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When I travel, I find myself getting bitten by mosquitoes not when I'm outside hiking, but when I'm inside eating or relaxing or otherwise sitting still. All the recommended insect repellents I've seen (DEET, Picaridin, etc.) have warnings on them telling you to wash them off when returning indoors. I'm not sure exactly why, but slathering myself with DEET and then sitting down for a nice meal doesn't sound too appealing to me.

Are there any forms of insect repellent than can be safely used indoors? For me, it's not important if it's not 100% effective or if it only lasts for a short time. Just that it can be used inside and (particularly) around food.

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Sounds like you are looking for nontoxic bug repellent. Something like this

or if you are into making your own bug repellent, can try this

EDIT: just realized, it's part of the site etiquette to explicitly mention that I'm not affiliated with either of the products above. Just found them on the internet.

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Have a look at these two questions:

The answers there probably are sufficient, including Skin So Soft, physical barriers, garlic, smidge, badger balm etc

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If you can find from a local shop/florist, a pot of basil is a natural mosquito repellant:

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protected by Ankur Banerjee Jan 27 '13 at 17:59

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