I like doing things my own cheap way, so I sprayed my zip-off hiking pants and a pair of socks with this permethrin formula. This worked just as well as the ExOfficio shirt, deterring mosquitoes that landed on the fabric from staying long enough to bite through. One 24-ounce bottle costs $16 and holds enough for four sets of shirts, pants and socks.
One application lasts six washings or six weeks, so it’s a temporary solution—a definite tradeoff. The treated fabric felt greasy and slightly heavy at first; but this feeling subsided after a washing. Be sure to spray your clothes outside and let them dry there, or the smell will make you gag. Permethrin is toxic to insects, fish and cats—and mildly toxic to humans, so wear gloves while applying. I recommend a full air dry and wash before wearing to eliminate the greasy feeling or potential for skin absorption. I’d recommend this option as a good, cost-effective solution for peak bug season or trips up to a month.