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How To Keep Cockroaches Away From Clothes

How To Keep Cockroaches Away From Clothes

Roaches have always been famous pests hated by almost everyone!

This creepy crawlies can get their way with anything, from entering tiny holes and gaps to dominating your furniture pieces and even getting in your clothes!

When you start seeing roaches in your clothes, don’t panic. They may have invaded your space, but we are smarter than them!


If you don’t do something immediately after seeing roaches near your clothes, you can have a wardrobe full of roach poop, eggs, and bacteria.

These are not hygienic and can even cause serious infections when proper preventive measures are not taken.

So, to battle pests like cockroaches, make sure to try out the following natural and practical measures:

  • Use the bay leaves to repel roaches.
  • Fabric softeners are also proven effective.
  • Always make sure your closets are organized and clean.
  • Place mothballs in your closet.
  • Try boric acid.

Garlic, onion, and cayenne effectively deter pests, including roaches. These creatures despise the intense scents, which will make them want to escape faster.

Continue reading and discover why roaches love going through clothes and what you can do to eliminate these vermin pests.

Roaches and Their Love for Clothes

Roaches And Their Love For Clothes

While clothes are not the roaches’ first choice when looking for a good place to thrive, they can still live in them.

If you always leave damp clothes out in the open, expect roaches to invade them in no time. Roaches are more likely to start invading clothes in the following conditions:

  • Hung up clothes
  • Wardrobes in drawers or closets
  • Boxed-up clothes
  • Dirty and unpleasant clothes left in the hamper

If you’re curious why! It’s because clothes can still serve as these pests’ food source.

Always remember that roaches have a keen sense of smell. This means they can detect possible food sources through food stains on your clothes.

Moreover, roaches are also attracted to body fluids and odor, which is why they prefer dirty clothes or freshly laundered ones that are not cleaned or scrubbed correctly.

A Quick Reminder!

Clothes not thoroughly rinsed out will have leftover soap residues on them. And even the leftover soap can entice roaches, especially when hungry.

For these pests, the tiny soap strain serves as a new source of nutrients they can devour. Because roaches are also parasites, they can chew:

  • Stray threads
  • Indulge in leather clothing
  • Chew and eat the ends of the clothing or fabric

The next time you use your washing machine, ensure each piece of clothing is properly rinsed before hanging it up to dry.

Clothes also provide good hiding spots for roaches, especially when tucked inside your drawers.

The area becomes dark and secluded when they are inside closets, making it a perfect space for roaches to nest and look for food.

Moreover, because clothes are pliable, it’s easy for roaches to get inside the layers and hide.

Because roaches can very well adapt to what’s present in the current environment, you should also be smart enough to generate simple yet effective ways to get rid of them.

5 Ways To Keep Roaches Away From Your Clothes

Ways To Keep Roaches Away From Your Clothes

We’ve talked about why roaches love clothes, and now we’re on to the next big thing:

Performing preventive measures to get rid of them and protect your fashionable pieces!

1. Use Bay Leaves To Repel Roaches

Use Bay Leaves To Repel Roaches

Bay leaves are one of the smelliest herbs you can ever get your hands on. This is also why cockroaches despise them. Their intense scents can drive pests away, which is certainly a good thing.

What makes bay leaves even more fascinating is that you should work with their essential oils to be effective.

Using bay leaves alone and displaying them inside your closets will not work. The leaves themselves have weak compounds that will not be as effective as utilizing their essential oils.

One way to use bay leaves is to purchase their essential oils and mix them with water. Use equal parts of each substance and place them in a spray bottle. Then, spray in areas where cockroaches are usually lurking.

If you don’t want to waste money buying essential oils, crashing the leaves and to place them inside sachets could also work. This allows you to break down the compounds to expose the scent, which will become more intense and triggering.

2. Fabric Softeners Are Also Effective

Fabric Softeners Are Also Effective

Famous fabric softeners from the market also have intense scents which could trigger roaches. These can also help deter these pests away, protecting your clothes.

Mix equal amounts of the softener and water in a spray bottle. Spray areas where you think a roach infestation is currently happening.

The softener’s intense smell can suffocate roaches, even leading to their death.

3. Organize and Clean Your Closets Regularly

Organize And Clean Your Closets Regularly

Roaches love anything dirty, and disorganized places make it easier for them to thrive.

Regularly clean your wardrobe drawers, and check for the following:

  1. Remove all your clothes from the closet.
  2. Check for potential infestation inside pockets, linings, and hoods.
  3. Clean the fabric should you suspect roach poop, shed skins, or egg sacs.
  4. Spray insecticide in your wardrobe drawers or boxes.
  5. Continue setting up bait traps around the area.

Don’t forget to clean your closets with soap and water to ensure you don’t miss out on any spot.

4. Place Mothballs in Your Closet

Place Mothballs In Your Closet

Mothballs are solid pesticides that contain naphthalene, solid chemicals at room temperature.

Roaches hate their smell and will always try to escape areas where you place them. Moreover, mothballs are also dangerous to humans, so always watch out for possible ingestion by your kids.

Another advantage of using mothballs is that other pests, including insects, don’t like their smell. You’re doing your wardrobe pieces a favor by ensuring they are safe from all the creatures which could enter your house.

Purchase mothballs from any market near you and place at least one to two pesticides in the darkest corners of your drawers.

Don’t worry about their effect on the fabric because they are harmless. You can also use them long-term to keep roaches away from your clothes.

5. Use Boric Acid

Use Boric Acid

Boric acid has been proven effective in deterring various pests, including roaches.

You can sprinkle the chemical in powdered form in the following areas:

  • In your entire closet.
  • On dirty laundry.
  • Dark corners of your laundry room.
  • Around your dressers.

Boric acid has an unpleasant smell, and roaches are not attracted to it. The chemical will help keep your clothes safe from these pests.

You can also mix boric acid with sugar to create an effective pesticide. Because it contains sugar, roaches cannot immediately guess there is boric acid. They will consume the pesticide and will die after a few days.

What Should You Do With Infested Clothes?

After deterring roaches away, you must wash all clothes infested by these pests.

Washing your clothing ensures bacteria and germs from the roaches are removed. It also helps remove scent trails and pheromones that could attract other roaches.

Don’t forget to check your washer and dryer for possible roach eggs or skin sheds. Always ensure they are left clean so your other wardrobe pieces will not be affected.

Practice Clean Hygiene With Your Clothes

Practice Clean Hygiene With Your Clothes

Your clothes help define your identity, and you must always ensure they are clean before wearing them.

This includes protecting them from possible pest infestation like roaches.

If you suspect roaches invading your clothes, place mothballs in your closets or use boric acid as a pesticide. Bay leaves, and fabric softeners could also work. But the bottom line is:

Roaches will come back if your closets and dressers are disorganized and dirty. So, make it a habit to clean and dispose of unwanted clothing regularly.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can Roaches Stay Inside Clothes?

Yes, roaches can nest and lay their eggs in clothes, especially in the folds. This is because the area is dark and will likely absorb their odor.

Can My Dryer Kill Roaches?

Because roaches are versatile creatures that can withstand extreme temperatures, we don’t recommend using your dryer to kill them.

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