Sam was born in 1992, the year of the infamous 16-hour-a-day brownouts. The brownout problem was not solved until over a year later. Needless to say, we lived in the company of mosquitoes. Nenuco mosquito repellent lotion was our friend. In fact, considering the number of bottles we must have bought even after Alex was born in 1994, we should have been awarded a medal of loyalty.
Then, Johnson&Johnson’s Off! entered the market. Cheaper than Nenuco. Since the girls were a little older by then, we figured they no longer needed a baby product like Nenuco and we switched to Off!
Despite criticisms that mosquito repellent lotions may have side effects (they are insecticides, after all), we preferred them to katol (mosquito coils). We also used those little mats that are inserted in receptacles that are plugged in electrical sockets. But there were times when we felt we were being invaded by mosquitoes and we would light mosquito coils (or use the mats) in addition to the application of mosquito repellent lotion.
Needless to say, the threat of dengue was very real. Despite all the precautions, Sam contracted dengue when she was 5 years old. Because dengue could not be diagnosed until after five days from the onset of the fever (I hear that early diagnosis is already possible today), by the time we found out that it was dengue, Sam was already on the way to recovery. Her pediatrician recommended hospital confinement nevertheless. While waiting for our room, Sam was playing tag with Alex in the hospital lobby — naghahabulan, literally. Speedy and I could only gaze at her resilience with awe. Tough kid.
When we moved to Antipolo, we were so relieved to find that we must have left 90% of the mosquito colonies in Metro Manila. Still and all, we do get our share of mosquitoes. We still have a steady supply of Off! lotion and mosquito coils. Then, on the same occasion that we went to Balay Indang, we decided to pass by Ilog Maria Honeybee Farms on the way home. I discovered Sting-Less and our war with mosquitoes will never be the same.
Introducing Ilog Maria’s Sting-Less Citronella Mosquito repellent. I am not a paid endorser for Ilog Maria, I am not even acquainted with the owners, I am just sharing a really great find. In fact, I bought about half a dozen different products from Ilog Maria — I am happy with all, except one. I will post entries about the other products in the coming days.
The directions for use on the bottle of Sting-Less says, “Apply on clothing and less sensitive areas of the skin.” The first time I used Sting-Less, I followed the directions. Wow, it worked! The mosquitoes stayed away from me and I smelled so good, to boot. :) But Sting-Less is oil-based and, in the summer heat, anything with oil doesn’t feel good on the skin. Meanwhile, I was worried that applying Sting-Less directly on clothes might leave permanent oil stains.
What I did was to apply a few drops of Sting-Less on the curtains, the pillows, bed sheets and upholstery. A few drops twice a day and we’re mosquito-free. And the aroma of citronella is just wonderful. Speedy also bought an oil burner and some aromatic oils from Ilog Maria and we had been using them after sundown for days. After I started applying Sting-Less all over the house, the oil burner seemed redundant.
It’s the perfect weapon against mosquitoes — it’s made from natural products, it’s environment-friendly, no insecticide on the skin, no stinky mosquito coils that may be harmful to the lungs, no additional use of electricity, no killing mosquitoes (they serve an ecological purpose, I know, although, personally, I don’t mind killing them).
My way of using Sting-Less, of course, would only work inside the house. Outdoors, it’ll have to be applied to the skin or clothing. The difference is that, unlike Nenuco and Off!, Sting-Less does not have to be applied to all exposed parts of the body. It seems that it is that aroma that keeps the mosquitoes away. So, a few drops on the arms and legs are enough.
I was so happy with my find but I also felt sad that there is no other Ilog Maria outlet except the one next to the farms in Tagaytay. Then, I discovered — check this out — that orders can be placed via the Ilog Maria website and the orders can be sent via Fedex. Ayos!
The website also contains a complete catalog of all Ilog Maria products. :)