Don't shoot the messenger, but the bugs have arrived in Maine. And as usual, they suck...and bite...and sting.

Anest - Thinkstock
Anest - Thinkstock

I know I'm not alone in the yearly quest for answers about what works best to prevent bug bites, or if you do end up bitten, treat them.

Of course, there are the tried and true options of things like "Off" with Deet, and everyone's old favorite Avon throwback, Skin So Soft (I'm still not convinced it was as effective as our parents may have thought it was.)

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But a few years back, when my littles were babies, I wanted to find something without harsh chemicals, that I could use on my tiny people to keep them from becoming tiny snacks.

Assorted Perfume Bottles
Mario Ragma Jr.

Looking into some options, I found a recipe for homemade bug-repellent in the Old Farmer's Almanac that sounded promising.This DIY bug spray was made from a combination of tea tree oil or peppermint, lemon grass, eucalyptus, and witch hazel. (It had some other suggested recipes that were probably equally as awesome.

I found it was surprisingly effective against not only mosquitos and blackflies but ticks, too. (That was a bonus.)

Woman spraying sunscreen cream on skin before run. Sports and healthy concept.
Mykola Sosiukin

Should you ended up not getting a chance to apply to bug spray in time, or maybe you just forgot it and ended up getting bitten, then what?

A young woman examines her insect sting on her arm
Jens Rother

Because I'm super pale, I tend to layer up in the summer, so they don't get to me as much as they do my kids. And let me tell you, my daughters seem to have allergic reactions to mosquito bites. The sites swell up to huge welts, and itch like the dickens!

A quick Google search of "best bug bite relief" did yield some potentially helpful ideas.

You can check them out here and here.

Of course with tick bites or spider bites, it's always a good idea to have someone who knows what they're doing check them out.

Ladislav KubeÃÂÃÂÃÂá
Ladislav KubeÃÂÃÂÃÂá

But in my quest to find relief for my girls, I got to wondering: what are your tried-and-true, go-to mosquito bite remedies?

So far, the majority of people I've asked have either mentioned rubbing alcohol, witch hazel, Afterbite, or Hydrocortisone cream.

Please feel free to share what's worked for you!

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