Mosquitos: Everyone hates them. The annoying high pitched buzz you can hear when one gets in your tent; the feeling that your skin is crawling when you can feel them on you, and the burning desire to scratch when you’ve been bitten. If you’ve spent any time in the outdoors you’ll have no doubt encountered mossies, midges, sand flies or gnats. These little flying insects are the devil’s work and by far the most annoying thing about sleeping outdoors. Sure, you can apply as much 80% DEET insect repellent as you want until your skin begins to burn, but these little bastards will still find a way to suck on your blood.
Aside from being annoying, mosquitos pose an altogether more serious threat- disease. In tropical climates, mossies carry a number of deadly viruses such as Malaria, Dengue Fever and Yellow Fever. Before we visited Sri Lanka at the end of last year there was a breakout of Dengue Fever which left thousands of locals, and tourists, in hospital.
About Dengue Fever
Dengue is a viral infection caused by four types of viruses (DENV-1, DENV-2, DENV-3, DENV-4) belonging to the Flaviviridaefamily. The viruses are transmitted through the bite of infected Aedes aegypti and Aedes albopictus female mosquitoes that feed both indoors and outdoors during the daytime (from dawn to dusk). These mosquitoes thrive in areas with standing water, including puddles, water tanks, containers and old tires. Lack of reliable sanitation and regular garbage collection also contribute to the spread of the mosquitoes.
Fortunately, before we left the UK, Craghoppers sent a few pieces from their NosiLife range to try out. We hadn’t heard of the technology before but were intrigued as to whether it worked or not. Craghoppers say that their range of clothing is a breakthrough in textile innovation utilising a unique permanent anti-insect technology. Interesting…
How does NosiLife technology work?
The Craghoppers NosiLife collection uses a material through which an insect repellent fibre is woven. The insect protection is a type of Permethrin which is a synthetic pyrethroid, and the antimicrobial effect comes from an ingredient often used in hand wash and other skin care products. This active ingredient which has been woven through the garments repels insects when they come into contact.
In the field
The claim that an item of clothing will actively repel insects is a big one. At first, we had our doubts that it would work at all, but after spending a month in Sri Lanka and three months in Australia we can confirm that it works well. Bugs will still fly nearby and land on you but they won’t stick around for long.
Craghoppers sent us the Cargo shorts in black and the Bayame long sleeve t-shirt in grey. Both items look and fit great, and more importantly are really comfortable in the heat and humidity. The t-shirt especially wicks sweat away from your body keeping you dry and cool which is essential when trekking through dense tropical forests.
Overall, the NosiLife collection was a great addition to our travel wardrobe. The long sleeve shirt and shorts go well together to create a smart/casual style, perfect for travel days. But they also serve the purpose of keeping the bugs at bay.
To find out more about the collection and see the whole range, click here.