Natrapel 8 Hour Insect Repellent
Initial Report 22nd May 2008
* Reviewer Information
Name: Mark McLauchlin
Height: 1.76 m (5’ 9”)
Weight: 80 kg (176 lb)
Email: mark at swanvalleyit.com.au
City: Perth, Western Australia
* Backpacking Background
I have been hiking since 2006 with most of my hiking consisting
of day walks averaging 16 - 22 km (10 - 14 mi) and short overnight trips where
I consider myself to be a light hiker with an average pack weight of
13 kg (29 lb).
My preference is for hot dinners, breakfasts of cereals with fresh fruit,
and lunches usually of bars and sandwiches.
* Product Information
Manufacturer: Adventure Medical Kits
Year of Manufacture: 2008
Net Contents Listed: 104 ml (3.5 fl oz)
Measured Weight: 136 g (4.8 oz)
* Initial Impressions
The Natrapel 8 hour insect repellent is a DEET-free product that provides long lasting effective protection from mosquitoes, black flies and ticks.
As can be seen from the image above the repellent is stored in a plastic pump spray bottle measuring 5.2x2.7x16 cm (2x1x6.3 in), slightly taller than a standard pen.
Two bottles arrived which was a welcome surprise.
I like the idea of the Natrapel repellent being in a pump spray
bottle as this reduces any impact to the environment. The other benefit
I see to this is that perhaps it can be decanted into a smaller
container so that I am able to carry only what I need for the duration
of the trip.
Active ingredients: Picaridin 20%
Inert ingredients: 80%
The ability for the repellent to provide protection from ticks is excellent for the conditions that I hike in, as on several occasions I have caught them before they get a chance
to burrow in. Hopefully this will keep them away altogether.
At this stage I am having difficulty in describing the smell accurately, suffice as to say there is a mild fragrance.
When applied to the skin there is an oily residue which after a few minutes seems to evaporate. I assume this is due to some kind of alcohol base.
* Reading the Instructions
The following is a quotation from the information provided on the rear of the packaging in regard to the usage.
"Hold 4 to 6 inches from skin when spaying, keeping nozzle pointed away from face. Slightly
moisten skin with a slow sweeping motion. Excessive amounts or frequent
reapplication is unnecessary. Apply on the face by first spraying small amounts in the palms of hands and spreading on face and neck. Do not apply to the hands of small children."
The repellent can be re-applied every 8 hours with only two
applications per day.
There are numerous safety and first aid directions on the rear of the
bottle which are easily understood and informative.
* Testing Strategy
The emphasis of my test plan will be on day trips and overnight hikes, which I actively
combine into geocaching. These products will form part of my hygiene kit for the
duration of the testing.
I have several day and overnight trips planned for the duration of this
I am looking forward to being able to take this out with me on my hiking trips, and will be very
interested to see how it performs.
This concludes my initial report. Please check back in three months for
the results of the field report.
Since receiving this item in May I have taken the Natrapel 8 hour Insect
Repellent on all of my hiking and general outdoor activities. This
includes approximately 200 km (124 miles) of bush walking over 6 days,
several overnight hikes and 5 day walks.
Temperatures have ranged from a low of 5 C (41 F) at night to a high of
33 C (91 F) during the day. There have been days with heavy
Although the peak time of the year for flies in Australia is October to
December I do feel that repellent has provided some relief from them. It
is something I notice more when I have not applied the product.
Over the test period I have used approximately 90 ml (3 fl oz) of the
contents and will continue to use the remainder.
Some of the areas are know for their ticks and the Natrapel appears to
have been effective against these.
One of the key benefits to the Natrapel is the fact the contents are not
in a pressurised container so not only is this better for the
environment but the contents can also be decanted into another smaller
container. My preferred style of hiking leans more towards the lighter
scale so I find the ability to take only what I am going to need to be
of great benefit. The image above show the original container along side
a small pump spray container that holds only 10 ml (0.34 fl oz) which I
have used whilst out hiking on a number of occasions. I have
predominantly used the manufacturer's container so that I can thoroughly
test the performance of that and to date there are no issues with leaks
or the pump mechanism.
During the test period I have worn several different items of clothing
that has come into contact with the Natrapel and there have been no side
effects on the materials which is a positive observation.
I have noted in my initial report that there is an oily residue left on
the skin for several minutes after applying the repellent and this still
remains the case now and does cause me a little anguish as I feel this
perhaps means some is absorbed into the skin.
I would give a rating of perhaps 70% efficiency on this product in terms
of what is a visible reduction in the amount of insects that either come
into contact with me whilst walking or the ones that just buzz around
making a nuisance of themselves. This is a big bonus.
I have not found any issues
with the Natrapel Insect Repellent that are performance related. Would I continue to use the product when
the amount supplied for this test is finished?
Probably not but only due to it not being stocked in Australia at this
point in time.
Things I liked
Contents not pressurised so better for the environment and can be
Things I disliked
Oily residue left on skin.
This concludes my Long-Term Report and the test series for the
Natrapel Insect Repellent.
I would like to thank Adventure Medical Kits and BackpackGearTest.org for the
opportunity to test this product.