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Now that mosquito season is starting, it's time to stock up our buzz-busting arsenal. But are these weird tips real or rumors? We'll be the judge.

mosquitoBaggis, Flickr


Weird Mosquito Tip #1: Drink Lots of Beer
Rumor. The rationale behind this gem isn't to have a good time, but that the alcohol and yeast are not appealing to a mosquito. Actually, the opposite is true. A mosquito actually prefers the blood of a beer-drinker over anyone else. You can try to trick them by leaving out open cans of beer around your yard, but it's more likely that Uncle Kenny will just drink the buggy brews instead.

Weird Mosquito Tip #2: Fire Up a Bubble Machine
Real. Though I suspect that this tip was actually submitted by a 5-year-old who desperately wants to improve their bubble output tenfold, mosquitos have been found to be repelled by soap solutions. So it's less about bubbles and more about the suds.

Weird Mosquito Tip #3: Mix Up Some 'Dew
Real-ish. Someone suggested mixing Mountain Dew and dish soap, then leaving the solution out in cups around the yard. Again, the mosquitoes were probably repelled by the soap rather than the soda. So save it for the refreshment stand and swap in water instead.

Weird Mosquito Tip #4: Wear Only White
Rumor. The thinking is that bold and dark colors absorb heat, which raises your body temperature, turning you into a buffet for bugs. But if it's hot out, you're going to have a higher body temperate no matter what you wear.

Weird Mosquito Tip #5: Rub Chives On Your Pulse Points
Real, but gross. Mosquitos hate the scent of chives, but so does everyone else around you.

Weird Mosquito Tip #6: Eat Plenty of Garlic
Real, but also gross. Points to the reader who painted a terrible picture in my head by writing, "Eat garlic until it oozes out your pores." Lovely. But if you happen to be eating a garlic-leaden meal, great news, mosquitos hate you.

Weird Mosquito Tip #7: Vacuum Them Up
Real. Of course, if you have the reflexes and the eyesight to be able to vacuum a mosquito mid-air, then I suggest you try out for the next "Karate Kid" movie.

Weird Mosquito Tip #8: Try This App
Real, but with reservations. There's a few iPhone apps on the market designed to emit a noise that repels mosquitoes. Unfortunately, it doesn't work on all varieties. And, it drives cats and dogs nuts.

Weird Mosquito Tip #9: Rub Yourself With Fabric Softener Sheets
Real. It goes back to tips #2 and #3, mosquitoes just don't like the taste or scent of soap. But use caution, since this idea just sounds irritating to the skin.

Weird Mosquito Tip #10: Spritz with Mouthwash
Rumor. A popular email forward from a few years back states that if you spritz yourself with a 10 to 1 mix of water to Listerine, you'll repel mosquitoes. While the menthol and eucalyptus doesn't appeal to the critters, the dilution won't be enough to make much of a difference. (And directly applying Listerine to skin will just dry you out.)

Want more tips on mosquito prevention? Check out...
How to make your own organic mosquito repellent
Garlic spray: a natural way to a mosquito-free zone
The Daily Fix: Ward Off Mosquitoes

Already bitten? Watch this to see how to take the itch away...






  • Wakka

    Um... Listerine definitely doesn't have methanol in it. I think you mean ethanol.

    *Editor's note: Listerine doesn't have methanol or ethanol in it, but it does have menthol.

    Reply
  • Elaine Hill

    I'm amazed nobody wrote in with this one. Take a fairly high dose Vitamin B-complex every day. After a few days, your skin will smell bad to mosquiitos, while you won't smell like a garlic bulb. I don't know which B-vitamin does the trick, but B-complex can't hurt you.

    Reply
  • Donna

    If already bitten and the itch is driving you buggy, get a bottle of the stuff used on dogs for hot spots; Scratchex. Put a dab of it on the bite and instantly the itch is gone, gone, gone.

    Reply
  • IndianaJohn

    To treat itching,swollen bug bites; tear off a corner of paper towel and saturate with vinegar.
    Apply to the bite.By the time that the patch falls off, you are treated. Flea bites take two treatments.
    Apple cider vinegar is best.

    Reply
  • risavjl

    My gramma and grampa had a cottage and they used a decaying fish or fish guts (sorry-gross lol) in one of those clear glass gallon bottles. It had a metal screw top and they used a hammer and nail and punched holes in it big enough for the flies to go in. Screwed it back on and tied twine just under the cap where there is an indentation and then tied it to a tree branch about 15-20 feet away. I was very little then but I didn't notice any smell. Flies went in, didn't come out. Hundreds of them went in (sorry-gross again.) They also used little dishes of vinegar on the picnic tables.

    If you have those smaller wasps around during a picnic, drink (yesss-lol) a dark berry wine cooler and leave about an inch or two of it in the bottom. Set it away from you of course. They will flock to it and they don't know how to get out. There are traps you can get to hang on your house eaves, and they tell you to put sugar water in them. Pour some wine cooler in it. Same difference.

    Reply
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