The special permethrin-treated clothing that is supposed to save us from mosquito borne diseases, most notable Zika, is beginning to look like a total sham. Permethrin is an insecticide that protects against many bugs not just mosquitoes. Bugs like ticks, and just about any flying insect hate this permethrin material, and it looked like the material was doing the trick, that is until owners of the probably expensive clothing began running it through the washing machine.
LL Bean, one company that manufactures these types of shirts, claims that the mosquito repelling properties of the shirts will continue to work for at least up to 70 washings. Well, maybe, but how well will they work? This seems to be the big question nobody thought to ask.
Volunteers taking part in a study to test the effectiveness of the shirts in question were not protected from mosquito bites even after one single wash. In fact, Zika carrying mosquitos called Aedes mosquitoes bit three out of the four volunteers after the shirts were washed once. Luckily these mosquitoes were not infected. You can cross theses shirts off your future Christmas list!
Have you tried out this permethrin-treated clothing? How well did it work for you?