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Picaridin - an effective alternative to Deet
Picaridin is a repellent for mosquitos and other insects which is similar in effectiveness to DEET, but more pleasant to use and much less likely to cause skin irritation. This Piperidine derivitave, developed by Bayer®, has been available worldwide since 1998 and is one of the best selling insect repellents in Europe where it is also known as "Icaridin" and is marketed under the name Bayrepel®. Picaridin has been available in the USA since 2005.
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In 2000 the World Health Organization proclaimed that, due to its safety, effectiveness and cosmetic properties, Picaridin was their recommended product for repelling the mosquitos that carry Malaria. They noted that under some circumstances it was more effective than DEET.
Dermatological testing has shown that Picaridin is almost odorless and not irritating to the skin (a major drawback to DEET insect repellents). The Jan-Feb 2004 issue of the Journal of Drugs in Dermatology declared it to be "as effective and less irritating than diethyl toluamide (DEET)".
In 2005 the US Centers for Disease Control revised it's mosquito repellent recommendations to include Picaridin in their list of products which are effective in preventing against the transmission of West Nile Disease. Also added to the list was a naturally-derived product, Oil of Lemon Eucalyptus. Products containing oil of lemon eucalyptus offer mosquito protection comparable to low-concentration DEET repellents.
Picaridin has also has been tested for effects on various household substances and has been shown to cause no major damage to plastics, sealents, plastic coatings or other synthetics.
Picaridin has proven effective in laboratory and field tests against a variety of mosquitos, ticks and flies and other biting insects including:
Picaridin has been well tested and is recommended by health authorities as a safe, effective and more pleasant alternative to DEET.