Skip to content


Your cart is empty

Spray It with Love: Best Bug Sprays to Protect Your Baby

Which Bug Spray Creates a Bug-Free Zone for Ultimate Summer Playtime?

Motherhood Loves Community Award 2024 Badge

Vote for the Best Bug Spray for Babies

Vote for your favorite baby bug spray until polls close on July 9 at noon ET. We’ll share the winners publicly on July 18. For any questions, please see our official Motherhood Loves Community Awards terms & conditions.

Motherhood Loves Community Awards nominees have been carefully chosen by our team. We may earn a commission if you buy something through links on our site.

Keeping your littlest ones safe from pesky mosquitoes and insects is a top priority when venturing outdoors for playtime fun, but choosing an effective insect repellent can be tricky. Chemical repellents like DEET, Picaridin, and IR3535® can be hot topics among parents with opinions and recommendations ranging far and wide. Natural repellant options are available, but come with their own set of questions (we see you, oil of lemon eucalyptus).

For your summer fun and travel, we’ve put together a list of options parents can confidently use on their babies. Our criteria included ease of application (perfect for squirmy tots!), recommended active ingredients (both chemical and natural), an unobjectionable scent, and of course, effectiveness in keeping those bugs at bay. Vote for your top choice for keeping your baby comfortable and bite-free during outdoor adventures!

Please note: All of the bug sprays on our list are formulated within the recommended parameters for babies older than two months. Be aware that some companies recommend checking with your pediatrician before using bug spray on kids younger than six months. You should always follow application directions provided on the product label and consult your pediatrician if you have any concerns.

Best Baby Bug Sprays of 2024 Nominees

Avon Skin-So-Soft Bug Guard Plus Picaridin Pump Spray

A classic go-to for many families, Avon’s Skin-So-Soft now offers this 10% picaridin formula that wards off mosquitoes, deer ticks, gnats, no-see-ums, sand flies, and biting midges. This spray won’t leave skin parched thanks to aloe and vitamin E, which rehydrate and keep skin smooth. Its light scent and quick dry down make it a winner with kids. Reapply after eight hours for mosquitos or six hours for most other bugs.

Avon Skin-So-Soft Bug Guard Plus IR3535® Expedition™ Aerosol Spray SPF 28

If you need an effective spray for venturing into the woods, this unscented formula from Avon uses proven repellent IR3535® to protect against deer ticks, gnats, no-see-ums, sand flies, mosquitoes, and biting midges. Thankfully, it’s also hypoallergenic, so it won’t irritate your baby’s sensitive skin.

Babyganics Natural Insect Repellent Spray

A popular natural choice for parents looking to avoid chemical repellents like DEET, the Babyganics Natural repellent comes in a convenient aerosol-free spray and uses natural botanicals that many moms swear by like rosemary, citronella, peppermint, lemongrass, and geranium oils to ward off unwanted bugs.

Badger Anti-bug Spray

Badger products are DEET-free and USDA Certified Organic. This spray’s active ingredients are citronella, cedarwood, and lemongrass. With no synthetic chemicals, no petroleum products, recyclable packaging, cruelty-free testing, and solar-powered production, this spray is a great option for the environmentally minded. As for the formula, it’s moisturizing, pleasant smelling, and easy on the skin—a great natural option for a light repellent.

Coleman SkinSmart Insect Repellent

DEET-free and unscented, Coleman’s SkinSmart product relies on IR3535® as its active ingredient. This aerosol spray has a quick dry time and is known for its non-greasy feel on skin. The convenient locking nozzle makes this a smart option for travel, and IR3535® is particularly effective against black flies if you’re heading into humid areas. You can expect about six hours of coverage with Coleman’s SkinSmart.

Cutter® All Family® Insect Repellent

Completely fragrance-free, this aerosol formula depends on IR3535® to deliver 8-hour protection against mosquitoes and ticks. Fans say that dry-down time is nearly nonexistent, and the lightweight spray also doesn’t leave oily residue that will attract dirt or stick to clothes. There’s also a convenient 4-ounce bottle that packs easily for your outings.

Cutter All Family Wipes

Make your trips even easier with a pack of these formula-laden wipes dispensing 7.15% DEET protection. Application is a piece of cake, avoiding problems with malfunctioning spray pumps, moving targets (i.e., your kiddos), or accidental inhalation of aerosol spray. Portability and ease of application are two winning qualities of these wipes.

Cutter Skinsations Insect Repellent

This 7%-DEET formula delivers the protection DEET is known for, offering up to 10 hours of protection against mosquitoes, ticks, gnats, biting flies, chiggers, and fleas. This repellent is sweat-resistant, has a light scent, and offers conditioning ingredients such as aloe and Vitamin E to ensure that skin stays hydrated. Parents will appreciate the 360-degree pump that makes application to squirming kids easier.

Kinfield Golden Hour

Formulated around a specific strain of citronella from Indonesia, Kinfield Golden Hour’s all-natural formula includes lemongrass, clove, and vanillin—so you know it smells great! Specifically for mosquitoes, it guarantees up to 3 hours of protection. For short outings or backyard play, this is a great option, especially if you prefer to take the natural route.

Natrapel Picaridin Tick & Insect Repellent

Promising an amazing 12 hours of protection from mosquitoes, ticks, and other biting insects, Natrapel’s 20% Picaridin formula comes highly recommended by outdoor enthusiasts and is perfect for camping trips and other outings into deep nature. The unique Eco-Spray bottle distributes formula evenly. Unlike DEET sprays, this one has a mild scent and is safe to apply to gear such as backpacks and hiking shoes.

OFF!® FamilyCare Insect Repellent IV (Unscented)

This offering from trusted brand Off! is perfect for picnics, backyard play, and short outdoor adventures, repelling mosquitos for up to two hours. The 7%-DEET repellent is a non-sticky, non-oily formula that kids will be happy about. Aloe vera adds a nice dose of moisture to keep baby skin soft.


Ranger Ready Insect Repellent

Another 20% Picaridin option, Ranger Ready gives you 12-hour protection from mosquito and ticks as well as 8-hour protection from gnats, flies, fleas, chiggers, and no-see-ums. You can choose from five different bottle sizes and three different scents—whatever suits your needs. Reviewers praise the juice for its efficacy, sensitive-skin-friendly formula, and non-greasy application.

Repel® Family Insect Repellent, Alternative Lightweight (Aerosol)

Fragrance-free, lightweight, and nongreasy, this offering from Repel® turns to IR3535® to fend off mosquitoes and ticks for up to eight hours. The formula dries quickly after application, sits comfortably on the skin, and won’t challenge little noses with a heavy scent.

Repel® Insect Repellent Family Dry (Aerosol)

Need to counteract a wider selection of insects? Repel also offers this 10% DEET formula to fend off gnats, biting flies, chiggers, and fleas as well as mosquitoes and ticks. Users report that the spray goes on lightly and dries in mere seconds. The unscented formula has a very light scent that most found pleasant.

Sawyer Picaridin Insect Repellent Spray

A very highly rated option suitable for a wide range of outings, this 20% Picaridin option comes in a pump spray bottle that deposits the unscented formula evenly and includes a double cap to avoid leaks. The product, which works great against mosquitos, biting flies, gnats, chiggers, and sand flies, is particularly effective protection for ticks. Sawyer protects people, gear, and clothes with up to 12 hours of repellent power.

About Motherhood Loves Community Awards

Our nominees are researched and selected as the top products in their category. You can vote once per category, per day. Motherhood independently selects the products and services we cover and recommend. We do not exchange currency, goods or services to be listed.