My guess is that 99 percent of people would say they hate mosquitoes, and the other 1 percent are probably lying. Summertime means long days and warm nights and spending some well-deserved time outdoors — but if you’re like me, it also means getting eaten alive by bugs. Last summer, however, I discovered an unexpected solution in the form of a strange, tiny suction device. Its name is as mysterious and all-encompassing as the gadget itself: the Bug Bite Thing.
What is it?
The Bug Bite Thing is a suction tool that promises to soothe itching, stinging, and swelling from bug bites and stings, ideal for those of us unlucky enough to be frequent targets. The product does this by extracting the insect saliva or venom left behind under your skin by a pesky bug — when you remove this irritant, your body should stop producing a reaction.
The Thing is three inches tall and doesn’t include any chemicals or medicine. It’s all-natural, very reusable, and claims to work on mosquitoes, bees, wasps, and biting flies (I’ve personally only used it on mosquito bites).
How do I use it?
To use the Thing, place the end with an open hole over one of your bites. Next, pull up on the Thing’s handles until you feel that hole suction to your skin, and hold it for a recommended 10-20 seconds before pushing down to release the suction again. Generally, I do this two to three times on each bite.
The device may leave a faint circular mark on your skin, but you can apply gentler suction pressure if you so choose (you’re in control of that). It may take you a few tries to get the hang of it, and you might not love the pinching sensation of the suction at first — but once you adjust, it’s a piece of painless cake.
Does it actually work?
I purchased the Bug Bite Thing last year on a recommendation from a friend. Before this, I was a big proponent of scratching around my bug bites (only semi-satisfying) or occasionally smearing calamine lotion on top of them (not ideal; it’s soothing, but very pink, and can also irritate your skin). Now, all I do is grab my suction tool. I even brought it to a friend’s house last week, when I knew I had some itchy bites that would distract me from enjoying my time there.
The Bug Bite Thing, against all odds, does make my bug bites stop itching. Once I suction it on and off a bite a few times, I experience immediate relief. My only complaint is longevity — I often have to “reapply” the Thing more than once a day, while bug bites are fresh. However, either because I’m scratching less (due to using the Thing) or because the venom is being extracted successfully by the Thing, my bug bites seem to heal more quickly than before, and thus I don’t end up having to use it on the same bites for more than a couple of days.
I can’t think of any better way to spend $10. (Buy from Amazon, $9.99)
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This article originally appeared on our sister site, First for Women.
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