How to Clean Your Mattress
You’ll rest easier knowing you’re not sleeping on dust and dead skin cells.
If you haven’t thought about cleaning your mattress lately, consider this: You probably spend six or seven hours on it every night. During that time, dead skin cells, sweat, and oil from your body make their way onto it. That’s why Carolyn Forte, director of the Good Housekeeping Institute Cleaning Lab, recommends following this advice every few months to keep your bed fresh.
What You’ll Need
1. Ditch the dust.
The easiest way to tackle dust is to use the upholstery tool on your vacuum cleaner to go over the top and sides of the mattress and as much of the box spring as you can access. Press firmly on the tool to draw out dust beneath the fabric’s surface. Then use the crevice tool to get into the quilting, along the edge welting, and where any pillow top is attached. If you have a garment steamer, go over the mattress with the steamer before you vacuum to help kill and remove dust mites lurking near the surface.
2. Wipe out old stains.
If pets sleep with you, or you like to snack in bed, chances are your mattress may have some stains on it. The easiest way to remove them is with an upholstery cleaner formulated to remove pet stains, like Good Housekeeping Seal-holder Bissell Pet Stain and Odor Remover ($18, amazon.com). "They not only remove stains but also contain enzymes to tackle odors," Forte says. Avoid over-wetting the mattress, and let it dry thoroughly before making the bed.
3. Kill any odors.
For any telltale smells, spray the mattress and box spring with a disinfecting spray, like Lysol ($7, amazon.com). It’s safe to use on fabric and kills bacteria that causes odors. To freshen your mattress between cleanings, sprinkle some Arm & Hammer Baking Soda ($12 for four boxes, amazon.com) onto the fabric, wait 15 minutes, and vacuum.
Now that you know your mattress is clean, check out these tips for making sure your pillows and mattress pad are dust- and odor-free too.
How can i clean my mattress
How to clean your mattress
Climbing into bed and snuggling under freshly laundered sheets is one of life’s great pleasures.
However, while cleaning our sheets and bedding is something we do regularly (or should do at least!), cleaning our mattress can sometimes get forgotten about.
TEMPURlooks at the best ways to clean your mattress to help keep it fresh and make it last longer…
Why is it important to clean your mattress?
As we spend around eight hours a night sleeping on our mattress, it’s important we thoroughly clean them from time to time to ensure that we aren’t lying in dirt, or worse, lying with unwanted company.
Tiny, harmless insects such as dust mites live amongst us all and mattresses provide the perfect home for them. Cleaning your mattress will reduce the number of these, as well as removing stains that have accumulated over time.
Sweat, along with dirt, oils and chemicals from toiletries can all live on our mattress, duvet and covers. It’s important to keep bedding clean, including the mattress, as it will prolong the lifespan of the mattress.
If you DON’T have a TEMPUR mattress…
Cleaning your mattress is a multi-stage process and, while it may seem like a lot of work, it will be worth it in the long run:
- Strip the bed – remove all of your bedding and wash sheets and covers in hot water
- Vacuum your mattress – after removing all bedding, vacuum both sides of your mattress with the hose attachment to get rid of dust, mites and other dirt collected on the surface
- Remove stains – use a clean cloth to blot any stains and try to absorb the spill
- Vacuum your mattress with an attachment to remove any surface dirt such as hair
- Invest in a washable mattress protector – this will protect your mattress from any future damage
Another effective method is to steam your mattress, which provides a deep clean and is great for removing stains. However, be sure to let your mattress dry before putting the sheets back on.
If you DO have a TEMPUR mattress…
You’re lucky, as TEMPUR uses environmentally friendly bacterium reducing components, which prevent bacterial and fungal growth, so the mattress itself needs little maintenance.
Each TEMPUR mattress comes with a removable cover, and many of these are machine washable. Simply remove the cover and follow the instructions on the label. It’s usually recommended to wash at 60 degrees.
The mattress covers that are not machine washable are:
- Original Deluxe 22 and 27
- Cloud Deluxe 22 and 27
- Sensation Deluxe 22 and 27
If you have these mattress covers, air them regularly to help keep your mattress clean.
TheTEMPUR-FIT mattress protector, which is complementary with every mattress, is essential for those covers that cannot be washed and will help protect your mattress from spills.
However, the TEMPUR material cannot be washed, sponged or dry-cleaned.Avoid getting the mattress wet or damp to prolong its lifespan. If any liquid is spilled directly onto it, or onto a cover that cannot be washed, use towels to soak up as much as possible.
We also haveextensive advice on caring for your TEMPUR mattresson our site to help make the most of your mattress and prolong its life.
Do you have any tips on how to clean your mattress? How often do you do it? Let us know in the comments below…
How to Clean a Mattress (and Why)
Tackling this five-step chore a couple times a year can help keep things fresh in the bedroom
You spend about a third of your life on your mattress. When was the last time you gave it a good, deep clean? The seldom-used living room sofa probably feels the bristle of a vacuum brush more often than your trusty mattress. It’s time to change that. Besides promoting a more pleasant and productive night’s sleep, a clean, cared for mattress can last longer—and it might even help prevent nasty, not to mention costly, pest infestations.
Back when most mattresses could be flipped over, the conventional wisdom was that you should turn it twice a year, and take that opportunity to clean it as well. These days, a lot of mattresses, including the pillow-top variety, can’t be turned because they have a proper top and bottom. But cleaning your mattress two times a year remains a good rule of thumb. (Check the mattress label for instructions since the manufacturer might recommend rotating the mattress head to foot to ensure even wear.)
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Start the cleaning process by stripping the mattress of all sheets and bedding and tossing the items in the wash. To remove tough stains, always use a Consumer Reports top-rated laundry detergent and the hottest water setting on your washing machine; dry on high heat as well to zap any surviving critters.
Next, vacuum the entire mattress surface with the upholstery attachment on your vacuum cleaner. Pay attention to seams and crevices, where dirt, dust, dead skin, and other icky stuff collect; switching to your vacuum’s crevice attachment can help get in deep.
Our tests have found that a normal vacuum cleaner provides capable cleaning, but if you’re fastidious, consider investing in the Dyson V6 Mattress Handheld Vacuum, a $250 device designed specifically for the job. In a Consumer Reports at-home mattress test, we cleaned half of a foam Tempur-Pedic mattress with a top-rated canister vacuum and half with the Dyson handheld. The Dyson sucked up 3 grams of material, including dead skin cells that dust mites like to nosh on, compared with the 1 gram that our regular vacuum removed.
Once you’re finished vacuuming, check for stains and spot treat them with an appropriate cleaner. An upholstery cleaner or enzyme-based pet-odor remover can do the job on many bodily fluids. You can also try a simple solution of 1 teaspoon mild dish detergent and 1 cup of warm water.
Next, deodorize the mattress by sprinkling baking soda over the entire surface. Especially if this is your first cleaning, don’t be afraid to empty an entire 1-pound box onto the mattress. For best results, leave the baking soda there for 24 hours. That means you might need to plan the project around an overnight trip—or be willing to sleep elsewhere in your home. If you can place the mattress near a window, the sunlight will add its sanitizing power.
After the baking soda has had a chance to tackle odors, go back over the mattress with your vacuum’s upholstery attachment. If you don’t already own a mattress cover, we recommend buying one. And adding a mattress pad between the cover and bottom sheet will help absorb moisture. Along with the periodic deep cleaning described here, these extra layers of protection will help prevent mites, fleas, and other pests from sharing your bed. That should really help you sleep tight.
How Can I Clean my Mattress?
You spend around a third of your life asleep, so it’s important to keep your mattress clean, hygienic and in good condition. It’s easy to forget to clean your mattress, since it’s usually hidden underneath sheets and bedding. However, cleaning your mattress regularly can help to reduce unwanted build up of:
- Dust and dust mites
- Dead skin cells
It’s particularly important to clean your mattress if you suffer from allergies. Regular cleaning reduces the opportunity for allergens, such as dust, to settle within your mattress. For more allergy advice, check out our guide.
There are lots of quick and easy ways you can care for your mattress to keep it in great condition for longer and ensure you get the best value for money. Read on to discover how to clean your mattress and enjoy a healthier sleeping environment.
How to clean your mattress in five easy steps
Follow our five easy steps to clean and freshen up your mattress. Always remember to check the manufacturer’s care guide for your mattress before cleaning, and open your bedroom windows to improve bedroom ventilation.
Step 1: Remove your bedding and wash it
Start by taking your sheets, pillows and duvet off the bed. Put them on a hot wash (but check the label first!). We recommend washing over 60°C as this will help kill any germs and dust mites. Tumble-dry your bedding on a high heat if you can.
Step 2: Vacuum your mattress and bed
Now that your mattress is bare, you can begin vacuuming it. Make sure the vacuum cleaner attachments are clean. Use the brush or upholstery attachment on your vacuum cleaner, if you have one.
Carefully vacuum your mattress and bed in small sections, paying particular attention to seams, corners and crevices where dust can build up. Take care not to damage the cover or dislodge the mattress fillings. Remember to vacuum underneath your bed and down the sides if your bed is pushed up against a wall.
Step 3: Deodorise your mattress
Lightly sprinkle a small amount of baking soda over your mattress. Baking soda helps to absorb moisture and keep your mattress smelling clean and fresh. Let it sit for at least an hour – the longer, the better. Vacuum thoroughly to remove it.
Step 4: Spot clean any mattress stains
Always remember to refer to the manufacturer’s care instructions before cleaning your mattress, as different fabrics may require different methods of cleaning.
However, as a general guide, The Sleep Council recommend using a very mild detergent and warm or cold water to spot-clean your mattress. Use a clean, damp cloth and take care not to over-soak your mattress. Air your mattress thoroughly to ensure it’s properly dry before you put the bedding back on.
Step 5: Flip your mattress and repeat!
Is your mattress double-sided? You’ll need to clean the other side by repeating steps one to four. However, if your mattress is single-sided, simply vacuum the underside to keep it dust-free.
Not sure how to flip your mattress? Check out our guide on how to turn your mattress correctly.
How to maintain a clean mattress
Now that you have a squeaky-clean mattress, you’ll want to keep it that way for as long as possible! Follow our top tips for that fresh feeling in-between mattress cleaning.
- Air your mattressThrow back the bed sheets every morning for at least 20 minutes.
- Open your windowsThis improves bedroom ventilation and allows excess moisture to evaporate.
- Wash and tumble-dry all beddingWash your bedding every week. Choose a high heat setting to kill dust mites and germs.
- Spot-clean stainsStains are easier to tackle when they’re fresh.
- Use a mattress protectorProtect your mattress from spills and accidents.
Buy a mattress protector
As the old saying goes, prevention is better than cure! A mattress protector acts as a barrier for your mattress, and it’s an easy, cost-effective way to keep your mattress clean.
Our range of mattress protectors includes waterproof mattress protectors that protect against spills and accidents. Our anti-allergy mattress protectors are ideal for those who suffer from allergies.
Mattress protectors: three of the best
Not sure which mattress protector to choose? Why not take a look at our three best-selling mattress protectors:
- From only £15.95
- Fits mattresses up to 33cm (13 inches) deep
- From only £35.95
- Fits mattresses up to 36cm (14 inches) deep
- From only £16.95
- Fits mattresses up to 40cm (16 inches) deep
Replace your mattress every seven years
Keeping your mattress clean and in good condition is important. This helps to ensure that your sleeping environment is healthy and supports a good night’s sleep.
However, after seven years your mattress will begin to lose its shape and comfort. Is your mattress lumpy? Does it sag or look worn out? These are signs that you need to replace your old mattress. Head over to our mattress replacement guide for help and advice.
A clean and fresh mattress is the key to a good night’s sleep. We hope this guide has answered all the questions you have about how to clean your mattress. Please get in touch if you need any further advice!
How To Clean A Mattress and Get Rid of Stains
Knowinghow to clean a mattresscan help you sleep better at night. This guide explains how to clean your mattress and get rid of stains, odors, and allergens. It also covers how to protect your mattress, so it stays clean and fresh.
Why You Should Clean Your Mattress
Dead Skin Cells and Dust Mites
Of the estimated 1.6trillionskin cells on our bodies, roughly 30,000 to 40,000 of them fall off every hour. Multiply that by the eight hours we’re supposed to get, and we’re shedding around a quarter-million dead skin cells in our sleep.
Sure, your sheets catch most of the skin cells. What they don’t protect your mattress from are the dust mites that feed on those dead skin cells. And, there arehundreds of thousandsof those dust mites in your bed.
Or, Glen Needham, a retired professor of entomology at Ohio State University, says, “Every mattress is a crime scene in terms of how it gets inoculated with mites.”
Moisture, Mold, and Mildew
When we sleep, our bodies lose moisture. Some of that is simply the result of us breathing. Some of it is also sweat.
If you’re a person who “sleeps hot” or who suffers from hot flashes or night sweats, you know how damp your bedding and mattress can get. Combine the two, and our bodies produce over a pound of moisture each night!
While much of that evaporates in the air, plenty soaks into your mattress. There, the dense materials and warm, dark environment provide the perfect breeding ground for mold and mildew spores.
Pets, Kids, and Other Messes
If you have young children, the chances are that at least one mattress in your home bears the results of a nighttime accident. Even house-trained pets can leave your mattress damp if they spend much time licking their paws or hop on your bed right after a bath. And, of course, full-grown adults can soil a mattress several ways, too.
So, you can put up with a stained mattress that stinks of sweat and body oils, or you can set aside an afternoon to deep clean your mattress and get it looking — and smelling — new again.
How to Clean Your Mattress
You need to strip the bed before you begin cleaning your mattress, so this is a good time to launder your bed linens, too.
- Using the hottest setting allowed on the manufacturer’s label will kill dust mites on your sheets and blankets.
- Go ahead and wash your pillows and fabric mattress toppers.
- You can even wash an electric blanket if you use one.
While the washer and dryer are doing their thing, follow the steps below to clean your mattress.
1. Vacuum the Top and Sides
Your vacuum cleaner’s upholstery attachment is the best tool for mattress cleaning. Start at the top and work your way down in overlapping, narrow paths.
Vacuum the sides the same way. Don’t worry about the other side of the mattress just yet — we’ll get there in step 5. For now, we’re clearing away dead skin cells, pet hair, and surface dirt to make the next step more effective.
2. Remove Odors with Baking Soda
S prinkle your mattress well with plain baking soda (bicarb for UK readers) andgentlyrub it in, so it bonds with surface moisture. Let it sit for 10 minutes to continue neutralizing odors.
What about adding essential oils?
Several readers have asked about mixing essential oils with the baking powder before sprinkling it on their mattresses. I don’t recommend it for a couple of reasons.
- Essential oils are stilloils.Rubbing any oil into a fabric is never a good idea — it attracts dirt and can make the bond between the material and soil permanent. That’s pretty much the exactoppositeof what we’re trying to achieve when we clean a mattress.
- It’s a waste of time.By the time you’ve cleaned the mattress, removed stains, and protected it from future problems, you won’t be able to smell the essential oil. So why bother?
3. Vacuum Again
After giving the baking soda time to bond with surface moisture and odors, it’s time to vacuum it out of the mattress.
Using the upholstery attachment, vacuum the top and sides of the mattress with slow, overlapping strokes. Donotpress too hard — it interferes with your vacuum’s suction and may snag your bed’s fabric.
4. How to Remove Mattress Stains
Mattresses typically acquire three types of stains: blood, urine, and what we’ll call “other bodily fluids.”
While it’s best to treat stains immediately, sometimes sleep is more important. Fortunately, you can still clean stains on your mattress even after they’ve been there a while.
You can often get fresh blood stains out of mattresses with just a rag, some cold water, and a little soap. For fresh blood stains, it’s important to usecoldwater, since heat causes the proteins in blood to bond with the mattress material.
If cold water and a bit of soap didn’t do the trick, use the dried blood remover for mattresses below.