Holes in My Shirt SOLVED!

422
2/6/2009 // Randomness

*Who knew four years, and 400+ comments, later the topic “Holes in my Shirt” would still be of interest!*

I’m so excited – over solving a very minor but annoying thing that has plagued me!! Holes in my shirt. Pesky, little holes.

We moved into our house a little over a year ago. Since that time I slowly started building a wardrobe of shirts with little small holes at the bottom. Just one hole typically. Always at the bottom about an inch above the hem, and always at the same spot in the center. At first I thought it was a fluke. Then I thought it was the dryer. Then we got a new dryer. Then I thought it was the button on my jeans (I always wear jeans). Then I thought it was because I always carry the toddler and his knee or shoes always hit right at my waist.

I’ve tried everything … air drying my shirts to avoid the dryer, trying to get more expensive (read thicker cotton) shirts, changing how I hold the toddler so his shoes don’t hit the front of my shirt … and today I sat looking through Etsy trying to find some scarf belts, figuring that would block the jeans button from rubbing against the shirt.

Then, Google-obsessed that I am, I decided to read up on my dilemma. Low-and-behold I stumbled on a solution. It wasn’t jeans or buttons or little moths. No, it was granite countertops.

And I look down from where I stand … where I stand typing on my laptop that sits on the kitchen counter … the granite kitchen counter that I lean up against as I type. And the granite overlap, with it’s nice tile edges and grout, is RIGHT at the spot where the damn hole is.

Problem solved. No need to buy a belt! But I’m not so sure I can don an apron every time I work … That just isn’t me!! So I’ll now have to come up with a solution to that problem :)

422 Comments

  1. If I had known, I could have told you this also. I was plagued with the same dilemma last winter and considered my pants buttons, I swore it was the zipper on my coat snagging things. Then spring came, and the holes still appeared on the first day I wore the shirts. I’m happy to say that I must have buffed the knick in the granite down by now because I nolonger suffer from holey shirts!

    It’s so frustrating while it lasts!

    • I’ve had the same problem and NO granite countertops- am doing an experiment to see if it’s the metal in the jeans closure or possibly the cotton reacting with the metal. I have replaced the closure on one of my pairs of jeans with a button. So far, I’ve not had a problem. I have also notofied the jeans maker (Anne Klein) of this widespread problem which can be seen all over the web. It just started for me last year and I have noticed that the stud closure is sort of brass colored.

      • I was getting small holes on the bottom of my tops below the belly button. Most the shirts were thin cotton or stretch material. One was my pagama top which I sometimes keep on over my jeans. It’s not bugs, it’s not from the washer/dryer it’s from leaning against your top. I put on one of the damaged tops but turned the back to the front. I was wearing my jean shorts which has a metal button in front. I put on my flip flops and then tried it with a pair of shoes with a wedge (I sometimes wear) I pretended to wash some dishes leaning against the counter. I rubbed my stomach against the counter/cabinet a few times and a hole appeared just after a few tries. It has to be the material rubbing against the button of jeans. Try it yourself.

        • Lyn,

          Did you feel the snag when it happened? As I am reading this blog, I can say that the holes have started since we had our countertops replaced with granite. I look forward to your replay. I am running out of tops to wear!

          • I am running out of tops too! i have holes in EVERY one of them! I do NOT have granite counter tops so I am trying to find out why. This woman says its her granite but my friend has the same problem and she swears it was her washer and hasn’t happened since she go a new one. The only thing with that was that it was happening to her shirts ONLY and nobody else in her family. I am STUMPED! Ughhh.

        • I’ve gone through dozens of shirts these last few years, and I wear Levi jeans all winter. So I contacted Levis, and they were INCREDIBLY NICE to me. My jeans weren’t new, but they replaced several pairs anyway, but they said they had done experiments and they felt it was not their buttons. I’ve been wearing the new jeans, with a lighter weight metal button, and darned if two of my brand new shirts have the little holes, plus the slight discoloration. I don’t have granite counters, but I do have quartz composite, but I don’t lean against counter when I work in kitchen. Anyone have any more ideas? One thing I’m pretty sure of is the fabric the shirts are made of is inferior compared to years ago. I still wear two shirts from long ago and neither one has holes. I also thought it might be just the edge of the jeans, rather than the button. I’m going to wear a belt, with the buckle on the side, from now on. I’ll see if that helps. Bottom line I think the fabric these days is inferior.

          • I’m replying to myself here. I bought 6 new winter shirts, supposedly high quality, and all now have the stupid little holes. I also find my old shirts with some silk or spandex don’t develop holes as much, and some don’t get holes at all. Meanwhile, I found I DO lean against our quartz composite (sort of like granite) countertop. I really thought I didn’t. So, I’m going to try to wear an apron. Grrrrrr. I hate aprons. And I think what’s called cotton these days isn’t like olden days cotton.

      • David Spiller 3/19/2012 at 9:13 am Reply

        My wife has the same problem, but I do the dishes and the holes
        are at not at the same level plus this has happened in 5 different
        houses with different kitchens. She has a girlfriend that has a twin
        and they both have the same problem. I think it is from energy
        created from the sacral chakra perhaps.

        • Hey David Spiller!

          I am a man, and it happens to me quite a lot too, but I too started to think that it is something related to the 1st chakra, and i also imagined that energy from there would shoot out through that area, and cause all the holes. I am thinking this, because i do feel that i have had that chakra blocked for quite a while now, and i imagine that this is all that energy that can’t flow freely, and it eventually has to come out somehow.
          It would be interesting to see if people having this issue, all have the symptoms that a blocked 1st chakra would cause. These would be financial unrest, lower back problems, etc. (you can find them all on the web).
          I’m gonna start meditation for the balancing of the chakras tonight, as i wanted to start for some days now, and it would be amazing if there will be any changes.

          • I have had my wood dresser since I was a teenager with no issues. Many years later; about 2 years ago, I noticed that most of my tops also have holes in the front; just above the seam. All this time, I thought it was moths – until today, when I got fed-up. Decided to MAN-UP and go through & clean ALL of those drawers AND my stored “Space Bag”ged garments to find the culprits and save my clothes. This quest led me to this site…Countertops, whatever stone nor the buttons from jeans were NEVER EVER considered. And then the chakra postings – yes a bit different, but why not, states: “It would be interesting to see if people having this issue, all have the symptoms that a blocked 1st chakra would cause. These would be financial unrest, lower back problems, etc.” So, y’all feel it’s not moths? I’m not yet totally convinced. However, it would be please me to know that I don’t have insects in my clothes, next to my body or in my home.

      • Interested to know how your research went. I have been having this exact problem. We have quite a bad moth problem too but since my shirts (like everyone else’s) all seem to develop holes in the same area, I have concluded it must be some kind of reaction with the nickel in the jeans buttons to the cotton. I also wondered if this reaction makes the fabric more “tasty” to the moths which is why the holes appear in this area. It has been happening for years but I have a shirt that is brand new – I have been wearing it for a couple of days and yesterday it was fine, this morning it has holes!

    • If only I had read this 3 years ago! I have ruined so many shirts since we moved into our house with granite counter tops. I just tested the theory and it is absolutely correct! I also thought it was my seat belt, button on my pants, belts, etc. I thought I had considered everything but not the granite countertops. The edge of my countertop looks smooth but there are actually tiny little chips that you can feel when you run your finger along the beveled edge. Mystery solved!!! Now, what do I do about it? I can’t remember to put on an apron every time I walk into my kitchen. Just called a granite installer and waiting to hear what he says.

      • I have spent hours invisibly mending so many tops which have all had holes in them and, like everyone else, blamed the seat belt, jeans belt etc.etc. and thankfully just found out to-day (after a year of holes as we had moved house too) that yes, it is the granite top in my kitchen, so what do I do now with the granite top? Have you got a solution? Pleae help!!!!

        • I don’t believe it’s the granite or the zipper of jeans.
          What do I think? It’s the metal on the button of pants or jeans. It may be brass that does not agree with cotton. Those two combinations together are causing an acidic effect on the fibers of the cotton. I may be wrong but it does make sense at least for me. I have all types of pants but most of them have a brass button closure. This has been driving me crazy since march when I first noticed it.

          • I don’t have granite countertops either. I have wood and metal with very smooth, rounded edges. My 5 sisters and I were talking about this very subject today and, regardless of our countertop material we ALL have experienced this problem and it’s only cropped up in the past few years.

          • hi ive been going mad too since i moved 5yrs ago i keep getting holes in my tops only when i wear jeans! i have a granite work top and no longer wear belts as i thought that was the problem no! still does it! same area every time. so, it has something to do with top of jeans i think. its driving me mad glad im not the only one ! skirts dont do it or legging type bottoms! my husband does not have the prob he never wears jeans in house!

      • I do not believe it is granite bechtops, I do not believe it is seat belts, or washing machines/dryers, your zip is covered once you do your jeans up, not just 100percent cotton, not detergents, not bodily acids, not moths otherwise holes would be everywhere. The other day I purchased a top from K-Mart and guess what- it had holes in it! Even before I tried it on I spotted the holes centre front above hemline. Unless someone wore it and returned it, how did they get there? It looked new all tags still on it. I am going crazy because I am so sick of my tops being ruined. Another thing is why does it not happen to everyone? My mother who does a lot of cooking and dishwashing gets no holes! Ever! And she wears jeans. I put on a top yesterday did no cooking or cleaning just drove my car and when I got home HOLES! I had a camisole under my thin very expensive t-shirt and still got holes. No holes in camisole. I do not wash my jeans with tops and only hand wash some tops. The thing that gets me is that besides a few others having problems in other areas it is always in the same spots. So friction must be the culprit. But then how do you explain the brand new top?
        SOMEONE HELP US!!!!!

        • I have been having this problem for over 3 years now! Never before though. I, too, thought it was related to my jeans, but it still didn’t make sense…I’ve always worn jeans, this never happened before we moved to this house. I also thought it was from carrying my son, or something in my water, or moths, etc. Then I thought it was the brand. After finally thinking to Google it (after noticing about six tiny holes in a BRAND NEW SHIRT that I’d only been wearing for 2 HOURS), I was amazed at how many other people have the same problem! So, I tested out some of the theories mentioned here. In my case, it is not just the rubbing against the button of my jeans, and it’s not just rubbing against my countertops (not granite, but tile)…it’s the combination of the two. After turning it around backward, I rubbed it against the slightly rough edges of my button. Not enough to wear 6 holes in 2 hours. I tried rubbing it against the countertop alone and still not enough. It’s the rubbing between the countertop and the button. Now, depending on how rough your button is around the edges (the jeans I’m wearing now are not expensive name brand), it could possibly happen just from that given the right amount of friction over a certain amount of time. I’m going to be super cautious of this from now on to see if this eliminates the problem. OMG, just thinking of how many great shirts I’ve lost over the past three + years!!!!

          • I started noticing this a few months back…I have no clue what it is from. I do have granite countertops but the holes are only in afew of my shirts. Some have one hole and some have many. I am frustrated. I know its not my washer as it has no center drum. Will try and pay attention to what I wear against the counter and keep you all posted.

        • wow.. I wish a clothing manufacturer would chime in on this.. Like everyone here, I’ve been getting tiny holes in the belly button area on almost all of the thinner, stretchy, mostly cotton shirts I’ve purchased in the last couple of years. Never before. Checked my seat belt, there’s nothing to snag on there. I don’t wear jeans, no buttons, zipper or snaps, no belts, either. I do have granite counters, but they have rounded edges. I found a hole in a shirt I just bought. I wore it once! This is an expensive nuisance. Velvet, while I like their designs, all have holes in them. This needs to be addressed by the companies making the shirts. Please help.. I’m going to send an email to them, at least.. I told Garnet Hill, they’d not heard about it, though they were willing to exchange.. if it is friction on granite, that would be interesting..

          • glad to see I’m not the only one with this problem. Every shirt I put on without a hole, I take off with a hole. Its driving me crazy! I don’t wash anything with a zipper or hook with my tops, checked seat belt, purse, my dogs toe nails-nothing makes a difference. Now I’ll try wearing an apron in the kitchen and see if it helps.

        • My Daughter and I have the same problem, we always have holes in the same spot and im tired of throwing away good money in this economy on new shirts when I don’t know whats causing it. I never thought of the granit counter tops. we do both have front loading washers though and was thinking that might be the cause, but then we had to ask ourselves why only our tops i did see some small holes in my husbands t shirts at the sholder seam. I’ve always had a top loader before and never had holes in our cloths so i was wondering if this could be it or if it is really the counter tops I have granit she has quartz countertops. I need help>

          • I have had this same problem for DECADES. I recall seeing it in the T. shirts of other guys in high school. I think it is moths attracted to pheromones from the suprapubic area where the T.shirt tucks in.

          • Angela Black 4/29/2012 at 9:18 am

            Carpet beetles larvae – 70% of all houses have carpet beetles.
            The larvae live off clothes, furniture, carpet, etc. Hard to see even the adult stage – very small. Not sure why they target the same area of shirts, but I have carpet beetles – been fighting them for four months now and they have eaten all my shirts – same place.

      • OMG!!! I think you’ve all helped solve the mystery of those tiny holes in my soft cotton tops – six of them so far on some of my faves. Every time another one is discovered I go crazy in my attempt to figure out what the heck is going on. Ran my fingers over every belt, but all were pretty smooth. Did the same on all the zippers and buttons of my jeans however none had unusually sharp edges. Couldn’t imagine my seatbelt doing all that damage. BUT….I renovated my kitchen a few years ago and YES….I have granite counter tops. Could that be the culprit?
        I was in a store discussing the problem with my cousin when another woman jumped into the conversation remarking that she, her sister and friend are all going through the same frustrating problem.
        I’m going to be really careful in the kitchen from now on and hope that rectifies the problem. My house is SO clean, I simply couldn’t buy into the bug theory so granite damage makes the most sense.

        • I just cannot believe how many people have the same problem as our family, even though none of my friends seem to have this happening to them. We do not have granite counters, we do not have bugs. We do all wear jeans which have metal buttons, we also wear belts with a sharp point which we have considered to be the culprit. But I wear tops with leggings and still these tiny holes appear. It has been happening over the last couple of years and I have wondered if it is because we buy cheapish clothes – i.e H & M, peacocks, New Look, etc. but I was in a bar recently and saw someone with a very expensive designer T-shirt on and guess what – he had them too! Always in the front, just below the belly button. So how can this be bugs, washing m/c or tumble dryers? Surely it would be all over wouldn’t it?
          Please contact me should anyone really find the solution to this infuriating, costly problem.

    • It’s not the granite benchtops. I’ve had granite benchtops since 2005 and my hole-y shirts only appeared a year ago. I don’t know what the problem is but I don’t like it!!!!!

    • have the problem for years and can’t solve it. Do not have any granite counter tops at home or at work and it happens in some of my woolen sweaters too. Can some please help me to solve this. Bugging for years. It only happens to my t shirts and some sweaters but not my husband or kids so not the washer or dryer. I thought it was work related so worn particular shirts to work and others at home but the home ones got the holes. hate it so much . IF any can help please do because someone is making money our me on new t-shirts. lol

    • I don’t have granite, just plain old formica countertops and my teen daughter and i both have these holes. It is very annoying. I think it might have something to do with how the button stick out on my pants and shorts. I don’t have holes on shirts with small plastic buttons.

      • To me it started happening only when I had my baby boy and started carrying him in the Manduca. Tried everything but nothing worked… and no information on German websites so I am consulting you… we do not have granite countertops so what can I do?

    • i have looked at my jeans and now convinced its the zipsticks out straight not lying flat from movement and cuts through the material depending on what your doing i am 99% sure hard one to solve !

  2. Unbelieveable I just “tested” this unsolved mystery and youre RIGHT!!!!! I thought it was my pants or seatbelt!!!!!!

  3. I don’t have granite or other abrasive countertops but I have this same problem.

    • have been having this problem for years and it’s been driving me mad. I have finally worked out that it is my jeans, all 3 pairs do it. It’s not the butoon or the belt but when I sit down my jeans are quite tight over my tummy and the zip tends to stick out and I think that is what’s doing it. I tried cutting the zip off and replacing with a safety pin but still got holes. I now have a pair of button fly jeans and finally have some t shirts without holes. Not easy to find button flies though. Anyone know a good place to get these?

      • I glued felt on top of my jeans closure, but it didn’t help. SO WEIRD! I too can “make” holes after just one or two wearings. Also, I thought maybe it was because my jeans were too tight. But I’ve lost 12 lbs since March, and I’m wearing the SAME SIZE JEANS, so they’re not too tight.
        As I mentioned (though I think there are two Claudias in this conversation) I took the problem to Levis, and they were super super nice and they tested their jeans, but they didn’t find them to be the problem, though they thought it was possible it was friction from the closure. But like the rest of you, I’ve worn jeans for years, and this problem appeared—-maybe 4 years ago? I’ve thrown away a LOT of shirts.

  4. I had the same problem cleaned closet had to throw out 21 shirts. Checked for everything this has been going on for 1 year.
    Finally I looked behind my seat belt in my car and the little plastic button was broken and had a sharp peice that was snaging my clothes. I feel so much better now that I know what it is….

  5. I just posted my shirt holes were solved. Now I fixed the belt,and one day I bought a new shirt wore it and did not drive my car.after wearing about 2 hours the holes appeared again. now I am finding them everyday they dont come out of the closet with the holes just appear a couple of hours after wearing.. I am going crazy…If any one has help please post…

    • I have been having this problem for years and it’s been driving me mad. I have finally worked out that it is my jeans, all 3 pairs do it. It’s not the butoon or the belt but when I sit down my jeans are quite tight over my tummy and the zip tends to stick out and I think that is what’s doing it. I tried cutting the zip off and replacing with a safety pin but still got holes. I now have a pair of button fly jeans and finally have some t shirts without holes. Not easy to find button flies though. Anyone know a good place to get these?

    • I have the same problem. Happens if I leave the shirt out or tuck them in. Today I wore a new shirt tucked in, no holes. Went to work, the seatbelt was over my jacket. When I got home, sure enough there was a hole. I don’t think it is granite, seatbelt or zippers. Some of the holes are larger. If the zipper was causing these holes I’m sure I would be feeling a pull. Just threw out 14 shirts. Driving me crazy.

      • I am looking for answers as well. I’ve been using moth balls for over a year, and stil have the creepy holes in the bottom of my tee shirts! It has to be something microscopic form of a bug that comes from maybe where the tee’s are made and doesn’t die in the laundry!!!! I also lost several nice cotton tee’s and am sick of this! It’s not granite, it’s not the seat belt, and it’s not the button on the jeans! It’s truly creepy!!! It has to be a microorganism we can’t see!!!

  6. Wow, I have been getting holes in my shirt and I thought it was the brand. but even when I bought more expensive shirts, I still had the problem. Thank you so much for posting this; when I searched it on google this came up. It is definitely from the granite in my kitchen when I’m washing dishes!

    • After reading everyone comments, I think it could be the manufacturing of the clothes, they are probably adding somewhat of additives in the material and after a few times of wearing them with the air outside, the water etc….Maybe.

  7. OMG – I have the same problem, I just discovered another hole and went online for help… Thanks for this!
    I immediately got some clear tape out (the packaging kind) and added it to the granite counter top where i stand when i do the dishes.
    Now i will go and mend the last hole in my shirt (hopefully) :)

    • How do you mend the holes in your shirts? Mine are so tiny however if I stiched it together it would be even more obvious.

      • Karen Nalbandian 6/2/2011 at 4:17 pm Reply

        I sew the holes in my cotton tees with very small stitches on the inside. It doesn’t
        look wonderful, but I don’t have to throw away numerous shirts.
        While the granite counter top idea sounds plausible, I still think it’s the waistband
        of jeans or the metal rivet closure. Even wearing a belt doesn’t help me. I’ve
        found packing tape on the inside of an expensive top in the probable area works
        great (just remember to remove before washing).

        • I have the same problem, I going crazy, nose what else to do, sometimes the holes are small and sometimes they are larger, especially in cotton clothes and cachimire, always in the same place that all of you, I think it is that if you cook or eat and you drop fat or food in that part of the blouse and somehow has a bug to eat but do not how or at what time..the tape work??

  8. I can’t believe that I googled this and it came up! I noticed this problem about a year ago right after having granite countertops installed. I thought it could be my jeans button or seatbelt but it is from leaning against the counter when I am working in the kitchen. I have ruined so many shirts, it is unbelievable! I am going to see if i can smooth it or start wearing an apron.

    • I SOOOO empathize with you all! I have gotten a new washing machine, then quit wearing a belt, and now I finally agree it is the granite! I didn’t have this problem with my last kitchen’s granite countertops because of the rounded edges, but this one has blunt edges. I am hoping this is the answer so I can fix the problem and stop ruining lovely clothes. What a waste of money and what a shame!

      • My daughter and I have been puzzled by this, we both just bought 3 brand new shirts and they all have holes in them. We don’t have granite counter tops, ours are Formica and the edges are smooth so I don’t think that the granite can be the complete problem. I checked and my pants button comes even with the counter edge and with the pin holes in my shirt. Thanks for all the input at least I have a few things to look out for and stop blaming the manufacturer of these shirts.

        • It is NOT granite counter-tops!!!!! It may be for some. But I say it is not. Lots of people have this same situation who DO NOT wear jeans, DO NOT BLOG at granite counter tops and who DO NOT drive or wear seatbelts. Those would be me and my family. This has been the case for over 20 years!!!!
          It is only soft cottons, no matter how expensive, how new….it always happens. Always. Always. Always. None of the comments have answered – I often hand-wash, air-dry and never iron these shirts. I have had pest control in the home, I do not get holes anywhere else on the shirts – front middle, a few inches from the hems.

          • Ok soooo glad I found this blog because seriously this is driving me nuts! For the past 5/6 years small holes have been appearing on my cotton tees and a few thin cotton sweaters. Always at the bottom near the hem and always at the front. At first I assumed it was a pin or something sharp stuck in my washing machine. So I bought a new one; more holes kept appearing. So then I assumed it was my dryer, so I bought a new one. Still holes! So then I started using moth balls and moth catchers, keeping in mind I’ve never once seen a moth in the house and keeping in mind that in our fmily of 6, only my clothes are ever effected! Still new holes popping up, even a few more on the same tees, making them completely unrepairable. So finally I called a fumigator to see what the options were because until I spoke to him, I assumed I had microscopic moths. Then he asked the obvious question all of you in this blog have discussed, ie, are they in the same place and only on my clothes? So not moths! He had no suggestions but told me categorically that no entomologist would tell you is is how moths work. Holes would appear everywhere and anywhere with no discrimination.
            After reading all your comments I’ve come to the following conclusions:
            I do not have a moth infestation
            The holes are not from granite because I don’t have granite
            The holes are not from jeans because I hardly wear them
            They might be seat belt related

            I’ll keep looking, but ruling out these things was helpful because clearly I’m doing something myself to cause the holes, which is a relief in some small measure. At least I’m now on the right track!

          • I have had this problem for years!! My hubby has suggested a few things that could be causing it (i.e., seatbelt, leaning against the counters), but I have taken precautions against that and it still happens. I truly believe that it is the material, or lack thereof, that is causing the holes. T-shirts are so thin now and just normal everyday living causes the holes to develop. It only happens with my shirts. My hubby and daughter’s shirts aren’t as thin as mine. It is so maddening, because I have had to throw out perfectly good shirts, that have only been worn a few times.
            I guess I will have to start buying shirts that aren’t made with cheap material. Unfortunately, I don’t think that is possible. All of the shirts from Target, Aeropostle, Lucky brand and a few others get the holes. Argh!

          • It is the granite!!! Maybe not the answer for all of the holes you are all talking about but for the ones on my shirts it is. I just moved a month ago to this new house with granite, I got about 7 new tops 2 weeks ago in JC Penney and have ruined 4 already, so this morning when I put on one of my new tops I made sure that there was no hole in it anywhere. I just did some dishes and inmedialety after that checked my shirt and a tiny hole starting showing, now there are about 3 or 4 more tiny holes around it… crazy but real…
            Now I have to remember to wear my apron every single time I am in the kitchen …
            It was making me anxious not knowing what it was…
            Blessings to all from Phoenix, AZ

          • I have been baffled by this problem for the last few years. I don’t remember it before then. I finally came to the conclusion it was the back nails of my cat since I always held him in the vicinity of “the holes.” Well, the cat is no longer with us, and the holes are still coming. I have blamed all of the above, including my tile countertops. Only one problem with that theory. The only clothing I have that does not have a single hole in it is my very soft cotton pajamas, and I’ve been known to wear them plenty while cooking. I also checked the seatbelt, my jeans zipper, buttons, etc. I have also noticed “wear” in the same place on my linen tanks. It is still a mystery.

            I have found a very good solution and have done it to all my T-shirts. Go to the fabric shop and buy a sheet of iron-on stitch witchery. Find fabric of similar weight and color and iron on a patch on the wrong side. I initally ironed on tiny little patches over each hole, but now I have resorted to sewing on one big patch several inches wide over the whole area. Unfortunately, this doesn’t work on white and very light colors…the patch shows through on the right side and looks pretty ridiculous. Too bad since half of my shirts are white. If the shirt is new without holes, any color patch would work.

            Wore a new shirt last night for the first time…came home…a hole! It’s not a snag, it’s a rub because I can see where more are starting. Until I googled this, I thought I was the only one! WHAT IS THIS???

      • I have been experiencing the same problem with small holes on the bottom of my tops, below the belly button. I don’t have granite tops but I do wear jeans. Most of them have the metal button. Last year I even went and replaced my washer and dryer thinking that they were causing the problem. I’m still getting the holes.

        • One of the posters just above said the exact same thing I said to my sister a few months ago -that this didn’t happen to my clothes until a few years ago. Never before. I’ve been wearing jeans my whole life and it ONLY happens to shirts I wear with jeans. I don’t have granite counters, and my seat belt does not meet where my holes are. My sister saw my shirt and said she has the same problem and that it IS the jeans causing it (at least, in my case). But it’s not the button or the zipper -it’s the tip of the jean -right near the zipper and button. The part that is HARD and POINTY and can often bend/curl out when not dried flat or when the denim shrinks so much that it pulls the tip down. (and yes, non-jeans with zipper areas can also have a hard tip of fabric). I was skeptical at first that the tip was doing it, but sure enough, it lines up exactly with all the holes and I can often look down and see the point pushing against my shirt. :( This week alone, I’ve got two new shirts with holes. So it’s definitely caused by friction to thin fabric -just that the belly area seems to get subjected to more friction (from counters, seat belts, jeans, etc.) than any other area. I found this site because I’m looking for a solution. So far, the best solution has been to wear an undershirt (which gets damaged instead of the outer shirt), but this is not always possible, nor comfortable. I like the idea someone said about putting an iron on patch inside -I might do that before wearing a hole in the shirt. Anyone else have any ideas to prevent the holes?

          • I agree with this one with a tiny excetion, I too have been going crazy over this and started layering my tops only to find that sometimes the outer top got holes whilst the inner top was fine, I don’t have granite, I have caesar stone (very smooth) but I think maybe harsh chemicals in cleaning products on bench tops can also be weakening the fabric in this spot. Then maybe whilst in the wash the fine fabric (especially the lyocell or cotton Lycra mixes) seems to break. Just a theory – most definitely not got a solution yet…..and getting more and more annoyed…….got only 2 wears out of my latest top!

          • David Spiller 3/19/2012 at 9:25 am

            Why doesn’t it happen to any men ?

          • I agree with you that it is the pointy corner tip of the jean closure that is causing the holes on cotton tops. I think that women’s tops tend to be thinner or a finer weave than a man’s t-shirt which is why men aren’t seeing the problem. I also think women tend to wear their jeans tighter and tops more fitted which exacerbates the friction and the creation of the holes.

            I am going to try to wear a slippery camisole that fits over the top of the jeans to try to prevent the problem. We’ll see.

  9. Same problem, but mine was a combination of the button on my jeans rubbing against the granite with my shirt being the innocent bystander in the middle. I first taped my granite counter top with duct tape and then proceeded throughout my day…and low and behold, the TAPE was mangled as was my shirt. Pressing against granite or any hard surface was making my jean buttons pierce my shirts. So I wear an apron….still in testing mode.

    • I agree 100% it’s the metal from the button fly or your belt that is rubbing on the inside of the shirt and up against the counter top!! I dont have granite.. but have a bevelled edge counter top. If I put tape over my button I don’t get holes. The minute I forget to do this… I will have a hole everytime!

  10. kelly crabtree 10/27/2009 at 1:00 pm Reply

    I have had the problem of the mysterious holes for about 5 months now..it’s over 25 shirts and really driving me CRAZY..I don’t have granite counter tops, my seatbelt is smooth…I have changed nothing in the last 6 months, so why now the holes in every t-shirt no matter the brand?…there is no reasonable explanation at all!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! :(

    • Stacie Jarman 2/23/2011 at 1:38 pm Reply

      I am with you Kelly. I don’t have granite counters, bugs, seatbelt snags or a bad Washer/dryer. But I am convinced I have to be snagging it on something. Hey my closet was cleaned last weekend though. :-)

    • Any chance it’s your belt? I think that’s what causes mine. I am 6’4″ so it’s not the countertop.

      • It is not the belt as I stopped wearing a belt and I have several new tops ruined since then. I have granite counter tops and I wear jeans a lot I am guessing jeans and granite counter top.

    • Kelly ~ I agree. None of my PJ tops do this. It could very well be something we are rubbing up against every day. Because even my zip up hoodies have holes in them now. It took a lot longer for that to happen, but they too have holes now. So, not sure it can be the button on the jeans, because my hoody isn’t rubbing on it. The more that I think about this… the more I am thinking that it is leaning up against countertops and the fact that the shirts are so thin!!!

  11. I am guessing we are all about the same height? I am 161cm and was going MAD about my hole problem, then it started happening to my Sister In-Law (about the same height). I thought we must have had some kind of Bellybutton Fungus? lol! Thanks for posting this, I will give the Ol’ Apron a try!

  12. It has to be rubbing against the corner of jeans above the botton — I can’t think of anything else! Everybody is getting a holes in the same place. It only makes sense.

  13. I am 5’1″ and have had this problem for about 2 yrs. I don’t have granite, my seatbelt is smooth, my jeans are not sharp, and no one else in my family has this problem. It happens to all of my shirts, regardless of where I buy them. It is an inch or so above the hem, around the belly button. It seems to start out as if I stretched the shirt and it gets a faded whitish color. Then boom the holes come. This is costing me a lot of money and it is driving me bonkers! I usually wear 100% cotton shirts so I don’t know if it has to do with that. On my thicker shirts, it takes a little longer for them to appear but they eventually do. Please someone help! This is so stupid but so annoying.
    Thank you.

  14. Can’t believe I found the answer on my first Google try! I blamed it on the poor quality of my Gap Tshirts, then it started happening to my Target Tshirts. Not that the quality was any better, but at least different brand. Although my granite countertops feel smooth, it is the only thing that makes sense. Thanks! You really can find anything on the internet.

  15. I have the same problem. Mainly with long t-shirts, however I, too am 5ft1″. Just started happening in the last 2 months. I was about to complain at a store, but then all my shirts started doing it. No granite countertops, but I do a lot of dishes and stand in front of my counter when I am on my laptop.

    • I have had this problem for about 5 years and 25 shirts. I’ve asked so many people about this, and it’s been a mystery all this time. My daughter just sent me this link and hope it solves the mystery. My problem is that my counter top is granite, but its smooth. I think that the solution will be to put on an apron.

      • It can only be my granite tops! It has just happened again to a new on for only 2 hours top. It only happens to t-shirt material I find! How utterly annoying!

        • it is DEFINITELY the granite counter tops…i just tested it w/ an old shirt and rubbed part of it along the bottom edge and boom, i got holes all over the old shirt! cant beleive how many clothes i’ve ruined b/c of this. now i need to find out how to sand it down or smooth it out….

          • laurie heath 5/11/2011 at 2:50 pm

            Thank you for actually testing it!!! I’ve been having this problem for awhile now and couldn’t figure it out!!! I will start wearing an apron or something now and see what happens…I’ve lost a lot of great shirts and blouses!!!

          • Did you manage to find out how to smooth the granite. I have ruined so many clothes.

            Thanks
            Emma

          • I don’t have granite counter tops and my shirts have holes, my daughter has the same problem and she does not have granite counter tops either.

          • I have the same problem with the holes but I do not have granite tops. It has to be something else. I do wear jeans that have the metal button on them. Also, one of my pagama tops also has holes in it but sometimes I wear it in the house over my jeans. I’m really thinking that it has something to do with the jeans.

  16. I have the same problem and I have finally figured it out. It is my jeans (mostly Gap brand) the top corner of the button hole portion of my jeans all stick out and are rubbing against my shirts. I have no idea how to fix it but today I noticed a hole in my brand new only worn 4 times adorable shirt from Ann Klein. I am so sick of this happening. How do I fix that top corner so it doesn’t rub?

  17. I wrote last on 2/6/10. I am still having the problem on all my shirts; new ones I just bought for Spring. My holes are not in line with the button hole portion of my jeans so I am still stumped. My husband is going to have a fit when the next credit card statement comes in and he sees the purchases of more shirts. I gained a lot of weight in 2006 and maybe pulling the shirts over my now too big tummy is too much for them. I am working on losing weight and maybe, someday, I can tuck my shirts in again and will solve my hole problem.

  18. This has been an on-going problem for me, as well. Tonite, while I was lying on the couch with my laptop propped on my lap, it occured to me that the heat from the underside of my laptop may be the culprit! My laptop is resting right on top of my belly and when I lifted it up, it was right where the holes usually form!
    I can’t be positive this is the cause, but it makes sense!

  19. My wife is in the same boat. I dont have a ‘hole’ problem in my shirts and I’m a Mr. mom. Dishes I do! Silestone countertops in my place, nice and smooth. My theory: you ladies just need to clean your belly buttons a bit better! Maybe? Or, the manufactures of these thin shirts just have an unethical/ethical flaw in their sewing process.

    • jajajaja. are you trying to say that we have a bug in our belly button ?? that is so silly

  20. I have been getting these holes now for the last two years, no granite countertops, seatbelt smooth and the holes appear on the right side of my tshirts, not the front. Have cleaned the closet and washed everything down still geeting these little fang holes—–HELP!

  21. So, I have the same problem. After 1 and half of buying tops I’ve been trying to answer this same question. What is causing this holes in my shirts?

    Yes I have granite counter tops. No, they don’t rub. Yes, I use granite cleaner. No, it doesn’t touch my clothes. New dryer/washer..didn’t matter. Hubby’s clothes/tops have no holes.

    Today, I wore a t-shirt, 100% cotton. No Holes! Went for a hike wearing gap jean. Wore the shirt over the jeans. Hubby wears Gap jeans. BUT WEARS a belt.

    Came home, didn’t touch granite, didn’t do anything but watch a movie. Got up looked at my shirt and sure enough, 2 holes right above the Gap button.

    I think the button is treated with a dye for looks and it’s rubbing the chemical onto the shirt?

    Anybody agree?

  22. I HAVE WORKED IT OUT!!!! IT HAPPENS WHEN THE ZIP ON MY JACKET SNAGS MY COTTON T-SHIRTS WHEN I DO UP MY ZIPPER!

  23. Okay, while I find the granite theory interesting, I don’t have granite, and I have another possibility. I notice the tiny holes only happen with my longer, thinner shirts. I finally noticed that when cooking a meal at the stove, or shortly thereafter, I noticed my shirt looked faded in the lower abdomen, like colors somtimes do when they get warm. Upon a closer look, I saw tiny holes forming! I think its a combination of the thiness of the shirt and its length – long enough to be a the perfect point right next to the hot stove! I have proven this theory (unfortunately) several times, as I cannot seem to remember to keep away from the harsh heat! It’s singeing my shirts!!!

    • Carmela LaVigna Coyle 5/26/2011 at 7:21 pm Reply

      I know your post is over a year old, but I am convinced that all the holes in my shirts are from something that is going on with the metal button on my jeans and the stove. I have a gas stove and I think there is possibly some interaction between the metal button and the flame or spark, that puts a tiny hole in my tee-shirts. I am going to try to cover my button with something so that it doesn’t conduct.

      • I have the same problem, don’t have granite countertop or gas stove…
        This is driving me nuts!!!!!!!

  24. I am going MAD with the hole thing!!!! I wear a smooth under top under all my shirts as they are so low and thin ..this has been going on for a good 2 years..
    so it cant be the button….
    no on the granite…I just bought 4 new t’s and after ONE wearing they all have holes…
    seat blet is good…
    the holes are actually lower than the button..
    put in cedar in closet and moth catchers..have caught lots of moths,yes..all baby moths..I think the cotton comes from the same places with moth eggs wear they eat their way out??
    I did notice the light discoloring that took place…they are all on the front but sometimes to the side and often multiple like stars and sometimes all over…I really think it is a buggy problem…lets solve this girls..btw I wear an apron oftem…
    I have gone through litterally 40 shirts…

  25. I am wondering if there isn’t an unethical process that these newly manufactured shirts are going through in manufacturing. Has anyone had the holes in shirts made in America? Are there any shirts made in America.

    I have 3 daughters, we use different washers, have smooth counters, as well as smooth seatbelts, some tuck in shirts and some don’t. we all have the holes~

    • I think it is the manufacturers. The cotton is definitely thinner now a days. It could be the genetically modified cotton. I wonder if it is the HE detergent or the oxy-clean I use in my front loader though.

  26. OMG! I am so happy to read this site! Just a month ago I found out my best friend has the same issue and I rejoiced knowing I am not crazy! How many times have I sworn in my closet after finding another ruined tee?? I was sure it had to be my seatbelt or counter…after reading the blogs, now I believe it is a combo of my jeans button and any hard surface I lean my belly against.

    Buying an apron, but wonder if that will solve it, as the jean button will still be there with any hard surface my belly comes into contact with…

    Not sure there is a solution. Just happy I am in good company. Maybe I will start tucking in? Scary.

  27. Thank goodness I am not going mad, I thought it was only me that this happened to. I’ve also thought that it could be a combination of the button on my jeans, seatbelt and zip on my jacket, but it has happened to tops when i’ve worn other trousers and not been in the car.

    Just leaned against the granite top in my kitchen and where I generally stand there are a couple of chips in the granite, right at the correct height.

    I am so relieved to finally know what it is, I thought I was going crazy. I knew it wasn’t the washing machine because it only happens to my clothes, no-one elses in the family.

    Just put a little dab of clear nail polish over the chip – don’t know if it will work but I’m willing to try anything!

  28. I sure hope my granite counter tops are to blame! So many ruined shirts…. I have been fustrated since we moved into our new home almost 2 years ago. Always thought it was my belt or coat zipper! It totally make sense now! Makes me so mad because I have a few shirts I so love and can not replace!

    • My problem also started happening when I moved into a different house. Yes it has granite benches.
      Same pants, same shirts worn for years no problem until I moved house. I haven’t lost or gained weight. I do have a new washer and I blamed it at first but it is only happening to my clothes not my husbands or my sons. I do all the work in the kitchen. Kinda makes you think it may well be the benches. I will be vigilant investigating this possibility.

    • Hmmm… mu countertop is laminate… and the handles are horizontal aluminium bars… Could the holes form form the rubbing of the button and the handles or countertop, being the fabric in the middle?

  29. Sylvie Cherian 4/20/2010 at 12:48 am Reply

    You´re going to get a kick out of this one…I´ve been living in Spain for 17 years, and I´ve had this problem too for the last few years! My sister lives in Canada, same thing. Yesterday I went to the corner store to get thread in different colors to match the t-shirts so I could mend them, the store owner told me she had the same problem, and two other clients who overheard jumped right in and said them too! So now this is an INTERNATIONAL PHENOMENON!!! I did believe in the counter (granite or whatever) theory, but just yesterday, another brand new shirt (H&M) got a series of tiny holes in the button area (always the same place), and I didn´t go near a counter! Can´t be moths, why would they always go at the jeans button area? So now I think it´s got something to do with bending down to get something, and the t-shirt fabric getting caught in the button, and when you stand back up it pulls at the fabric and makes a hole. Sighs.

    • I believe it is the food when we cook or eat, that attracts the larvae of moths and bite clothes? who’s agree?

    • you know after reading all the coments ,it seems that the one thing we do have in common, we all wear jeans but i’ve been wearing jeans for years and years. the only things different in the past two years are front loading washer and granit counter tops and i never had holes in my shirts before that. I think i’ll try the apron to.

  30. I used to have problems with holes appearing in t-shirts for no apparent reason. Then I learned that if you wash anything with a zipper, you should always ZIP the zipper up because it will snag on your clothes in the wash and make holes !!! My hole problems have ceased. =)

    • this does not seem like a possible solution for this specific problem because the holes are all in the front or side of the shirts; zippers in the wash cannot possibly be doing it in the same place.

  31. I have the same problem. I have been going crazy!! I finally figured out that it is infact related to wearing jeans… I have several t-shirts that I only wear with sweat pants and no holes. I have had some of these shirts for a while and some are new and never a hole… However any shirt I wear with jeans, with in the first or second wear a hole appears.

  32. I am 5’1″. I have been finding two and three little holes in the lower front of my shirts. Its driving me crazy. Cant figure out how its happening. I do have a little dog. At first I thought it was from her nails while she sits on my lap.
    So I stopped having her on my lap but still have new holes. :(

  33. I am so glad to find I am not the only on with this problem!! I have been having this problem for years! I don’t have granite countertop, and always assumed that it must be from my belt, but I also had the holes in my maternity shirts when I was pregnant and was not wearing a belt, and their was no button for it to catch on. Someone suggested the bug theory, but my husband and I keep our clothes in the same closet and he never gets the holes in his clothes. I also thought that it could be from washing them with jeans (because of the zipper) but it’s always in the EXACT same spot. I just bought 2 new shirts from old navy and after wearing them one time each, the holes are starting. This is driving me crazy. If I went throught my closet and threw out every shirt with a hole, I would have nothing!

    • I have been having this problem for years also. Even with new shirts. I have granite countertops but they are smooth. It must be something with the jeans. I am going to try putting packing tape on the inside of the shirts and see what happens. I am still wearing my shirts with holes because like you, I would have nothing to wear!

  34. Oh wow! Glad I am not the only one going crazy with this. I swore it was the granite becuase my sil has the same problem. myhusband thinks i am nuts but that is the only thing that would rub against my belly. but i think it is from the cleaner or whatever i spray on it that lays in contact with the shirt and makes a hole? anyone?????? i even tried to take an old shirt and rub it on the counter and wash it every day to sort of simulate what one of my regular shirts would go through but i didnt get any holes. i am so frustrated with this!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  35. Help!!!!!!! it seems i can only wear a shirt once and this is costing me a fortune! My sis and i were talking about this last night and i was curious to see if anyone else had this problem… So glad not to be alone! but i must agree with the people who say its their button on jeans… this is the only thing that makes sense!.. I am going to try and wear a shirt underneath to see if i can prevent this!

  36. Everyone, listen. It is not counter tops or moths or mysterious mites in the cotton bales. It is washing up liquid. IT IS WASHING UP LIQUID!!!!
    I have been studying this now for years. I use mine neat under the tap instead of in the bowl of water, it splashes my top. The spots dry and the enzymatic in the liquid, concentrated starts to eat away at the fabric. You then put it in the wash at 40 degrees or so and BINGO, you have a cluster of tiny holes at the FRONT of the tee shirt at just about waist level.
    Concentrated enzymatic will eat skin, tissue, blood and COTTON………..
    I absolutely know this to be the case.

    • It can’t be dishwashing liquid. I am too short for the dish liquid to splash down to that front area of my shirts near the zipper, but I have this crazy hole problem that you all have!!!!

    • it can not be, I never use hot water to wash my tops

  37. Read all the reasons and solutions but I still don’t think it has solved the ‘tiny hole problem’.

    Bought a new machine as a result of this so lets see how we get on!!

  38. NO! You are not listening!! It is the washing up liquid and also any house hold spray cleaners you use. Protect your clothes. It is the only way! I promise you!
    I used to be an endoscopic technician and learnt all about enzymatic cleaners and what they do!
    Have a look at my facebook page – ‘holes in all my tee shirts!!’
    I am trying to spread the word across the world! I am that fed up with it!!

    • this is the *only* thing that makes sense to me. i am going to pay attention to wash carefully and we sill see. i used all natural soaps for years and then was given some cheap stuff from costco. this is when it began for me, so it is possible.
      Thanks!

    • it happen to me in the same day, I wear a shirt with out a hole at the morning and by the evening the holes are there

  39. There are so many of us, maybe its a conspiracy between the clothes manufactorers to make us by more t shirts. Seriously though thanks for the advice I will try some of your suggestions, I have granite work tops too, I thought it was my belt buckle but I have bought 2 new belts and the same thing happened. Its driving me mad, my t shrits cost between £20 – £50 and they are ruined within days. It seems on the surface to be a simple problem but not only is it costly its also infuriating.

  40. I live in Sydney Australia. Same problem but not only with cotton tees….I washed 6 woollen jumpers yesterday and laid them flat to dry. Lo and behold! There were the same 2-3 little holes in 4 of the jumpers….. Expensive tops ruined plus numerous tee shirts and also a fine woven cotton blouse. I have been living in this apartment with Corian benchtops for 2 years and have had the problem for about the same length of time…previous benchtops were smooth edged Formica. I am 5′ 2″ (157cms) tall. It seems to be the shorties who have the most probs so I’ll go with the benchtop theory and wear an apron from now on!!

  41. HolyShirtGirl 5/31/2010 at 5:05 pm Reply

    OMG…I’m not alone?!!lol

    My theory is that when we’re pulling up our jeans at the front, we’re catching the fabric between our fingers and the zipper/button, causing a little rip/hole! So losing a couple lbs would probably help.lol

    However, I will be checking my sealbelt after reading your comments! =)

  42. Hubby just did a test and made it look so simple. I am rubbing my pants button with my shirt while standing at the the countertops. The button is rubbing several small holes right though the shirts. I guess I am going to have to tuck my shirts in at home – or grow taller.

  43. Barney Rubble 6/13/2010 at 2:32 pm Reply

    HAVE I FOUND THE ANSWER?!

    I too felt tremendous relief (and kinship!) reading all your experiences, so thank you. I went to another site where this vexing problem is discussed and found the following:

    “PROBLEM SOLVED – Experiment Included! I’ve been reading these forums for quite some time as I’ve had the same issue since I moved into my new house. It wasn’t until the other night while hovering around the kitchen countertop that I finally realized it is the countertops creating the holes. All of my holes have been on the front of the shirt and not in any nice dress shirts as I don’t wear those while cooking. So to prove this theory (I admit I’m not the first, but I do have an experiment that works!), I’ll show you how to recreate those little holes. You can either use a new cotton shirt with no holes in it, or take one with holes and wear it backwards. If you typically wear a belt as I do, wear it. Now with your experimental shirt on, lean against the countertop, specifically the edge on the bottom and begin to rub left and right. You only need to do this about 5 to 10 times each way, and you will now find your tiny holes!!!”

    I want to report that I carried out the guy’s experiment and he is ABSOLUTELY CORRECT! It may not be the only explanation – there may be other factors – but there is no doubt that after I rubbed my t-shirt against the edge of my composite-stone work surface for no more than a minute, a small hole appeared in the shirt in exactly the place that I and all of you have been having these problems. As the guy suggests, try it on the back of one of your damaged t-shirts and you will see. So the only advice from now on is to wear an apron when cooking or washing up!

    Hope that helps…

  44. It’s true! IT’S THE GRANITE!

    I have never posted ANYTHING on a website, but the tiny holes in my shirts have been driving me crazy since we moved into our new house last year. I blamed it on the new washer and dryer, and even returned them to get a different brand! That was a MAJOR headache and hassle to get that done! Then the problem continued. I changed soap…ruled out bugs…and started hand washing and air drying all my fine cottons. (The small holes at the front waistline happens exclusively with thin cotton shirts). So I tried the test…I took the back of one of the holed t-shirts and rubbed it 5 – 10 times on the granite in front of the kitchen sink….and YES….HOLES!!! Either I will always have to wear an apron or get the granite fixed or smoothed out. But at least I have an answer…mystery solved…and life can go on. But I do miss my pretty blue original washer and dryer. Went with a Kenmore and had to get gold.

    • Gosh, I relate! It’s exasperating that there could be more than one cause, but it does help to know I am not crazy and that this is a common problem. Damn annoying one, though, and expensive (and disappointing)!

    • i have never, ever had granite counter tops and these holes are in all of my thin shirts. rrrrrr.
      it has to be a number of causes, not exclusively granite.

      • After many discussions with my hubby about this problem in my shirts, we have come to the conclusion that it is a combination of things. First, the very THIN material and shirts made in Honduris, Guatemala, etc. The thick Hanes shirts, etc. don’t get holes in them. Secondly, it is the tasks that us women do every day that also contributes to it. The thin material is rubbing/wearing against things and causes the holes to start. I have looked at my t-shirts that are a bit thicker in material and they don’t have holes in them right now, but the ones that I have had for a while have developed holes. I am telling you it is the THIN material and all of the daily activities that we do. So, yes, rubbing up against countertops, our buttons, our seatbelts, etc. We need to figure out a way to get the manufacturers to STOP using such thin material.

    • I just tried you experiment and got 1 hole! It must be the countertop. Will wear an apron.

    • I have been plagued by this problem as well and I am so relieved that I am not alone and I am not crazy. Put on a brand new t-shirt today, a few hours later, 2 holes appeared. I just did the experiment above and lo and behold…ANOTHER HOLE! I can unequivocally say that it is the granite counter top and the jeans button. The thin cotton t-shirt doesn’t stand a chance! Don’t know if putting an apron on will help, but I will try it. Also going to try just to tuck my shirt in when I am cooking from now on. =)

    • I have been driven to distraction with this problem too! just tried your experiment, and….. wow found out it was caused by the buckle on my belt rubbing againt sink when i was washing up, about 6 holes appeared!!!! will now try not to make contact with kitchen sink lol, thown offensive belt away, and fingers crossed, hope i’ve solved my mysterious holes , thanks for all your help xx

  45. I, too, can’t believe I found info on the internet regarding this rediculous problem! I spend a lot of time finding my t-shirts and love them, then within one wearing, HOLES…..I have talked to no one with the problem so I also have tried several different changes/theories and have also joked I have a belly button fungus. What is weird is that I moved to this house over three years ago and do have granite counter tops but have only had the problem in the last year, so what’s up with that? I am so so so so frustrated too! I will test the granite suggestion and see if that will help.

  46. I am having the same problem! Can’t be bugs – they wouldn’t go to the same spot every time. Can’t be the seat belt. Don’t think it is the “washing up liquid” because why not the sleeves? I have to say I am starting to buy into the granite top theory but not sold. I have granite tops and do a lot of dishes but it has happened once to a shirt that I hadn’t even worn yet. I am going to take better care when standing at the sink and see if it does solve the problem.

  47. FINALLY! you solved my two year dilemma! i wish i couldve spared some of my favorite shirts! thank you!

  48. This has all been so illuminating. thought I was alone in the universe- one (or two or three tiny black holes- in my t shirt).
    Here is my theory: its a terrorist chemical warfare bacteria that will eventually eat all the shirts of women in western civilization, driving us all back to the days of pure nakedness– perhaps a plot by the male establishment to see more boobies.

    • HA HA HA HA HA!

      “More boobies” is the best theory I’ve seen yet for this vexing problem!

  49. I have been getting these tiny holes in the same spot on all my t-shirts for ages. I just did the same test that Niiki did and it works! I put on some jeans and put my holey t-shirt on backwards. I rubbed my stomach against the countertop (laminate) like I would if I was cooking & going from chopping board to sink, stove, etc. Sure enough, after 4 rubs I have the same type of hole exactly where the t-shirt rubbed between the countertop & the jeans button. Mystery solved!

  50. Wow I am so glad I found this thread as I have had this problem for ages now.
    My sister and a few friends too! I am going to wear an apron now on when washing up and cooking. This has been driving me crazy and has cost me a lot of money and many nice t shirts.

    Thanks to everyone

  51. Ok, so I have read all these theories, but my husband’s tee shirts have these same holes. They are never in the same spot – chest, back, arms, etc. Why are they only on his shirts and not on mine? Some shirts develop them over time, and some which he has only worn once or twice. What’s up?

  52. I thought I was the only one. I can’t believe I would find this just by googling. I didn’t think others would be having this same problem. I have lost several of my favorite shirts and some of which have only been worn once. Always noticed it after wearing them with jeans that have a button and I do notice a lot of rubbing on the countertops when doing dishes and washing my hands. I do have new granite countertops which the holes have gotten worse since then. I also sometimes wear a belt buckle, but still get them without a belt buckle. I am very convinced it is from rubbing on the countertop where the button of my jeans are. Thanks to all of your answers and help. Guess I’ll try the apron thing or tucking in my shirts at home.

  53. Carol – I reckon your husband is doing some crazy dishwashing! Or, perhaps there could be a sharp bit on the drum of your washing machine or dryer that could be catching the t-shirt? Good luck.

  54. Yep! I suspected it was the Silestone counters in my kitchen + the cleaners I use. Cant’ be moth larvae ’cause the holes are all in the lower front of every shirt! Now after reading all these comments I am convinced! My husband said”Look it up on the internet– I bet others are having the same problem.” I said I doubted it. Thanks!

  55. I can’t believe it. I have so many ruined shirts with mystery holes below my belly button. I just did a test – and it is the granite – but only when I wear jeans. Thank you for solving this mystery that has cost me so much!

  56. Sigh. I’m now convinced that the shirt is being chafed between the jeans button and the countertops (mine are tile with grout — eek!).

    So, all you smart people — I’m not about to replace all my countertops. What do I do to them to keep the chafing down? Bottle and bottles of nail polish? Weekly caulking? Duct tape or packing tape? Something else?

  57. Okay….so I am starting to think it is definitely a mixture of the countertop and belt buckles or jean buttons. I used to wear a cami with all of my shirts and I would get hundreds of holes in the cami along with the shirt I would wear over it. I don’t have granite counter tops but I do notice that, especially if I’m wearing a belt, the wear (or whitening) of the shirt is right over the belt buckle after I had been leaning against a counter top or something…..and then….BOOM….little
    holes on another good shirt. I’m almost wondering if it has anything to do with the little belly I have that may protrude just enough over my pants to rub a little harder on a surface. I’m not sure if anyone else has that little belly or not (have to blame this on the kids). It seems to have started happening a lot more with my new countertops and I thought I had the problem solved when I stopped wearing belts……WRONG…….still happens. As a matter of fact, I just took 2 shirts back to Gap today because they both had holes in them, I just got them 3 weeks ago and only wore each one twice. I will start to pay A LOT more attention when wearing a shirt doing dishes, would be nice if I could just do them without a shirt!!!! LOL…… Thanks for all the great advise.

  58. this problem has been so frustrating but it’s comforting to know I’m in good company. I think the one common denominator is friction.

    Regardless of the type of countertop or whether the seatbelts are smooth, they still cause friction. I think it’s only started recently b/c we tend to wear long tshirts (often very thin) not tucked in and the shirts get rubbed between our waistbands and something (counters, seatbelts, shopping carts, etc.). Also, the lower rise may contribute.

    Men may not experience it b/c their pants tend to sit below their gut. This may prevent the shirt from being rubbed between the waistband and whatever else they’re leaning against.

  59. I love this link…I just tested the theory with the jeans button and shirt…rubbing at the counter top. A hole happened after a few rubs. The shirt over the button of the jeans and rubbing under the counter edge. It must be it. I think it happens with any kind of counter whether its granite or laminate. I moved a year ago from a house with granite to a house with laminate and it’s been going on here to. I’m going to tuck my shirts while working in the kitchen and wear an apron if cooking for long periods and see if I can save some shirts. Or I will put on sweats instead of jeans. OMG…finally! BTW…Banana Republic probably thinks I’m crazy. I returned like 7 shirts there this summer because I thought it was the material they were using. haha

  60. So Im not the only one having this problem- I thought it was granite benchtop but I have moved house and it still happens with laminate bench top- it even happens when I wear a singleton under my top. Why has this only started happening the last two years? I think it might be the thin baggy tops worn against jeans- it doesn’t happen to tight stretchy tops – and it doesn’t matter what brand I just bought an expensive new top and I’ve only worn it briefly on two occasions and it already has a hole – I’m so annoyed! From now on I’m getting into old clothes when I’m at home!

  61. So relieved to see your comments I have the same problem. Not sure a solution has really come forwrad yet. Should we be convincing jean manufacturers to change the buttons on jeans to flat buttons probably plastic like on trousers?

  62. Melissa Taylor 9/24/2010 at 5:48 pm Reply

    At last, some answers- thank you!! I was ecstatic to learn recently that my friend across the street was having this problem, too. I do not have granite counters, but I agree that the thinner t-shirt material that is common now is likely partially to blame- as is the button on the jeans. I am so happy to have an answer to this annoying and costly problem!

  63. Melissa’s neighbor here… I cannot believe how many of us are dealing with this. If you could have only seen me showing the service manager at Acura my shirt the other day! I said, “See my shirt? See this hole and this one? ALL of my shirts look like this!” he definitely thought I was nuts and said he had never heard of my seatbelt theory before! I will test the counter theory… Mine are not granite, but do have a beveled edge. The whitening some of you mention is something I’ve also noticed. Craziness!

  64. You are having this problem because of the plastic rivet that is on the seatbelt. This rivet is used to hold the seatbelt latch (male part) that clicks into the receiver when the seatbelt is up against the B piller. (when seatbelt is not in use) The rivet is smooth on one side and rough on the other. Unfortunatly with honda the rough side is toward you when you are wearing the seatbelt. Toyota and other makers have the rough side away from you when you are wearing your seatbelt. If you wear thin shirts, the rough side of the rivet will catch your shirt and snag it. Check this out the next time you sit in your vehicle rub your finger against rivet and you can feel it. The fix is to lightly sand the burs on the rivet smooth with some fine sandpaper.

    • We own 2 Hondas, and I know without a doubt that their seatbelts have been destroying our shirts. Took me a while to figure it out, but after wearing yet another brand new shirt to the grocery store, less than ten minutes away, I could see the rub marks from the seatbelt rivet and the typical pattern of small holes within the rub marks. (It was my very first time wearing the shirt!) I wrote a letter to Honda. Their customer service department called and basically accused me of lying about the damage and dollar amount of shirts that had been ruined. (Several years worth of nice clothes , x 2 people, can add up fast, especially when you have to keep replacing them due to holes in the front!) He said I was the only person who had ever complained, and because there wasn’t a recall on the seatbelt, they were not going to do anything about it. I try to remember now to put the seatblet under my shirt, but I forgot a few weeks ago and it happened again. I swore at myself and then at the very rude Honda guy who doesn’t believe me. I wanted to hold it up in front of his face and yell, “See I’m not lying!”

  65. “Nope” to the seat belt theory, it is definitely the kitchen counter. After reading all the comments I did a test (see my comment on June 29th) and it is the friction of our tshirts rubbing between the countertops (laminate or granite) and the jeans button that make the tiny holes. I am now wearing my yoga pants when I do any cooking, and my husband HATES them, but I love my tshirts now!

  66. This hole problem has been happening to me for years , regardless of what make of t shirts, it doesnt happen to my husbands t shirts and he does wash up . I wear a plastic apron , thinking that would solve the problem , it still happens , and I have seen holes appearing as Im wearing it , always in the same place and the fabric looks washed out before they appear . It happens to new T shirts that Im really careful with too.
    I have been told its due to the manufacturers using cheap cotton and stretching the fabric before the patterns are cut in order to get more out of the fabric and so the thread is stretched too fine . i will investigate this further , but its no fun trying to take things back. Domestic chores are hardly heavy duty ; thus shows the garments arent up to normal wear and tear

  67. I cannot believe there are this many people having this problem. I totally believe the countertop is involved but since it is happening all over the world, there must be some truth to the manufacturing issues, too. Personally, I have lost 60 lbs in the past year and I am happy to toss my holey, huge shirts. I have lots of old clothes that fit now but I don’t want them ruined by the countertop, too. I moved into this house 6 years ago. We replaced the kitchen counter within 6 months and the problems starting happening soon after that. I think I will be tucking in shirts and wearing aprons when working in the kitchen. How annoying.

  68. OMG ladies! Never posted in my life! Been having this problem for about a year. Just my american eagle tshirts at first… now everything I wear… thought I was blacking out and picking at my shirts… lol. My friends can’t believe it everytime I tell them another shirt is ruined after only one wearing. Thank god I’m not insane!

  69. At last the granite issue is proven but not only the granite but also the type of cleaners we use especially the wipe type of cleaning cloths that are highly concentrated chemicals that last for a fair few weeks even when opened and when left in the wash bin just slowly eat away at the clothing.

  70. When I moved out of my house with granite counters and still had the problem I was dismayed to find I still was getting holes. But I am happy to report I have not had one hole since summer started. The solution was, none of my shorts have buttons. It seems the metal buttons in jeans ( I think especially those that go through to the skin) cause the holes in my shirts. I am planning to make little button covers or at least duct tape or nail polish to see if I can prevent it once I start wearing my jeans again. I am convinced this was my problem. I did the granite counter tops, cleaner, apron, seat belt covers and all the others. I am sure this is it.

    • I’m going to devise a belt with velcro fastener to wear with jeans. I’m keeping my fingers crossed. Yesterday I ruined two new shirts after wearing them only a couple of hours. Both times it happened in the kitchen and while wearing shorts with a metal button. I suppose I should also try to remember to wear an apron.

  71. Definitely any type of friction!! I could be sitting, driving, walking, cooking, you name it and I have gotten holes!! I hate to even buy tops any more! I’ve been loosing weight so I’m hoping less belly fat will help! :)

  72. This same problem has been happening to me and driving me absolutely crazy. The holes are in the same spot, sometimes 1 or up to 5 or 6. The clothes are either in my closet or dresser drawer. If it were a bug it wouldn’t be always in the same area. I don’t have granite countertops and have checked my counter tops for any rough spots I may be leaning on but find none. I haven’t tried out the jean theory but will. I’m so glad at least I’m not alone on this as I was beginning to think some sort of chemical was being released by my body.

  73. This is sooo crazy that we all are having this problem. I think, at least for me, it is the zipper on my jeans. I notice that the top of the “zipper head” always sticks out. I beleive that is how I’m getting the small holes. I just wear a camy under my t shirts and who cares if they have a few holes.

  74. I cannot thank you ALL enough for helping me to figure this out!! It is my button on my pants or skirt rubbing on the edge of the counter! I actually put on an old holey shirt and did an experiment. (I put holes all over this shirt testing it out.) The edges of my counter are not sharp in any way…it is just the friction of the button on the laminate edge. I even put on a skirt that has like a hard plastic type button and it did the same thing! Now I know why I have destroyed all my favorite shirts and I will either wear a thick denim apron from now on (I tried that and it prevented the holes) or I will not lean on the counter! I cannot tell you how happy I am to know this know! To the creator of this blog THANK YOU, THANK YOU!! I am thrilled to know this now!! Try it everyone and you’ll see it is your buttons and your counters TOGETHER…just rub them together with the shirt in between and you’ll see!! :o)

  75. Sorry, guys! That is not the solution. I started having this problem, when I lived in my previous place and I didn’t have any granite at my old place. Actually in my new place, I have granite everywhere and I have less of this problem.

  76. It doesn’t have to be granite…my counters are laminate. It is really any HARD surface with the shirt in between the surface and the pant/skirt button! I promise I put about 30 holes in my shirt testing it out with different pants/skirts with buttons on them. I put an apron on and tried that and didn’t get any holes. To test it I would take different places on my shirt and put it in front of the button and then rub that several times on the edge of the counter. It did it every time!! Try it with an old shirt you don’t mind getting holes in! It happens more quickly with the thinner shirts.

  77. I believe Emily is right. I tested a t shirt by rubbing against my laminate counter tops when wearing jeans. 2 little holes appeared. This very annoying and expensive problem has been solved (I hope). Thank you Emily!!!

  78. My question is: if it is the counter tops both my husband and I have this issue. He is 6’1′ and I am 5″3′. Both our holes are at the belly bottom spot.

    Also, why has this just starting happening to us in the past 2 years when we have been in our home for 5yrs?(and yes, we still did the dishes in the first 4yrs : )
    I have also been doing dishes for 20+yrs before this and no holes. What is the expanation for that?

    I’m going to get a few shirts from Goodwill that are more than 5yrs old and see if I get the same problems with them. Maybe it is the newer manufacturers?

    Help!!!

  79. I meant 6’1″ and 5’3″ lol!!

  80. Hey Everyone who doesn’t have granite countertops, but is still getting holes. I figured out where mine are coming from about 10 minutes ago……

    LAPTOP vs BELT or BUTTON.

    If I sit in a semi-reclined position, my laptop is often resting on my pants button or belt buckle, with my shirt in between…

    So glad I figured out what’s going on… Now I can work to prevent it! It was so frustrating!!

  81. Ummmm. Yay to everyone for figuring out that your counter tops are sharing your ts with your belt line. So now what? Go on forever watching where you lean or relax? The problem is not fixed with that answer…Did we invent counters 2 years ago? NO! Something more sinister is going on. And since we are on the subject of shirts. The government is currently and has greater ambitions to recycle plastic into clothing….can we make sure our shirts stay BPA free? What happens when BPA soaks into your sweat glands your whole life? I dunno

  82. i have spent way too much time reading and realizing that we all want an explanation so badly- but i laughed so hard just now about the woman pam who thought she was insane , blacking out and damaging her own t-shirts i am still laughing. i too can blow a hole in the countertops theory. i must agree with john andy october 26th- who so eloquently put it( sorry i am hysterically laughing still) ” did we invent counters two years ago?” His insight on the unexplainable is priceless. something more sinister is what i take away from all the postings this time. i will still think there is a manufacturing machine that holds the material in place while cutting or sewing that begins the process. as i only wore the best shirt twice after washing it just before i wore it. i will continue to re-visit this site and truly have a healthy belly busting time.

    • Here is something to laugh about. The first tops this happened to for me were ones that I had been wearing for several years without a problem. Then we moved house and that is when the holes started to appear and yes the new house had granite benches. So maybe there is more to it than some sinister redundancy built in by manufacturers. Why would they target women’s shirts God knows women are notorious for buying more clothes than they need anyway so it would make more sense to build this redundancy into mens clothes as that would likely generate more sales.

  83. I have now got a Facebook page dedicated to this mystery!
    ‘Holes at the front of my tee-shirts’

    It is gaining in popularity and I am hoping to get a National newspaper to investigate it properly!
    I am soooooooo fed up about it, every single t-shirt I own in ruined.

  84. I’m starting to believe there’s some thing living in my belly button is eating my cotton shirt !

  85. I too have had this problem I’ve thrown away today about 20 to 25 t-shirts. Holes always in the front by the belly and I truly think that it is from rubbing on the zippers on jeans because it’s only my t-shirts and I always wear them with denim.. the countertop isn’t my problem because I never stand at the counter in my t-shirts I usually change clothes to an old shirt and that never gets holes.. so I’m thinking to put a piece of tape over the zipper and see if that helps I’m not giving up wearing jeans.. and it doesn’t happen all the time so it must be how long I have the shirt on and how often I wear it.. it’s been most of my black shirts which I find I wear a lot…I’ve lost some really cute tops and I’m so mad.

  86. Thank you, thank you! Now I know I’m not crazy! I just tried the test (I’m wearing GAP jeans and a cotton t-shirt). I put my shirt on backwards, rubbed back and forth all along my countertop, which is laminate, and lo and behold – there was a hole!!! I’m so thrilled to finally have a solution to this problem. It has been driving me crazy forever! Thanks again for all of the great advice, ladies!

  87. Oh my gosh, I am so happy my husband googled my problem and your blog came up. I have been trying to solve this same problem with the holes in my shirts. They are all in the same place no matter what pants I wear or what automobile I’ve ridden. I had just went out and bought a whole new set of every day shirts to wear around the house and now all of them have holes. Then when it started getting cold I started pulling out shirts from last winter and some of them have holes too. We thought it was from my purse when I sit it on my lap or hold it in front of me. So last weekend I went out and spent hours looking for just the right tops to wear on vacation and guess what two of them already have holes. I started crying! It was then my husband went out and inspected my car seat belt, I threw away my purse and then he found this blog. So we did a test, I put on one of his white T-shirts and washed the dishes. Low and behold holes in the shirt. It has got to be the granite counter tops. So now what do I do, I’m not an apron type of girl. Has anyone contacted their granite installer for a solution?

  88. I wore a brand new shirt for 20 min. Today and got a hole. It’s from the thicker section of jeans above the button and tugging your shirt. My cute mom said to iron a patch on the inside of all new shirts in that spot before wearing them. I think I will test it out.

  89. Okay….little tiny holes in my shirts too! I do not use chemicals when “washing up”, just water. I thought it was bugs on my shelves, so I put plastic down. Doesn’t matter whether shirt is old or new….just cotton. I think a common factor here is height and counter, jean buttons, and (girls we all do it) pulling your shirt down in that spot just above the hem line of your shirt when you get up, reach up…or whatever. I am 5’2”, 120 lbs, where jeans almost all the time, and have granite countertops…and I pull my shirt down in the same spot.

  90. Could be the weave of the cotton shirt too!

  91. Ha! Granite countertops! Our new home has granite countertops and I cook for hours every single day. I noticed these tiny holes in my shirt right around my belt line and I thought it was my belt but never thought it could be my countertops. I tried all the same things as you: air drying, changing my belt, etc. Today I’ll wear my husband’s Star Wars apron and see if it makes a difference.
    Thank you!

  92. I have been having this problem as well, and found this site when I googled “tshirts getting small holes”. I also thought it was the button on my jeans rubbing my tshirts but why has this problem suddenly appeared for me in the last 18 months? I think it is the poor quality of materials being used by Gap, and even Lands End. At least I got my money back from Lands End.

  93. It’s definitely not just granite as I have had this problem for years and have never had a granite worktop. Also I have had them appear in t-shirt sleeves as well, but mainly they are all around the waist area and sometimes at the back of the t shirt. I know its not bugs/moths as i have been through that process.
    I am inclined to believe it could possibly be snagging in the wash or the detergent though have reasons against that too. I am sure friction as well could damage the material too. With all that said though it does not happen to my wives t-shirts. She uses the same washing machine, is in the kitchen as much if not more but all her t shirts are fine. So whilst I agree a lot of the above things could be part of the problem I still don’t know why my t shirts are affected more. And lastly i have just bought a t-shirt and already one hole has appeared. Its been worn 3 times, washed 3 times. My wife has t shirts she has been wearing for years and they are fine.

    There is a more definitive reason so I am not as yet buying into any of the explanations above and the seatbelt idea is just insane

  94. I have the same problem. I’ve also ruined many shirts. I’m sure it’s from the counter tops and the button on my jeans. The holes appear exactly where my jeans button is and my jeans button is lined up exactly with the counter top. I tested this with an old t shirt . I slid back and forth along the counter a couple times and produced a hole. I started getting holes the same time I started wearing a lower waist jean. The button on the higher waist jeans wouldn’t have lined up with the counter like the lower waist jeans do. What I’m trying now is to wrap the jeans button in fabric before I push it through the button hole. Hopefully it’ll work.

  95. Thank you very much. My wife has been complaining for months of exactly what you’ve described. We’ve run through the exact same responses and thought processes . I no longer have to keep dismantling the washer and dryer, I now just need to fix the granite.

  96. Thank you so much! I have been tormented with this problem since moving into my new apartment 2 years ago. I have lost countless t shirts often at first wear due to small holes appearing an inch from the hemline and just slightly to the right side. Today after spotting holes in a t shirt ive only worn twice (and it was an expensive one!) i got really cross and decided to google the problem! I actually thoght I was going mad! Ive just done the tshirt test on my granite work tops and guess what? Holes! So glad this problem has been solved! It might save me a bit of money from now on! Thanks Guys!

  97. Thanks so much for this information. Although I agree with a lot of this, I still think the main culprit is the button on jeans. It’s definitely rubbing against some object be it a counter top, seatbelt, etc.

    I wanted to ask what type of jeans people are wearing? I bet I have ruined 25+ shirts. I even took many of them to the alterations and had them shortened above my button. It unfortunately causes one to have to wear a belt. I know that’s not the fashion these days, but it’s helped a bit.

    Still very frustrated! I am wearing a lot of Miss Me jeans. They have a silver crossed metal button that I feel is rubbing the holes in the exact same place many have mentioned. There are 3-4 tiny, tiny holes. Eventually, I have seen larger holes developing if it rubs long enough!

    Help…I wonder if I need to change jean manufactures but wonder then if the same thing will occur?

    What jeans is everyone wearing? I wore simple GAP jeans for years and never had this problem. It was before the era of the “bling jeans” that has recently taken off.

    Before then, buttons weren’t so fancy they were just a plain smooth surface.

    Just curious? Thank you!

    • sick and tired of holes 3/4/2011 at 12:03 pm Reply

      i don’t think it has anything to do with the brand of the jeans. i wear several different brands, and i’ve seen brands mentioned on this thread that I don’t wear. i think the theory of several fashion trend factors all working together is what has caused the issue to crop up the last few years: 1) longer shirts that are not tucked in, 2) lower rise jeans that put the button at counter height, 3) lower rise jeans tend to pull the jean fabric up into a little point at the top corner, 4) thinner/softer fabric on the shirts. Changing brands of jeans won’t fix it. The kind of counter surface doesn’t matter, only that it’s a hard surface. It’s all so frustrating. I’m going to test out using an apron in the kitchen and being super careful at restroom counters, and hope for the best. Also going to inspect my seat belt, just to rule out any issues there. But again, I agree with some other folks here that it’s a tragic combination of several of factors.

    • It can’t be jeans because I never wear jeans and I have several thin cotton t-shirts with the little holes. We have quartz countertops which are very smooth. I wear either elastic waist or shorts with inside button/hook closure. I bought one top at Talbot’s and noticed a small hole when I put it on and several more holes developed over the day, it had never been washed and I wasn’t doing any cleaning that day! Yes, the little holes are always in the same place around the belly button area. This is a mystery. Has to have something to do with the manufacturing process.

  98. So glad I found this info! I have had this problem for months now and cannot figure out what it is either. I don’t have granite counter tops and am taller than others who listed their height (5’7”). I have been wearing mostly Gap jeans and do wear jeans often in the fall/winter. However, I noticed it starting in the summer time, where it is definitely shorts weather here in Texas! I am going to test to see if it is just any shiny button on jeans/shorts. Not sure what to do about it though … I guess live in an apron all the time! :)

  99. I’ve had this problem for years so I too am glad to know I’m not crazy. The holes are always on the front center a few inches from the hemline. I don’t have a granite countertop, I don’t cook so it can’t be from heat or splatter nor do I own a laptop. At first I thought it was just happening to my cheaper less expensive knit tops, but yesterday I noticed holes in a Banana Republic tank and just this morning I noticed my brand new (expensive) J. Crew tank was already starting to develop holes. I literally removed the price tag just this morning, but it’s been sitting in a drawer for a few weeks. I wear jeans nearly every day but I really don’t think it’s my jeans button as it’s smooth. I most often wear Old Navy jeans but today I’m wearing jeans from Target. Funny thing is that it doesn’t seem to happen to any of my non-cotton (synthetic) tops….or sweaters for that matter. If it were the granite countertop or any of the other theories posted here wouldn’t it happen to all clothing regardless of the fabric content? The only tops I have this problem with are made of 100% cotton.

    • I have had the same problem with polyester blends, cotton and just found a hole in my $45.00 Ruby Rd. 95% cotton 5% spandex shirt that I have worn only 2 times. The hole is right in front of the “button” on my Docker slacks that I wore on Sunday so I don’t think it matters what kind of button, it might just be the pressure leaning against a hard surface i.e. the counter and pressing the shirt against the button on the pants. It would be great if we could have a definite answer as to why this happens. Keep plugging away girls.

  100. I work in a lab. I think it may be a combination of rubbing against the counters and perhaps any chemicals we use.

  101. I just ran the countertop/jean button test. I started with jeans with a metal button and a thinner cotton tee on top and a thicker cotton cami underneath.

    I leaned against our granite counter and slide all the way across – no holes. Then I realized I still had boots on and the button was not comming in contact with the counter so I took them off and then my jean button was aligned exactly with the countertop. The thinner top shirt got a hole immediatly and I could see the stress marks on the thicker cotton cami that was actually against the button but it didn’t get a hole.

    I switched to no button pants – – no holes.

    I ran the same test in some pants with plastic buttons and I could make holes but I had to put a lot more effort into it.

    I ran the test with the jeans against a wood edged counter and wood window sill and was able to produce a hole with the jean button but it was much harder with a wood surface.

    The jeans I am wore first I have only had for a couple months but I wear jeans all the time and have been getting holes for 2 or 3 years. I put on my old favorite jeans and got holes immediatly too.

    So my hypothesis is that if your jeans have a metal button and your height happens to match you to your countertops you might get holes – and the harder the surface that contacts the metal button the more likely – so if that happense to be a laptop or something else…..at least it’s a start.

    Let’s design a button cuzy – I did put a barbie band aid over the button and the holes didn’t happen as quickly.

  102. I, too have been bothered by this for a couple years. I just put on a tank that is badly chewed up, so I turned it around and tested the countertop theory. We have quartz countertops, not granite, but it’s rock just the same. Within 10-15 “rubs” I had two tiny holes!
    I was ready to fumigate my closet and was convinced it was moths, though I had no evidence.

    I think the bottom line is, it’s a combination of friction and the crappy overseas cotton we are getting, no matter where you buy your clothing. It doesn’t matter if you’re buying Banana Republic tees for $40 or target tees for $10, all the cotton used today is from overseas and made REALLY cheaply so that, in combination with some sort of friction (be it countertops, jean buttons, laptops, your desk) we have our answer! I sit at the computer a lot, and sometimes I slouch and my belly touches the desk. I just felt that and it’s a bit rough on the underside, so I’m sure it’s been a contributor, too.
    I’m just glad I figured it out and it’s not bugs, ick.

  103. I have had this problem for 5 years, but noticed it went away this summer when all of my shorts had the button free enclosure. So I put duct tape (not as fancy as a button cozy but it doesn’t show because your shirt is over it any way, and it does not hinder buttoning or unbuttoning because it is on tight). I have not had a hole in three months. Usually I would get one the first day I had a shirt. So try duct tape on your button. I think there is some kind of reaction with our bodies through to the metal back of the button. so the duct tape stops the contact and so the reaction. Give it a try. I’d love to hear if it works for anyone else.

  104. I don’t know why it has taken me 3 years to get the bright idea of googling this problem. Gosh if I would have done this 3 years ago I would still have shirts and would have saved money…no tellin how many shirts I have had to toss because of these holes. I could never figure out why some shirts would have the holes then other shirts wouldn’t. I figured if it was some type of moth that I never did see that it wouldn’t pick and choose what shirts it would attack. I have tried to think of every possible solution for this very frustrating issue. After finding this and reading a few statements I jumped up and went straight to my granite counter tops and the holes align perfectly with the counter top..guess what I am going to buy myself tomorrow..AN APRON!!!!! no more holes in my shirts!!!! Thanks so much for all this information!!!!

  105. LETS GET REAL HERE. The people who keep saying it’s granite counters MAY be experiencing it but come on, why are the odds that all over the world we are all experiencing the EXACT same thing buy some of us, including myself do not have granite counter tops!!! I live in Canada. I started seeing these wee holes in most of the cotton tshirts I buy and all at random times from purchase. I always figured it had to be some bug. But how would it be possible to get the exact same size, placement etc on all of them? Also to prove the granite theory can’t be possible for everyone…my son is 14. Never cooks, doesn’t go in the kitchen at all. We don’t have granite. But, his tshirts too have these. Today was my last straw. Newer t-shirt…8 same size holes on the bottom in the back!!!! WTF! it’s insane! My husband, he has them too. Different closet. My sons closet is not near ours either. The washing up liquid can’t be the answer for everyone either. Neither my husband nor son every touch dish soaps or the washers at all. One thing I notice though…all cotton. Anything with some spandex in it doesn’t have holes. Just 100% cotton. I think the zipper or studs theory COULD be possible. My son has stubs front and back on some jeans. But riddle me this hole haters….I have shirts I never wear with jeans! Only pull on skirts and slacks. So what’s the answer now? We keep boiling this answer down to larve don’t we? We keep eliminating all the angles and we still keep coming back to some sort of bug. At first I was agreeing with it being impossible for bugs to tell front from back but now that my son has them in the back makes it easier to believe it’s a bug. My belief is that the bottom first inch it two is the easiest and most accessible part of any shirt hanging. But if you have never hung your t’s, then we are back to square one. I am stumped. I’m going to ask my mother what she thinks. For now, I will be going with ceasing to wash ANY cotton t’s and tops with ANYTHING that has a stud, zipper, button, latch, hook, clasp or decoration!! I guess I’ll see how that goes. Thanks for all the insite. Hope my theories and disproving some of them will engage all of us to continue researching this weird phenomenon. In the mean time, let’s all start asking old folks we know or the drycleaner or utilize the expertise if a skilled older seamstress. I bet we get some other ideas.
    Thanks! Heidi in Vancouver Canada!

    • Well I hate to bust your theory on the 100% cotton shirts but I have a shirt with spandex that I have worn 2 times, guess what….it has a tiny hole right in the front and some of my polyester shirts also have holes. Perhaps we will eventually come up with the answer.

  106. This is a crazy conversation but entertaining. I have never ever had holes in my tshirts although I don’t wear them that often and I wear more tights than jeans. But I am a cooker and a baker in my spare time and still it has literally never happened to me. It happens to my husband but in the shoulder tops only and I always figure it comes from acidity in the body. I also double rinse my clothes in the laundry to make sure soap is out. Not sure if that’s what nakes a difference. Now if someone can tell me how not to get holes in my nyalons, THAT would be helpful, lol!

    • Ha ha ha princess is not only blessed and lucky but sounds like she could use some miracle panty hose too! I am so jealous this never happens to you Princess and I’m wondering if perhaps this has not happened to you because you never wash jeans and zippered items with cotton tshirts??? I’m also not on board with the body acid idea. It’s just not possible we ALL have acidic bodies only in our belly button region (with the exception of your husbands shoulders) lol lol

  107. I have read all of the great solutions that everyone has shared and wish I could say that I agree. But I don’t!!!!!
    None of this works to give us a solution to stop the holes, they still continue. I thought it was my brand of jeans so I contacted the customer service at the company where I buy most of my daily wear jeans about this problem. They are also in the dark and said they had never heard of any such thing. I was asked to send them the style numbers to my jeans and the brand and style numbers to my shirts so they could try to see if they could find an answer to the problem. I started making this list and found many, many different brands, fabrics and styles with holes. I have spoken with them several times but no answer. This said I have come to believe, as some of you do, that it has to be something causing a reaction between the denim of the jeans or the metals of the buttons against t shirts. I have shirts that were inexpensive and others that I paid quite a bit for so cost is not an answer. This needs to be brought to the attention of someone who can have test run on the denims and metals with other fabrics. BUT WHO??????

    • I don’t think it is only connected to the jeans. I have a new shirt that I only , wore 2 times with Dockers that have a plastic button, no metal button and today I noticed my shirt has a hole, only one but it is a hole and in the same place as all of my other shirts.

  108. The tiny holes in the front of my cotton shirts started happening right after we got our new granite countertops. Some of the shirts were good quality, ten year old cotton shirts in previously perfect condition. All of the holes were aligned with the countertop and I do have a tendency to lean up against the counter when doing dishes. The formica counters did not rip a single shirt and I’ve worn the same tee-shirts for years around the house. The underside of the granite is very rough, and the shirts would rub against the underside when I leaned against the counter. Wearing an apron all day would be a pain, so, I’m thinking about some kind of tape to cover the granite. I’m 5’3″ and a size 8-10. I do wear jeans with the metal button which I’m sure contributes to the problem. It doesn’t matter whether you wear a fine quality old shirt or brand new one. The granite will destroy anything you rub on it because it’s worse than sandpaper. Perhaps the granite installers should polish the first three inches of the underside of the granite and there would be no rough spots to tear clothing.

  109. Okay Debi I HEAR you. We ALL hear the granite owners. But why are we even comparing apples to broccoli when a lot of us have clearly said we DON’T OWN GRANITE counters and we have always had this problem. Some of us don’t wear jeans. Some of us have new washers some old. It’s way too much of a mixed mash of things going on and we have to think with the elimination process! So granite has to be out! WEARING jeans has to be ruled out. The machine quality or washing products is out too. We can still conceive that MAYBE it’s something on the jeans and washing them as I bring back the fact that we have always said they are in the front. But when my son got jeans with studs on the waist band but in the back…he has 8 of those holes now. Also we need to remember that all our holes world wide are the SAME size!!!

  110. For those saying that it’s not granite – I’m curious to know if you have a tile counter with grout? Because ever since I’ve had a counter that is one piece of rock (and smooth) I haven’t had them. So perhaps it’s any sort of tile/grout combination with sharp corners and rough edges?

  111. First of all I want to say congratulations Niki on a on going debate over mysterious holes in shirts. almost a year strong :) oook so I’m having this problem also. I DO not have granite counter tops, nor are they tile. Also I’m wearing two shirts today and the top shirt got a hole in it, not the bottom shirt. So I think we can rule out jeans and chemicals. but not to rule out jeans COMPLETELY because if I stand up straight and look down I can see a spot where my jeans poke out around the button area on the corner there. So I began to think “what did I do today?” I got dressed went to church came home did dishes fed my 8 month old. my suspicions are either. I rubbed it against her car seat, or her changing table, or the counter top. I think its just from GENERAL rubbing against things and the fact that the corner of the button is sticking out it just rubs a hole. I think its just going to be a ‘being careful’ type thing. Even if its not rubbing against jeans. its rubbing against something. I have a BAD habit of resting my hips against what I’m standing in front of. ie. counter tops, changing tables. just whatever is there.

    My questions is: How do you fix this little delicate hole??

    • For moth holes in sweaters, you can sew a thread around the hole like a purse string and carefully pull it snug to shrink down the hole. You tie a knot when it’s the right size, and it’s virtually invisible. I have tried this as well on nice shirts ruined with the dad-ratted HOLES, with somewhat less success as they are not thick enough to really conceal the thread. It is at least better than throwing them out, which my budget cannot handle. I’ve also tried the thing some people have mentioned (have read a few thousand posts once it occurred to me to Google this) about fusing something over the wrong side, but I definitely don’t like what it does to the texture and comfort of the shirt. BTW, a few thousand posts later…I think it all boils down to trauma (abrasion or picking) of some sort. Been getting holes over twenty years!

  112. I am so relieved!!! For months now both my boyfriend and I have been getting small holes at the bottom of our tops and always in the same spot! We couldn’t figure out wher they were coming from…. We bought a new washing machine, tumble dryer & iron. After reading this website I put on jeans and one of my holey tops back to front and rubbed against the granite counter top… and guess what!!! HOLES… Finally I don’t feel like I’m going mad and hopefully won’t be spending a fortune on clothes.

  113. I hate to tell you all this, but i remember these little holes from when i was a child (40 years or so ago). Only in cotton, and not always at the hemline. For years i thought the bleach my mother used was wearing the cotton threads so thin they’d break and the knit would unravel, but i stopped using bleach in my laundry (different, new machine, so it’s not residual bleach) and i still got/get them. I’ve tried all the fragrance free, dye free, suitable for infants’ clothing detergents, i’ve tried hanging my tees to dry, and now i just know to buy multiples of any shirt i really like since it seems it will ALWAYS end up with those holes. Oh, and i don’t have granite, and it’s not jeans (get them with tees i only wear with sweats too), and the seatbelt is smooth. (and, like i said, it’s not only at the hemline, some showed up around the neck, and i don’t wear necklaces)

  114. Maria Pandolfo 2/11/2011 at 5:59 am Reply

    This has been driving me crazy for several years now. I don’t have granite counter tops and I don’t wear jeans all the time but almost all of my cotton shirts have these little holes. As i’m reading all these comments, i decided to look down at my shirt, which did NOT have a hole in it less than 2 hours when i put it on – lo and behold, there it is…..I’ve given up – i just repair the holes by sewing just one or two single thread stitches when i see them and then move on. Or else, i’m going to be checked in to the looney bin!!!!!

  115. I’m starting to believe that holes are forming because of the quality of cotton or how it’s spun or made. I’ve been wearing jeans with the same type of button and been the same height for my adult life and this has only started happening in the past few years. And heads up, no matter how expensive the shirt, they all come from the same place! Any type of friction (countertop, laptop, seatbelt, pulling your rising shirt down) with cause small holes.
    For me, I only get holes in tops I wear jeans with. And I started noticing worse holes when i left the city for the suburbs and started driving a car. Someone else suggested putting a thick washcloth on top of your zipper/ button area before putting seatbelt on since many people feel this is what causes most the holes.
    I will also try the duct tape on the button cover, as another suggested.
    I find it totally absurd we’ve been driving ourselves mad and losing money over this! The problem is low quality, disposable clothing.

  116. This is so strange. When I first started having this problem for four years ago, i searched the web and could not find any info on it, nor were there any comments from people with the same problem. I hired an exterminator to come in 4 times a year but that has not helped. It is not my seatbelt or my countertop. If i buy a new cotton shirt and leave it for weeks in my closet, it is fine. After wearing it once, I check it before washing it and see that there are no holes. But once it is washed, one to four holes appear. Could it be the scent of the belly button since it is only in my shirts, not my kids? This is driving me crazy because i rarely get to wear a shirt more than once.

  117. HA HA HA omgosh I am seriously going to check myself into the loony bin. If I hear “it’s granite counter tops”, one more time I’m going in! Lol how can a manufacturer of something so smooth suddenly make all the tshitts in north America become full of holes? Clearly we are all saying we don’t ALL have granite. So please let’s move on. Those of you who have “figured it out”, with granite, don’t post anything! Please, we want to find a reason. You apparently have yours already. Great. Now, onto us that DON’T HAVE THE DAMB GRANITE. after reading the last few posts someone said they checked a shirt and a few hours later found a hole. So I was reading it and thought, oh this tank top has no hole. I know for sure. I looked down after a full day and voila…one hole! It’s new. It wasn’t there today so I just started laughing. Lol lol is a little off to the right. Not centered. The jeans I have on are not sharp anywhere.
    So here’s one for y’all. Why are our other tops okay? No holes in my dressy tops, satin tops, polyester tops…nothing. Just cotton Lycra, cotton spandex and plain cotton. Why Lord why????

    • The mention of the belly button sparked a thought from my wife. Maybe, just maybe we have something living in there that loves cotton! It would seem to be a nice habitabale enviornment, dark, warm and moist. I’ll look into it. I live in Orlando Florida. Is this “hole” problem mainly located in the south?

  118. SORRY! SORRY! SORRY! I totally disagree regarding the granite countertops. I have formica with a smooth bullnose edge, I am an avid apron wearer and I am short too so my tee’s are not rubbed at all in that area. The holes appear right where the button is. I always pull my shirts out over the seat belt too. Like the rest of you I have tried it all and pretty sick of it, we should be allowed to wear our tee shirts out or in without this problem. I heavily suspect the poor quality fabric in the shirts and buttons on the jeans because I have done my own testing. I use nylon tape over my buttons and outer edge of the zipper placket. NO HOLES ! but no fun undoing when in a hurry going to the bathroom either. However we should not have to put up with this. If we stop buying the shirts that do this and report this to the MFG. perhaps they will hear our voice. I now sleep in those holie tee shirts. I have an appointment at Penney’s today to discuss the problem they promise to pass this information to the buyer. I wear ladies Lee Jeans and Penny’s Tees. No more till they fix the problem. PLEASE REPORT THIS PROBLEM TO THE STORE YOU SHOP AT. I’m glsd to know I am not the only one. By the way, how do you repair them without it being obvious? I have a machine that darns but it shows. Thanks you guys, lets stick together.

    • I, too, thought I was going crazy! Today, I returned a shirt that I wore once to Kohl’s. I asked the lady at customer service if anyone else was returning shirts because of tiny holes. She said “no” but would report it. Start returning these shirts, maybe the manufacturers will get the message. I had no holes, then I washed my shirt and the holes appeared. Almost all of my shirts are cotton and “modal” whatever that is and holes appear.

      • Diane, you make a good point. We need to start returning these shirts if we want them to change. I haven’t been returning, assuming it was just me. Now that I know better, I will definitely start returning and hope others will as well.

    • I totally agree and I work in a very nice boutique. The owners at the store are constantly having to return shirts. The only brand that seems to be better than others is Michael Stars. I am not sure what that’s all about, but I find I have less of a problem with that brand than any of the others. I have actually gotten so used to this annoying little problem that I have just started taking a little stitch when a hole pops up and moved on! ARGH!

  119. J Ashford you are awesome! Great idea. Let’s get the voice out! An FYI to y’all asking…no this problem must be everywhere. I live on the west coast of British Columbia Canada. Look at your map from the California coast, up to and past the Oregon coast, then up the Washington Coast and the next state line is Canada. we just call it THEE West Coast. Don’t know of any other name actually. Live here all my life and the holes PISS ME OFF! I too have smooth bull nose melamine counter tops I say it’s come down to cheap pesticide riddled cotton rubbing on Jean buttons and THEN the weakened spot gets a whole from washing!! Cheap cheap crap!! I am going to start buying organic cotton. Watched a whole documentary on it and it’s the right thing to do in every way!

  120. I am a male with this problem and no currently known source.
    Here is my logical rundown of what I’ve read here (more or less).

    Problem: Holes in exact same spot on cotton shirts.
    Causes and Solutions:

    Bugs: Not the problem in this case.
    Zippers: Be careful.
    Buttons: Put tape on button (not a solution,just a temporary fix).
    Don’t allow shirt to come between you and any hard surface.
    (like a countertop or seatbelt).
    Belts: Don’t use a belt that has metal sticking out.
    (like a button does).
    Seatbelts: Put shirt over seatbelt (Don’t rest seatbelt on shirt).
    Countertops: Use apron and/or don’t lean. Also smooth down rough edges.
    Chemicals: Use apron when cleaning.
    Cooking: Use apron (hot oils can splash on clothing).
    Mfg issues: Inform the business of problem.
    Washer/Dryer: Not the problem (wouldn’t happen in same place every time).
    Also, Wash Button/Zipper items seperately from shirts.
    Other: Don’t purchase 100% cotton.
    Or buy Organic (chemical free) cotton.

    Furthermore: Can happen to mens, womens, and childrens clothing.
    Furthermore: Different heights.
    Possible cause: Seatbelts
    Everyone leans on something.

    Exceptions: Can happen in other places on the shirt.
    Possible cause: Chemicals like cleaners.

    There is no one cause, each person needs to evaluate their own case.

  121. Your solution makes sense. I have the exact same problem in almost all my t-shirts. It’s so infuriating! Some of these shirts are almost brand new, and they’re not cheap fabrics. I’m gonna try the wearing an apron and see if it makes a difference. Has it made a difference for you yet?

  122. I have had this problem for the last year and a half. I am going crazy. I want to see a national news story about this problem!!!!!

  123. OMG this problem just started a year ago for me, which is the same time I purchased a new house with granite counter tops. I’m not saying it’s the granite- I actually think it’s because of my counter height and my jeans button, whatever the culprit I’m soooo sick of new shirts getting ruined after one wear! ONE WEAR! It’s maddening LOL I refuse to buy any nice new shirts and now do most of my shopping at Ross so I don’t feel like I’m losing too much money on this insanity! So… other than an apron (which isn’t practical for me and my 20+ trips to the kitchen sink) anyone have a solution?

  124. It has to be the Jeans people. I’ve been so frustrated by this for years and sick of buying new t-shirts but I know it only happens when I wear jeans. Bottom line…metal button with ANY kind of friction and BINGO…holes. I think we need to invent something to go around the button. Would you buy it? I would…maybe I should get on that..

    • I’m going to devise a belt with a velcro fastener to wear with my jeans and see if that helps.

  125. Okay, I have found out what has been causing the holes in MY shirts. It may not be the answer for everyone, but I know it to be true for me now and I am relieved and embarrassed that I didn’t figure it out on my own. I have a job as a guest teacher and I wear a lanyard with my name badge on it, and I also get a couple of keys at every assignment. My friend, who is also a guest teacher said is was the lanyard, but it turns out, its the keys. I don’t have granite, and it didn’t make sense that it wasn’t happening to anyone else in my family. So, when I noticed a teacher at the school wearing a knit shirt with tiny holes toward the bottom, just like mine, it made me think! YAY!

  126. I have this problem tooooooooooo.I have holes in my t-shirts only but not in my kids and husband’s t-shirts.I wash all the t-shirts together.

  127. Had to laught when I found this blog.
    I have been wondering as have all of you, what these little holes are! No one else seems to be having the same problem – well those close to me anyway. I actually live in Sydney Australia. The singlets and tshirts of cotton fabrics and basically thin to start and are the only one’s, seemingly, obtaining these elusive holes.

    My theory, is my jeans ‘corner’ near to the button sticks out a little bit, never flush – therefore from simply walking, moving around, pulling my shirts down if they ride up etc, causing friction on the fabric and then hence – little hole!

    I must say it is simply amazing that so many ‘people’ are having the same problem. Thank goodness I’m not going insane and can rectify it – to a degree.

    This does pose the question as to if I should purchase more expensive shirts now… hmmmm :)

  128. I sent this thread to my husband, who was in the agricultural chemical business. From him: “I suggest that the problem of little holes in the fronts of tee shirts is the result of two factors: poor quality cotton coupled with a current fashion for thin tee shirts. What has changed aside from the thinner shirts is that over the past 5 or 6 years GM (genetically modified) cotton has replaced upwards of 90% of all cotton planted. Monsanto and Bayer Crop Sciences set out to engineer cotton that is resistant to certain insects and that can be spayed with an inexpensive herbicide (glyphosate). They did this by manipulating the genetics of the plant. In the case of insect resistant cotton, the plant now expresses a gene from a micro-organism (bacillus) that is toxic to the insect. My theory is that the plant only has so much energy and the GM plants are diverting their energy away from fiber tensil strength into other things, resulting in reduced fiber quality. Couple that with the thinner weaves and a tiny bit of rubbing, whether it be from standing at a counter, or just wearing a belt or the button on your jeans and you get holes. Complain to the source – Monsanto and Bayer. http://www.monsanto.com/whoweare/pages/contact-us.aspx
    http://www.bayercropscience.us/news/contact-us

    • Very interesting. I am not so sure about the thin t-shirts part of this theory because it happens with my thick shirts too. Really great info from this post.

    • But, according to your theory, why are they localized around the abdomen?

    • I thought you were onto something here until the holes appeared in a new shirt I wore for two hours yesterday. The tag says 95% viscose and 5% lycra. I wanted to believe your theory was corrected…I hate Monsanto. A side note, I was wearing jeans with a metal button. The holes appeared at that spot. I changed into a new cotton T-shirt and had a hole within the hour. Both occurred while at the kitchen counter.

  129. Hi everyone – I too have the tiny hole issue as a result of my granite benchtop. I was just interested to know if anyone has contacted the granite maufacturer of their benchtop and had any success? I am so annoyed about all the clothes I have ruined.
    Would love to hear about a solution other than just wearing an apron!

  130. I have been having this problem for years and it’s been driving me mad. I think have finally worked out that it is my jeans, all 3 pairs do it. It’s not the button or the belt but when I sit down my jeans are quite tight over my tummy and the zip tends to stick out and I think that is what’s doing it. I tried cutting the zip off and replacing with a safety pin but still got holes. I now have a pair of button fly jeans and finally have some t shirts without holes. Not easy to find button flies though. Anyone know a good place to get these?

    • I do have a granite work top too but it’s smooth and since the new jeans problem has been solved, apart from the fact I only have 1 pair of jeans I can wear as can’t find anymore button fly jeans

  131. The problem is “CARPET BEETLES” I have been dealing with this problem for almost 4 years….

  132. I agree with the comments that it is the material that is being used in clothing nowadays. I never, ever had this problem in the past and for the past 5 years or so, I have been getting holes in all of my shirts, sweaters, tanks, whatever I wear! I thought it was the jeans or the belt but now don’t think so. I bought a new shirt and purposely made sure it didn’t rest under my seatbelt at all and didn’t rub on the zipper and had holes after a couple of wears. It is odd that all the holes are in the same spot on all my shirts though. I thought maybe it was from pulling it down in the front often and that stretched out the cheap material enough to start tiny holes that continue to grow bigger and bigger. I just threw out a dozen shirts and am sick about it, it has to be manufacturing defects, again, I never had this problem “back in the day.”

    • Okay, problem solved!!! After reading the many posts, I did an experiment. I put on a shirt that already had holes, wearing it backwards. Then I put on my Gap jeans and leaned into the island in my kitchen as I do any number of times throughout the day. I moved back and forth very slightly four or five times and when I backed away from the counter……..HOLES!!!!! I tried it several times with the same result everytime. I also tried the same thing wearing my yoga pants and while there was a tiny bit of wear, there wasn’t any holes. It seems the problem is a combination of jeans with the counter top. Hope this helps!!

  133. I’ve been having the mystery problem for about 2–3 years and I finally think I’ve cracked it. Sure, rubbing against countertops/seatbelts/whatever is no doubt activating the problem, and thinner fabrics do seem to be more at risk.

    But what I’m saying is this: I’m a 39-year old woman, and I’ve been leaning against counter tops doing the washing up for decades, so why only now?! Some of you have granite counter tops, but I don’t have a granite counter top; and why would rubbing up against tables, counters, desks etc have not ruined our clothes in years past but is making a difference now? What, are we more hard working now?!

    Maybe the quality of cottons is inferior to what it used to be, but that doesn’t explain it either: I could wear a very fragile silk shirt in the 1990s and still not end up with the belly-button area full of holes.

    Now, every morning, I’ve been monitoring the state my shirt/T-shirt before I put it on and then remembering to check in the evening. Last week, I put on a brand new top. By the evening, it had a small hole forming. I wasn’t wearing a belt, so I examined the jeans I was wearing, more particularly the zip. And this time, after 2-3 years of this happening, I REALLY examined that zip.

    What I saw was this: the zip is of a subtly different design to what I would call the norm, to what they used to make. On the zipper head, if you look really closely, there are two tiny metal spikes/protuberances sticking out, the size of a pin head each – run your nail over them and it catches. They’re located about where the edge of your thumbnail would touch as you’re gripping the zip head between your fingers. The offending jeans are Gap jeans (I live in the UK but Gap are everywhere of course), although this type of zip could now be being used by other manufacturers.

    On a couple of occasions I’d noticed, when the little holes in my clothing were freshly made and before they enlarged, that they looked like little punctures. And on a couple of occasions, there happened to be two of these little punctures perfectly lined up side by side, like they’d been made in tandem. The spacing of the little spikes matches up to those double punctures in my clothes.

    Examine your zip heads! This won’t solve everyone’s problem but hopefully it might solve a couple. It could be that there’s some similar thing going on with the buttons they now use too.

  134. Beverly - Avon Lake Oh 4/8/2011 at 10:48 am Reply

    Well, first of all thank you to Nikki Katz for posting this site. I, for one, thought I was totally loosing my mind. I have told my husband for years that there must be a mouse in our laundry room who is clawing into all of my tee shirts as they hang on the rack (the rack is fairly close to the floor). I also thought it was only Target tee shirts, but no, it’s all shirts. Always mine, never his. Then it occured to me after I read through all the posts, I do all the dish cleaning and almost all of the prep and cooking. Against granite counter tops. Anyways, I’m investing in some totally retro 1950′s aprons, mixing up a martini and having a good laugh! Finally the mystery is solved.

  135. I had this problem a couple of months ago and looked it up on the internet. It seems eveyone has their own reason but I couldn’t find one that made sense for me. I had a few shirts with little holes in them always on the stomach area after only wearing them once or twice. Then I found an article on carpet beetles and learned about them. Now, I know its kinda gross thinking that there are bugs in your carpet and I totally denied it at first but then I found them. They are so small you can hardly see them. You actually have to get down on your hands and knees and look carefully. They like dark places like closets and drawers. You can actually bring them to your house on new clothes bought from the store so I started washing all of my clothes before I wore them.

    • Did the article say if the carpet beetles live on hardwood floors? All of my floors are hardwood or laminate.

  136. I am not quite sure about the granite top and holes, but could be possible. I really think it is the zipper on jeans. I have so many holes in my shirts that I put on a tank top underneath my shirt to prevent the holes and what happens the tank wound up with holes, so it doesn’t seem right that it is the counter tops. I think if possibly your pants are tighter then the zipper top stands out or below it. All I know is I am tired of seeing my shirts ruined.

  137. I am so excited that I found this web page!! I too have had this problem ,with holes in my shirt, for several years now! It’s very frustrating!! I have thrown away, I bet atleast 50 to 100 shirts! My friends would think I was crazy because none of them said they had this problem!! Some of my shirts would be brand new and I would only have on a couple hours or less and find a hole!! Everything described in this article is exactley what i’ve gone thru or thought was causing the holes in my shirts! I even started using DUCK TAPE over my button fly to prevent the holes! I thought it was my kids when i carried them, yatta yatta… With spring and summer around the corner and the new tops I recently purchased… i decided to look this up on line to find a solution and came across this article! I don’t have a granite counter top though…. so it can not be just that. I do think i get them from leaning into my counter top!! But there’s times where i know by belt buckle would do it or my button fly!! Someone needs to patent an invention that just clips over the front of our button fly and or belt!! Please let me know if you find anything else that will help to stop this problem!! I have not had the chance to read thru all the comments yet to see if any one else has solved this issue. I will though. Very frustrated with throwing away so many nice clothes!!! UGH!

  138. I am so excited that I found this web page!! I too have had this problem ,with holes in my shirt, for several years now! It’s very frustrating!! I have thrown away, I bet atleast 50 to 100 shirts! My friends would think I was crazy because none of them said they had this problem!! Some of my shirts would be brand new and I would only have on a couple hours or less and find a hole!! Everything described in this article is exactley what i’ve gone thru or thought was causing the holes in my shirts! I even started using DUCK TAPE over my button fly to prevent the holes! I thought it was my kids when i carried them, yatta yatta… With spring and summer around the corner and the new tops I recently purchased… i decided to look this up on line to find a solution and came across this article! I don’t have a granite counter top though…. so it can not be just that. I do think i get them from leaning into my counter top!! But there’s times where i know by belt buckle would do it or my button fly!! Someone needs to patent an invention that just clips over the front of our button fly and or belt!! Please let me know if you find anything else that will help to stop this problem!! I have not had the chance to read thru all the comments yet to see if any one else has solved this issue. I will though.

  139. Ok…..These holes on most of my shirts (sometimes even worn onece) are driving me absolutely INSANE!!!!!!!!!!!I have no Grrrranite countertops……None of these remedies make sense to me, someone outhere has got to have a solution to this problem…..PLEASE HELP!!!!!

  140. I have just found a small hole centre front just below belly button height on my first time washed thin cotton expensive t shirt dress and I am beside myself with frustration. This is a chronic problem – I have had at least 30 affected tops over the past 18 months. Same type of holes, same place. Like all of you I have considered every possible cause from every possible angle – nothing makes sense. Oh and by the way – I thought this was just a UK problem it seems its not!

  141. HOLD THE PHONE- HOLD EVERYTHING. Sometimes reality DOESN’T make sense but it still is reality. So after my tons of blogging and bitching here….guess what ladies!! (and gents) I pulled out this cotton tank to wear the other day. I held it up and no holes. I lay in down with another shirt (non cotton) on top of it. Just laying them out for morning. Next day I get up and take the first top off…what do I see laying on the tank?????!!! A F$&K#*G MOTH!! I’m not joking. I was stunned and squished it and I sooooo regret not taking the photo. Guess what?? 4 small holes in the front. So I look up “clothing moths” on the net seeking the photo of what I saw and had in memory. I do think I saw it. It’s small. So I start reading and this is what it says. Basically you will never find a moth or it’s larva. Like what I found was 1 in a million! The larva live in the cloth and guess what they feed off of? Even if it’s washed…the sweat and skin and food droppings that live in the fine fine fibers of the cloths. They can’t be seen! I don’t know if I read anything about where they go after they turn into winged things. You would not believe what they say to do to get rid of them!!! It’s crazy long procedure. They apparently even live on walls and you have to wash the walls!!??? Washing everything, line your closet with a sheet of cedar plywood to last a long time. Even someone’s clothing can infect our clothing. Wish I recalled the link. Just look up “how to get rid of clothing moths” in google. I’m convinced it’s a permanent problem. Hope this helps but sadly, it won’t.

    • If this is the case, why do the holes only appear around the bellybutton area?

      • The moths may be eating at the belly area b/c moth don’t eat cloth, they eat the food, etc. that we drop on our clothes – hence when you rub against a counter, any food, water, etc. left on the shirt will be eaten by the moth . . .

  142. I too have had the problem with holes in all my shirts. It’s obvious to me that my shirt is rubbing against my jeans and making the holes. My jeans have a square corner that could probably make a hole all by itself. This coupled with the metal button have ruined practically my entire wardrobe. So why this sudden problem. Years ago I wore jeans and didn’t have this happen. I think it has to do with the thin fabrics they are using these days. They are probably using different fibers than they used to. The clothing manufacturers need to smarten up and consumers need to return garments that get holes in them when brand new. Also jeans are different today with the lower rise. Remember jeans that buttoned at the waist??

  143. The small cluster of holes in the front of your T-shirts, is from your seat belt. The next time you’re in your car, check this out: there is a small disk on the back of your seat belt, it has a small indentation on it. This disk usually rubs right on the top button of your jeans. The T-shirt fabric is caught between the disk and the button, rubbing a small hole. I drive a Honda, but I”m sure many cars have this same type of belt. Why is this a new problem? #1 The new T-shirts (particularly the “Old Navy” type) are made from really thin fabric. #2 We used to wear our jeans a lot higher, up around our waist.

    This only solves the problem of a small cluster of holes in the front of your shirt. If you have holes all over your shirt, you have a different problem.

    I hope this helps :-)

  144. Awesome Jodi 5/7/2011 at 7:09 pm Reply

    This is how I’ve slowed down those F-in’ holes: Cut a several inch wide band off of an old tank/cami and wear over the waist of your jeans. It covers the button and that little corner that doesn’t lay flat. It cuts down on the friction and keeps those freakin holes away a little longer…but we need a permanent solution here!! Obviously men are designing/manufacturing these shitty clothes, and since they don’t wear the styles, they are not familiar with the problems! I will not take this any more! Make some noise if you’re with me…

    • Nope, its not just womens clothes and a tad sexist I must say. All problems cannot automatically be pinned on men! Both myself and my wife have same holes in lower belly. I don’t believe that it is the seat belt theory that people are throwing around as most people are reporting holes in their belly area not their shoulders area also where seatbelts also reach. I think it must be worktops, I also have a granite worktop.

  145. I started having the hole problem in my shirt just the past couple years. It doesn’t happen if I buy mens’s more expensive t-shirts in the smaller sizes. I have a shirst by Woolrich, Eddie Bauer, and Polo (for women) that I bought 2 years ago and no problem with them no matter what I wear them with. This month I bought shirts that were the same design, same company and instantly got holes. The fabrics are made with cheaper content and not near as strong as before. I have tested wearing the shirts with yoga pants (no buckle, button, etc) and the same result. A soft cloth between m y sestbelt, not carrying anything in front of me and still holes. i do not have granite tops and do not lean against anything (trying to save my shirts) I get then just from the friction of walking and the shirts moving against my pants or skirt. I believe like everything else in the stores they have cut ingredients to make more money. The materials are cheap and thin and do not take any stress. I have tried , and experimented with several expensive brands with the same results. I believe the companies are making big money off cheap clothes and blaming all this other stuff that we have done all our lives for the problem.

  146. I too get these holes all the time and it doesn’t seem to matter where the tops are from. Interestingly I don’t seem to have holes in the tops I have bought from Marks and Spencer so think it must be a fault in the fabrics being used by other manufacturers, especially as this has only been happening for the last couple of years.

  147. @ Paula Omg! I have the same problem. the holes appear exactly as you discribe them. First they look like the shirt is stretching out and then boom the holes appear! I don’t think it’s the couter tops i’ve worne new shirts and have not been close to the counter tops and the holes still show up. I also thought it was the seatbelt but it’s not, the washing machine, can’t be i’m the only one thay gets them in the same spot! This is depressing me i need help solving this madness!! Someone please help!

  148. I have been dealing with this issue for at least 4 years, ever since i moved into my new home. Old home had formica countertops, new home has granite, I am 5’3″, love to wear jeans and a t-shirt, do dishes most of the time. Like to wear cotton, usually a cotton blend. Eventually, get the “hole” near belly button on all cotton tops. I am posting because, I just bought 2 identical tops in 2 different colors the other day, cotton / spandex blend, and have worn both. I went to put the gray one on the other day and there was a hole in the back of my shirt, they are usually in belly button area. It was hanging in my closet, had just been washed, and got frustrated and ended up not wearing it, put it back and went to wear it a couple weeks later and now there are 4 or 5 holes, but in the back left side, above where jeans hit. It is making me think the theory of moths might be problem. It could also be friction, for all with granite countertops, i usually use an apron when cleaning anyway, but if you don’t want to wear an apron when washing dishes, i also put a towel over countertop in front of the sink, and lean on the kitchen towel, while washing dishes. I also have to mention that i hate spending too much money on t shirts, so I go to H&m, forever 21, love culture… places where i can spend 20 or less per t shirt, it could also be because of the cheap fabric. I am so frustrated, I wish there was an exact answer, is that show myth busters still on, we should contact them to figure this out.

  149. Well glory! SO glad to find this site. I have been experiencing this strange phenomenon for a year. I am a very young 60 year old, and this is a first! I do not have granite counter tops. I have worn a seat belt ever since they made it a law. I have worn jeans ever since it was proper for ladies to wear them. I am still 122 lbs (no protruding belly). I have used the same washer for 10+ years. Moths? How come they only eat away the front belly button area? I go with the cheap material. There were NEVER holes in my shirts until abut a year ago.

  150. Could it be the inexpensive fabric? I have granite and I would swear that it is the granite. I put packing tape over the countertop. I don’t even care how it looks, I am so sick of the holes. I just bought a slew of new maternity tops and will see if the packing tape works. My belly is protruding! Possibly it might be our thin fabrics on many, many different countertops and surfaces.

  151. I did the ‘rub experiment’ myself with a shirt worn backward (it already has waistline holes in the front). I have smooth polished-concrete counters — but they’re rough enough to cause damage, because I had 2 tiny holes after a few rubs! This convinced me that it’s friction + cheap cotton. I also wanted to share something my dry-cleaner told me: people often blame the cleaner when clothing comes back with a hole, but what usually happened is that there was already a weakened spot on the fabric (from friction, moths, age, etc.), and the cleaning process washed away the last of the broken fibers, opening the hole. I launder my tees at home, but often notice new holes in fresh laundry. Might be a similar thing — I weaken the cotton by brushing against the counter when I wear it, then the hole opens up in the wash. Whatever the case, it’s really annoying! My thanks to everyone here who shared their ideas and suggestions. Headed out now to buy an apron…

  152. I have this problem and think I have another solution. Some people like myself have coarse hairs on there body. They can be long or short but as tummys stick out a little and are covered in long or short hairs depending on male or female. As you move your hairs rub and rub against the material and eventually cause holes.

  153. I live in Belgium and for the past couple of years have been discovering one or several “fang” holes in the front of my T shirts about 2 inches above the hem and slightly off centre. I’ve lived in various countries and been wearing both jeans and T shirts for 30 years but have never had this problem before. I have lived in the same place, with the same kitchen counter tops (yes, they’re granite but it’s smooth) and kept my shirts in the same wooden wardrobe for 6 years. My husband’s unafflicted T shirts are in an adjacent compartment of the same wardrobe. He frequently wears jeans but doesn’t do dishes and therefore isn’t on intimate terms with the granite worktops but he does wear a seatbelt. However, the seatbelt theory doesn’t wash: it’s only warm enough to go out without a sweater/jacket a couple of weeks a year so my T shirt isn’t often in direct contact with the seatbelt. I’ve zapped my wardrobe with every insect spray known to man but I can’t imagine any bug would systematically chew holes in exactly the same place in every T shirt. The cotton used nowadays is doubtless of inferior quality and this could make T shirts more fragile but that alone doesn’t explain the appearance nor the position of the holes. Friction is possibly the answer but rather than the button on jeans, it may be that friction against the “corner” of the waistbelt above the button is causing the holes. However, to the best of my knowledge, this corner has been on the waistbelt of every make of jeans since the year dot yet I don’t recall having this problem in the past.

  154. I can’t believe I found this problem on the internet! I have been having this problem for about two years. I first noticed the holes in one shirt only. They were small-like bite holes and they were about two inches from the hem; around the bellybutton area. I really thought it was from moths; especially since I started noticing the holes in my other t-shirts…and I did notice small moths around my bedroom. But what I couldn’t figure out was why the holes seemed to be in the same spot! Moths can’t be that clever can they? I cleaned out my dresser and moved my t-shirts to another area hoping that would solve the problem but nope it didn’t. Then I started noticing the holes were now three to five in number, same area! I told my husband and like many of the other comments posted we talked about the dryer being the culprit or my jeans butons. After reading about counter tops I too can count that out..my counter tops are smooth. I thought the quality of my t-shirts were poor, but that wasn’t it either. I did think it was the cotton material but then I noticed the holes in a poly/blend shirt. It’s not my seatbelt either; I just hope someone comes up with an answer because many of my nice t-shirts have been ruined.

  155. I would have thought it was moths every time I do my laundry I find more and more holes in my shirts. I just figured it was moths in our old house. We moved since. Still noticing the holes. I work in a warehouse where I’m leaning over a metal conveyor belt all day. Figured that must have been it the whole time.

  156. I have had the same problem for the past year, and kept having to give away shirts. Whatever the cause, I have finally come up with a solution, maybe it will help u guys as well. I have cut up and old t shirt, and using fabric glue, have started gluing the strips over where the holes usually appear. And have bought some pretty stones to glue over the holes on my damages t shirts. Hope this helps. :)

  157. Ok, I googled “holes in my this cotton shirts” because ,yet again, I went to put on a NEW shirt that I bought a few weeks ago and there they were! No rubbing on my granite counter tops, no seat belt snag, no enzymatic soap… nothing. Brand new shirt, never worn, right off the hanger. I read all of this blog, I read all of the other blogs too… this seems like a world-wide phenomenon. It’s been happening to me for at least 5 years now and I’m done. In the past five years I went from laminated counter-tops to granite, from Hardwood closet floors to carpeted, so these are not the causes. I just rubbed my shirt (the new one with the new holes) all along my granite counter top about ten times in every direction and nothing. I rubbed it with my jeans on and up against the button… nothing. I put enzymatic soap on them and put them in the dryer, again nothing. Checked all my seat belts, nothing to snag a shirt. Went to the dry cleaner who said that bugs don’t eat cotton and it must be my zipper… UGH! It could be carpet beatles… they’ll eat anything… but I can’t see an evidence.

    So here are the facts on the ground:

    It affects thin cotton shirts and sweaters
    This seems to be a problem that is world-wide
    It affects the super clean, to the kids in a dorm (nuff said)
    It is not caused by zippers, belly piercing, buttons on jeans, granite counters, enzymatic soaps or seat belts.
    It affects both men and women’s clothing
    It always happens to the bottom front and usually in clusters

    NO ONE KNOWS WHY AND NO ONE HAS A SOLUTION.

    So, if the government can spend millions of dollars on ridiculous research maybe we can start a petition and get a Grant to fund it. Of course with our wonderful new credit rating I’m sure they would rather it was never solved… this way we can keep putting money into the economy by replacing all our shirts over and over again.

    I guess we’ll just have to wait.

  158. I would be interested to hear if you still believe you have solved the problem. I have the same problem – 7 shirts and counting! I have polished stone bench tops – absolutely NO rough spots. I believe (as others who have commented here) that the problem is in the manufacturer/fabric. It’s always the lower front of cotton shirts made in China!

  159. I have granite counter tops but the holes are lower than where the counter reaches me. I’ve come to the conclusion that it is from my seatbelt in the car. The constant sliding back and forth over the same spot cause tiny holes to appear. now I pull my shirt up and over the lower part of the seatbelt and so far, no more holes!

    • I have been having this problem for about 5 years my 3 daughters all nagged me it was the washing machine but how can a machine know to put the holes in the same place every time you wash them, and i have had two new machines in that time also new tumble dryer. I never had granite work tops and the girls weren’t likely to be doing any cleaning, def not seat belt or jeans as again would be a miracle for holes to be in the same area. I wondered if it could be spray from cleaning toilet or worktops although again they are almost uniform in the way they appear so not likely. My neighbour in Spain also has the same problem. Perhaps it is a fault in the manufacture i wish i knew as like everyone else it is costing me a fortune.

  160. THANK YOU!!! I have had this problem forever it seems!! I dont have granite counter tops but tile counters and I think it does just as much damage. I thought it was my button or zipper too…but It didn’t make sense to me when I was wearing shorts with no button or zipper and my brand new tank top had a hole in it the very FIRST time I wore it lol this also explains why my more laid back comfy clothes are the ones with the most holes. I do most of my cleaning and cooking in them.

  161. I have had this issue for awhile now. I really think that it has something to do with the metal buttons on my pants. I wear alot of pants so therefore have ruined many shirts. It happens to different materials and has absolutely nothing to do with the price or quality of the shirts. I have bought shirts from Target and also buy expensive shirts from Macys (INC, etc) and still have the same problem. When I wear a skirt or pants without metal buttons, it doesnt happen. My youngest daughter has had eczema for years and this was actually happening to her skin. Instead of having the holes on her shirt it was actally irritating her skin.She would always have this red quarter sized rash on her belly so when I took her to the dermatologist one time, she told me that most metal buttons are made with nickel and that can cause a rash. Some people are just more sensitive to it then others. It was basically an allergic reaction to the nickel in the button. I think it also has something to do with the acid in your body. She recommended either buying her pants/shorts without buttons or putting a piece of tape over the button. Obviously, I had to put the tape on the side of the button that touched her skin but it seemed to help the situation. I figure that it might be the same thing with clothes. The nickel just eats away at the material. It is very annoying and costly to say the least. Anyway at this point I just put about three pieces of tape over the button and hope that it doesnt happen but still sometimes does. I think it really must be a reaction to the acid in your skin and the nickel in the button. In any case, it sucks. If anyone can think of a better way to stop this, please reply.

  162. After reading all these extensive posts I really think that for me – holes on the belly of my cloothes must be a combination of factors. I never really had any trouble till approx 2 years ago when I had my first child. My contributing factors where:
    - Buying thin cotton t-shirts to cope at home in the summer heat.
    - Spending far far more time at the kitchen sink where the shirts had contact with the rough edged benchtops and any other chemicals that are on them.
    - Purchase of a new washing machine with super high spin cycle which further weakened the weak spots on the tops.
    - Clothes where a little more stretched given my post baby bod.
    - Wearing jeans and stretching the holes so that they are more noticable.
    Given that I want to continue to wear soft cotton and jeans I guess wearing an apron looks to be the efficient solution. This way maybe there will be less weak holes that can be widened by the variety of factors.

  163. no, no and no…i don’t wear jeans, don’t have any snags in my countertops, no grout lines, no baby to carry, no moths that eat cotton, NOTHING to explain the tiny holes in my t-shirts! aaarrrgggg

    • I hear ya!! me either. It is a mystery. Even when I am very careful of all of the above things you mentioned, I still get holes. I figured that it was the seat belt and that is why you see a lot of guys on TV with the front of their shirts tucked in.

  164. I used to think it was my pant button/snap rubbing on the seat belt too but I even get these new holes when I wear sweat pants. When I get in the car, I am very careful to pull my shirt up OVER the seat belt and I STILL get the holes. Every shirt I have has at least one hole, some have 3 or 4. WHAT IS GOING ON HERE???? I am running out of decent shirts.

  165. I had this problem for 2 years. Paid exterminator. Took every thing out of my closet.
    Bought all kinds of pest strips for moths, silverfish, etc. Nothing worked. Every shirt got a hole in it. Read on a website like this one about rubbing up against granite. Tested it and they were right. NO more holes in my shirts. I’m very careful, either unbutton your pants button, wear an apron or sometimes I just lift my shirt up and tuck it under my bra in the front. Because if you forget you WILL have a hole immediately. For those people who don’t have granite, it happens with formica, tile, etc. Anything smooth that you might rub against will make a hole. I found that out the hard way. It’s been about 3 years and I never get holes in my shirts. Kids who get holes are probably leaning against something, maybe the bathroom counter when they brush their teeth or their desk at school. Could be lots of things.
    Also in search for answers, I did find that silverfish can create holes too. Hard to find silverfish bait traps but you can order them on internet. Theres no chance that moths or silver fish only eat holes in the stomach area. If the holes are in the stomach area it’s probably from leaning with pants on. The metal rubbing against the hard surface with just fabric in between makes a hole every time.

  166. I have had this same problem for years and it is so aggravating! Always in the exact same spot- front, middle, a few inches above the hem. Sometimes they happen the first day I wear a new top! It happens in thinner knit tops and thicker t-shirts. I wear Banana Republic, JCrew, Loft, Gap, Bebe… it doesn’t matter the brand. I’m so glad to find other people with the same problem so I know I’m not crazy. It’s got to be friction rubbing against the waistband where it sticks out from the button closure but I have friends that wear the same types of tops I do and it doesn’t happen to them. I mend the holes until so many develop I can’t mend them anymore. It’s so frustrating that I can only wear my cute tops a few times!

    • Forgot to mention the holes develop on the outside of my tops, not the inside b/c several of them are double knit and the inside layer does not have a hole. So it’s something like a counter or seatbelt rubbing the fabric against the waistband.

  167. Post – Barney Rubble – 6/13/2010 at 2:32 pm

    Did the test… worked!!!

    Genius!!!

  168. Hannah Hadman 10/6/2011 at 9:34 am Reply

    Hey I have had the same problem and it increased 3 months ago when I moved into a home with you guessed it Grante worktops. I have been testing an already runind shirt. It seems to be a combo or the little peices of round metal on my jeans and the underside of the Granate. However all tops will get tiny holes in from time to time but in my case it was happening after one or 2 wears max

  169. Hi! I am so happy to have found this blog. I think my mystery shirt holes are from leaning on my bathroom counter top while putting on my makeup. Drives me nuts. Thanks, Ladies!!

  170. this is hilarious.. can’t believe I had to google this, but like everyone else here, have been going nearly nuts trying to figure out what the heck has been ruining EVERY shirt I own. I never noticed it until the past year or two, and in this time, I have gained significant weight in the belly area… I first thought that perhaps it was the brand (threadless t-shirts, ordered online, 100% cotton), b/c some of the t-shirts are thinner material, etc., and it seemed to just be occurring with these items. But then fall and winter came, and I noticed it happening with turtlenecks and thin sweaters… ALWAYS right at the belly button line, starting with one tiny little hole and rapidly increasing to 2-6 holes.. Then I thought it was a specific pair of jeans, got rid of them, but it still occurred. I’ve just concluded that at least for me, it is my fat stomach making the button and/or zipper protrude, and the friction from that rubbing on the cotton material is what’s creating the holes. I’ve clearly seen the actual formation, as I’d bought a t-shirt on clearance from Target, wore the thing ONE day, and could see the cotton getting thinner (and sort of shiny) where the button had been rubbing. By day two, there was a $&%*@*@* hole. The only solution I can come up with is to lose weight and buy jeans/pants that have a flap covering the button.

  171. I can’t believe I waited so long to search for info on this annoying problem! I agree that gaining weight can put more pressure on your shirts at the point where they touch the button/snap on your jeans and/or the point at the top of your zipper that is bulky and often sticks out. However, why would this happen to thin people, too?
    How about this…when we sit down, especially at a desk where we’re leaning forward, a portion of our shirt can get folded between our body and the button or point. Regular, gentle movements over time can wear the holes just like washing dishes at a countertop can.

  172. I rarely wear jeans or pants with zippers/buttons or snaps – no belts, either. I checked my seat belt, found no unusual doodads that would cause holes. We do have granite counters, but they’re smooth as can be. I never had little holes in my shirts until about 3 years ago. Could it be something in the granite? Could it be the quality of the cotton being used nowadays? I think it comes down to this. Any friction with a lesser cotton, right where belly rubs a counter is going to do it. I bought a new cotton shirt last week and found a hole after one wearing! That makes about 8 of them now. I’ve sent an email to a company to ask for their help, as 4 of the shirts are theirs.. I think we all should put it out there that there’s a problem.

  173. I have holes in all my shirts. I am wearing a shirt now I bought less than two weeks ago and I have only worn once before today. There are too many holes to count. I usually wear a spaghetti strap tank top under my shirts but this one is a little low cut and the tank would show. So, I didn’t wear one and now the shirt is basically ruined. I do have granite counter tops with a rounded beveled edge and I wear jeans just about everyday. But, from what I can remember, it has happened when I wear sweat pants too with no clasp/brass button. I am going to try the apron thing and see what happens.

  174. It’s not just granite. My problem with the little holes started when I got quartz counter tops.

    • I am up in the middle of the night reading all of these posts and I can’t believe what I
      am reading . This has been going on for a year for me and years for other people. I have sanded my granite counter tops , taped my seat belt , cleaned every corner on every surface in case it was a chemical reaction. Does not happen to my husbands’ shirts. I wear expensive Tees and this is making me crazy. I have beveled quartz countertops also. I called them all and they had never heard of the problem.
      Cant seen to isolate the problem. Costing a fortune. HELP!!! ALL THESE WOMEN WITH HOLES IN SAME PLACE .. ARE THE NEW SHIRTS DEFECTED…ALL DIFFERENT BRANDS????

      • Hi everyone – this has been happening to me for ages – It is caused by the material being rubbed between your jeans button or belt buckle and the countertop. I find Next jeans have a sharp edged button & so are particulary bad – I replaced the button on one pair with a founded plastic button & that seems better. So upset today as my v.expensive brand new FatFace top has little hole from my new jeans which were high waisted & therefor should have missed the counter. However, lost a bit of weight so they were sitting lower…..rats! Wondered if I could claim from Next on basis button is unreasonably sharp!

        • I have this problem also. I’ve read a lot of these comments, here and on other blogs. I think Nicki may be right about wearing jeans and rubbing the waist button against the counter top. It seems to happen only on cheap T-shirts. We don’t have granite counter tops. The other thing is seat belts. Most all of these hole are in the waist area. I’ve read where moths don’t eat cotton but other bugs, like siverfish and carpet beetles do. I’m going with the button against the counter top. Does anyone have an explanation of why this would be incorrect?

  175. This is soooo funny! I had NO idea that the same problem that plagued me and half my wardrobe also plagued so many others. I was thinking that shirts were just more cheaply made, but the problem also began for me after we installed the granite counters. I’m guessing it’s worse with thinner shirts and perhaps I lean too close to the counter – I’ll have to study my husband to see how he stands. I’m sad though, lots of shirts are ruined.

    Oh and on the button theory – I don’t buy that. I alway always wear a belt, so I’ve been blaming my belt. I imagine it has something to do with the metal rubbing against the granite though.

  176. I have some T-shirts that are over 15 years old. Most of these older ones don’t have holes. We also don’t have granite anything so that theory is out for me. It’s only been the last few years that I’ve noticed this. My wife has no problem with her clothes. I think it’s counter top friction, granite, wood or whatever. I’m a counter leaner, but not my wife. Also seatbelts are a good possibility. I’ve been driving my present car for about 3 years and have only been noticeing this problem for about that long. I’m not sure there is only one answer for this problem.

  177. Ok, let’s talk real solutions. I’ve read only about a half hour of this site so forgive me if I missed better solutions, but here’s what I’m doing. Everyone can agree that there is a lack of quality now in the cotton shirts and friction of any kind is the problem. My shirts got worse when we got granite, but I also lean more on the counter as I also got a bigger sink(thus needing to lean over more to the faucet), so I now wear a thick apron when I wash dishes or cook. If I don’t feel like getting the apron on, I place a thick dish towel over where I lean. This has helped but still notice some holes. Also my son now has holes, same place, in all his shirts and believe me he has never washed a dish. He wears a thick belt (is very skinny) and drives all the time (friction). The best solution I have heard and will try is to use stich witchery (the iron on hemming tape) and add a panel of other cotton tshirt material to patch to the underside of all shirts you want to save from this fate. I’ve tried fabric patches before, but they are pretty stiff and looks weird on really thin shirts. You can buy men large tshirts at goodwill for only a buck or two. I would use the material to cut out patches to iron on to the underside of shirts I just can’t bear to lose. Will try on my son’s expensive hot topic shirts too. I may even flip up my shirt under the apron so there is still no friction from jean button to back of shirt and lift shirt up and over lap belt in car. May also coat jean buttons with a clear coat of nail polish in case the metal interaction theory holds water. Seems like alot of work I know, but I am tired of ruining all of my shirts. Will update on how this works.

  178. I knew it was my granite countertops! I never had this problem until I moved into my current home five years ago. At first I thought my shirts were just cheaply made, and then I thought may be I used too much bleach on the white ones. When it started happening to every t-shirt I wore, every color, I knew it had to be caused by something I was doing on a regular basis, and that is standing at the kitchen sink, with my stomach up against my beautiful granite counter tops. They feel smooth to the touch, but obviously that granite is like sandpaper against my shirts. My husband said I was crazy, so thanks to everyone here I am vindicated. Still not sure what to do about it though. I guess I will just keep buying cheap t-shirts and when they get too holey I will by new ones!

  179. I had also been losing all of my lovely shirts. Read through all of this and realized… It’s the counter top in my master bath. I lean over to wash my face. I looked down toady and at least 5 holes in a brand new shirt. I stepped back, ran my hand along the edge of the counter and sure enough, a small chip. I was wearing a nice tee and jeans. It was not the button or the tip of the denim. It was the damn chipped counter. THANK GOD I FINALLY FIGURED IT OUT. Thank you everyone who has left their theories.

  180. I’ve been trying to solve the problem of my Mystery Holes for years. I’ve come to accept that every stretchy cotton blend shirt I buy has a life span of only a few hours., then it can only be worn as an under layer. My brand new top that I just put on today only lasted an hour. I don’t have granite counters, and it’s been happening in 3 different dwellings I’ve lived – none with granite. It’s not my current car seat belt, or the car before it, I’m sure of it. It’s not chemicals or moths. If it’s my jeans, then it means every single pair of jeans I’ve owned for 7 years – we’re talking at least 15 pairs of all different brands? And why never before than? Like another poster, it’s accompanied by a discoloration of the fabric… like it’s rubbing on something… seemingly along my zipper flap. And there’s usually 4-5 little holes – not snags but holes.

    Today I decided to google it, thinking for sure I can’t be alone, and I know I’m not crazy. Thank you for this blog! I will continue helping this quest to solve the mystery… and will continue with my monthly bulk purchases of new shirts.

  181. No, it’s because we’re carrying a little more around the middle either fat or skin from having children. Everytime you sit and that bit of skin hangs over your waistline you will catch yourself pulling out the waist of your pants and pulling your shirt down. That would most definatly cause a hole. Not the counter, not the car seat belt, not bugs, not the button on your pant but the fabric poking out next to the button that touches your shirt that constantly get pulled. Sorry we’re just fat…..

  182. Wow! I thought I was the only person plagued with this. I’ve come to the conclusion that it may be both the granite and my sweatshirts and sweaters that have zippers. If you wear a lot of zippered sweatshirts feel the bottom part of the inside of the zipper and see if it has a sharp edge. A couple of mine do.

  183. I googled this today after my 6th shirt this year is ruined! I thought it was moths, the jeans, the zipper, etc. but didn’t really do anything about it. The tops I wear to the office do not have this unless I also wear them with jeans. Since I only wear jeans on the weekends with casual knit type shirts, I think it must be the friction of the pants with shirts that are knit in the thin cheaper cotton. I’m going to start standing a bit away from the sink when I clean up to see if that works—SO FRUSTRATING!!! Thanks to all of you who posted. We’re all trying to help each other and that’s a good thing.

  184. We don’t have granite countertops and I have not been leaning on the counter as I cook/clean. I have ruined at least a dozen shirts with these tiny holes in the belly-button area. I can’t figure out which ‘friction’ would do this…the mystery continues here…

  185. I have found that if I’m wearing any form of pants with a hard clasp at the front either a button or clip to hold the jeans/pants together I get holes when I put pressure from leaning on a table, a belt over the top, seat belt or my toddler backpack, I have found it’s the friction of two hard objects and my tops, I found this out because I was on holiday and wore my Manduca toddler backpack (which I highly recommend if you ever need one) to carry my 2yr old around Cairns and when I took it off there was about 20 small to med holes in my shirt at the front from the rubbing of the backpack band and jean button, I received another hole after a long car trip again from the rubbing of the seatbelt and jean button. So now I’m aware of the issue I just lift my shirt up above my jean/pants with the backpack or seatbelt and I no longer put a belt over the top and I try my best to remember to not lean on counters, fences, gates, ETC,

  186. PS. I’m a size 8 to 10 and wear clothes to fit correctly so being fat isn’t the cause!!

  187. I finally had my ceasar stone and granite countertops edges refinished where there were nicks. $150 bucks is nothing compared to the amount of shirts ruined.
    I haven’t really had a chance to see if it works, because I only have 2 shirts without holes in them and and I can;t afford to ruin them this month. Hoping this works.
    Asking Santa for a couple shirts for Christmas.:)

  188. I have this problem, only this past year with my 3 Levis. Too many shirts lost. I read everyone’s ideas, I think the ideas about the button closure and push on it, or the acidic reaction are all probably on the right track. also on my jeans the very top of the tab that you button into (the waistband edge) on it’s corner it seems very “hard”.
    And given i thnk this happened even when i wore a belt, it might be that corner. not sure.

    I’m thinking I will put clear nailpolish on the buttons, see if that helps. Of course it may be a while before i know, since too many of my shirts have holes now. And more belt wearing, crossing my fingers on that.

  189. Have had this problem with all of my husbands’ T-shirts for the past couple of years. At least 20 t-shirts have been discarded because of the small holes all in the same place. Even made him throw out a nice Brighton belt because I thought it was the culprit…. We spend summers in Sweden were we have a smooth stainless kitchen counter – no granite or tile in sight – and the holes kept appearing there, too. Now I have found holes in my t-shirts as well – I just started wearing them with jeans after always wearing leggings (no buttons) before. S0 – my conclusion is that it must be the button closure on the waistband of our jeans – will try the trick with duct-tape and see what happens. (We have started buying my husbands’ T-shirts @ the thrift-store, – at @ $1.00 each it’s not the end of the world, just very puzzling.)
    .

  190. I’ve been having this same problem since 12/10 and none of these topics seem to be the solution. I’ve since bought a brand new washer and dryer, replaced over 2 dozen shirts to no avail. At first the holes would only appear on my shirts only but now they are also on my husbands cotton shirts and even my cotton underwear. I’ve had terminex put bombs in my bed room three times and still had the holes. I went on vacation with brand new shirts and was gone for a week holes didn’t appear but as soon as I got home a few days later all the shirts had holes in them. I’m frustrated and really can’t afford to keep buying new clothes every week. Also the holes are appearing in different locations, not just near the belly button anymore. I thought it was carpet beetles, silver fish even moths but if it were terminex would have taken care of that problem. I think it’s just the quality of the shirts. If anyone finds a different solution please let us all know. This is just very frustrating.

  191. I noticed in the last month, that small holes where appearing at the front of my thin material tshirt’s. Our background, we moved in new home 12 months ago and our washing machine was new when we moved in (it was our 3rd front loader) and used the washing powder that was supplied with the machine for the last year; we have Caesar Stone (granite) bench top (our first home with these bench tops).
    I original thought it was our washing machine as l didn’t see any holes in tops when l put it in (the holes are small therefore not noticeable) but l saw the holes when the garment was dry as the holes had grown when washed. I did another search on the internet and saw someone saying that holes are caused from the friction of something hard like a jean button behind a tshirt when rubbed on the granite bench top edge like leaning over to do the dishes or looking into a mirror to put make up on. My jean button are the same height as our granite bench top, so l did an experience and put a mug (a hard surface) behind a tshirt and rubbed it on the edge of the bench top and within 1 minute there was holes in the tshirt, they suggested doing it for 5 minutes.
    I have read that causes of holes was from car seat belt, cleaning reading glasses, opening bottles but we have had our car for a long time and l don’t wear glasses or open bottles with my tops. It would of had to of been something different to our last house and our bench top and washing machine where new when we moved into our house 12 months ago.
    It doesn’t happen to my husband’s top as he doesn’t wash the dishes. Now l know what the cause is l will wear an apron and hope that this is the solution.

  192. I can not believe this!!! I have been having this problem for about 2 years!! I couldn’t find out why it was happening. Today wearing my favorite t-shirt, looked down and saw those little holes again. I decided to look it up on my “friend” Google and the first link I clicked on solved my problem. THANK YOU SOOOO OOOOO OOO MUCH :) :) :). I am so pleased. Wearing apron from now on.

  193. This problem has been torturing me for 6 years. I have lived in 2 houses and between my husband and i have probably thrown away over a hundred shirts in that time thinking it was bugs eating them. I can tell you i have become neurotic about checking my cotton shirts before I wear them, before i wash them and after I wash them. A couple times I have noticed the holes appear while i am wearing them but often I find that the holes appear after I’ve worn them while they are in the laundry basket. I have tried many things, including: cedar balls, moth sachets, lavender sachets, clove sachets, storing all my t-shirts in zip lock bags (this actually worked quite well but is too much work). It even happened with a brand new cotton puma tank top on our honeymoon in Spain and I threw my suitcase away. I ride the subway and don’t drive so it is not seat belts. I have also had a few holes in my underwear and socks over time.

    MY SOLUTION of late has been to spray the area where the holes appear on our shirts with 1 part vinegar 2 parts water and then hang them on a door handle or hook before i do laundry. This has greatly reduced the number of holes I have been getting but not completely.

    AS for COUNTER TOPS: we just tested the theory and took one of my husbands white Uniqlo t-shirts and rubbed it on the edge of our granite counter and sure enough we got a hole and another and another – Eureka! We both are in the kitchen quite a bit. I am not 100% sure this is going to solve the problem because I know some of our t-shirts get holes while in drawers or while in the laundry. My other worry is our last place had one clear coated plywood counter and one laminate counter – neither of which were noticeably rough. I will report back once we’ve try the apron solution for a few weeks. THANK YOU! If I were you I would try the vinegar solution too.

  194. I, too, thought I was crazy. I wish I had googled this problem sooner. I don’t believe that stores and manufacturers have not heard of this problem. I don’t think they want to address it because they don’t want to be held responsible for returns and replacements. That said, I think the rubbing may be a cause. I was wearing a repaired shirt yesterday and was trying to be very careful all day. Then in the evening another hole appeared while watching TV. I decided that since the shirt was ruined anyway I took a spot with no holes and ran and pulled it over the button, zipper, the edge of the denim corner above the button hole, the zipper pull on both sides. No holes. So then I thought about what I had done that day. Laundry, dishes, wiped down kitchen and bathroom counters and sinks, brushed teeth. All things that I probably rubbed up against the counter (not granite) and the appliances. I have spent hundreds of dollars on new shirts in the last year. Wish I had a definite solution but glad to know it’s not just me.

  195. I have been getting small holes in some of my Ann Taylor shirts, in the underarm area (cotton/rayon blends). We do not have granite counters. One of the shirts I have only worn under a sweater, so it has not rubbed against anything. And since these holes are all under the arms, they don’t rub on anything.

    Perhaps my issue is completely different than others discussed here, but the holes are still mysterious. Anyone experience this?

  196. Have any of you seen silverfish in your home, if so then that’s the solution to the problem not an apron!!!

  197. No silverfish or any bugs of any kind here. I’ve worn long sleeve T’s of thin fabric all week. NO HOLES! Hallelujah !!! I have tucked my shirt in my pants while standing at the kitchen sink and stayed back from the counters while wearing low ride jeans. I think I have found my cause and solution…..

  198. How can it be silverfish? Do Silverfish ONLY chew holes in the front lower center of shirts? If holes were everywhere, then I would agree, but that can’t be the answer to these particular holes.

  199. I bought 6 shirts made by Velvet or Graham and Spencer. All of them have these little holes in the lower front. Garnet Hill graciously allowed me to return all. I called Velvet -they’ve been less than informative. They don’t call back and now they’ve been rude. Their receptionist says that their company isn’t the only one manufacturing these holey shirts and that I’m “escalating the problem.” All I’m looking for is a reason why this is happening and a sense that these companies, who are making millions of dollars, are looking into changing whatever the problem is, whether it’s a new fabric processing or what. They need to be held accountable and it’s up to us to ask that they are. I encourage everyone to speak up.

  200. sally garrett 1/24/2012 at 5:06 pm Reply

    I don’t know how many of these comments are from Australia, but here I have had this problem for the last two or so years. My daughter confirmed her t-shirts were the same. Almost all the holes in my shirts are doubles, side by side, in both expensive and bargain articles, some of which were favourites. I thought it was the seat belt button at waist level (but why only lately?), then the zipper pull on my jeans which unfortunately shows when I sit and has sharp edges. I have started placing a small piece of fabric over the waistband of pants where they close to see whether it makes a difference. The only thing is that almost every t-shirt I have is ruined so I have to find more for testing!

  201. please go to my blog to list the companies from whom you’ve purchased shirts from that now have holes. Let’s get them to figure it out!

    holeyshirts.blogspot.com

  202. After 2 years of suffering I googled this problem and cannot believe the amount of people if affects! I thought it was only me! This problem needs taking to the press and investigating by cotton manufacturers as consumers are wasting significant amounts of money throwing away damaged cotton t-shirts. Why is it happening in the same area of our clothes? Where are the clothes made – is there some bug that gets into the cotton in the country of production? Is it a chemical reaction of detergent and body sweat produced by people of a certain blood type? I mention this as it only happens to me in our family and I am a different blood group. One top I only wear to go out in has just developed holes and I never wear it with jeans or go anywhere near a granite worktop. We need to find answers before we all go insane!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • Julia, I spoke at length with Cheree at Garnet Hill. She was very nice and interested in this problem. It does seem to happen with thin cotton or cotton blend only. That it’s only been in the last 4-5 years should shed light, should any company making them care to look into the problem. AND THEY SHOULD, don’t you think? Graham & Spencer was NOT interested at all – all they had to say was ” We’re not the only ones with this problem.” I agree with you, we should get this issue out there. Many people are not only spending money throwing out the shirts, but replacing washing machines, exterminating their homes, and it goes on. Funny how quickly we accept the blame for it rather than going to the source!!! Is a rub or two on a countertop “normal wear and tear?” Not. I started a blog : holeyshirts.blogspot.com please go to it and list the companies you know of who make the garbage.. and/or email me back.. good luck.. Peacha (Lisa)

  203. YOU GUYS YOU GUYS IT’S ME AGAIN…I DID IT!!!! I HQVE THE ANSWER THIS IS IT I HAVE REAL PROOF!! I’m so happy I have it!
    Okay since I’m an accountable person I take back all I said was not possible. There are three or four things all together an now I know how to prevent it. It’s not JUST the jeans, not JUST the counters or granite. Okay today I put on a high quality Abercrombie shirt that I love and was expensive. I was pissed off because there was a hole in the usual BS spot. I literally, unusually so, looked at it all day. Several times I looked at is just thinking of ways to sew it up. I came home after a full day and a long car ride. I started cooking (and yes I have granite but as u may recall I never used to and have always had holes anyway). After dinner I looked at my shirt and HOLY SHIT is an understatement. There was a mass of several sizes of holes. It was ONLY within the cooking time frame. So I can only conclude that Tw RUBBING of the jeans button, shirt in between, against ANY surface is slowly cutting through the shirt. This is it man. So I also believe that the seat belt is part of it. ANYTHING that is rubbing on the front o the shirt with a hard jeans or pants button behind it is causing this. Now when I drive I’m pulling my shirt out. I wish I could attach a photo of my shirt from JUST making dinner today. It was so bad it almost made me laugh but I was also so happy I can start preventing this. Just shove the shirt in ur pants before driving or cooking and it should do the trick! I’m so happy this happened today.

  204. This problem has been driving me crazy too for the past 3 years since we moved into our new house. My husband and I thought it was the electric spark on the gas cooker. We took this up with the cooktop supplier who came out to investgate. He said he thought it was when the hob was lit it was throwing out sparks from the trivet and the flame. I have tried wearing aprons but occasionally forget and have continued to get many little holes. Funny my husband who sometimes does a little bit of cooking has had no holes in his tee shirts although he wears a coarser fabric than I do. Our granite edges are very smooth. The holes cerainly coincide with the button on the trousers and this coincides with the position of the granite edge so this must be it. We need someone to present the problem to Dr Karl Kruszelnicki

  205. JEANNIE, did u read my post? If you look back, way back I am one of the ones who was dead against the granite and every other thing. I’ve been posting here for quite some time. I had to really take back my words from my previous posts. I’ve been purposefully watching very closely because I always thought it was bugs and I’ve researched. Like I said in my last post it isn’t the counter or seat belt, it’s the cloth rubbing against the ANYTHING with the button behind the cloth. I am 40 years old. All those years that “we” wore all shirts tucked in, like 25 years, never once saw a hole in ANYHING. Read my post 3 above this one…it actually happened before my own eyes!!

  206. OMG! It is the product cleaner used on the bench tops!!! I went through so many tips and have figured it out!! So by wearing an apron your tops will be safe! The when you lean onto you counter top the cleaner gets onto your top and burns little holes! Tested it over time it works!!

  207. sickofthrowingoutshirts 2/22/2012 at 9:12 am Reply

    Wow, good to know I’m not the only one with this problem! My theory: it’s some combination of thinner, cheaper cotton being used recently, and tops rubbing against jeans buttons and granite counters (I did not have this problem in my old house with wood counters). Thin t-shirts and granite countertops are both popular now, and this may be the price that we pay. I’ve stopped buying thin cotton shirts. Will try wearing aprons more now, too. Hope that helps! I’m sick of throwing away shirts after wearing them only a few times.

    • don’t throw the holey shirts away.. return them and get reimbursed. This is not acceptable. Companies should not produce clothing that develop holes with the slightest amount of friction. They’re making/using crappy fabric in the last few years, and we need to let them know that it’s not okay. All the suggestions for why these holes appear point to the same place. They’re all in the same area, in the front, below the navel, when we rub against counters, belts, zippers, seat belts, etc. It can happen in the first wearing. I’ve had 7 shirts in the last two years develop these holes – I’ve sent them all back and was reimbursed. Velvet (Graham and Spencer) made them all. They won’t fix the fabric unless we let them know. Whose responsibility is it? Not those of us buying the clothing. There are enough of us wondering about it to make a difference

  208. Putting your laptop on your lap and typing away – then look at your tshirt after doing this for about 30 minutes, and lo and behold you have an answer to your problem! Have tested it and it is the answer!!

  209. I have been having the same problem for many years! I have ruined countless shirts and figured out a while back that it was my jeans… but thanks to this post I figured out HOW my jeans were doing it! I did the granite test and, yup!, more holes.

    SO, I put a small piece of felt (about 1.5″x1.5″) over my button and then buttoned my jeans (the button hole holds on the felt) and tried the test again – NO HOLES! I really rubbed and saw some marks but no holes! I think it will work with just normal wear (not purposely TRYING to make a hole). I got this idea from who ever wrote the button cozy post. The felt is super cheap, and very easy to do! I really hope this works because I am SO sick of holey shirts!!!

  210. Does anyone have a soln besides an apron? Button cover of some sort?

  211. Just saw the felt idea. So going to try that!!! Thx for the idea! :-)

  212. Wow! I hope the granite counter top we just recently installed is the answer to the holes in my new top. I just not figure out how a top I just bought and washed once had holes in it. Mystery solved! Thanks

  213. I dont have granite counter tops but I have the same holes in my shirts.. all of them.. so annoying could not figure out why.. I believe its caused by the jeans.. not the button but where the jeans join together above the button. only solution I can come up with.. so to fix this wearing a camisole beneath will save the shirts but sooner or later its going to get through the camisole. Ive given up and think Ill just wear active wear..

  214. It is where the top of the jeans come together.. you will notice the jean material is very thick on the edges where it buttons the thick areas stick out into two points.. run your hand over that area and you can feel the edge corners like projectiles sticking out.. with that being said that edge rubbing against the counter, seat belt or anything is going to cause friction and it cause a hole.. no more jeans for me ..

  215. I have quartz counters with bullnose edging, which is smooth. I was thinking these tiny holes were being caused from cooking, hot splatters jumping on my tops. I have damaged so many new tops and sweaters from this. I have started using camisoles to see if this would help and even started to use aprons when cooking (if I remember). I will let you know if it helps. I am so tired of my clothes ruined.

  216. I’ve had this problem for about 3 years now but never before that. I think the problem is the quality of clothing has just gone way, way down. I find it too odd that everyone started having problems at around the same time. The problem is certainly the rubbing of the material against something (counter top, jean button, in my case the small, point of the jean near the button). I only have this problem if I’m wearing jeans and a fitted shirt. When I’m at home I only really wear sweat pants and it’s never happened once while wearing anything besides jeans. Also it only happens outside the house so I know it’s not the washing machine doing it. Maybe it’s a combination of the shirts getting thinner and the jeans getting stiffer. I may actually try cutting off the edge of the jean that’s causing the problem to see if it stops.

  217. Angela McDonald 4/11/2012 at 6:41 am Reply

    I agree that it’s a problem with the fabric rubbing against any number of things (jean button, pointed jean fabric, etc). There’s an “as seen on tv” product called trendy tops. It’s basically a fitted tank with no top half. So you could wear it over your waistband and maybe it would protect your t-shirts from holes. I made my own from cutting an old tank, and it doesnt show under my shirt. It reminds me of those “Units” belts we wore in the 80′s. We’ll see if it works!

  218. I have holes in the belly button area only on my everyday tops, not dress clothes as many other posts! Having read many of the preceding posts, I now believe the holes in my shirts (my husband has none) may be caused by sitting and using my laptop on my lap. Looking at where the laptop is on my top is exactly where the holes are. I am going to try a mouse pad under the computer. I will buy some new tops and eventually post my results. Thanks all “posters” for steering me to the solution to my problem holes!

  219. Cristina Steele 4/22/2012 at 12:02 pm Reply

    I just bought half a dozen new t-shirts from the Gap, and I already have these “belly button holes” as I call them in two of the shirts. Mind you, I didn’t even wash the shirts before I wore them, just put them on and go (so it’s not the washer or dryer). I don’t believe the holes are from rubbing up against a counter, button etc. but they are from the cheap fabric that companies are using now–the shirts are so thin I can see the outline of my bra through them. Argh. I tried emailing Gap customer service and they gave me a lame response saying that I would have to bring the shirts back to the store & have the manager “evaluate” them to determine whether or not I could get my money back or if the holes were from “wear & tear”. What a garbage answer, I only wore both shirts for a few hours before noticing the holes. We’ll have to see what the manger says when I bring them back.

    • I agree with you, Cristina. It’s the thinner cotton that is so popular now. My friends and I have been trying to scooby doo the mystery. We all have gotten holes (rather rapidly and all in the same spot) in all of our GAP tees for the last two years. Just had another tee show up with a hole today! The thinner soft cotton feels nice, but it just doesn’t hold up. I have some heavier cotton tees from Walmart that I bought YEARS ago and they still look great. It’s frustrating!

  220. We had new kitchen installed a year ago, including quartz composite work tops. At the same time started to gradually notice the dreaded belly button moths. We have 3 kids and their clothes are unaffected but myself and husband have small holes around bottom of our t-shirts. Have been baffled but it couldn’t be a coincidence that it started happening at same time as we got new kitchen, could it? We live in Ireland. It’s really bizarre….

  221. I have had these holes for a couple of years now and finally I thought it was from the washing machine so we then bought a new one. No holes for a few months….great! but then suddlenly HOLES again have started appearing. I am ruling out the following:

    * Washing machine – as we have bought a new one and holes are still appearing
    * Seat belts- As although i get holes around belly button, i also get them near the arm area where the shoukder meets the arm.
    * Granite/Quartz worktops – We dont have these
    * Tumble dryer-dont tumble dry all of clothes affected

    There is just one thing that I am now thinking this maybe…..do any of you who have posted these comments own a STEAM IRON? Could it be this that is causing these holes? I must admit I do only use a high heat and prob shouldnt!

    Other than that maybe it could be bugs and carpet beetles which is such an awful thought!

    Let me know your thoughts please or if you have a solution as I am DESPERATE to resolve this.

  222. I get these frustrating holes in my clothes – sometimes after 1 wear.

    I’ve moved countries, changed washing powders, changed washing machines, change tumble driers (which isn’t used for my tops). I even wash my clothes separately in a washing bag on a gentle wash.

    I have no granite counter tops – and nothing that my tops catch on – (we’ve run a stocking around the edges of everything to check) I use no bleaches, battery acid or any chemicals in my house at all.

    My belt doesn’t catch my clothes (once again the stocking test) and yet I still get holes.

    It’s starting to drive me insane

  223. OMG – I can’t believe how many other people have this same problem with the tiny holes in the front of their shirts! I’m convinced it has something to do with the metal button on the front of jeans. I don’t have granite counter tops and my seat belt is smooth. I’ve been wearing jeans all my life, but this problem just started 2 – 3 years ago. I wonder if jean manufacturers changed the source of their metal buttons. Several people have suggested a reaction between the metal and the cloth, especially when rubbing occurs. Maybe manufacturers are importing cheap metal substrate for the buttons. It would be interesting to note which type of jeans (as in manufacturer) each of us has with this problem. I’m going to replace the metal button with a plastic button to see if that helps. So glad to know I’m not alone, but we all need a solution!

  224. Hi
    I’ve just googled this as everyone else has done, as I have lost loads of teeshirts this way. I have around 5 Abercrombie and 6 Hollister that have these small holes always in the same place. Also Miss Sixty is the same and these are not cheap! After reading all your comments I have just emailed Abercrombie to give them a chance to give their opinion also prompted by yet another batch of holes in a top I have worn twice. I think that the material is cheap! You should be able to wear tops more than twice and without worrying what you are wearing with them and what you are doing. Its wrong and the manufacturers should sort it out!

  225. Keith Peterson 6/11/2012 at 9:28 pm Reply

    I was also having the same problem with the small holes, on mostly cotton T-shirts around the belly button. After our third technician coming over to look at our washer I decided to look else where. I put on a brand new Haine’s shirt I bought (with no holes) and started to slide my belly down my counter tops. After two passes, I was able to replicate the small holes on this new shirt. I spun the shirt around and did two more passes and again created the same holes that were in all of out cotton T-shirts. Our countertops are tile and the installer did not use enough grout, so where the tile pieces meet there are sharp corners exposed for our clothes to snag on while cooking, cleaning, getting a drink of water. This is the front of the countertops that hang out further than the rest of the counter before going down toward the floor. The height is spot on for the damn holes! So many shirts have been ruined. An eight dollar file stone from Home Depot will resolve this issue!!!

    I can’t imagine that everyone has the same countertops, but I now know it’s not my washer!!

  226. Keith Peterson 6/12/2012 at 7:54 am Reply

    Well, after filing down my grout joints on my tile countertops, I aging ran my belly down the countertops. Before I had small holes after two passes, this time I did it 10 times with no holes! Time to check your countertops! Not sure why I didn’t think of this sooner as tile is sharp and can cut skin like glass while installing it. Especially if the installer did not use smooth edge tiles on the front edge of the counter top!!

  227. Like all the post above I have the same issues on many of my Banana Republics t-shirts and other brand’s names, same holes, same location like every one else. Went to the store and talk to a sales guy about it, he recommended not to put the t-shirts on the dryer, just hang these after finish the washer cycle end, unlees you have a nice steamer you will end with a lot of wrinkles, still I’ m not sure about this to be the solution beacuse if heat is the problem, why holes are always in the botton part of t-shirt?.
    And yes, I have granite counter top and tried passing my old t shirt around the top, borders and corners but still could not replicate the holds.

  228. I’ve been having this problem for years. I don’t have granite countertops or a front loading washer.. The moth/bug theory doesn’t really make sense because the holes are always in the same spot. The thing that everyone seems to have in common is that we all wear jeans. My theory is this: it’s the combination of thin fabric rubbing against the corner of of the jeans along with the fact that jeans are lower waisted now.

  229. I have this problem, too, which is why we all ended up here :). As I was reading through these posts it hit me….how fortunate we are to be dealing with FIRST WORLD problems. Today I ruined another EXPENSIVE TSHIRT on my GRANITE countertops. I was smacked with perspective. :) I have clothes and food and money to buy more when I run out of it or ruin them. Thank you, Lord!!

  230. I came here yesterday because I was wearing a good shirt I’ve had for two years with no holes. Most of my everyday ones have holes. For the first time yesterday one appeared on this treasured shirt and for the first time I cooked dinner and unloaded the dishwasher in it. It started only when we got granite counters three years ago. So glad to have the mystery solved.

  231. Seat belts! It’s gotta be where the seatbelt meets the jeans. I never do chores in my nice T-shirts, but they ALL have tiny holes around the abdomen. But I do wear jeans with grommets, and I drive a lot….in my T shirts. That’s my vote! Seat belts!

  232. Just curious. Does everyone have a newer washer design with the very high speed rinse cycle?

    This is the only change we have made to our life style and we are seeing these holes too. We have worn out, ripped and torn lots of clothing but never have seen this problem before. The holes are in fabric like tee shirts but I have a thin flannel gown that has them at the hem. I do not beleve that suddenly a lot of people are wearing small holes in only certain, specific apparal items. I think either the fabic has changed and/or the high speed spin cycle is the culprit.

  233. SoManyDamnHoles 7/31/2012 at 7:13 am Reply

    Anyone had any luck with the invisbelt or isabelt?

  234. I’ve experienced this problem for years. Granite counter tops were not the problem because we didn’t have granite in our home. My first thought was my child’s buckle sandals but then she grew out of those shoes and began to wore Velcro shoes. Every shit I bought developed holes after only the first and sometimes second wear. A few months ago I noticed a shirt developed a hole flyer I pulled it out of the washer. I wondered if the washer and dryer was the culprit. I became very cautious while washing clothes making sure I watched only person to touch my Tees. Tonight I was folding laundry and noticed several tees in the basket. Immeditely I pulled them out and studied each one foe new holes. Sure enough, I found 6 holes in a fairly new shirt. I googled “why do I have holes in my shirt.” many people have claimed countertops as the culprit however my countertops have always been smooth and the holes typically appear after washings

    • CONT….I found the most logical answer that supports my recent observation. The washer and dryer is in fact the culprit. Using too high of a spin speed and overloading the machine may cause delicate fabrics to tangle up with hooks and zippers if washed together causing holes. There is a YouTube video that proves this theory. MYSTERY SOLVED in my household! I have to to my laundry before my husband does.

  235. I, too started discovering these strange holes about 4 years ago. We had just moved into a house with granite countertops, so when I finally got around to searching for answers on the internet, I was sure that was the problem. It couldn’t be the washer or dryer or moths because these holes are always located only in the lower stomach area. However, when we moved back to our previous house I noticed that I was still getting the holes, only not as quickly, and we have the same laminate countertops that we had when we lived here before- and they had never caused the holes then!
    That leaves me to believe that it’s a combination of many of these things, all resulting from flimsier fabric in the shirts. I once got a t-shirt at a concert that was made out of bamboo. It was the lightest, softest thing ever, and I couldn’t wait to wear it. After one time wearing it I noticed 2 or 3 tiny holes, after the next wearing, those holes had multiplied exponentially, and it wasn’t fit to wear out to get the mail, and very soon after I just threw it away!
    The fact that these holes never happened before 4 or 5 years ago leads me to believe it is ultimately the fabric’s fault, and counters, buttons, seatbelts, etc. all exacerbate the problem! And I’m mad as hell that I spend good money on nice shirts and tshirts that only last for a few wearings!

  236. I’m so glad I found this site, this started for me about a year ago when we moved into a brand new house, which does have granite counter tops, however for me it is not the granite in the kitchen, I believe it is the marble in the bathroom. I do not lean against the counter in the kitchen (I don’t cook everyday), but in the morning getting ready for work I lean up against the bathroom vanity and after reading these posts yesterday I looked down at my shirt (which already had a hole in it) and I had a wet spot right above the existing hole so I felt the edge of my vanity and there are a couple chips in it. I hope this is what it is I will be very careful with any new shirts I wear to make sure I do not lean on the vanity. Good Luck to everyone

  237. This has been happening to me too!! I thought I was alone. No one else I have talked to has this problem. I thought it was my zipper but I have tried to pay attention to what happens when I zip up. I always fold my shirt up until I am done. I wear jeans and jean shorts most of the time. I do have a quartz counter top but since others that don’t have stone counter tops have this problem I don’t think that is it. I think it has to do with the jeans.

  238. My counters are not granite.
    I’m short, so if I was catching my shirt on the tile of the counter, the holes would be higher than the bottom edge of my shrt.
    I don’t wear belts.
    Because I’m not tall, the hems of shirts tend to be a bit lower on me. Buttons and zippers don’t appear to be an issue.

    My guess? Crappy materials used to make tshirts. A quick google supplies that this is a widespread problem yet manufacturers are being silent.

    Tshirts are like my uniform, but this hole business is frustrating. Cheap, mid-range, or expensive, it doesn’t seem to matter! I put on a white tshirt this morning that I’d washed, but never worn: three small holes. Grrrr.

  239. It seems little tiny holes are appearing in all soft cotton type fabric. This has been going on for 4 years and everyone initially thought that it was their detergent, washing machine or that they pulled the fabric somehow. It turns out that it’s defective fabric used to make these clothes.

    After 4 years of throwing money away, I am starting to return all items or go back to the manufacturers to resolve these issues. Shirts made from this fabric last 2-6 months at max if worn a couple of times a month. I started to return all the shirts made from this defective fabric in the last few months. Neiman’s, Nordstom, Gap, Barney’s have all acknowledged this problem when I returned these shirts. Saks Fifth Ave still won’t admit this problem exists and said they are looking into it and did not issue me a credit.

    Bring it back to the retailer/manufacturer!!! They need to stop using this fabric!

  240. 9-6-12 — Who knew the problem of holes in cotton knits was so rampant. I had some light cotton nightgowns made in Turkey which, after a few years, suddenly developed 1/8″ round holes scattered across the front. I thought of moths or crickets but couldn’t find any, so decided it was cheap fabric. I gave them to a thrift shop, but a few months later I noticed an identical hole in the crotch of a fairly new pair of Hanes cotton briefs. First I sprayed the inside of my clothing drawers with Avon Skin So Soft, which is the best non-toxic insect repellent (but too expensive for large areas). Then I thought of the internet, and once again fellow truth-seekers came to the rescue. After comparing many posts on the topic to my situation, my bet is on CARPET BEETLES IN THE LAUNDRY HAMPER (like the game of Clue). I often see tiny black beetles around the baseboards in my Tucson home but had no idea they eat clothes. They seem to come up from cracks in the foundation under the wall-to-wall carpet. I spray insecticide around baseboards, bed and bathrooms every few months, but never thought to spray in the closet where I keep my laundry hamper. In fact I’ve never seen them in there, but I’ll spray anyway, even if my closet smells like Raid for a while. Thanks to everyone for the helpful input, and I hope my observations help someone.

  241. I have the exact same problem; however, I do not believe the granite countertops or bugs are to blame. I believe it’s a manufacturing defect because the holes ALWAYS occur in exactly the same spot – if it was a bug, the holes would be random. The same manufacturer will supply many fashion houses with their fabrics, which would account for an across-brand problem. Literally ALL of my tissue Splendid, C&C California, Velvet, Tobi, etc t shirts have this problem, and it’s been driving me nuts because it’s a huge waste of money!! There IS a bit of good news – my slub boyfriend tee from Michael Stars which is a different and thicker slub cotton does NOT have this issue and my Splendid Very Light Racerback tanks with the shirttail hems do not either (50% Pima Cotton/50% Modal Cotton). My solution is going to be trial and error – avoiding the tissue tees and hand washing. Good luck to you all!

  242. I have now solved the problem to the little holes that have been occurring at the bottom of my shirts. As with all of you, it was frustrating me to no end. All of my shirts are being ruined! I realized that, when putting on my makeup today, I was leaning against the sink counter (mine is quite high). My counters are rounded and, for some reason, the friction was causing the material to look like a hot iron had been placed on it. And lo and behold, tiny holes formed. Aggghhhh….another shirt to throw away….I thought it might be something in the composition of the shiny rough laminate that may be causing it….never had this problem with any other countertop and this was definitely what caused it.

  243. Surprised to know that many have similar problem. Iwas just googling about my issue and found that everyone one finds holes in the front bottom part. But my T shirts get holes in the back middle protion . I handwash my dress. And only my shirts are getting holes and not any others in my house. What possibly could it be?

  244. PROBLEM : TINY HOLES AT COUNTER HEIGHT. Put on your t-shirt with holes, face your kitchen and bathroom counters, and see for yourself if the holes are at counter height.

    CAUSE: friction on CHEAPLY MADE COTTON FABRIC that often gets wet and then rubs against countetop, top of jeans (point), seatbelt, etc. and makes tiny holes, mostly noticable after washing.

    SOLUTION: wear a robe when getting ready in the bathroom, wear an apron in the kitchen, clip the corner of your jeans at an angle, and send every shirt with holes directly to the manufacture so they take notice. And, be sure to let the manufacture know that you will not purchase their clohting until they remedy this problem. Also keep track of which shirts are more prone to holes, who manufactured, and avoid purchasing these items. If we were to call out the manufactures a television special, people would take notice. Everyone on this site needs to take their concerns to the Oprah community Conversations blog so OPRAH staffers take notice: http://www.oprah.com/packages/community-conversations.html. Colothing companies need to change their practice of buying the cheapest cotton available.

  245. Okay So I “HAD” this problem too. I was tired of ruining all my newly bought shirts so I did tests. For five days i tested out theories : Granite, tile countertops , seat belts , high quality , low quality shirts , high quality detergent , lower grade detergent, belts, no belt. What it came down too was, where your button on your jeans or whatever type of trouser you wear meets the fabric and is rubbed up on any type of counter type it causes holes. Even if your jeans have no buttons, its the rubbing on a hard or rugged surface. So how do I know its true, not only did I try it out I had my husband do it. I bought two shirts , Yesterday as I did the dishes and when I was finished holes , three of them. Later in the day I did dinner dishes with an apron on, NO holes. I had my Husband do dishes this morning, one hole exactly in the area I had mine. It is the rubbing of that area against a hard surface. Buy an apron, worth not ruining any more shirts.

  246. Amazing frustration in losing tops constantly to holes in the same place. A manufacturer ought to be taking up this problem – buying expensive makes no difference.More frustrating to lose that amount of money so quickly after buying and wearing a couple of times. I want to scream. I will now wear an apron as suggested in the kitchen, but this never happened years ago so how are the tops now being made we have to ask ourselves ? Come on Manufacturers take up this issue for us all – If you can find the answer we will all buy YOUR clothing.

  247. I can’t believe how widespread this problem is! It’s a combination of cheap cotton shirts and rubbing up against any thing. It’s not just the $20 Gap shirts, it’s also the $80 Free People and Splendid — which I will never buy again!

  248. the holes in my shirts are at the shoulders, always 2 together as if bitten by tiny teeth, the shirts are kept in different cupboards. Therfore none of your explanations make any sense, I’ve really had it!

  249. I’ve had this problem for a few years now and I really think it’s because I’m over weight ugh! I never had this problem until I gained weight and I think it’s due to the top edge of the jeans. It definitely jeans that make the holes (at least the ones that you get on the front near the belly button) because I’ll get the hole the same day a wear a new shirt and only if I am wearing jeans. I think its because when you walk the shirt moves and rubs against that top edge of the jeans wear the button is but it’s not the button itself. You will notice that when you button your jeans the two ends will not be on top of each other, instead the two end tips will be sticking up over the edge of the jeans and this is where the holes are. The belly doesn’t help this situation. I’ve found a small solution untill I lose the weight (hopefully). I wear those tight under shirts (tank-tops) that kinda suck in your stomach. But I don’t tuck the shirt in leave it out and wear your other shirts over that. This has been about the only solution I’ve found. The tight tank top seems to keep the rubbing to a minimum and therefore the holes stop. The bad part is that you always have two shirts on and its not pleasant when its warm out. Good luck girls!

  250. I have had a problem with holes in my clothes since I had a new kitchen installed in 2008. Not only do I have granite countertops but also an induction hob. My theory is that it has something to do with metal buttons reacting with induction hob and/or maybe the granite. Since I replaced all my metal buttons with plastic ones, I don’t seem to have had a problem. In my case, my tops were peppered with small clean holes (no snagging) always in the same area – hob level. AEG/Electrolux are doing tests in Germany at the moment to test my theory! I would be very interested to know if any of you cook on an induction hob.

  251. I have had this happen to dozens of my shirts. All of my favorites are now damaged. Some are expensive some are not. Honestly it should not matter. All I know is that this used to never happen! I am not overweight, I don’t have any granite, I have checked my house and enviroment for everything and I come up with no answers! One friend thinks that is may be because when they stack the shirts in the factory, they put long pins through the stack to help hold the stack. She thinks this weakens the fabric in that area. I don’t know if this is an answer, but I am very frustrated as well. Some one please help!

  252. I think it started happening when I gained weight in my belly (perhaps my belly pushing the metal on the zipper out more then intended).

  253. Wow. Like many, this has been bugging me for more than a year. I thought it was the seat belt of my car rubbing against my belt, with my shirt in between. But then I saw this site, and checked into the countertop theory, and for me, at least, it is DEFINITELY the countertops. Granite in kitchen, marble in bath. I think it’s the bathroom more than the kitchen, because that’s where I really lean. And right near where I lean: an imperfection in the marble that causes the tears. I tested with a piece of shirt cloth, a belt and some friction. Voila!

  254. I’m wondering, after moving my belt to the side a bit and seeing no holes, if it’s my desk at work. I have a rubberized top on my slide out for my keyboard, and it touches my stomach right where the holes are… right on top of the zipper cover, no zipper sticking out, nothing rough on my jeans. I think it’s a combination of thin cotton shirts (they have gotten cheaper over the years, even expensive ones) and me rubbing up against the keyboard tray for the last few years. It touches the very same place on all my shirts. This has to be it, although, I still have ruined 19 shirts in the last couple years. :-( For this many of us to have this issue, I really think that it’s the jobs we have as women, whether housewives, moms, or those of us who work in an office environment, and cheap, thinner cotton or other cheap material shirts.

    • But…I also have a higher cultured marble sink, and it touches in the same place when I lean into the mirror… so, I guess it could be both?

  255. Thank you!! Thank you!! I thought I was going crazy to have holes in many tops, including brand new ones! My hubby thought I had been carelessly zipping my top inside my jeans when I go to toilet, so I was super-careful every time. I had lost at least 10 tops so far and was very very frustrated until reading this site! Before finding this site I just ruined a just bought top (with still a tag intact). I was wearing it around house for 1 hour and then noticed a HOLE in it at the exact same spot!! — in centre front and lower than my waist!! That was my last straw so I googled and found this site. Now I found out what was causing it. In my case it was the combination of the granite bench top and wearing jeans and the cheap, thin fabric in between!! I tested wearing my (already holey) t-shirt back to front and moved around my kitchen and Voila!! A hole appeared! My granite top had some rough edges on it and I never noticed it was causing this very expensive damage. All I have to do from now on is wearing an apron or tuck my top inside my jeans when I work around the kitchen. Now I can finally sleep well at night.

  256. Damn! New holes in my new top already! Since reporting here 2 days ago I have been super-careful tucking my top inside my jeans but I have just noticed 9 holes! Maybe something else is causing this…??? I am going crazy! Help!

  257. I get it because I’ve been having the same problem. It just sucks. Anyhow, in an attempt to find the cause, I virtually turned my closet upside down, if you know what I mean.

    I bought some t-shirts a few months back which I did not wear even once. I got a couple of tops, same material which I only wore in bed. I got some others which I put on only upon going outside. All were placed in the same closet before and afterwards. For the sake of checking any remote possibility for the bugs, I put one with holes among two new and never worn ones.

    Guess what?

    The new ones I never worn, including the two on top and bottom of the one with holes did not have a single hole after a couple of months (confirming my suspicion that bugs were not the case). Similarly, the ones I wore to bed did not have any holes (thus, it has nothing to do with pulling and stretching since I move a lot in bed). BUT, all the ones I wore upon leaving house had holes in them (suggesting the possibility of something rubbing against and causing the holes).

    I’m not done with the experiment, but I thought you might just be interested to know. I hope I might have a solution soon.

  258. Having read all these comments & having suffered the same t-shirt fate for nearly 2 years, I think it may be something to do with anti bacterial sprays as I have a quartz worktop & this would be the same problem with any worktop & it is the correct height. I thought it was bugs in the wooden drawers but it can’t be as it would be far too coincidental to always be near the same position. So anti bacterial sprays is my conclusion.

  259. I have a feeling it is a chemical reaction between two things. I am thinking metal and laundry detergent. So the shirt rubs against the metal getting on the shirt and then something in the shirt react to the detergent, metal and the shirt. I have found that I have more holes after I wash a shirt than before I wash it, but this has nothing to do with the washer its self since the holes are always in the same spot.

  260. Solved my problem today. I was tired of tossing out shirts too!! Read all the comments here and started playing sleuth. Not chemicals, definitely the area directly over the metal button. Although, it is more likely the stiff fabric at the top rather than the button itself. I checked counter-top height. Nope, I’m too short, it hits higher. And just now I figured it out. Desk at work! The edge of the desk sits EXACTLY at that point! I’m going to try raising or lowing the chair and see if that makes a difference. Could be an easy fix!!

  261. I googled this phenomenon on a long shot, and I’m astonished at how widespread this is. I’ve toyed with many of the explanations mentioned – this just began happening to me in summer 2011, but today I looked at a Ralph Lauren white cotton men’s t-shirt that I’ve had for years, and I was shocked to find the little holes all over the back and a couple in the front. They’ve mostly been waist level before, but this seems quite widespread even going up into the upper back area.

    I don’t think it’s countertops. I don’t back in to our granite countertops. I don’t think it’s moths, but I’m wondering if it’s some other critter (not mice – don’t have those either) or even some microscopic skin mite that no one has named yet.

    It really IS a drag to see my soft, cozy shirts ruined!

  262. GUYS this has been bugging me for the 12 years since Ihave been in Australia. It never happened in the UK!

    Conclusion – do not spend a fortune on T-Shirts as its a waste of money

  263. I get the same holes and I’m pretty sure I know the answer. I think It’s a combination of my jeans and seat belt in my car. Jeans now ride a bit lower than they did in the 80′s or 70′s. The mandatory seat belt law has everyone wearing a seat belt. My thin T-shirts and some of my Cashmere sweaters are the most susceptible. I think this combination is creating the holes. I don’t use a lot of laundry detergent or bleach. It is a simple case of shearing from normal wear exacerbated by the seat belt.

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  266. Was happy to read these post… Happy I am not crazy and other people have this bizarre problem. I have some shirts that overtime the holes will get quite large and noticable and my friends will ask what happen to my shirt and when I tell them they look at me like I am losing it… I love my nice shirts and would really LOVE a solution….

    Not only is this driving me crazy , it is costing me ALOT of money! I love nice tshirts and it seems the more I spend the nicer the fabric the easier they get holes in them. :(

    It only seemed to start happening when I was in early 40′s, about 5 years ago, and always in the same place on my belly button area of the shirt no where else. It does not happen to my husbands shirts or my kids, just mine and only the shirts I put in the closet and only after I have worn them.

    I do not have granite counters, and do not even where jeans all the time, I can wear a new t shirt with my workout clothes ( not metal and still happens). My theory is their is some type of hormone that we possibly secrete out of the belly button and as Angela black said some type of very small but, perhaps a carpet beetle larva or some extremely small bug that eats this fabric and is attracted to whatever aroma or secrestions comes from our belly buttons. It is sooo weird, but I have wood floors throughout my home, but older carpet in my closet. This only happens in the closet with the carpet. If I leave my shirt in my bedroom, put in the wood drawers or plastic containers no holes,… but if I put in the closet and hang them, holes will appear immediately! I am wondering if possibly these organisms whatever they are might also live in granite counters? I have tried to always put my shirts in my drawers or plastic but the second I accidently leave in m bathroom (has the same carpet) or hang in my closet holes will appear if they are cotton shirts. Also I have noticed this does not happen in the winter months just the summer months. I really think some type of microscopic bug, this is the only thing that makes sense to me. I am going to rip all the carpet out and replace with wood floors and put cedar in my closets. I will post if this helps or not.

  267. My theory…I was so shocked to find out how many others have this same problem. I thought it was something that was happening to just me at work. I wear jeans to work and in the summer I wear capris to work. I noticed this happening to all my thin, or light shirts, not just the tshirts. I lean over a light table at work and thought it was something sharp on the table, nope not that. I also work with sharp metal plates (printing) at work, nope not that. Why beacuse these things were not happening to my co worker. A few weeks ago I was at work and wearing one of my shirts that already have holes I looked down at my shirt that it was rubbing on the corner of my pants near the button closure. It was wearing another hole. Errrrr. I notice that it happens faster to the thinner fitted tshirts, takes longer to the thicker looser shirts. All in the same area on the shirt. I believe it’s not anything poking the material, just the material rubbing on the corner of the pants. Any pants where that corner sticks out just enough to rub the shirts. I may need to look into different pants or jeans that the closure lays more flat. Or maybe I need to loose a few pounds…lol Also that part does stick out more when sitting down like driving or working at my desk. Yesterday I ran to the store, did some shopping came home did a few things around the house and there were holes in my shirt…I was wearing an old pair of capris. Took them off and put on gym shorts no holes the rest of the day.

  268. I have the same problem with the tiny holes and I have tried all the above statments for answers and remedies. The difference is that my husband also has the tiny hole in his tshirts as well. He does help out in the kitchen and will be at the granite counters often. We have runined many many tops and this mystery is drving me nuts. The holes are in the same spot on both mine and his shirts, so it can’t be the washer or dryer…can’t be insects either. Why would these holes only appear in one spot if either of these things were the culprit? I really thought it could be the granite counter tops, but I had them in a previous home and “no hole”. Another thing is that I seldom wear jeans…..What is going on?

  269. All of my t-shirts now have these holes. I moved into a house with a caesar stone bench just over a year ago. Holes began appearing in t-shirts that I had been wearing for more than a year that were still in perfect condition. I thought it must be from carrying my son (now nearly 2). I tried changing the way I carried him, buying new t-shirts and only hand washing and air drying them. The holes would appear after 1 wear.

    2 weeks ago I bought 5 new t-shirts. The first one had 3 holes in it after 2 hours of wearing. Now 4 of them have these dreaded holes. It is maddening.
    I just tried the test. I got one of the ruined t-shirts and rubbed the back along the edge of the counter, sure enough within a minute or so, the holes appeared.

    I’m going to try to return and exchange the 4 new t-shirts and get an apron.

    Fingers crossed…

  270. Susan, maybe the granite counters in your previous house were newer and didn’t have the little nicks which develop over time. I too have had granite counters before, but they were near new. The counters in my current house are about 8 years old..

  271. I started seeing holes in a new shirt bought at Kohls. Returned it, thinking it was defective. Incidentally, I had also bought a few pair of Lee jeans, one of which I wore with it. I had never experienced any holes before this. I had always bought Levis but liked the fit of the Lee jeans, so decided to try them. As time went on, I began seeing the tiny holes in my shirts. Funny, the shirts I wore with some matching shorts never got any holes. At that time my house had Formica counter tops that were at the lower height for older houses. We now live in a new house with granite counter tops at the higher height. The only constant is the Lee jeans. I had an old “Life Is Good” T shirt that was a thick cotton. Wore it lots with shorts and the day I put it on with my Lee jeans, holes appeared. I now know to only wear my Lee jeans to work out in the yard with the already holey shirts. The shirts I wear with Levis are fine. I’ll never buys Lees again. My next letter is to them.

  272. I believe it’s a combination of getting the shirt a bit damp while using the kitchen sink (so liquid dish and/or handsoap is involved, too, I guess.) I noticed that the holes ALL appear right at the height of the kitchen countertop – which in my case happens to be stainless steel. It happens to all my shirts, thick and thin cotton alike, right in the same area, regardless of where the shirt was manufactured. Dish detergent must be more corrosive than I thought! :(

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  275. I don’t have granite counters now and when I did this didn’t happen. It’s only been the last 3-4 yrs. It doesn’t seem to matter how much you pay for your shirts either. Does it only happen to shirts made in China? My one Italian shirt doesn’t have holes. I believe it’s a seat belt and type of fabric issue.

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  277. After reviewing the many possible causes found all over the web I’ve settled on it being the stiff corner of any pants closure that rubs against the shirt when you wear it untucked (which I always do). These holes just showed up in my favorite IBEX Wool t-shirt which I NEVER wear in the kitchen and I handwash. I wear a number of different pant brands and styles, but many of them have a stiff corner near that top buttonhole. The holes always appear clustered below my belly button and most of my pants ride just in the same spot. So I guess I have to live with the holes. I hate tucking in shirts.

  278. Its definately the counter tops. I have had the same trouble for years in many different houses some with granite and some wiothout. After reading all of the feedback did a little checking and for me my granite is pretty smooth but I truly think its the ceramic tops in the bathroom. They are very jagged and I stand there everymornign to get ready and the jagged edge hits right at the spot where the holes are.

  279. I have an obvious explanation that no one (apparently) wants to own, and I’m pretty sure I’m right for all of us, not just me. First, I’m certain that all the various friction and bug and lousy manufacture theories aren’t behind my t-shirt holes. Here’s why:

    1. I don’t rub my belly against countertops– I’m too tall, and have been for 40 years. Kitchen counters hit me at crotch level. My t-shirt holes are at navel level.

    2. As I’m getting older and fatter, I go long months without wearing shorts/pants with hard buttons in front (think hot summer in the south).

    3. About 10 years ago my navel started herniating (protruding) slightly. While it is not painful, it is still a sensitive area. I am very aware when pressure is applied on my navel. I am definitely not rubbing my navel against anything.

    4. This problem has followed me for decades, through many homes, roommates, family members, etc., and dozens–if not hundreds¬– of t-shirts.

    5. In the last 15 years, I never store my t-shirts in a drawer. I hardly store them at all. They are stacked, thrown, piled on wire racks or in plastic bins or in a suitcase. I don’t own a drawer for my clothes.

    6. I just asked my son if he has these holes in his shirts. He does. I asked my daughter if she has them. She doesn’t. Heredity at work here, not housework. Definitely not housework.

    Here’s the Elephant in the Room folks–– it’s most likely your navel.

    My theory, supported by the article I’ve linked to, is that it is an acidic navel secretion or bacteria causing my t-shirts (and all of yours) to develop holes just at the navel, and nowhere else. We all have––brace yourselves––bacteria and cultures living in our navels, and they differ from person to person. Some of us have acidic secretion, some of us don’t. While the article doesn’t follow the trail all the way to the t-shirt, it satisfies me that something in my navel is acidic, reacting with my cotton t shirts. Unpleasant? Perhaps. Does that mean it can’t be true? Nope. But if you can’t feature your navel as the culprit, continue to file away at your granite counters and write letters to clothing manufacturers. It might make you feel better even if you still get t-shirt holes. But if you want to solve the problem, a baking soda navel wash in the AM is certainly worth a try. It’s just my theory, but it fits the problem for 95% of the symptoms I read here.

    Here’s the link to the article so you can “secrete” your own conclusions:

    http://blogs.scientificamerican.com/guest-blog/2012/11/07/after-two-years-scientists-still-cant-solve-belly-button-mystery-continue-navel-gazing/

  280. I think the holes are from my iPad! I had always thought it was my cross-over purse or maybe a seatbelt or my jeans but when I discovered them on my pj top I knew none of the above were the problem. I looked at my iPad and there are 3 little holes at the bottom right were it sits on my lap! I have since turned my iPad in the case so these holes are not exposed so hopefully I will not have this problem anymore. Anyone else with the “holes” problem also have an iPad?

  281. I have ruined tons of shirts before figuring out that the trim of my kitchen counters is what is doing this. We have ceramic countertops and the trim is also ceramic tile. Leaning against this will leave a powder residue intantly on the area you leaned up against. I ran the shirt underwater immediately and most the time this will not stop the shirt from getting pinholes that get bigger every time you wash your clothes. This powder residue is an acid and that is what is eating holes in your nice shirts. You can remedy this for a short time by buying a clear sealer and paint it on your countertop trim, but in a short ammount of time you will need to do it again , washing counters and water will wash the sealer off.. I will never use any ceramic tile for an countertop edge/trim again EVER! And I would love to change the existing to stop this problem. Think about this…years ago with the old countertops this problem did not exist unless you have moths or something else going on and you know when you have something else that the holes show up in all sorts of places. Countertop holes show up in the same area due to the powder/acid residue it leaves on your shirts…hope this helps! I dont want to worry about wearing an apron every time I am in the kitchen!!!

  282. All of my girlfriends, and I, have the stupid little holes in our shirts. We’re convinced it is from wearing jeans and how the top corner (above where you button it) flares out a bit. Could be counters, seatbelt… whatever. It’s annoying.

    If it is the countertops the only thing I can say is wearing an apron to protect the rubbing. If you don’t like the full apronts, wear just the type that tie around your waist.

    If it is the corner part of the jeans doing this even without rubbing on the countertops, the only thing I can suggest is wearing those cotton bandeau things that go around your hips. You know the ones that give you the layered look and protect your buttcrack when you bend over in low-rise jeans.

    Annoying little holes….. GO AWAY.

  283. P.S. to my post above. I have had this problem for ever. And have had formica, granite, ceasarstone, tile… and stainless. :(

  284. I actually resorted to covering my jean button with masking tape. It worked! If I also wear a camisole long enough to cover my jean button, it acts as a barrier and I do not get holes.
    I find this happens more with fine and or delicate fabrics.
    Maybe this is why the trend is to tuck the front of your shirt in your pants now!

  285. You are all wrong. I noticed the holes appearing a couple of years ago and I can now tell you that it is caused by the friction of your car seat belt buckle rubbing against your shirt. This was not an issue when I had a flat stomach but with my now pauncy gut applying additional pressure on the buckle/shirt/belly, you get holes.

  286. Like no doubt most on this forum, I have been wearing T Shirts for many years/ most of my life: with jeans, belts, against counter tops, etc. This hole business is a reasonably new phenomenon and can only be attributed to vastly decreased product quality control inconsistent with normal, everyday wear. Old Navy, Gap, Target – shame on you and the crap you now sell.

  287. This is insane! How many of you happen to work on laptops like the Macbook air; I’ve been getting these little holes in my shirts the past few years as well. I’ve teste the countertop, jeans’ button, car seatbelt theories . . . none seem to be the culprit. I’ve concluded that it’s the sharp edge of my laptop. Anyone else think this might be it and, if so, have you tried to test it or solve for it?

  288. I’m so frustrated, because I too have ruined so many shirts! I have the same problem with shirts I wear with yoga pants, so it can’t be buttons. This was not a problem years ago, so I have to rule out the seatbelt. I wear an apron when I cook, but not when I wash dishes, so it may be the granite, but it definitely has to be cheaper fabric!

  289. I have been battling this problem for years. I know exactly what the problem is. It is from tugging on your shirts. I do it all the time. I can have a brand new shirt and wear it for a few hours…and their is the whole. I am trying very hard to be conscious of this terrible habit. I think I do it more when I sit. I even have people tell me when I am tugging on my shirts to pull them down. It is all from a crazy habit of tugging on your shirt. I know it sounds crazy, but have someone see if you tug on your shirt. I know it has gotten worse since the manufactures make thinner shirts. Still trying to break this habit. I have made wholes in some very nice shirts. I also do it to my sweaters.

  290. Same problem on my expensive shirts from Buckle!!! Main question is…how in the world do I fix the holes!!!!!

  291. OMGosh! I cannot believe all these comments and I also cannot believe I’m not the only one with this problem! I honestly think it’s my Levi’s button. That’s what I Goggled and found this site. All the shirts I wear with my Levi’s have small holes. And this is actually a somewhat new problem for me. I noticed the holes about two years ago. Never had a problem with my older Levi’s. However, I have gained about ten pounds, so maybe they are not laying as flat anymore and that’s part of the problem? Plus I’m sure I lean up against stuff and also the seatbelt like others have mentions; lots of friction with the button and shirt. I’m going to try the tape test like someone posted and do it with a new shirt. Hopefully it helps! I have so many shirts that are ruined. :(

  292. I put clear Scotch packing tape on the bottom edge of the counter where my button meets up to it when I lean over to wash the dishes. The tape is not noticable and it saved my shirts for about two years before I had to replace it.

  293. So happy I found this – just saved myself hundreds of dollars in T-shirt replacement. Here in Australia it’s just getting cold again – and today I wore a brand new unwashed J Crew t-shirt. As I sit here tonight I look down and – tiny holes – just like the whole of last winter. Funny thing was, today I wore my highwaisted jeans with no belt. I was convinced by the end of last winter that it was my belts – didn’t seem to matter which one. So unhappy that my brand new shirt is ruined. After reading all these comments I ran out and stood next to my ceaserstone (composite stone) bench top – yep the exact spot of the holes. Even worse, there is a small chip in the stone which can only be making matters worse. thank you thank you thank you. Aprons from now on for me. Also agree that it is the result of the very flimsy / tissue type of cotton which is popular now.

  294. I’ve had this same problem and it drives me batty. So many of my favorite shirts RUINED! I’ve wondered about moths, thought maybe my cat’s nails were too long, etc. I honestly think it’s my Mac laptop. I use it in bed and set it on my belly… which is right where the holes always show up. It’s somehow melting or degrading the fabric enough to cause holes. At least that’s the only plausible theory I can think of. I did not have this problem when I didn’t have a laptop computer.

  295. Wendy L. Howell 4/14/2014 at 12:59 pm Reply

    Oh my gosh! Cannot believe all the people that have this problem! My daughter’s childhood friend was at the park with us for a picnic just this weekend. About an hour into it-she ran up to me and said, ” Hey! You have those holes in your shirt too! How do they get there?!” I laughed (Altho this topic really ticks me off-I had some really cute shirts-that are now only good for -the park or cleaning or gardening!) I told her I really hadn’t figured it out. I thought maybe from holding my small dogs that their nails had gotten caught on my shirts. She said no-she had large dogs that she couldn’t pick up or hold in her lap, so that couldn’t be it. Then I told her I wondered if it was because occasionally I use Shout on my shirts- no, she didn’t use that. It couldn’t be the jeans, because I don’t always wear jeans-my husband does, but, and before we lost weight-if there was a problem with the jeans-HE would have been suffering with my shirt dilemma! And he doesn’t,… so it’s something that only affects me. After reading this, I went out and stood at my granite counter top and due to my age, I guess I’m shrinking…cause my belly area doesn’t reach my counter-LOL! However, I have a granite sink with a rough front-and I tend to handwash alot of dishes-since I don’t put my pots/pans in the dw nor my knives. Uh-huh, I think I found the culprit. Water getting over the edge, additives in the dishsoap-rubbing my belly back and forth to put the dishes in the drainer. Come to think of it, my daughter doesn’t get holes in her shirts-she has a smooth counter top and they share household duties- her husband will quite often wash the dishes-LUCKY WOMAN! I’m going to wear an apron and see if this helps-I’ll post back with results. Wish me luck-(that I don’t ruin any more shirts!)
    Grandmaleopard

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