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Deal Divas

Stephanie Hayes, Katie Sanders, Kameel Stanley, & Keyonna Summers

The buzz on decent-smelling mosquito sprays



I can deal with the heat, with the frizzy hair, the sweaty brow, the melted makeup face. The worst part about being Florida summertime, to me, is the mosquitoes.feeding_mosquito.jpg

Seems I can't step outside to get the paper or walk the dog without returning covered in fresh welts that not only itch to the point of life-hatred, but they look gross when I'm wearing shorts or skirts, too. My boyfriend keeps a stash of heavy duty OFF! bug spray, which I use in emergenciescvsspray.jpg, but I hate going to BBQs or outdoor concerts smelling like I just got back from camping in the Everglades.

So recently, I went to CVS to peruse the bug spray selection, which was limited to one little shelf near the light bulb aisle, and I noticed they had these little blue bottles of "CVS Soft Skin Spray." It appeared to be their version of Avon's Skin So Soft bath oil, that magical elixir that does everything from repel bugs to solve the nation's debt problems, although it didn't actually say "repels mosquitoes!" on the packaging. Instead, it had little icons showing a person hiking and a tent, which I supposed was their way of saying it was good for the outdoors, i.e. repels mosquitoes. It was only $2.99. Why not?

Well, I think it works? Unless it's just been a coincidence that I haven't gotten bit while wearing it. It smells a little like baby oil, but not as strong, and it's a little greasy when you spray it on, but  it absorbs fairly well. I like it! I have yet to test it while hiking in the Adirondacks, but I will say I've noticed a decrease in bug bites.

The New York Times T Magazine blog recently ran a short item the most gentle and luxurious Swedish mosquito repellents, if you're up for international shipping costs. It also extolled the virtues of something called Mrs. White’s Unstung Hero, also tough to find, and $30 -- yeah, no. I've heard local health food stores are good places to look for DEET-free and nice-smelling bug repellents. Anyone have any holy grail mosquito spray secrets they'd like to share?

Deal Diva Emily

Photos:, iStockphoto.

[Last modified: Tuesday, July 19, 2011 8:48am]


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