Want to wear long sleeves and pants tucked into socks when going outdoors in super-hot weather?
Yep, we don’t either.
No one likes bug bites. And no parent would want to see their little angel suffer from inflamed and itchy mosquito bites or worse a latched-on tick!
Considering the horrible diseases that such insects can give your little one— from West Nile virus and Zika from mosquitoes to Rocky Mountain Fever and Lyme disease from ticks— it will definitely drive you crazy.
So, to put your mind at ease, we put together the best bug spray for baby that you can get before your next trip outdoors.
- Our Top pick for Best Bug Spray For Baby
- Babyganics Natural Insect Repellent
- Sky Organics Organic Bug Spray
- California Baby Natural Bug Repellent Spray
- Cutter All-Family Insect Repellent Spray
- Repel Plant-Based Lemon Eucalyptus Insect Repellent Spray
- Quantum Buzz Away Extreme
- Natrapel Insect Repellent Spray
- Sawyer Products Insect Repellent Spray
- Skedattle Insect Repellent Spray
- US Organic Bug Repellent Spray
- Kinven Mosquito Repellent Spray
- Lafe’s Baby Organic Insect Repellant Spray
- doTERRA TerraShield Spray
- Bug Soother Spray
- All Terrain Kids Herbal Armor Insect Repellent
- Buying Guide: Smart Considerations When Buying The Best Bug Spray For Baby
- Frequently Asked Questions
Our Top pick for Best Bug Spray For Baby
Babyganics Natural Insect Repellent
Don’t let the outdoor insects bug your baby and stop them from enjoying a cool and fresh breeze. The Babyganics Natural Insect Repellent features gentle plant-based ingredients that are super safe to use on your little one without any chemical residue.
Made from 100 percent natural essential oils including Geranium, Lemongrass, Rosemary, Peppermint and Citronella, it has a non-toxic, non-greasy feel, making it safe and comfortable for daily use. It has no DEET, artificial fragrances, phthalates, sulfates, parabens, and dyes.
Sky Organics Organic Bug Spray
An all natural bug spray, this one from Sky Organics help repels insects and mosquitoes without the harmful and toxic chemicals found in most mainstream bug repellants which may cause adverse reactions and skin irritations. A single spray can repel mosquitoes and last for up to 4 hours and packaged in a durable aluminum bottle.
Free of chemicals, alcohols, DEET and certified USDA Organic, this bug spray contains organic and natural ingredients including peppermint oil, cedarwood oil, rosemary oil, lavender oil, lemongrass oil, citronella oil, castor oil, and soybean oil, making it a safer choice for babies. It is also cruelty-free and 100 percent vegan!
California Baby Natural Bug Repellent Spray
The California Baby Bug Repellent spray is a natural alternative to toxic DEET making it safe for babies. As a matter of fact, Eco-Excellence Award offered it an award “Best Skin Care For Baby” in 2013. It contains cedar, lemongrass and citronella pure essential oils that naturally repel bugs including biting flies, ticks, mosquitoes and fleas without the irritating scent of other bug sprays.
In addition, this best bug spray for baby even soothes existing bites with its herb ingredients which care for the skin. It features ump action sprayer which can be locked, so you do not have to worry about leaks. This bug spray is allergy tested and free of nut, dairy, oat, soy, and gluten. It is certified organic and FDA registered, ensuring only the best and safest solution for your little one’s outdoor protection.
Cutter All-Family Insect Repellent Spray
The Insect Repellent Spray contains 7 percent DEET formula which effectively protects your little one from mosquitoes including those that may transmit the Chikungunya, Dengue, West Nile and Zika viruses.
The formula is gentle enough and soft on the skin for the whole family to use but tough on bugs. It has a non-oily or greasy formula for a comfortable feeling and offers a pleasant scent that you will love.
Repel Plant-Based Lemon Eucalyptus Insect Repellent Spray
This insect repellent spray from Repel helps guard your little one against mosquitoes for up to 6 hours. This DEET-free insect repellent uses lemon and eucalyptus oil to provide protection during outdoor trips.
Thanks to its lemon and eucalyptus ingredient, this best bug spray for baby has a refreshing scent without the usual bug spray smell. Its essential oil formula provides total protection without leaving your skin feeling greasy or sticky, making you comfortable throughout the day.
Quantum Buzz Away Extreme
This 8 ounces bug spray from Quantum offers a much needed outdoor relief from pesky ticks and mosquitoes for hours. It features proprietary powerful essential oils including peppermint, cedarwood, lemongrass, geraniums and citronella oil to help repel insect while providing a pleasant scent that you will love.
The Quantum Buzz Away Extreme Spray contains no DEET, so it is completely safe for your baby and the whole family.
Natrapel Insect Repellent Spray
The Natrapel Insect Repellent Spray offers 12-hour protection against ticks and mosquitoes, thanks to its CDC-suggested 20 percent Picaridin formula. And although it is a DEET-free formula, it effectively guards your little one against insects that transmit diseases such as Dengue fever, Lyme disease, Eastern Equine Encephalitis, West Nile Virus, and Zika Virus.
Super easy to apply and easy on the air, this Eco-Spray can offer continuous and even spray without releasing any harmful aerosols.
Sawyer Products Insect Repellent Spray
Rated Number 1 Best Seller in Amazon’s Pest Repellents, The Sawyer Products Insect repellent Spray offers long-lasting protection and highly effective at repelling a broad array of insects and bugs.
This Fragrance-Free topical insect repellent contains 20 percent Picaridin which is more effective and protecting yourself from biting flies than DEET. The spray effectively repels disease-carrying ticks and mosquitoes for up to 12 hours and considered safe to use on the whole family.
Skedattle Insect Repellent Spray
The Skedattle Insect Repellent Spray uses pleasant-smelling, natural and skin-safe essential oils including lemongrass, peppermint, and citronella which are proven effective to repel pesky bugs and insects. This is a chemical and DEET-free formula that is independently Lab Tested and Certified.
Eco-friendly and biodegradable, this insect repellent spray is safe for you, your baby and also o the environment. In addition, the manufacturer offers a 100 percent satisfaction guarantee, bringing you only the safest, most effective and highest quality products possible.
US Organic Bug Repellent Spray
Proven 98 – 100 percent effective against Yellow Fever Mosquitoes, this bug repellent spray is tested in US pest testing labs for efficiency. Offers long-lasting protection from bugs and mosquitoes this spray is safe for kids, babies, elders and expectant moms.
This best bug spray for baby uses herbal formula including lavender oil, geranium oil, peppermint oil, rosemary oil, cedar oil, citronella oil, lemongrass oil, castor oil, and soybean oil. Proudly made in the USA, it is a refreshing bug repellent spray without alcohol and DEET, and has a Leaping Bunny certification.
Kinven Mosquito Repellent Spray
For both indoor and outdoor use, the Kinven Mosquito Repellent Spray helps keep bugs and insects away from kids and adults. It has a DEET-free formula that safely kills bugs without harming your skin.
In addition, its concentrated formula helps to protect your little one for up to 4 hours and works great on clothing or on your skin. Proudly made in the USA, this repellent spray is made from organic essences including clove, rosemary, geranium, citronella, and peppermint.
Lafe’s Baby Organic Insect Repellant Spray
The Lafe’s Baby Organic Repellent Spray is perfect for adults, kids and babies alike! This bug spray is certified USDA organic and is chemical and DEET-free, s it is safe for your little one’s skin.
Its formula contains certified organic lavender and geranium essential oils that naturally repel insects. It is also fragrance-free which makes it suitable for irritable babies. Furthermore, it is packaged in special baby-safe plastic which reduces exposure to toxic endocrine disruptors that are found in standard plastics.
doTERRA TerraShield Spray
Another best bug spray for baby, the doTERRA TerraShield Spray is another Amazon’s Choice that offers complete defense against outdoor bugs and insects. Available in both 30mL and 15mL sprayer, the TerraShield Spray is deemed safe for the whole family to use.
The TerraShield Spray blend contains strong essential oils including Vanilla Bean Absolute, Notka, Arborvitae, Litsea, Lemon Eucalyptus, Catnip, Cedarwood and Ylang-ylang which possesses natural compounds that help protect against annoying tiny creatures. In addition, it contains Tamanu oil for added strength and potency.
Bug Soother Spray
Bug Soother Spray is an effective alternative to chemical-filled products. It is a natural repellent with a blend of 100 percent pure lemongrass, castor oil, and a hint of vanilla for a scent that you will surely love, but bugs and insects will definitely hate.
The formula also contains skin-loving ingredients such as vitamin E and glycerin and without DEET so it is totally safe for your little one to use.
All Terrain Kids Herbal Armor Insect Repellent
An Amazon’s Choice, the All Terrain Kids Herbal Armor Natural Insect Repellent is a super effective bug spray without the harmful DEET ingredient. You will definitely love its citrus smell and you get to stay comfortable without the oily and greasy feeling.
Parent-approved and kid-safe, this insect repellent uses an effective mixture of 6 powerful essential oils— geranium, lemongrass, cedar, peppermint, citronella, and soybean— to help protect you and your kids against mosquitoes and other pesky bugs and insects.
Buying Guide: Smart Considerations When Buying The Best Bug Spray For Baby
The best bug spray for baby uses 3 primary ingredients that are deemed safe for babies and kids:
A long-time favorite insect repellent ingredient of the CDC or Centers for Disease Control, this is number one recommended for fighting against ticks.
However, it does has some issues.
Even though DEET is a great defense against disease-carrying bugs and insects, it causes very rare cases (1 in 100 million) of adverse reactions in the nervous system. At present, the AAP or American Academy of Pediatrics suggests to only use formulation which contains at least 10 – 30 percent DEET (not more than 30 percent) on kids. Meanwhile, babies of 2 months or younger shouldn’t be exposed to DEET at all.
The DEET percentage does not change its level of effectiveness. However, the higher the percentage then longer its protection lasts. Bug sprays with 10 percent DEET can offer protection for 2 hours, while those with 30% DEET can offer up to hours of protection.
Similar to DEET, this ingredient is also great at keeping the insects and bugs at bay, but without the neurotoxicity issues. Unlike DEET, it does not cause irritations and a strong smell. Picaridin, however, is not yet enough studied for its potential long-term side effect. A 10 percent concentration offers you 3 – 8 hours of bug protection.
The synthetic version of pyrethrum, permethrin is a non-toxic insecticide produced from the chrysanthemum flower. It is rated safe and even approved by the US EPA for adult and babies above two months old use.
Although skin reactions and absorptions are low, excessive exposure may cause seizures, muscle weakness, nausea, headache and shortness of breath. It also does not provide much protection against mosquitoes and only on lice and ticks, and is recommended to be applied only to clothing and not on your bare skin.
Most natural brands utilize essential oils in order to repel bugs. Most included essential oils have not undergone any official testing for their repellent characteristics, however, there are 2 botanical ingredients which have been proven effective.
Citronella at a 4.2% concentration offers protection from ticks and mosquitoes for an hour, while catnip oil at 15% and 7% concentrations can offer up to 7 hours protection against mosquitoes.
Although most parents report great results with plant-based products, they usually need to be reapplied more often and may cause allergic reactions. Before spraying it to your baby, it is best that you do a patch test on your little one first.
Some products have a scent or fragrances, so you need to check the smell first. You need to make sure that you can bear or that your little one won’t get fussy about the fragrance of the bug spray.
There are some products that offer sunscreen and repellent in one. Although this might seem like a great idea and a valuable investment, it is not! Sunscreen needs to re-apply more often than chemical bug sprays.
By frequently slathering on a combo product, you are exposing your little one to more chemicals than needed.
It is more advisable to apply sunscreen on your little one’s skin and allow it to soak in. Then follow up with the best bug spray for baby. You can then re-apply the sunscreen as needed.
The CDC recommends that newborns ages 2 months and younger should not be exposed to DEET and Picaridin. If you want to protect your little one, you will need to rely on physical barriers such as mosquito netting for carriers and strollers as well as long pants and sleeves.
Nursing or Pregnant Women
According to the CDC, nursing and pregnant women can safely use Picaridin and DEET products.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: Do babies really need bug sprays?
A: Although you might argue that human has existed for as long as you can remember without bug sprays, it is quite important to protect your little one.
Mosquitos and other insect bites can be quite painful to babies and may swell up more than adults. Some babies, may even get severe swelling or bruising on the bitten area. Furthermore, some kids can end up with allergic reactions or cause excessive scratching that can lead to a skin infection.
However, the true dangers of insect bites are the disease that these pesky bugs transmit. Diseases such as encephalitis and West Nile virus can be quite severe for babies.
However, with the best bug spray for baby, you can protect your little one from all these problems.
Q: When should I start using bug sprays?
A: This depends upon the ingredients on the product. Some of the active ingredients which can be used on your little one when they turn 2 months old include the powerful Picaridin and DEET.
You need to stay away from those that contain lemon eucalyptus oil until your kid is at least 3 years of age.
Q: Are bug sprays safe for baby? What are the possible side effects?
A: Nothing is risk-free and bug sprays are no exception— they do carry some risks with them.
Although it is not a usual reaction and extremely rare with many people using repellents each year, some considerable side effect reported include:
- Behavioral changes
However, take note that your kid is far more likely to have no side effects with the best bug spray for baby. Also, keep in mind that there are severe health consequences of being bitten by insects and bugs too.
Q: How should I apply a bug spray to my baby?
A: When using bug sprays on your little one, you need to exercise extreme caution when applying it.
- Try to limit spraying to one time a day.
- Do not spray it on your little one’s face. You can spray it on your hands and dab it on their face and stay away from their mouth and eyes. For really young babies, you might want to skip applying it on their face.
- Only spray on their exposed skin or you can spray it on your baby’s clothing instead.
- If your little one has a scratch or a cut, make sure that you do not spray on that area.
- Avoid spraying on your baby’s hands. Babies tend to put their hands on their mouth and this can make them ingest the bug spray.
- Don’t go overboard, you will not get any extra benefit by just putting too much.
- When going back inside, you need to immediately wash off the repellent or give your baby a wash.
- If your baby develops rashes while using the bug spray, discontinue it immediately. Make sure that you wash it off of your little one and call your doctor.
As the weather warms up, it might be a great idea to spend time outdoors with the whole family. However, we’re not the only to delight in such warm weathers. Summer is also a busy season for pesky bugs and insects which can sting or bite you and even transmit diseases.
So, make sure that you protect your little one and the whole family with the best bug spray for baby and enjoy the whole summer season upon us!