Las Verandas, Roatan - Ryan R. (Pics)

Now, it's early August and business was taking me to the Las Verandas at Pristine Bay resort on the island of Roatan. I was there to monitor the hotel and villa resort project that my company is involved in the project management side of the construction.  I took the opportunity to take along three small bottles of BYE-YOU BUG.  BYE-YOU BUG is an all-natural product and I wanted to test it against the more traditional pest deterrent products that are currently being used on the island.  If you are not familiar with Roatan Bay Islands they are a small chain of islands 30 miles off the coast of Honduras.  Roatan is only 22 miles long and 5 miles wide at the island widest point.   Roatan has long been a closely guarded secret and a hidden gem within the scuba diving community.  Roatan's reef is the second largest in the world with The Great Barrier reef in Australia being the largest.  With direct flights to Roatan from both Dallas and Houston the word is quickly getting out about this exotic island that is only a 2.5 hour direct flight from Houston.  The island also host approximately 22 cruise ships a week as well.  Regarding the diving, I have personally dove the Great Barrier reef off Hamilton Island off the coast of Australia and I truly believe Roatan reef is much better-for sure a lot closer to Houston.

During my trip to Roatan I set off to use BYE-YOU BUG exclusively during my outdoor activities.  For 5 days, whenever I felt the need to apply a pest deterrent I always used BYE-YOU BUG.  There are countless "other products" used by the locals and tourist on Roatan.  However, I wanted to personally test BYE-YOU BUG on this trip to see the results first-hand how well BYE-YOU BUG's all natural ingredients were against the island's sand flies.  First, for those that never heard of a sand fly, a little background information.  All along the Texas coast and in particularly in the Low Country of South Carolina the sand flies are commonly referred to as "No See Um's".  These small indigenous insects lay their eggs in the moist sands along the beach and are nearly impossible to see.   All the island resorts in Roatan have a daily process of raking the beaches to clear away sea grass and any debris that may have floated in onto the beach by the currents.  However, raking the sand also serves another purpose.  Turning the sand exposes the sand flies eggs and larva to the sunlight.  The sunlight heats the sand thus killing the sand fly eggs and newly hatched larva.  As long as there is a coastal breeze sand flies are usually not that big of a concern.  Only when there is no island breeze then the sand flies can become a bit of a nuisance.  Also, Roatan is not flat like Cancun, Cozumel or other Caribbean and Mexican coastal resorts.  Roatan's mountains create an uplift of the oceans' breezes and not to mention some amazing panoramic views from their high vantage points.

The locals claim that any product that has an oil base is effective in deterring sand flies.   BYE-YOU BUG is not an oil based product [its primary ingredient being vanilla extract] which makes it feel less greasy and more dry.  Spray On, Rub In, and Go.   I used only BYE-YOU BUG during my trip and utilized all three product scents: The Original (Lavender), Texas Cedar, and Cypress.   All these scents smelled great and each went on smoothly and felt very light on my skin.  I never had the sensation that I was left with a greasy residue and it seemed to me that all three scents worked equally as well.  Although, the correct application for BYE-YOU BUG is to spray on to the skin and then rub the product in order to spread the vanilla over the exposed skin area.  I also just sprayed the product directly onto my clothing without fear of staining my clothing-top of socks, collar and back of shirts.  Unsure if this method is recommended by the makers of BYE-YOU BUG, but this is my experience and how I used the products.

YUTUMI: [TYPICALLY, YUTUMI RECOMMENDS APPLYING TO ATLEAST ALL EXPOSED SKIN AREAS. APPLYING TO CLOTHING IS AN EXTRA MEASURE THAT MAY ALSO BENEFIT IN DETERRING PESKY BUGS!]

Did I get bitten by the sand flies?  To be honest, Yes.  But everyone regardless of the product used were receiving some bites, usually on their ankles, legs, or arms.  I don't think any pest deterrent product could make a claim of 100% effectiveness.  But, I will say I believe me getting bitten was more the result of not reapplying BYE-YOU BUG often enough.  I was active while I was on the island.  I walked the work site; I went scuba diving; I visited other resorts and enjoyed their amenities; I did a lot of walking around the island; and I even went fly fishing for bonefish and permit.  Reapplying BYE-YOU BUG was probably needed more than what I found myself doing during the trip.

YUTUMI: [YUTUMI HIGHLY SUGGESTS THAT YOU REAPPLY BYE-YOU BUG AS OFTEN AS NECESSARY. A TYPICAL APPLICATION LASTS THREE TO FOUR HOURS DURING DUSK AND DAWN. HOWEVER, THE MORE ACTIVE YOU ARE AND THE MORE YOU ARE EXPOSED TO THE WATER, BYE-YOU BUG SHOULD MOST DEFINITELY BE APPLIED FREQUENTLY AS YOU WOULD APPLY A SUNSCREEN IN THE SAME CONDITIONS.]