What can I do to keep mosquitoes from biting me through fabric?

I have two scenarios in mind.

Use case 1: I have applied insect repellant to all areas of exposed skin, but mosquitoes keep biting me through my clothes (esp. shoulders).

Use case 2: I am sleeping in a hammock with a bug net, but mosquitoes keep biting me through the hammock where the hammock touches the net (esp. knees and elbows).

  • How many mosquitoes are we talking about? I feel there is a different answer if it is one or five vs. some horrible amount.
    – Carl
    Commented Aug 23, 2015 at 20:01
  • @Carl Definitely "some horrible amount". Houston in the summer is not a nice place.
    – Gwen
    Commented Aug 25, 2015 at 2:38

3 Answers 3


You won't likely stop them biting through unless the fabric is quite thick, and then it might not be as breathable for your needs.

You need to make sure there is enough space between you and the mosquito net (including where it hits the hammock). Either tie it up better, or add more strings to pull it away from you. Or, depending on your setup, add an object (e.g. small sticks) inside between you and the inner net to push it away from you.

If the only problematic area is under the hammock, then you could attach a thick blanket to the underside of the hammock, or lay it on the hammock, if this is comfortable to you.

You can buy better quality nets, which might be an option.
That said, you can get nets pre-treated with repellents, and are much more effective at repelling mosquitos than non pre-treated ones.
Such nets can actually kill mosquitos upon contact of the net.

And you can apply repellent quite liberally, how much depends on the net you have really.

But sounds like the problem is the net position, not net quality.


I feel your pain! I once went camping during Black Fly season in the Adirondacks - literally swarms of black flies! NOTHING - not even pure DEET - could keep them away except:

I think you will have a problem unless you fully cover yourself from head to toe with mosquito netting, and increase the thickness of your clothing fabric. ExOfficio makes clothes specifically designed to keep insects away.


To keep the mosquitoes away from your body, rub a handful of crushed basil leaves on your skin.

Other methods you can try:

  • candles with citronella essential oil - it`s a natural mosquito repellent;
  • put a few drops of lavender to ribbon and place around open windows;
  • eat more garlic - it acts like a barrier between the mosquitoes and your skin;

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.