Bugs. This time of the year, they seem to make their way into everything. Pests can sneak through screen doors, sprays and camping equipment, generally cause people a huge pain—or at the very least, annoyance. But can critters so tiny really be that dangerous?
They can. In fact, Lyme disease is one of the fastest growing epidemics to date, currently with 300,000 new diagnoses occurring per year in the U.S., according to the CDC. Yet Lyme and other insect-borne illnesses such as West Nile and Zika are preventable, with one caveat – awareness. Enter Insect Shield® repellent clothing and gear.
Where It All Began
Insect Shield® was born from a request by the U.S. Military, who was looking for a durable, long-lasting way of adhering the bug repellent permethrin to uniforms in order to ward off insects in dangerous and disease-prone environments. In 1996, Insect Shield® researchers perfected that formula and implemented it across the military’s specialized equipment, reportedly dropping Lyme disease cases in the West Point Military Academy to zero. Learn more about the story behind Insect Shield® by watching this video.
How it Works Today
Each Outdoor Research product made with Insect Shield® is tested, proven, and registered to repel a wide range of bugs like mosquitos, ticks, flies, chiggers, ants, and midges (no-see-ums) – all pests that are actually more dangerous than they are annoying. Each of these insects include a surprising number of species that carry dangerous diseases like malaria, West Nile virus, dengue fever, Zika virus, Lyme disease, and more.
Insect Shield® Third-Party Testing
Insect Shield® is proven to be effective and long-lasting, and can be worn and used by the entire family with no restrictions. Treated products are put through a ringer of 3rd party testing like “KD” Knockdown, field testing, and more to ensure complete effectiveness. Plus, all Insect Shield® apparel is EPA-registered. Check out these tests in action right here.
The Insect Shield® repellent works just like repellent sprays and lotions, but stays on your clothing and gear – not on the skin. Topical repellants may still be used for exposed skin, especially in heavily bug-infested areas or areas where malaria and other diseases are at risk. Since this treatment is so tightly bound to the fabric, your gear remains effective and bug-free through an expected lifetime of roughly 70 washes.
Seattle-based Janine Robertson developed her passion for the outdoors from her experiences as a biking and hiking tour guide throughout Europe. After numerous years of guiding she was ready for a home base and chose the Pacific Northwest for its proximity to endless outdoor opportunities. She moved into PR/communications and has promoted adventure travel, outdoor, fitness and beauty products since 1994. In her free time, Robertson loves chasing her two boys up the trail on a beautiful hike, going for long runs or paddle boarding