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83011OR - Natrapel Insect Repellent - Bob Dorenfeld

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  • geartest7000
    Aug 10, 2014
    • 0 Attachment
      Dear Editors -

      One for a buggy August! 
      HTML at http://tinyurl.com/n438vu7

      Text below....


      Natrapel Insect Repellent

      Owner Review By Bob Dorenfeld
      August 10, 2014

      Tester Bio
      Name:     Bob Dorenfeld


      I'm an active hiker, snowshoer, skier, and backpacker.  Home base is the
      Southern Colorado Rockies, where I'll hike from 7000 ft (2100 m) to
      alpine tundra, with desert trips at lower altitudes.  Six to 12 miles
      (10 to 20 km) daily is my norm, with elevation gains up to 4000 ft (1200
      m).  Many of my backpack trips are two or three nights, other trips are
      longer, and I usually carry about 30 lbs (14 kg).  My style is
      lightweight but not obsessively so - extras like binoculars, camera, and
      notebook make my trips more enjoyable.

      Email:     geartest(at)sageandspruce(dot)net
      Age:     56
      Location:     Salida, Colorado, USA
      Gender:     M
      Height:     5' 6" (1.68 m)
      Weight:     140 lb (64 kg)

      Product Overview

            Manufacturer:   Tender Corporation
            Website:  www.tendercorp.com <http://www.tendercorp.com>
            MSRP:   US$5.99
            *Quantity:*  3.4 fl oz (101 ml)
            *Dispenser:*  pump bottle
            *Active Ingredient: * Picaridin (20% by volume)
            *Stated Effective Protection:*  8 hours
            * Measured Protection: * at least 4 hours

           Pump Bottle

      Natrapel is a DEET-free insect repellent that can be applied directly
      onto skin to provide protection against flying and crawling insects such
      as mosquitoes and ticks.  Its active ingredient, picaridin, is used
      worldwide as an effective replacement for the older chemical DEET, and
      unlike DEET, picaridin will not melt nylon or other plastics.  The US
      Environmental Protection Agency has found that in recommended dosages
      picaridin does not pose any significant health effects for adult
      persons.  It is not recommended for dogs or other pets.  Besides the 3.4
      fl oz (101 ml) pump bottle reviewed here, Tender Corporation also makes
      Natrapel available in a 1 oz (30 ml) pump bottle, 6 oz (177 ml)
      continuous spray bottle, and as a box of wipes.

      For 35 years I've relied on insect repellents using DEET for my primary
      shield against mosquitoes and flies while outside camping in the
      wilderness.  What finally motivated me to look for alternatives was a
      lingering suspicion that DEET might not be safe on my skin and, most
      recently, a leaky container that spilled DEET onto a nylon bag, melting
      its corner and creating a sticky mess to clean up.  OK, time to look for
      another product!  I found Natrapel at an outdoor products store, and
      after a bit of research decided to give it a try this summer in the
      mountains of Colorado and New Mexico.

            Field Performance   

      It has been a wet summer since early July in the mountains, so I've had
      a good test environment.  I normally use repellents in the afternoons
      and early evenings when the bugs are most bothersome, and before ducking
      into the tent I've had it on my skin for two to four hours.  I've not
      yet had a chance to test the full stated effective time of eight hours,
      however.  Usually I apply Natrapel using the backs of my hands (to avoid
      getting it on my fingers) and rub it on my forehead and neck, then a bit
      onto my lower arms (if exposed).  That's it for me - I use as little as
      I can get away with, both to conserve the repellent, and to avoid
      unnecessary overexposure to the active ingredient.  The clear liquid is
      slightly more viscous than water, and easy to spread on skin without
      having it slide off first.

      Picaridin itself is odorless, but Natrapel has other inert ingredients
      (not named on the package) that impart a strong "perfumy" scent that's
      not unpleasant (perhaps like lemon), but definitely quite noticeable.  I
      would have preferred a more subtle smell; but like most odors, after a
      while I get used to it and don't notice it much, if at all.

      small bottleBut does it work?  Yes!  Natrapel is at least as effective
      as DEET for me against mosquitoes and flies.  As for ticks, where I hike
      and backpack (mostly in Colorado's Rocky Mountains) I rarely see them so
      I can't attest to Natrapel's effectiveness against those little
      critters.  But I notice that mosquitoes would fly right up to my face,
      buzz around for a moment, then back away.  Go find another host!  Same
      for the flies - they definitely didn't like my skin when treated.

      Although the original pump-spray container works well, it's larger than
      I want to carry in a backpack, and the clear plastic cover for the pump
      top would be either too easy to lose or might pop off in storage.  So
      I've transferred the liquid to a small plastic container with a folding
      lid that seals well with no spills so far (see photo).  For a two-night
      trip I might use about 10-20 drops of Natrapel.  I still have plenty of
      the original container that I purchased, and expect it to last the rest
      of the summer bug season.

            Concluding Thoughts   

      I'm happy to have found an insect repellent that seems to be a good or
      better substitute for that old standby DEET.  Natrapel and its active
      ingredient picaridin work well for me.  I'm always cautious about
      applying chemicals to my skin, and I'm conservative with the amount I
      use over a season - just enough to repel most of the bugs, and only when
      they are at their worst.  The small amounts of Natrapel that I use do
      the job.

      * Pros*

        - non-DEET based (does not melt plastics)
        - does not leak out of other (non-original package) sealable containers
        - easy to apply

        - strong lemony odor at first application

       Reviewed By
      Bob Dorenfeld
      Southern Colorado Mountains

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