Boil Your Pants to Battle Moth Crisis

By Gary Cutlack on at

Moth enthusiast scientists have a bleak warning for the future of mankind and mankind's favourite skinny trousers and t-shirts. Our modern love of washing everything at lukewarm temperatures to save energy is failing to kill off moth larvae, meaning we're more likely to have our wardrobes and/or bin liners full of clothes attacked by fabric-eating insects.

The fact that we're going off the idea of nylon slacks is also helping the moths, as the moth larvae prefer to eat the protein keratin that's more commonly found in natural fibres like wool and silk. So, annoyingly, buying expensive things and trying to look after them by not boiling them in Persil every weekend is actually making the moth situation worse.

This niche bit of fashion advice has been issued by exterminator Rentokil, which says it's treating more moth infestations than ever this year, and it's all the fault of global warming and people too scared to wash their expensive jumpers at temperatures of 55 degrees or higher – hot enough to kill off moth larvae. This also means there's probably moth larvae on you right now.

Rentokil's David Cross said of this surprisingly boring moth revelation: "With a prolonged breeding season, clothes and soft furnishings in British homes could be at increased risk to damage caused by moth larvae feeding on the natural fibres they contain. Washing clothes at high temperatures or having them dry cleaned are practical methods to help remove moth larvae from clothing." [Sky News]