Got Bed Bugs? Bedbugger Forums » Bed bug bites, skin, etc.

Success with Skin Repellents? PLEASE VOTE

(22 posts)
  1. BuggyGirl

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    Posted 3 years ago
    Wed Dec 15 2010 15:58:29
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    There is so much back and forth on what works to protect your skin from BB bites--and maybe nothing does. I keep my arms and legs bare in bed, to give them something else to bite, but they prefer my neck more than anything. I worry they will find my face next. It is disfiguring and upsetting.

    It would be great if someone could experiment with various substances and publish the results, but until then, maybe a vote of readers is helpful. Who has had success (or think you have) with any of the following skin applications?

    -Tea tree oil (alone or in cream)
    -Lavender oil
    -Avon's Skin So Soft
    -Other

  2. DougSummersMS

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    Posted 3 years ago
    Wed Dec 15 2010 18:33:08
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    I don't think that you will find an effective repellent.

    Best Yet by Cedarcide is labeled for bed bugs and can be sprayed on your skin according to the manufacturer.

    It might have a limited effect, but I think you will still experience bites.

  3. rangichangi

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    Posted 3 years ago
    Wed Dec 15 2010 18:51:32
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    I have read that Neem oil works against bbs - there is a recipe online for DIY insecticide consisting of neem oil, water and soap. http://www.ehow.com/how_6374935_kill-bed-bugs-neem-oil.html I haven't tried it but have thought about mixing some up and spraying it on my futon frame. Neem oil is supposedly good for the skin but it stinks - you need to mix it with some other oil(olive, almond) if you want to try it.

  4. MsTabbyKats

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    Posted 3 years ago
    Wed Dec 15 2010 18:55:07
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    BuggyGirl

    I'm wondering, if you changed your position, and put your feet where your head usually goes....maybe they would go to your feet.

    It seems like some pharmaceutical company could come up with a cream that would be repugnant to BBs.

    Or...develop a "flea collar" for people.

  5. bait

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    Posted 3 years ago
    Wed Dec 15 2010 23:46:25
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    A paper was presented at the ESA meeting this past Sunday:
    Repellent products for bite-free sleep - a low-maintenance, minimal-chemical answer to the bed bug problem by Robin Todd, ICR laboratories.
    I intend to contact ICR and see if the paper can be made available.
    A book written by entos is out too: Prevention of Bug Bites, Stings, and Disease. Amazon dot com lets you get a preview of it.
    Bait

  6. Nobugsonme

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    Posted 3 years ago
    Thu Dec 16 2010 4:23:59
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    Hi,

    I tried all three of these. Did they prevent bites?

    -Tea tree oil (alone or in cream) - no.
    -Lavender oil - no.
    -Avon's Skin So Soft - no.

    They all dried my skin, though, which probably contributed to more itching.

    I understand the desire to avoid bites and I did try all of these things extensively back in the day.

    Keep in mind, though, if something like NEEM is repellent as fans claim it to be, then it may actually cause problems by spreading bed bugs deeper into your home.

    Repellents don't make bed bugs pack up and walk out the door. They can make them spread into your home in ways that make them harder to treat.

    I started and run the site but am "not an expert."
  7. BuggyGirl

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    Posted 3 years ago
    Thu Dec 16 2010 9:11:20
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    A flea collar would be great! But I hear Neem might be toxic?

    I just want to repel them from my face and neck (and private parts). They can eat my arms and legs, etc. It's mostly the disfigurement of going to work with a flaming red neon sign that says "I HAVE BED BUGS" on my face that I want to avoid. That and the extra psychological stress to think of them on my face--in my nose, on my eyes--at night.

    So nothing works? Surely, there has to be something that would make a treated part of your skin less desirable to a BB than an untreated part. Right? God, I hope so.

  8. Winston O. Buggy

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    Posted 3 years ago
    Thu Dec 16 2010 10:38:41
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    Important to consider is that people respond differently to the same material. While one oil or "repellent" may work for one it may cause a negative and even life threatening response to another.
    By law any item which is labeled to be an insect repellent must be EPA registered, which requires safety and efficacy data as well as a label instructions.

  9. DougSummersMS

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    Posted 3 years ago
    Thu Dec 16 2010 10:58:11
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    You might want to give the cedar oil a trial... The manufacturer claims that it is repellent... It does kill bed bugs on direct contact... It might work for saving your face and critical areas... if you are just trying to redirect the biting activity to other parts of your body.

    Keep it out of your eyes ... it will make you smell like cedar.... but it might work to shift the biting pattern away from your face.

    The product is eco-exempt and is labeled for bed bugs, but I don't believe that it is EPA registered as a pesticide.

    I would definitely look into the research from ICR that Bait mentioned... ICR is a private lab that performs bed bug research.

    Do Not use a flea collar... or any other flea preventative product

  10. rangichangi

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    Posted 3 years ago
    Thu Dec 16 2010 22:25:21
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    Info about neem oil toxicity here:

    http://www.discoverneem.com/neem-safety-and-side-effects.html

    Seems like it is safe unless you are pregnant or trying to conceive.

  11. rangichangi

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    Posted 3 years ago
    Thu Dec 16 2010 22:32:06
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    BuggyGirl - 13 hours ago
    So nothing works? Surely, there has to be something that would make a treated part of your skin less desirable to a BB than an untreated part. Right? God, I hope so.

    I think I recall a post by someone who slept with every inch of his body covered(including gloves and socks) and to avoid getting bitten on his face applied liquid bandage... and some people think sleeping in a tent is extreme... you might try a silk balaclava like skiers wear?

  12. bed-bugscouk

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    Posted 3 years ago
    Fri Dec 17 2010 10:38:59
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    Hi,

    I appreciate the distress that bites can cause but I cant stress enough that repellancy is NOT the solution to bedbugs, in fact as others have said it can make the matter worse.

    You are better off covering sensative parts and leaving less obvious areas exposed to be bitten. To this end I would recommend cotton gloves on hands if you have a bad reaction and socks as both hands and feet can be some of the more itchy locations to get bitten on.

    Covering the face is a difficult one as you don't want to restrict your breathing as you sleep which all of the feasible solutions I have worked on seem to do.

    Hope this helps.

    David Cain
    Bed Bugs Limited

    In accordance with the AUP and FTC (legal requirements) I openly disclose my vested interest in Passive Monitors as the inventor and patent holder. Since 2009 they have become an integral part in how we resolve bedbug infestations in domestic and commercial settings. The patent numbers are GB2463953 and GB2470307.
  13. BuggyGirl

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    Posted 3 years ago
    Fri Dec 17 2010 13:53:55
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    I will try cedar oil and look into the new research, thanks. Liquid bandages? Ugh! What about diluted rubbing alcohol?

    I was just wondering, what about people who sleep with those sleep apnea masks on their face? Hm....

    I live surrounded by infested neighbors who don't care if they live with bugs and who refuse PCO treatments. If I could repel every bug they send my way back into the walls and into their apartments, that would make very happy.

  14. DougSummersMS

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    Posted 3 years ago
    Sat Dec 18 2010 1:19:24
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    Let us know if the cedar oil helps.

    If the bite patterns shift away from the treated areas it would suggest that the manufacturer is correct about the repellent action of the product.

    I'm really sorry to hear about your uncooperative neighbors... That does not suggest a good prognosis for becoming bug free.

    David is right... I don't think that cedar oil will eradicate your bugs, but I think it might work for the purpose of shifting the bites away from your face

  15. Nobugsonme

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    Posted 3 years ago
    Sat Dec 18 2010 4:33:11
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    DougSummersMS - 3 hours ago  » 

    David is right... I don't think that cedar oil will eradicate your bugs, but I think it might work for the purpose of shifting the bites away from your face

    But doesn't CedarCide claim its product is repellent, and isn't this potentially a problem, for the reasons noted above, if it is true?

  16. Nobugsonme

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    Posted 3 years ago
    Sat Dec 18 2010 4:34:52
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    I would never cover everything besides your face.

    I would recommend leaving parts you prefer to have bitten free: calves, feet for me are better spots than the face and hands. YMMV.

    I know this sounds awful but with treatment, you should be able to get rid of the problem soon and it should get better with every treatment.

  17. BuggyGirl

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    Posted 3 years ago
    Sat Dec 18 2010 11:03:32
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    Definitely--I am happy to let them feed on my legs, arms...well, not "happy" but you know what I mean, and just want to save my face and neck. Thanks! Will let you know how the cedar oil goes.

  18. scaredsilly

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    Posted 3 years ago
    Sat Dec 18 2010 18:46:07
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    Skin So Soft works for me as long as I limit its use to a small area (face and neck). If I put it all over my body, the bugs still bite. But since using it for face only, no bites on face. I let them bite other areas I can hide with clothes later. Lavender didn't do much. Good luck with the cedar oil. I hope it works!

  19. BuggyGirl

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    Posted 3 years ago
    Thu Dec 23 2010 12:11:10
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    Thanks ScaredSilly--that makes sense! I will try that, too, and do a little experimenting.

  20. jjakk

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    Posted 3 years ago
    Thu Dec 23 2010 12:57:35
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    Research Cinnamon Oil ... It is being researched as an insect repellant and is proven to kill mosquito larvae. It is the main ingredient in Rest Easy spray for BB's but that product is Not to be used directly on the skin. I just googled plain Cinnamon Oil and see that it can be purchased in small bottles like the Tea Tree Oil which I have been using around my neck recently since I always get bit on my back. I use tea tree oil to try and keep anything from going down my shirt. Actually no bites since I started that. It's been about 15 days since my last bite but I don't have a confirmed infestation as of the present. Just the bites. I also was using a C-Pap machine for apnea. Than realized that the machine with the wire and tubing provided an access route from the floor to the bed so I stopped using it for now. I have never been bitten on my face.

  21. bait

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    Posted 3 years ago
    Sun Dec 26 2010 19:34:49
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    I said I would get back to you on this....

    A.Taisey at the NE IPM Ctr at Cornell wrote an online review of ICR's repellent research discussed above. The site warns about using the info, so I am providing the link

    http://stoppests.typepad.com/IPMinMultifamilyHousing/

    I hope the Todd team is working on how to reduce the volatility. If they could get just 8 hours of repellency, it would be a G-send to travellers.

    Curious, has anyone tried the B1 patch and reported back to the members?

    Bait

  22. DougSummersMS

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    Posted 3 years ago
    Mon Dec 27 2010 1:16:40
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    Bait

    Thanks for posting the link.

    Very interesting


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