It must be that time of year, because everyone and their Pumpkin Spiced Latte has been asking me about moths, and how to get rid of them; my clients, my business acquaintances, my neighbors, my aura reader, kidding I don’t have an aura reader, but if I did I bet she’d be all up on me about clothing moths.
While chemicals are always an option, I’d reserve them as a last resort. Like a root canal. You don’t want to go there unless you really have to go there.
The most important step is the Simplest, as is always the case. Moths & co. are lured to your doorstep by way of juicy stains, succulent sweat particles, and so on. The dirtier the better for them. Thus, why your best plan of attack is to clean. Clean everything. All the time.
Empty the contents of whichever closet or storage area you believe is currently infiltrated before conducting a deep clean: vacuum hard to reach corners (look up!), wipe down walls, shelves, and drawers, and seal any cracks you find in the walls. That’s step one.
Step two: every item of clothing which goes back into the closet must be cleaned. You do not put away dirty clothes, especially not clothes that you’re going to be storing for long periods of time. Oh, no. Nor do you leave dirty clothing laying around (you might even want to consider temporarily relocating your hamper if it’s normally in the occupied territory).
Clothing that you believe may already be compromised can be placed in the freezer for 72 hours. This kills the moth and the egg and blah blah we don’t really need to get into the gross specifics, do we?
Step three is to maintain this newly achieved state of cleanliness. Vacuum the space regularly (read: at least once a week), wipe away cobwebs, etc, etc. Limit the humidity levels in the storage space if at all possible by closing windows. All those microscopic little crumbs and particles that you can’t see or think aren’t a big deal? Yeah, well, those moths are feasting on your lack of stringency, so, you know, yum.
As we covered in the post called Off Season Clothes Storage, you cannot skimp on proper storage products if you care about your clothing’s longevity. Don’t tell me you spent $650 on a cashmere wrap, tossed it in an open garbage bag with the rest of your winter warmth over the summer, only to be surprised and disappointed it was full of holes come October. If you care about it, protect it, which is also, come to think of it, quite a fitting slogan for like…life. Funny how organizing and the core of existence are so intertwined, isn’t it?
The next proactive step is to enlist the powers of natural repellents: lavender and cedar are known to be effective at warding off preyer-of-clothes. Do note that such products will lose their effectiveness over time, as the scent wears off. However, you can easily revive cedar slabs by taking them out into the sunlight and sanding them with sandpaper, or by using a cedar/lavender refresher spray every couple of months. As long as the products are still effervescent, you’re in business.
1. Household Essentials CedarFresh Deluxe Cedar Coat Hanger // 2. CedarFresh Cedar Power Spray with Lavender // 3. CedarFresh Cedar Balls with Lavender // 4. Moth AWAY natural repellent sachets // 5. Cedar Green Aromatic Cedar Hang-ups // 6. Organic French Lavender Sachets with Ribbon Rosettes
But please don’t go the mothball route. Not because they’re not effective (I actually have no idea if they are or aren’t) but because the day you lose your ability to detect (and be repelled, yourself, by) the odor of the mothball is such a sad, sad day. So, you know, try to hold out just a little longer, okay?
HOPE THIS HELPS BYE!Image credits: via Fargerike, Sarah Richardson, unknown, Erin Boyle for Gardenista P.S. What have YOU found most helpful in combating the clothing moths?