Wingspan 8-10 mm.
A small but rather distinctive species, the adults normally dark brown with a creamy-yellow head and three silver bands across the forewing. The form tarquiniella however, has only a single silver fascia.
It is generally coastal in distribution, with some populations inland, and occurs in England and Wales, as well as parts of Scotland and Ireland.
The habitat preference is for shingle and sandy areas. The foodplant was long thought to be common mouse-ear Cerastium fontanum, but recently larvae have been found feeding on mosses, and old records of it feeding on Cerastium are now considered to be atypical.
Adult moths fly between June and August, possibly in two generations or one extended generation.