Choosing the right mosquito net is essential for effective protection against mosquitoes and other insects when travelling. Here’s a comprehensive guide to help you select the best mosquito net for your needs:

Types of Mosquito Nets

  • Rectangular / Box Nets: Provide more space and can cover larger areas, making them ideal for most bed sizes. Require multiple hanging points.
  • Bell Nets: Suspended from a single central point using a spreader bar, creating a bell shape. Suitable for beds and outdoor use.
  • Wedge Nets: Shaped like a wedge and easy to set up, perfect for single beds or camping. They are lightweight and compact, making them ideal for travelling. 
  • Pop-Up Nets: Easy to set up with a flexible frame, making them ideal to be used anywhere. They can be more bulky and heavier to carry than suspened nets. 
  • Free-Standing: Use lightweight poles to form a self supporting structure. Think of a tent without the fly sheet. These are often the heaviest nets to own and can be quite bulky to carry.  
  • Head Nets: Worn over the head and useful for outdoor activities where full-body coverage isn't necessary. There are two main head net types: Ones that you wear with a hat, and those that have a hat incorporated in to the design. 
    A double wedge shape mosquito net showin the space for two people

    Netting Fabrics

    • Polyester: Durable, lightweight, and affordable.
    • Cotton: Comfortable and breathable but heavier and less durable.
    • Polyethylene: Lightweight and cheap but less durable.
    • Nylon: Strong and lightweight but can be less breathable.

    Mesh Size

    • Small Mesh (156-200 holes per square inch): Provides better protection against small insects, including mosquitoes and sandflies.
    • Large Mesh (156 holes or fewer per square inch): Offers better airflow but may let smaller insects through.

    Insecticide Treated Or Untreated?

    • Treated Nets: Impregnated with insecticides like permethrin. Provides added protection but needs to be handled carefully and replaced / retreated periodically. Retreatment is relatively straightforward these days using a hand spray or wash-in treatment. 
    • Untreated Nets: Safe for everyone, including babies and pregnant women, but only offer a physical barrier.
      Lifesystems EX4 Permethrin fabric spray

    Size and Shape

    • Ensure the net is large enough to cover the area you need, with enough overlap to tuck under mattresses or sleeping bags. Most mosquito nets nowadays come with a skirt to enable this. 
    • Choose the shape based on your specific needs and the space where it will be used.
    • Do you need a single or a double? Single sized nets are lighter and more compact, but a double will fit most bed sizes and feel more spacious.

    Portability and Ease of Setup

    • For travel and camping, choose a lightweight and easily packable net.
    • Consider pop-up or self-supporting nets for ease of setup and takedown.
    • Check that your mosquito net comes with a hanging kit (not applicable for pop-up nets). Don't presume that your room will have points already installed to hang your net from.  
      Boxnet mosquito net installed over a bed in somebodies hotel room

    Durability and Maintenance

    • Look for durable materials that can withstand wear and tear.
    • Consider nets that are machine washable for easy maintenance.

    Environmental Considerations

    • Consider the environmental impact of the materials and treatments used.
    • Opt for eco-friendly options where possible, such as untreated natural fibers.

    Additional Features

    • Entry Points: Zippers or overlapping flaps for easy access.
    • Hanging Mechanisms: Loops or rings for easy hanging.
    • Reinforced Edges: For added durability and to prevent tearing.

    Mosquito Net Conclusion

    Choosing the right mosquito net involves considering the type, material, mesh size, treatment, size, portability, durability, and additional features. Assess your specific needs, whether it’s for home use, travel, or outdoor activities, to find the most suitable option. Investing in a high-quality mosquito net will ensure effective protection and comfort.