What is one of the most used items in your home? Yes, your pillow. All year long it takes care of your head through the nights, the heat of summer and even your late-night snacks and spills. No wonder your pillows deserve a good cleaning. Since you rest your head on your pillow every night, you want to make sure that it’s as clean and germ-free as possible. Your pillows accumulate dust, sweat, and oil particles and if left unchecked, they can turn your cushions yellow and make them less comfortable to use. Eventually, you might need to throw them out. To prevent this from happening, you should plan on washing your pillows regularly, by hand or in a washing machine (whatever the instructions say about how to wash pillows).
How To Wash Cotton, Down & Synthetic Pillows
You can put most down pillows in the washing machine, but remember to use cool water and a mild detergent, then dry on low heat. High temperatures can damage the down. Follow these steps and learn how to wash pillows in washing machine.
1. Remove The Case
Before you start with the process of how to wash pillows, take off any pillowcase or sham, if you have placed your pillow in one. Some pillows also come with additional zip-on cases that should be removed before washing the pillows and washed separately from the body of the pillow.
2. Put Your Pillows In The Washing Machine
Don’t worry because it is perfectly safe to wash pillows (even down pillows) in the washing machine. Try to wash at least two at once so that the washer is balanced and the pillows don’t get thrown around so much.
3. Add Your Detergent
For a regular wash, you should add a cup or scoop of your regular washing detergent. To get your pillows ultra white, add some amount of bleach.
4. Start The Wash Cycle
Adjust the settings on your washer so that it runs with hot water and goes through a 2nd rinse cycle. Use the “bulky or large” cycle if it is available on your washer. Then, let it work its magic!
5. Put Your Pillows In The Dryer
It’s crucial to make sure that your pillow is completely dry, otherwise, you risk mildew. Place your pillows in the dryer and adjust the settings; if your pillows are feather-filled, put your dryer on the “air or fluff or no heat” setting. For synthetic pillows, you can switch your dryer to a low heat setting.
6. Check Your Pillows
When your dryer has finished the drying cycle, remove the pillows, feel them to check for dampness. Smell the pillows to check for moisture in the centre. If your pillows don’t feel dry, then repeat the drying process and check them again a second time.
How To Wash Memory Foam Pillows
Did you know that washer agitation can break up foam? So these pillows will need to be hand-washed, to keep the form from breaking. Learn how to wash memory foam pillows with this method. Vacuum the dust off of your pillows, then spot clean with a clean, damp cloth and a small amount of mild detergent. Then lay the pillow flat to air dry. Learn how to hand wash a pillow with these simple steps.
1. Remove The Cover
If your pillow has a pillowcase, remember to take it off before washing. Most memory foam pillows also have a zip-on protective cover that should be removed too. These items can be washed separately or together in a washing machine.
2. Fill A Tub With Water
Washing machines prove too rough for sensitive memory foam, so pillows of this material must be hand washed. Fill a tub with (or your sink) with warm water to cover the pillow.
3. Add Your Detergent
For each pillow, add a tablespoon of liquid clothes detergent to the water. Swirl it around with your hands till it bubbles up and gets it evenly mixed.
4. Wash Your Pillow
Place your pillow in the water, and move it around the bit to help the detergent to work its way in. Massage and squeeze the pillow with your hands to help get the dirt out and to freshen it past the outer layer.
5. Rinse The Pillow
Run the pillow under fresh water. It is important to get as much of the soap out as you can, checking for suds in the runout. Rinsing the pillow may take several minutes longer than washing it.
6. Dry The Pillow
High heat levels can ruin the memory foam and cause it to crumble, so do not put your memory foam pillow in the dryer. What’s better is to lay it out on a clean towel in a dry area. And if possible, allow it to dry in the sun.
7. Check The Pillow
Memory foam is susceptible to holding water for a long time after you have washed it, as it is made out of a sponge-like material. Make sure that there is no water left in the material before bringing it back for use on your bed, otherwise it will begin to grow mould and mildew.
How To Thoroughly Dry Pillows
No matter the drying technique you use, you still need to check for moisture inside the pillow. If none remains, it’s time to go back to using it.
- Many pillows can be dried within an hour on moderate heat. However, you can add a couple of dry towels to speed things up.
- Toss in two fresh tennis balls or dryer balls, as well, and they’ll keep the filling from clumping as they bounce around the drum.
- When drying down feather pillows, use the no-heat air-dry setting and add dryer balls or tennis balls to break up clumps.
- You can also hang most pillows on the clothesline until they’re dried all the way through.
How To Disinfect Pillows
Once you have learned how to clean pillows, follow these simple steps on how to disinfect pillows. The best way to get rid of the odour and freshen memory foam pillows is by using baking soda.
- Sprinkle baking soda all over the pillow. Cover the entire surface. Baking soda absorbs odour.
- The sun is the best thing to kill bacteria so place the pillows in the sun for 2-3 hours.
- Use the upholstery attachment to vacuum the pillow. If possible, lower down the suction power so that it sucks up the soda and not the pillow.
- Turn over the pillow and repeat the steps on another side.
How to Know When You Should Replace Your Pillows?
Even after taking the utmost care of your comfy pillows, you’ll need to buy new ones eventually. The foolproof way to know when to toss them is by folding the pillow in half and if it doesn’t spring back into shape, plan for a shopping trip. If your pillows have a funny odour even after you give them a good wash, it’s also a good idea to replace them. To lengthen your soft pillow’s life, use liners under your pillowcases and wash pillows every four to six months.
A good pillow can make a world of difference in your quality of sleep. Which makes learning how to clean pillows imperative. The key to keeping a clean pillow is to be aware of the type of material used. Whether it is solid memory foam, natural down feathers, latex foam or any other type, the best thing you can do to protect your pillow is to use a removable pillow cover that is machine washable. You’ll get a good night’s sleep and peace of mind knowing you aren’t hugging a dirty pillow to your face.