During the warm weather, there's nothing worse than swollen, painful bug bites that force you back indoors. Luckily, the best mosquito repellents for patios can save your skin and your patio party.
Before you buy, you'll want to consider the size of the area you're dealing with. If you have a yard or patio that covers a lot of ground, you may want to invest in a long-range repellent spray that can prevent pests from settling in your grass. But if you know you'll stick close to your outdoor furniture or grill, an electric mosquito zapper or repellent candle can clear the area without dealing with residue or excess chemicals.
If you know you'll be hosting people for a barbecue, it might be a good idea to look for repellents that use as few chemicals as possible. Some of your guests may be sensitive to them, plus no one likes the taste of chemicals lingering in the air around their burger. Sprays and candles that contain citronella and lemongrass are good choices, or you could skip the scents altogether and go with an ultrasonic mosquito repellent.
No matter which way you go, it can be hard to find the best mosquito repellents for your patio. From zappers to candles, here's a round-up of some of the best options out there to keep the bugs away for good.
1. The Best Personal Spray
Even though this all-natural mosquito repellent is completely free of chemicals, it still packs a powerful punch. Made with lemon eucalyptus oil, a natural insect repellent, this spray creates a non-sticky barrier on your skin to protect against bites for up to six hours. Plus, it has a light, refreshing scent that cools your skin but won't overwhelm your senses. To top it all off, this spray has a cult-following on Amazon, with over 4,000 reviews.
What fans say: "I have been using this product to repel mosquitoes exclusively for seven years. I became so confident in it that I volunteered to survey wildlife in New England bogs and swamps for six years running. I can't think of a better test than standing around in prime mosquito territory for four hours at a time just daring them to bite. It works every time and they don't get their free lunch. I also used it in Alaska, Kenya, and India and was NEVER BITTEN."
2. The Best Yard Spray
This eco-friendly yard spray will keep pests away without all the chemical residue. The key ingredient in this formula is cedar oil, which blocks octopamine, a compound essential to the life cycle of mosquitos, fleas, ticks, and other pests. Just attach the bottle to your garden hose and spray up to 8,000 feet of your yard. This formula tackles active problems by eliminating mosquitos, but it also works as a preventative measure so you don't have to deal with them cropping back up later. And since there aren't any harsh chemicals in its formula, you can spray right before a barbecue or party and safely go onto the grass without worry.
What fans say: "This stuff works and I LOVE that it is non-toxic for me, my family, and our dog. I sprayed a heavy application all over the bottom of the house, the back yard, and into the woods around our play house. [W]e have been enjoying our back porch mosquito free."
3. The Best Lantern
If you want to skip the sprays altogether, this portable bug zapper does the trick without any scents or oils. This device uses non-toxic ultraviolet light to attract bugs to the lantern and then kill them instantly. It's built with a heavy-duty ring you can hang it from any nearby post, and can banish bugs for a half an acre of space. Plug it in and wait for a few minutes. You'll hear the machine working when bugs are zapped as the enter the lantern. It's solidly constructed so that it'll be safe from pets and children, even if they like to play in your yard. Word to the wise: Put it at least 25 feet away from where you're sitting to draw the insects to the lamp, instead of your patio.
What fans say: "Definite reduction in bugs on our patio. In just a couple of nights we've killed a pretty good size pile of bugs. After a few months, we have seen a definite reduction of flying insects at our patio. The Flowtron definitely attracts bugs, so be careful where you put it. We made the mistake a first of putting it on our patio and ended up having more bugs than less, as the chemical released actually attracts bugs. But then when we moved the Flowtron about 40 feet from the patio down to the edge of the lake in our yard, there was a noticeable reduction in bugs on the patio."
4. The Best Candle
This refreshing plant-based candle smells amazing while it keeps you and your guests protected from bites. Made with a beeswax base, this candle is infused with all-natural mosquito repellents, including rosemary, peppermint, and citronella oils. Plus, it has a 30 hour burn time, so you can use it for multiple nights on the patio before it'll need to be replaced.
What fans say: "This was a great scented candle. It did the trick and was a great treat. We lit it on Halloween, for we sat outside greeting tricker treaters. We were out for 2 hours in South Florida heat and not one mosquito or bug bite. First time ever!"
5. The Best Ultrasonic Device
If you're looking for a more discreet option, this ultrasonic plug-in banishes mosquitos and other pests without any (hearable) sounds, scents, or lights. This little device gives off ultrasonic waves that irritate pests so they're forced to stay away. It works in an area up to 1,200 square feet, and it's completely free of toxins, chemical, and radiation. Just plug it into an outdoor wall socket or extension cord and enjoy your patio, mosquito-free!
What fans say: "A great environmentally friendly, no kill way to keep pests away. I would recommend this to anybody, it's amazing at keeping mosquitoes and other bugs away from the porch. Definitely worth getting."
Bustle may receive a portion of sales from products purchased from this article, which was created independently from Bustle's editorial and sales departments.