When you sink into bed at the end of a long day, there’s nothing that quite compares to that blissful feeling of relaxation. But if your mattress isn’t clean, the dust and other airborne particles can leave you sniffling and even keep you tossing and turning. Cleaning a mattress is simple if you follow some basic steps. Here’s how to get started.
Effective Methods of Cleaning a Mattress
Routine maintenance is one of the best things you can do for your mattress. Cleaning tasks like vacuuming and deodorizing plus rotating or flipping your mattress make a huge difference in how it holds up. Try these tips for a comprehensive clean that refreshes your mattress every time.
Start with the Bedding
Get started by pulling all the bedding off and running it through the laundry. If you wash the layer that goes against your mattress first, you can start putting it all back together in the order it dries to shave off a little time. This and vacuuming make up the routine care that helps to extend the life of your mattress.
Break Out Your Vacuum
While the bedding goes through the laundry, it’s a good time to vacuum the mattress to get rid of those loose dust particles and skin cells. If you leave the mattress on the bed frame, work from the center outward. Vacuum down the mattress’ sides too. While you’re vacuuming, check for stains to remove. If there aren’t any stains, add a dusting of baking soda to freshen the scent of your mattress. Then, vacuum again after a few minutes to get rid of the powdery layer. Plan on vacuuming your mattress every three months.
Disinfect the Mattress
A mattress needs to be disinfected periodically to eliminate growth of bacteria and dust mites and remove body oils. Steam cleaning is a great option and takes just a few steps:
- Put the mattress on its side and pass the steamer over it, starting at the top and working your way down.
- Repeat the steaming process until you’ve treated the entire surface.
- Position fans to blow directly on the mattress. Let it dry completely before putting it back on the bed. If you have an outdoor area large enough, lay the mattress in direct sunlight. Allow a few hours of drying time for each side.
- Vacuum the mattress thoroughly before placing it back on the bed frame.
Have extra fans ready. You don’t want the mattress to stay damp any longer than necessary, and you’re going to need extra circulation to dry it quickly. Turn on your ceiling fan and open windows to create a breeze.
How to Clean Mattress Stains
Stuck with stains like wine, blood, or urine that have set into the mattress fabric? There are two ways to tackle this cleaning job using common household products.
- Make a thick paste of baking soda and a few drops of hydrogen peroxide. Use a small brush or cloth to work it into the stain, starting from the outer edge and working toward the center. Blot with a damp cloth. Use this paste to tackle most stains that come from bodily fluids. If the stain is dry, it may take some extra scrubbing. Using a powdered oxygen cleaner and a few drops of water also works well.
- For lighter stains, try a mixture of liquid dish soap and peroxide. Spray on the stain and use a clean cloth to blot and remove the stain. To help absorb odors, sprinkle baking soda on the mattress and let this sit for 10 minutes before vacuuming. To prevent mildew stains on your mattress, let the area dry completely before making the bed.
Flip and Rotate the Mattress
How often you flip your mattress depends on how much dirt and use it sustains and the type of mattress you have. Flip and/or rotate it every three to six months to distribute the weight and keep certain areas from compacting. The mattress style determines if you should flip it or rotate it. Pillow-top mattresses can’t be flipped, so rotating is important to prolonging the life of your mattress.
One last note: plan an extra hour or two in your day if you want to do these steps all in one session. Cleaning your mattress isn’t difficult, but it can be time-consuming and you’ll also want to allow drying time. However, after you’ve remade the bed, you can rest easy knowing your sleep space is pristine, fresh, and ready for sweet dreams.
Looking for a new spot to stretch out and relax? Read our Mattress Buying Guide for tips on choosing the right mattress style and perfect level of support for you.