Put On Sunscreen First, Then Insect Repellent, For Better Protection

Put On Sunscreen First, Then Bug Spray, For Better Protection

Mosquitoes and other biting bugs are such pests (at least for some of us more than others), and a good bug repellent can be a strong line of defence against these critters, but it's important to make sure you're applying it correctly when using it with other skin products, like sunscreen. Image by frankieleon.

Luckily, the US Centres for Disease Control and Prevention has some tips for using insect repellent in combination with sunscreen. Among their tips, the CDC recommends:

  • When outdoors, use both sunscreen and bug repellent. Apply sunscreen first, followed by bug repellent.
  • Avoid a single product that combines sunscreen and bug spray because bug spray does not need to be reapplied as often as sunscreen does. Better to keep them separate and follow the labels on each.
  • Don't pile on the bug spray. Heavy applications do not offer better or longer-lasting protection.
  • Reapply bug spray according to instructions, but if you're starting to notice bites reapply as needed.

Insect bites suck not just because they make us itch like crazy, but because they can carry potentially deadly diseases like the West Nile and Zika viruses, so make sure you're protected.

Insect Repellent Use & Safety [Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)]


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