When you think of insect-repellant clothing, do you think of safari-looking pants, a long-sleeved button-down shirt, and hat with a back flap and perhaps netting? While that can be incredibly effective at keeping the biting bugs away, you don’t have to say sayonara to style when repelling irritating critters.
ExOfficio’s BugsAway line includes Insect Shield, a process that is designed to prevent loss of the active ingredient Permethrin. Once it’s applied to the clothing, it’s so tightly bound to fabric fibers that garments retain full effective repellency through 70 washings. BugsAway apparel with Insect Shield keeps you from slathering on that sticky, smelly repellent so frequently (although you should use a combination of the two—clothing and repellent) and offers protection that’s invisible, odorless and as easy as putting on your clothes.
Insect Shield technology repels mosquitoes, ticks, ants, flies, chiggers and midges. Clothing with Insect Shield can be washed and dried just like a normal garment (just don’t dry clean it, as this removes the treatment).
We’ve previously reviewed ExOfficio BugsAway items such as Ziwa Convertible Pants, Lumen Hoody and Impervio Shirt. The brand keeps on kicking out new offerings, however, and has added the Leilani Multi-Way Dress and Lumen Wrap.
The convertible dress can be worn a number of ways, including as a halter dress, a strapless dress and a skirt. When you’re trying to pack light with multi-functional pieces, this dress is a winner. You don’t even need to be in a buggy environment—the dress looks good whether or not you’re using the Insect Shield technology to shoo away flying things that bug you.
But say you are and you think, “hey, I’m not sure that a dress that doesn’t cover my legs or shoulders is optimal in keeping mosquitoes away.” There are two solutions for that: bring along a pair of leggings to cover your legs during especially buggy hours, and add the BugsAway Lumen Wrap to your wardrobe. The 32-inch by 76-inch wrap takes the place of your regular evening/airplane wrap and adds the functionality of Insect Shield plus UPR 20+.
So pack the dress for daytime, add leggings and/or the wrap for evening (if needed), and add to your insect-resistant wardrobe without looking like you’re forever on safari. The dress comes in black (which is really more of a charcoal gray), dusk (light blue) and mod (pink) and lists for $65 on the ExOfficio site. The wrap comes in black, dusk, botanic (light green) and grenadine (orange-red) and lists for $35 on the ExOfficio site and Amazon.