The best tips to protect yourself from mosquitoes, according to science

Summer's already here, and with it comes its traditional batch of mosquitoes responsible for our insomnia and aborted aperitifs. Don't worry, here are the best ways to protect yourself!

This is the best way to protect yourself from mosquitoes, according to science
© Cameron Webb / Unsplash
This is the best way to protect yourself from mosquitoes, according to science

We all hate mosquitoes. Far from sharks, hippos and wild lions, the mosquito is by far the most dangerous animal for humans, causing 800,000 deaths every year. It doesn't look like it from its size.

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The struggle each summer is trying to find a way to stop mosquitoes from biting you. Many of us use citronella, either through diffusers, sprays or even candles. Others will buy mosquito repellant and spray it all over their skin that's not covered by clothes.

But are there actually better ways to protect yourself from mosquitoes? Let's see what science has to say!

How can you really protect yourself?

But without going that far, mosquitoes are also the main culprits behind all those botched summer evenings. You're sitting peacefully on your terrace with your best barbecue, and suddenly they arrive and force you to barricade yourself in. Well, we're exaggerating a little, of course.

So what can you do to protect yourself beforehand? Traditional citronella candles and other mosquito repellents are certainly effective enough, but sometimes you need to treat the root of the problem. A scientist specializing in this field shares her top tips with us.

Read more: Here's how to prevent mosquitoes from getting inside your home during summer

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Advice from a scientist

Quoted in The Sun, Maisie Vollans, a doctoral student in mosquito ecology at Oxford University, gives us her top tips.

As she explains in The Conversation, the best tip is to avoid drinking beer in the first place. Yes, it's heartbreaking, but according to an experiment in which researchers established which beverage was most likely to attract them, they saw that beer was the best mosquito magnet in their opinion.

Use deodorants!

Second tip: use deodorant. According to Maisie, isopropyl tetradecanoate, a compound found in deodorant bottles, repels the blood-sucking beast! One study, in particular, showed that mosquitoes settled less on a surface coated with deodorant, a reduction of 56%! Don't throw it away!

Take a shower after a good sweat! You may already know that these invasive insects are very attracted to our sweat. And last but not least: choose your fruit carefully! Replace bananas with grapes to avoid bites!

This article was translated from Gentside FR.

Sources used:

The Sun: 'BUZZ OFF I’m a scientist – the 5 surprising ways to prevent mozzie bites and 2 things that WON’T work'

The Conversation: 'Do these seven things really stop mosquitoes biting you?'

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