One useful way to prevent adult moths from eating your clothes is to create a physical barrier with a storage bag that hangs from a coat hanger.
Our clothes storage bags are made of washable cotton, but if you want to use one of these things, keep it from dust with a protective fleece that is tough enough to eat adult moths.
Moths don’t eat clothes but their larvae do eat clothes in the house
1. Moths eat fabrics, including clothes and carpets
2. They can’t digest the fabric, so it’s just a matter of time before they die
3. You should be able to find moth cocoons in your closets or other areas where you store clothes
4. Once you see them, vacuum the area thoroughly and seal any infested items in airtight bags for 2 weeks
5. Clean up after yourself – don’t leave dishes in the sink or dirty clothes lying around
6. Install an insecticide like Borax if you’re worried about future infestations
More info to know
- Moths are attracted to wool fabrics and clothing made of natural fibers
- The larvae eat fabric in order to survive, which can cause holes and damage the clothes
- Moth infestation is a major problem for people who have expensive clothes or items that they want to keep in good condition
- It’s important to store your garments properly so moths don’t get into them
- You can use mothballs or cedar blocks as deterrents against moths if you’re at risk for infestation due to climate conditions where you live
- If you find a moth, remove it from the garment by placing it on a piece of paper and then putting both pieces into an airtight container like a jar with some talcum powder sprinkled inside
- Take care when storing wool garments because moths are drawn towards these types of materials more than other types of clothing such as cotton or polyester
What you can do at your Home
The most effective deterrent against moth infestation is dry cleaning of clothing, but this is not realistic.
Moth larvae are attracted to damp clothes, including dirty or sweaty clothes that have not been washed, meaning that adult moths lay eggs on damp clothes that do not contain keratin so they can approach each other.
If you find a hole in your clothes, it is easy to blame a moth for the wardrobe misfortune. The first sign that you have a problem is the tell-tale hole in your clothes that you see when an adult moth flies into your closet or home.
Moth larvae can be difficult to spot when one notices their presence for the first time, as one can only see the after-effects of their eating habits.
Moths, for example, use the fibers they eat to spin sheaths of the same color as the clothes they feed on, making it difficult to see through their folded material. They are also hard to spot because their sleeves match the colour of the clothes they are wearing.
It is the larva (caterpillar) of the clothes moth nibbling at the holes in the clothes. The larva has special jaws called mandibles by scientists and uses them to chew holes in clothing, blankets, and carpets made of natural fibres such as wool, felt, silk and fur.
The small tunnels they pass through when they devour their sweater or coat have the same colour and material as the clothes, but the web of clothe moth larvae is much more harmful because the tunnels consist of cloth particles and excrement.
Clothes moths have evolved to extract their food from keratin and keratin proteins in animal materials like cashmere, wool, silk, feathers and furs. For this reason, your investment objects in your wardrobe, your valuable household textiles, and your valuable carpets and rugs are threatened by the presence of moths. Clothes, blankets, and carpets are made from natural fibres such as wool, felt, silk and fur, but the larva (caterpillar) of the clothes moth lives and carries it around – in some cases, it consists of fibres excreted in its excrement.
There are many moth species in the UK – there are over 2,500 recorded – but not one has produced larvae with a natural taste for T-shirts. Like all living beings, their aim is to reproduce, and to this end, clothes moths seek shelter in places where their young can develop without damaging food sources or taps.
Clothing larvae are known to feed on wool, cashmere, silk, cotton, linen, fur, feathers, hair, lint, carpet brushes, animal fur, and dust. It’s the baby moths that you have to be wary of – to get the protein they need, keratin (i.e. Organic fibres) has to come from an animal. This brings us to the main message: the moth-eating myth is a partial truth and is often attributed to the feeding of moth larvae.