REPEL 100 INSECT REPELLENT
BY MIKE DAURIO JR.
July 06, 2007
Mike Daurio Jr.
Wonder Lake, Illinois USA
6' 0" (1.83 m)
183 lb (83.00 kg)
I am quite new to backpacking. My experience lies mostly as a canoe guide. My inspiration to get more into this sport/hobby was a backpack trip to Thailand in 2005. Due to my experience I am fond of lightweight, waterproof quality gear. I backpack in mainly hilly forested areas and of course near rivers and streams. I also do a lot of backpack traveling to other countries. I am a 3-season backpacker. Every year I spend time in the Ozarks in Missouri and in Voyageurs National Park in Minnesota. I'd love to explore Canyonlands National Park in Utah.
Manufacturer: Spectrum Brands Inc.
Year of Manufacture: 2005
Manufacturer's Website: http://www.repel.com
Other details: Fluid volume is 1 oz (29 ml)
The Repel insect repellent reviewed is called REPEL 100 and states it is 100% DEET. Actual ingredients are 98.11% DEET and 1.89% other ingredients per the label. It is contained in a 1 fl oz (29 ml) pump spray bottle that is about the diameter of a US quarter and approximately 3 in (8 cm) high . The bottle sprays easily and although always carried in my pack, has never leaked.
I purchased this product before my trip to Thailand in 2005. When traveling to Thailand it is recommended to bring 100% DEET spray as the strains of malaria are resistant to vaccines and preventative medications. So it is better to not get bit.
Cautionary warnings are abundant, on the rear label, in regards to first aid, disposal, and storage.
Directions listed on the back say, "Apply all over exposed skin to repel mosquitoes, ticks, and biting flies. Use just enough to cover exposed skin and/or clothing. "
My usage of insect repellent is usually minimal. In everyday situations I try not to use it. I maybe apply it two to three times a year, if not camping or in the woods. I also do not like to use chemicals. I do not fertilize nor use insecticide on my lawn or garden. The potency of this product is a concern to me and I try to use it only in the most extreme infestation situations.
My first use of the product was in Thailand in Phang Na Bay. Me and my companions were on a day hike to a large cave with the temperature in the high 90's F (32-37 C) and the mosquitoes were the buzzing and swarming worse then I have ever experienced. I couldn't swat the bites in time to get to the next bite. I reached for the Repel 100 in my bag and sprayed all over the front of my body. Then passed it to my girlfriend and let her do the same. After trading turns on spraying each other's backs, the mosquitoes stopped biting like they were turned off with a switch. After all in the party were doused in the repellent we hiked further and enjoyed the three hour hike through the jungle, marsh and rocky hillsides.
The repellent does leave an oily residue on your skin. The smell is a pungent aroma of a typical bug spray just magnified. I trade the smell for the protection but otherwise it is unpleasant. We did not get bit again that day. We showered and laundered our clothes and I'd assume the repellent was gone.
I had to use it was on a recent backpack trip to Kettle Moraine State park in Wisconsin. My hike started in a 80 degree F (27 C) sunny clearing. After entering the woods I was attacked by mosquitoes. I must have had seven bites by the time I could secure my dogs, and another seven before I could shed my pack. I dug out the Repel 100 and sprayed myself on my body, back of the neck and on a buff I was wearing on my head. Again the mosquitoes seemed to instantly lose interest in me. I hiked four hours before setting up camp bite free. This outing allowed me to gauge the longevity of the repellent. After approximately six hours, although bite free, I did get an increasing amount of annoying buzzing around my ears. Within the hour I was starting to get hit again. It wasn't as frequent as when I first entered the woods but I could tell it was losing its potency. I perspired some, but never enough to wipe my brow. The consistency of the product kept it intact for almost seven hours. The package boasts "Up to ten hours protection". While not the max at ten hours, seven hours would fit into the marketing statement.
While sitting around the campfire I was brushing my dogs and noticed they were both infested with ticks. After clearing the ticks with my Leatherman I counted about 40 ticks. It was then decided the dogs will receive the repellent treatment before exiting the camp in the morning. I got up around 5 AM the next morning and ate a snack for breakfast. After changing I sprayed the repellent on my self and on the bottom half of my dog's fur. I refrained from spraying their faces and although a haven for the ticks a day earlier, their ears. After hiking the four hours out I did a tick check before entering the car. I found three ticks between the two dogs. One was found between her toes and one on each dog on one of their ears. This leads me to believe the ticks were still present and even though not sprayed directly the ears were a feast for only the toughest (or bravest) ticks. I was quite pleased with the results and will spray as a precaution in the future.
The research I have done on DEET has mentioned its effect at deteriorating or staining clothes. I have not witnessed any discoloration or deterioration of my garments when using the product. I do however wash my clothes as soon as I can get to a washing machine. I also bathed my dogs as soon as I got home.
I have used the DEET spray on a few camping excursions, and a couple evening outdoor activities most recently at fourth of July fireworks in my home town, which takes place a few blocks from my home. I had to jog the journey back to get the spray and showed up a hero to my friends when I returned. All experiences with the product are consistent. I purchased the bottle in 2005 and even though have had multiple people use it on multiple situations I still have about a quarter to one-third of the bottle left. The potency has also not faded noticeably in the two year shelf life.
Over all I am pleased with the protection of the REPEL DEET 100 in the most extreme mosquito situations.
THINGS I LIKE
1. Absolutely the protection. Mosquitoes and ticks hate this stuff.
2. Longevity of the product.
3. Almost instant protection once sprayed.
THINGS I DON'T LIKE
1. The odor.
2. I hate to use chemicals and the potency of this stuff scares me a bit. The warnings on the back should be followed and I only use it in extreme situations.
Mike J. Daurio Jr.
This report was created with the BackpackGearTest.org Report Writer Version 1.
Copyright 2007. All rights reserved.
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