Is Vicks an Effective Repellent for Mosquitoes?

Tatsuo Yamashita/CC-BY 2.0

There is little evidence to suggest that Vicks VapoRub or similar home remedies for repelling mosquitoes are effective. While many blog posts and other web articles report anecdotal evidence that Vicks VapoRub makes a good insect repellent, it should not be used as the sole means of repelling mosquitoes.

The effectiveness of Vicks VapoRub for repelling mosquitoes is a myth, according to, a website dedicated to debunking myths. However, there are several substances definitively shown to effectively repel mosquitoes. DEET is a classic bug repellent that is safe for use on skin when used as directed. Suitable alternatives to DEET include picaridin and lemon-eucalyptus oil.