ONCE BITTEN… Guest Blog by Lily Slydel

With temperatures as hot as 36 degrees, this summer our prayers have been answered. We have been granted unrelenting, beautiful sunshine for longer than a few passing days and this is set to continue well into September! We have had one of the hottest summers of the last decade and people have delved into a pandemonium of summer activities and excitement.

However, this glorious weather has incited something other than just summer frivolity, it has paved the way for a plethora of insects to reproduce in our midst. This warm and wet weather provides the perfect breeding conditions for those biters we loathe the most: mosquitoes.  Therefore being informed in order to protect ourselves is an ever increasing priority for many people.

Last month on BBC Breakfast, Louise Minchin and Bill Turnball interviewed Dr. James Logan of the London School of Hygiene and Tropical medicine. Not only did the interview illuminate the necessity of a trusty mosquito repellent but descended into giggles as Minchin unwittingly released a cage of mosquitoes into the studios.

Logan recommends incognito’s active ingredient PMD (Para Menthane Diol) as the most effective alternative to DEET, and although it requires more regular application (every five hours rather than every seven with DEET) the numerous benefits make it an infinitely better investment in our health. incognito spray is the only insect repellent that is clinically proven to protect against malaria, when used in conjunction with a mosquito net; (overnight ,no spray can provide full protection throughout that time). With its light citrus aroma and with no oily residue it is considerably more pleasant to reapply this repellent, so you are inclined to do so more regularly, reinforcing the level of protection incognito can provide.

When offering advice on the best way to reduce your attractiveness to insects, Logan echoes what we say in the ‘Avoiding Bites’ section of our website. He reinforces the necessity of covering up your arms and legs, particularly at dusk, and sleeping with a fan/air conditioning on in the bedroom, as mosquitoes do not like being jostled in the breeze!

As most people well know, each person’s level of attractiveness to insects is varies greatly; some of us smell delicious to them, others, less so. James Logan used a derivative of the infamous cage test to exhibit these contrasting levels of attractiveness with his ‘volunteers’ Bill Turnbull and Louise Minchin. Within moments of Turnbull placing his hand inside the cage numerous mosquitoes landed and began to feast. As he is clearly attractive to insects, using one of incognito’s luxury loofah would significantly reduce his appeal to insects. Not only does the loofah remove the detritus (disintegration of organic debris in the skin), which is an attractant that mosquitoes can detect from a mile away, but replaces it with the natural repellent in the soap, providing a dual-action way of working.

If you do receive a bite, it is important to remember not to scratch the bite. Although it is the most tantalising temptation, itching can cause inflammation of the bite .The best remedy is to use incognito Zap-Ease, which reduces the urge to itch by ‘localizing the poison and inhibiting the histamine release which causes the itch and urge to scratch’. It has no negative effect of the surrounding skin and reduces the unsightly swelling of the bite, as well as neutralizing the itch. The Zap Ease can be purchased via our website, or in Waitrose, Holland and Barrett or many independent pharmacies.

Although the Zap-Ease is the most useful bite relief around, it is key to remember that prevention is always better than remedy.

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