amount of protection from bugs.

  • Unopened wipes last for several years
  • Safe for use on children of any age
  • Will not damage cotton, nylon, or wool

These towelettes are individually wrapped in resealable packets and impregnated with a proven 7.15 percent DEET formula to repel mosquitoes, biting flies, chiggers, fleas, gnats, and ticks.

Towelettes give you a controlled way to apply DEET to exposed skin on your face, neck, and arms. Once applied, the low percentage of DEET means it will only last for about 2 hours, so you’ll have to reapply it frequently.

The wipes aren’t greasy or oily when you apply. Instead, they feel light and clean on your skin. When properly stored, they remain moist for several years. Toss a few in your pocket or picnic basket and you can use them as needed.

Pros

  • Light, clean feeling
  • Individually wrapped packets
  • Packets are resealable

Cons

  • Low Concentration
  • Only lasts for 2 hours
  • DEET-free formula
  • Safe for baby’s sensitive skin
  • Long-lasting protection

These individually wrapped towelettes contain 10% Picaridin, a DEET substitute that is less irritating to sensitive baby’s skin. It will protect your baby from biting flies, biting midges, deer ticks, gnats, mosquitoes, and no-see-ums.

It comes in a bag of 8 towelettes, which makes it easy to carry or toss in your backpack or picnic basket when you head outdoors. In addition to the Picaridin, it also contains Vitamin E and Aloe Vera to act as a soothing moisturizer.

It has a strong woodsy-type of scent. Some people have complained that it’s too strong.  Other than that, this is a good mosquito repellent for babies.

Pros

  • Good for sensitive skin
  • It's not greasy
  • Contains Vitamin E and Aloe Vera

Cons

  • It has a strong smell
  • Has to be washed off
  • All-natural formula
  • 6 hours of protection
  • DEET-free

This is an all-natural pump spray containing oil of lemon eucalyptus, the only one of the essential oils that has been systematically tested and found to be an effective insect repellent. It gives you hours of protection, up to 6 hours at a time.

This is a natural insect repellent that is safe and effective. However, it hasn’t been lab-tested to determine if it’s safe for young children under 3 years of age. Based on our experience, we suspect it is safe but we can’t actually prove it.

The natural ingredients are non-toxic, non-greasy, non-sticky, and won’t stain your clothes.

Pros

  • Proven effective
  • One of the essential oils
  • Non-greasy
  • Non-sticky
  • Won't stain your clothes

Cons

  • Some people have allergic reactions to it
  • Convenient travel size
  • USDA approved as safe
  • Dermatologist tested

This is a natural mosquito repellent using essential oils. The active ingredients are soybean, castor oil, lemongrass, citronella, cedar, rosemary, peppermint, and geranium. Overall, it has a slight lemon scent.

An important note: the lemongrass oil is not the same as oil of lemon eucalyptus, so don’t get them confused. Furthermore, it’s not as effective a bug repellent as oil of lemon eucalyptus, DEET, or Picaridin.

It comes in a small, 4-ounce spray bottle so it’s quick and convenient, the perfect size to take on a family outing. It has been USDA approved as tested by dermatologists to be safe for the most sensitive skin, so it is completely baby safe.

Pros

  • Lasts for up to 4 hours
  • No messy residues
  • Gentle on baby's skin

Cons

  • Avoid spraying this on your face
  • 100% organic
  • Easy to apply
  • Moisturizes as it protects

Another repellent is this stick balm from Badger. The stick form gives you total control over where it is applied and how much you put on. It is certified 100% organic and the active ingredients are castor oil, citronella, cedar, rosemary, and geranium.

It protects your babies from bug bites by using the power of essential oils to repel mosquitoes, sand flies, gnats, and other biting insects. Be aware though, some people have reported that it attracts bees.

The scent is fairly light and it moisturizes your skin as it repels mosquitoes. It’s rather greasy though and needs to be reapplied every 2-3 hours.

Pros

  • Smells great
  • Safe for babies

Cons

  • Greasy
  • Attracts bees
  • Natural, organic ingredients
  • Doubles as a skin cream
  • Safe for babies

This spreadable cream contains water, food-grade mineral oil, beeswax, borax, and cosmetic grade citronella oil to create a gentle and natural skin moisturizer that will also protect your baby from mosquito bites.

This cream is excellent for moisturizing dry, cracked skin and helping any existing bug bites to heal quickly and painlessly. It is safe for sensitive baby’s skin and the mild citronella won’t overpower you. You can also use it on pets.

In addition to repelling mosquitoes, gnats, flies, and other biting insects, it also acts as a mild sunscreen when you’re out at the beach or the park.

Pros

  • Light, clean odor
  • Pet-friendly

Cons

  • Can only be used on skin, not clothes

This mosquito repellent comes with waterproof wristbands as well as 2 towelettes, all with geraniol oil, lemongrass, and citronella in them. Since it’s not a bug spray, there’s no worries about getting it in baby’s eyes, nose, or mouth. Instead, you just wear it.

That means the wristbands are 100% child safe, even for newborn infants. You can even wear them in the water when you’re swimming and they won’t lose their effectiveness. The high-quality silicone band has enough essential oil in it to last for 120 hours.

There’s no need to worry about messy sprays or creams, and it works regardless of what clothes you’re wearing. Unfortunately, it only repels mosquitoes. Other biting insects are unfazed by it.

Pros

  • Lasts for 120 hours
  • Light, refreshing scent
  • One size fits all

Cons

  • Only affects mosquitoes
  • Wristbands are over-sized for children
  • DEET-free
  • All-natural ingredients
  • Recommended by the CDC

These wristbands are made for children and can be worn on their wrists or ankles. Each polyethylene wristband contains citronella oil, lemongrass, and geraniol essential oils to keep mosquitoes away from your children.

These individually wrapped bands are advertised as DEET-free, containing only natural products. These stretchy bands are easy to adjust for any size child over the age of 3, making them perfect for any outdoor activity such as hiking, sports, or just laying back on the beach.

It is recommended by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) as a safe product that will last up to 18 months in its individual packet.

Pros

  • Easy to use: just wear it
  • One size fits all

Cons

  • Not for children under 3
  • DEET and chemical-free
  • Near-100% protection
  • Reusable

Mosquito nets are an excellent way to prevent insect bites if the edges of the net can be properly secured. This net, designed for strollers, car seats, bassinets, and carriers, has an elastic drawstring so you can pull it as tight as necessary to keep out the bugs.

It has 1000 tiny holes in every square inch of the net, allowing plenty of air and sunshine to enter, but the holes are so small that insects are kept out. This means you don’t have to use any bug spray, lotion, or wristbands.

Put this on the stroller when you go out and your baby will be completely protected.

Pros

  • Fits many strollers, car seats, bassinets, and carriers
  • Lets in sun and air
  • Keeps out the bugs

Cons

  • Elastic drawstring loses elasticity

This pop-up baby tent is perfect for the beach, the park, or just out in the back yard. It only takes a few seconds to set it up or take it down – no assembly required. It’s lightweight and folds up nicely so it doesn’t take up a lot of room.

The mosquito netting keeps out mosquitoes, gnats, sand fleas, and other biting insects while letting in fresh air and sun. If your baby needs to sleep, there are outer flaps that come down to block the sun but a band of mesh netting along the bottom still lets in fresh air.

Pros

  • No chemicals at all
  • Lightweight
  • Compact

Cons

  • Nylon can be damaged by UV rays

Although they use chemicals – DEET – these towelettes are safe for children of any age, all the way down to newborns. DEET is proven effective at repelling mosquitoes and other biting insects. This is the best mosquito repellent available.

It is safe to apply to your skin and won’t most clothing. One application lasts for about 2 hours without feeling greasy or oily, but it needs to be reapplied on a regular basis.

  • Unopened wipes last for several years
  • Safe for use on children of any age
  • Will not damage cotton, nylon, or wool

Final Thoughts On Mosquito Repellents

DEET and other chemicals are safer for infants than most people realize but due to the perception of harm, manufacturers have begun offering a variety of non-chemical repellents. We’ve listed them all so you can make your own choice.

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