Consumer Survey Results on Insect Repellent Labels
The Office of Pesticide Programs conducted a national survey in 2011 about insect repellents to better understand how we might improve label information for these consumer products. We also wanted to get a better idea of consumers’ understanding and preferences for various graphics that would explain at a glance how long a product will repel mosquitoes and ticks after the product is applied. This page describes what we learned from the survey. The results will help inform our future decisions and policies affecting labeling of insect repellents.
On This Page
For our survey, we developed four different graphic marks to convey insect protection times:
- Consumers clearly understood how to interpret the Circle, Bugs, and Square efficacy marks, but were unclear about the meaning of the RF mark.
- The Circle mark produced the most favorable responses, both in overall appeal and helpfulness, and was the mark consumers suggested they would most likely look for and consider when purchasing insect repellent products.
- The Bugs mark was the second most well received.
- The Square and RF marks were rated low among consumers.
- The survey demonstrates the benefit of adding an efficacy mark on insect repellent labels that will allow consumers to easily see the number of hours a product will repel mosquitoes and ticks.
- Providing the length of time a product works may be beneficial to those who are forgetful about the need for reapplication.
- Providing information about product efficacy time may help consumers decide which product is better suited for different situations (e.g., use of different products for short- or long-term exposure to mosquitoes and ticks).