If you’ve ever been in the field in sweaty, dirty clothing and had dirty gear, you have an idea of no matter how much ‘bug juice’ you drink, you never have enough, because if they don’t come after your exposed skin, they seem to sense your skin under your clothing, and sometimes bite right through.
After having had many years of experience of simply ignoring the consistent discomfort of bugs biting through clothing, the though of being as comfortable as possible for as long as possible in a field environment, whether training or in a SHTF scenario, was very intriguing, and I followed up by putting my money where my concern was and did a field test on it.
Not too awfully expensive for a test (S16 for 24 ounces from Amazon), especially with the hope of some relief during the ‘heavy’ bug season. This past holiday, 4 and 5 July, I put it to the test in the middle of my own training ground in Northern Michigan while doing some upkeep and maintenance of the property itself and various support machinery, all while wearing impregnated field pants, boots, socks, wicking issue brown t-shirts and a boonie hat.
I’ve got deer flies, black files, no-see-ums, mosquitos that can double as dragon flies, ticks, centipedes, and spiders. The only thing we don’t have are scorpions. This time of year, as you park your vehicle, the bugs are diving at the windshield trying to the get to you. Under these conditions, the test seemed like it would be a real trial.
I had ticks fall on me and literally jump off; mosquitos land and leave immediately. Even one spider crawled across my chest for an inch before it fell (or jumped – he was moving fast to get away) off.
Bottom line? This stuff works!
The directions tell you the best results come from using about 3 ounces per article of clothing. I think I used about 2 ounces per because I was concerned with negative reactions from being next to sweaty skin. Nevertheless, I did my socks, my boots, my field pants, t-shirts and boonie hat and had enough left over to do the same for the spouse unit, and she’s got very sensitive skin, and is typically the ‘bug magnet’ in the family.
I let it air dry for a day and a half prior to the trip. There is no smell whatsoever when fully dried (cured) and this treatment when done according to directions is supposed to last through six machine washings. I figure about 3, but will treat the clothing again to make sure it’s good to go as I did a ‘light’ job the first time.
Back to the bottom line: First, most importantly, neither of us had any skin reaction whatsoever from the application. No chafing, no itching, no rash of any sort. For me, it worked so well that I didn’t use bug juice on exposed skin! That, in and of itself, at this time of year, is unheard of! I was in the woods, tall grass, did some drills from the prone on my little ‘range’ with short sleeves and with my boots unbloused. I had bugs all around my head at times and all around me, but they refused to land.
The spouse unit, as the family bug magnet, only needed to use her natural repellent made from essential oils to keep her from becoming a bug main-course. No DEET, though, which for her, is a first.
All in all, this appears to be a really good way to treat your ‘go bag’ or field clothing and equipment. Equipment? Sure, the product even recommends it. That’s going to be my next test. Treating my personal LBE (load bearing equipment), ruck sack, and anything I have made from nylon or cordura. A couple of bottles of this might just be the ticket to being a tad more comfortable. It’ll also make that 4 ounce bottle of DEET last a lot longer….
DTG recommends this product!