5 Best Bug Repellents for Protecting Against Zika

The more we hear about Zika, the more we're freaking out. Honestly, at this point we just want to know the best ways to protect ourselves and our families (aside, of course, from never setting foot outside again). So we're happy that Consumer Report released a new insect repellent rating with a definitive list of the best, most Zika-proof bug sprays on the market.

It's high time, too, because according to all the new reports, we're extremely screwed. Not only has the World Health Organization declared the outbreak a public emergency, but now experts are saying it's also only a matter of time before it spreads organically the USand, as of today, the CDC confirmed the link between Zika and two babies who died of microcephaly in Brazil.

That means that while everyone bitten by the Aedes mosquito is at risk of developing the virus, pregnant women need to be especially concerned because there's a chance it could lead to pregnancy complications or birth defects.

The best way to protect the pregnant women in our lives is to protect ourselves so we don't get Zika and then spread it -- and if that means smelling like bug spray for the next year, we'll do it. 

Here are the five best insect repellents to protect against Zika (don't worry -- all are safe for pregnant women). Say hello to your new perfume!


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  • Sawyer Fisherman's Formula Picaridin


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    Sawyer Fisherman's Formula Picaridin ($15.99, amazon.com) topped Cosumer Report's list with an overall score of 96. The active ingredient in this baby is Picaridin, and it'll protect you for eight hours against Aedes mosquitos -- a score which tied it for the number one longest-lasting bug spray against Aedes mosquitoes.

  • Repel Lemon Eucalyptus


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    Clocking in with an 87 overall score, Repel Lemon Eucalyptus ($7.91, amazon.com) will protect you from Aedes mosquitoes and Zika for seven hours. It's made with oil of lemon eucalyptus, so it gets a gold star for being the only repellent in the top five that'll do an "excellent" job of resisting damage to materials (the other four only will only do a "good" job).

  • Repel Scented Family


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    Repel Scented Family ($10.94, amazon.com) uses DEET as its active ingredient, and it comes in the form of a continuous aerosol spray, so it's a little easier to apply than a pump spray. It only protects against Aedes mosquitoes for five hours, but it's effective against Culex mosquitoes for eight hours and against deer ticks for 8.5 hours.

  • Natrapel 8 Hour


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    Picaridin is the active ingredient in Natrapel 8 Hour ($5.99, amazon.com), and it has an overall score of 81, making it the fourth-best spray on the list. It's also one of the most long-lasting -- it'll protect you from Aedes mosquitoes for 7.8 hours.

    More from The StirMake Your Own Bug Spray: 5 Simple Recipes

  • Off! Deepwoods Vlll


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    Number five is Off! Deepwoods Vlll ($42 for three pack, amazon.com), which will protect you against Aedes mosquitoes for a full eight hours. Its overall score is 74, and it uses DEET as its active ingredient.

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