I spent 26 years in the military, primarily serving in humanitarian roles, with a majority of that time in austere locations. My 'adventures' have ranged from Infantry School in Fort Benning, Georgia to JRTC in Fort Polk, Louisiana to a deployment in Iraq, where my face swelled up after being bit by some sort of evil spider. Missions have also taken me around the world to places like Haiti and Mozambique. Needless to say, all the bug encounters and disease exposures, like Dengue and Malaria, have led to many nights of sleeping in mosquito nets.
All my life, bugs have been attracted to me and I've been left to assume it's because I'm so fucking hot. Either that or I wasn't using an effective insect repellent. All jokes aside, I was initially introduced to Picaridin while in Europe, where it is the most widely used ingredient for insect repellents.
Giving back is a priority.
A portion of each BALLISTIC purchase is dedicated to supporting military veteran organizations fighting vector- and water-related illnesses.
Our current contributions support Veterans Without Orders, a veteran-led, non-profit, clean water organization that assists populations without clean water and other essential services. Veterans Without Orders focuses on the prevention of vector and water-related illnesses by implementing a whole-community education approach. On their most recent mission to the remote jungles of Guatemala, BALLISTIC successfully kept the team from coming home covered in insect bites.