Protect Your Clothing from Moths | Reader's Digest

Protect Your Clothing from Moths

Manage a moth infestation with these great ideas.

from Householder's Survival Manual

If you discover holes and white larvae in stored clothing, you’re most likely facing a moth infestation.

Sort through the affected items and throw away anything you can’t salvage. Take the rest to a dry-cleaner, letting the staff know about the infestation. Meanwhile, have your house exterminated for moths. Before returning cleaned clothing to the storage area, wipe off boxes, shoes, and other surfaces with a damp, clean cloth, then throw the cloth away.

Natural Moth Repellents
Cedar is nature’s best-known moth repellent, but it’s not the only one. Other natural moth repellents include lavender and dried orange peel. Don’t allow them to come in contact with the fabrics that you store, however, because their oils can damage textiles over time. Instead, place them in open containers on closet shelves or suspend them from the ceiling in decorative, light fabric bags.

Mothballs And Crystals
While cedar repels moths, mothballs and moth crystal products will repel and kill them when used in an enclosed space. Mothballs and crystals won’t kill moth eggs that are already in your clothing when it’s put into storage, however, so always clean clothing thoroughly before you put it away.

Mothballs and moth crystals are poisonous if eaten, so store them out of the reach of pets and children. It’s best to suspend mothballs above clothing; the chemicals in these products emit a vapor that filters downward (it’s heavier than air), making this method safe as well as effective. Place mothballs or crystals in a decorative bag or clean sock and hang them from the ceiling. To counteract mothball odor, add a pomander or an herbal potpourri to the storage area.