Where do the little holes in your T-shirts come from (no, they’re not moths)

Online sleuths have solved one of life’s greatest mysteries: where do the little holes in t-shirts come from?

Hint: they’re not moths.

For years people have wondered why almost identical holes appear in the lower front part of their t-shirts.

Whether it’s a designer t-shirt or a basic Kmart shirt, these pesky holes don’t discriminate and people have scoured every corner of the internet in search of a definitive answer. .

Online sleuths have solved the mystery of small holes appearing on T-shirts after the issue was raised in a viral video. Source: TikTok/@StarryNoisy

People have previously speculated that closet critters, such as moths, silverfish, ants, and even cockroaches of your garden variety, are responsible for holes in t-shirts.

Others have suggested that the holes are the result of shirts getting stuck in washing machines and dryers, but that doesn’t answer why the holes are usually in the same place.


So what is the cause of small holes in T-shirts?

The answer to the age-old question of how these annoying holes are created is much simpler than most people think…they are caused by friction.

Generally, the most common cause of pinholes in t-shirts is rubbing against the metal hardware of our jeans, such as buttons, zippers, rivets, and even stubborn knots of thread around The fly.

Woman's hands and t-shirt tucked into blue jeans showing metallic hardware

Friction caused by metallic hardware on jeans has been found to be one of the main causes of small holes in t-shirts. Source: Getty

If you add wearing a seat belt, carrying a heavy shoulder bag, or working on a bench or desk to the scenario, these holes are even more likely to appear.

The reason these small holes have become more common in recent years is likely due to fast fashion, which means retailers are using lower quality cotton and jersey to keep their prices competitive.

Viral TikTok helps solve mysterious case of t-shirt holes

As consumers searched the internet to diagnose their mysterious shirt holes, one woman caught the attention of millions with her TikTok video on the subject.

In the woman’s tiktok videocaptioned “These aren’t moths,” she asks why all of her T-shirts have tiny holes in one place.

“There are these little holes in the same place on almost every shirt I own,” reads a caption in the video, which switches to different shirts with the same type of holes.

The relatable video quickly went viral, amassing more than 13 million views and 31,000 comments from people who correctly theorized it was the ‘friction’ caused by zippers, buttons, counters and waistbands. security.

How to Avoid Pesky Holes in Tops

Although t-shirt holes may be unavoidable for some people, there are ways to avoid them.

Wearing an apron while working on a counter will prevent chafing between your shirt and the bench, while tucking in your top will prevent it from rubbing on your jeans’ button or zipper.

Making sure you buy high quality cotton tops will also prolong their lifespan.

Fans of the “French tuck,” that is, tucking the bottom of your t-shirt into the front of your jeans, will also be pleased to know that this will help reduce chafing that causes those holes.

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