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The Science Behind Insect Shield

June 26, 2020 5:00 am
The Science Behind Insect Shield
The Science Behind Insect Shield

Bulwark is thrilled to announce that we will be launching a new line of Bulwark FR clothing with Insect Shield® technology. Those who work in the great outdoors know, there’s one particularly pesky downside to all that fresh air: insects. And for those who face thermal hazards on the job, insect repellents like DEET are a big ol’ don’t. That’s why we took 13 of our top garments for men and women—including shirts and pants from the iQ Comfort Series, jean and hi-vis favorites, and our ultra-advanced Mobility Coveralls—and turned them into the ultimate PPE for the outdoors. This patented technology is proven to effectively repel insects ranging from mosquitoes to ticks and flies to fleas, with protection that lasts through 50 washes. So you can work pest-free and confidently compliant, no matter what Mother Nature has in store.

Sound too good to be true? It’s not a gimmick—it’s science! Insect Shield technology was invented in 1996, when Richard Lane was tapped by the U.S. Military to develop a durable, long-lasting way of bonding permethrin—a highly effective, EPA-registered insect repellent—to military uniforms. After many years of research and development, Lane was able to create a proprietary process that would bond the agent tightly into the weave of the fabric, ensuring it wouldn’t wash out.

How do you know it works? Well let’s just say, it’s been through the ringer. Insect Shield technology came out of years of intensive research and field study and has been tested, proven and registered to repel mosquitoes, ticks, ants, flies, chiggers, and midges (no-see-ums). The EPA requires extensive effectiveness data to prove a product's ability to repel insects. In order to achieve the EPA registration, Insect Shield technology has been tested against many species and varieties of these insects, including those that can carry dangerous diseases. The results conclusively show that the technology offers unique, long-lasting insect protection that works.

For Bulwark, this is an especially important development, since many wearers of FR clothing also work outdoors and are often at the mercy of the insects, as they are unable to use DEET—the highly flammable active ingredient in most insect repellents. Insects are not only annoying, but they can also be dangerously distracting while on the job, and can carry all sort of infectious diseases. Through our partnership with Insect Shield, we will offer a collection of 13 double-duty FR and insect repellent garments, guaranteed to maintain their pest protection through 50 washes. As the relentless protectors of those who power the world, we’re proud to be launching this innovative new line of protective apparel as yet another way to live that mission and, ultimately, keep you safer on the job.