How To Clean A Mattress: DIY Guide & Tips
Find out how to clean a mattress and what products to use in order to efficiently remove any type of stains or dirt from your mattress.
Long days at work, foul boss, worst day ever, and the one thing we always look forward to is the comfort of our bed. A good night’s sleep means clean sheets and pillowcases. By default setting regularly clean our beddings, never the mattress.
Think of it like this, if you clean your sheets because they are stained or have urine on them, doesn’t that mean that the mattress is also affected? Well, unless your sheets are stains and urine proof, then your mattress is also culpable to the same vices.
Sometimes we invest so much to get the best mattress and we expect it last a minimum of 8 years. And if that’s not reason enough to clean and maintain your mattress then you should do it for your health. Consider this; you spend an average of seven hours in your bed every night, this means that the sweat, dead skins, and oil from your body get on the mattress as well.
Why Should You Clean The Mattress?
You Spend An Average Part of Your Life Sleeping
Essentially, you spend about 318 months curled up in your mattress. This is inclusive of the days you spend in your bed when you’re sick or lazy. You obviously want those months to be productive or useful and this means having peaceful sleep. By cleaning your mattress you will limit the number of times you toss and turn at night.
A Clean Mattress Impacts Your Sleep
Believe it or not the cleanliness of the mattress impacts how peaceful your sleep will be. You can’t sleep peacefully on a foul smelling mattress, or a mattress infested by bed bugs, or on a mattress with blood stains.
A clean mattress will influence your health beyond just support and comfort. It will impact the air quality of the room which affects the oxygen that your body cells take in as they are resting and recuperating.
Mattress Collects All Sorts of Dirt and Stains
Mattresses tend to collect sweat, dead skins, stains, dust mites, dirt, and bed bugs and other little insects sometimes. This means that they find a home in your mattress for months and sometimes even years. This will continue to be the case until you decide to clean your mattress.
To Avoid Respiratory Problems
For those eight hours you are asleep at night, the dirt, stains, and grime in your mattress affects what you breathe in. The trapped particles can cause insomnia, allergies, depressed immune system, respiratory problems, and lowered libido in the bedroom. So if you want to give your body a chance to be healthy and revitalize while you are sleeping, you have to keep your mattress clean.
Mattresses are Expensive
The cost of a good and comfortable mattress lies between $800 – $2500. Failing to clean and maintain your mattress will have an average life of 5-7 years. Cleaning and maintaining your mattress will boost the life expectancy of 8-12 years.
How to Remove Odors from Your Mattress
There is nothing more unappealing than climbing into a stinky mattress. Retained moisture and stains lead up to bacteria and mold growth which makes the mattress stink. The good news is you can clean the odor and make the mattress fresh again.
The first step should be to remove the debris and dust from the mattress by vacuuming it. Then dip a cloth in distilled white vinegar and scrub off the area with the odor. After that remove any excess moisture with paper towels before air drying the mattress.
The ideal way to air dry the mattress is by leaving it outside for a couple of hours. Alternatively you can sprinkle baking soda on the bare mattress, allow it to soak the odors overnight and then vacuum it the next day.
Do not sleep on the mattress until the mattress is completely dried off since it also has a smell of its own. Air drying will deodorize he mattress and remove the foul smell.
How to Clean and Remove Stains
Let’s face it! Mistakes happen all the time. You can accidentally spill food, nail polish, body fluids, or other substances on the mattress. The trick is to clean it as fast as possible before it becomes a problem. If you allow the stain to set it, cleaning it becomes a problem.
In case you get liquid on the mattress, the ideal solution would be to bolt up the liquid with a clean towel or cloth. You can also use dish detergent in a spray bottle in cold water and let it sit for just a few minutes before you scrub.
If its blood stains or urine, the ideal method is to use hydrogen peroxide or a laundry detergent because they tend to be a little bit difficult to remove. After which just use cold water to remove the cleaning agent.
You can also use a detergent and baking soda for other stains. Leave it for a few hours then vacuum the mattress. Baking soda easily soaks up the mess and makes the mattress fresh. If you would like to avoid getting the stains on the mattress, you can use a waterproof mattress protector to act as a barrier.
How to Clean Off Dust Mites
Dust mites happen to be one of the most common dust allergies in the house. They also love to live in the mattresses because of the warm. Dust warms can easily live in humid and warm places and they feed on the human skin you shed which means the mattress is a perfect home for them. Not perfect for you though.
Dust mites start in your bedding so technically you need to make sure you constantly wash your sheets and pillow cases to remove the shed skin. You also need to make sure you hang them out in the air and in direct sunlight.
Since dust mites like humid environments it is wise to maintain low humidity in your bedroom using a dehumidifier. If you keep it as low as 40% – 50% you will kill off the dust mites. You can also steam clean the sheets using a heavy duty steam cleaner to kill them off instantly.
Use a canister vacuum cleaner to get the dust mites off the mattress. You could also get a protective mattress over to act as a barrier that keeps the dust mites off. You also need to get new pillows occasionally, preferably after every six month because they also like to live in the pillows.
How to Clean Mold
Mold is disgusting and is the worst infection you can have in your mattress. Mold starts from a minor stain, wetness, or heavy perspiration then it grows into something serious. Unlike dust mites, mold spreads really fast and can eventually make you sick.
You can use a powerful canister vacuum to get the mold spores from the mattress. You could also mix rubbing alcohol with water, soak a cloth in it and use it to scrub the mattress. Remove the alcohol mixture later by wiping it down with water. Always make sure to blot off the excess mixture before it soaks in the mattress.
You can also kill surface bacteria with a spray disinfectant. The other alternative is to place the mattress out in the sun.
How to Clean Vomit
Ever gone out on a wild night and somehow you ended up vomiting in the bed? Hey, it happens! Good thing is you can clean the vomit off the mattress. Well, it goes without saying that the first thing you need to do is remove and dispose the solids, take off the sheets and mattress covers and wash them on high temperature.
Soak up as much liquid as you need on a dry cloth and dab on the stain. Yes! Dab and not rub. Carefully scatter hydrogen peroxide on the stain without saturating the mattress. Leave the hydrogen peroxide for a few minutes then soak it off with a towel.
If there is any vomit stain left, lightly rub baking soda on the stain and leave it overnight. On the next day, vacuum it off.
How to Clean Sweat Stains
We sweat! Its almost unavoidable and when we sweat at night guess where the sweat goes? Your mattress! Like vomit and other liquids, the ideal solution is to get rid of it as fast as possible. If the sweat stays on the mattress for long, mold will foster.
However, in this case you can’t clean the mattress daily since sweating is a daily occurrence. So you have to settle for other alternatives. You can remove sweat stains by creating your own DIY cleaning solution. Use baking soda (3 spoons), hydrogen peroxide (8 ounces), and a drop of dish soap.
Put the cleaning solution in a spray bottle to make cleaning much easier. Let the stain sit for a few minutes then wipe the residue away and leave the mattress to breathe and air itself out.
How to Clean Wine Stains
You can easily spill wine while on a nightcap. If the wine stain is fresh, then diluting it immediately with water should weaken the appearance of the wine stain. If you have club soda in the house spill it on the stain and rub it in.
You can also pour salt on the stain and leave it for a long as possible to allow it to absorb the wet wine. Remove the salt with a vacuum when the stain disappears. If you couldn’t clean off the stain sooner, then hydrogen peroxide will be the most ideal option. However, the hydrogen peroxide could discolor the mattress and you also need to put on gloves when handling it.
How to Clean Nail Polish
The bed tends to be the most comfortable place to paint your nails. But let’s face it, where there is nail polish there is a possibility of spill. Even though nail polish looks good on your nails, the smell of spilt nail polish doesn’t exactly provide a good sleeping aroma.
Anyway, in case the polish slips reach out for a paper towel and wipe off as much as you can. Apply nail polish remover on the cotton ball or cotton swab and apply it on the stained spot. Use another paper towel to remove the nail polish remover.
You can use a little laundry detergent to eradicate the smell of nail polish then wipe it off with a sponge and pat it dry.
How to Clean and Remove Bed Bugs
Bed bus are the worst thing that can happen to you. Hypothetically, the first instinct is to throw the mattress away. The good news is you can save the mattress from a bed bugs infestation. If your mattress is infested by bed bugs the first thing you need to do is remove all the items including blankets, stuffed animals, phones, bedding, laptops, and radio.
If you have personal items that can’t be laundered, then bag them with Nuvan Pro Strips. When you are looking for bed bugs, make sure you look in the dressers, bed frame, as well as the underside and inside of the drawers and furniture. You can use a full size canister vacuum cleaner furniture for this.
You also need to inspect and clean the mattress and vacuum the eggs and bugs as thoroughly as possible. Once you are done, it is crucial to protect the mattress with a mattress safe protector and encasement because they can’t get past the encasement and so they will starve and finally die.
Bed bugs infestation means thoroughly cleaning the bedroom. Therefore, scrub and wipe all the infested surfaces and vacuum the carpets as well. Wash the blankets, sheets, and pillows in very hot water then vacuum the mattress again. If you are unable to handle the bed bugs on your own you should get professional help.
How to Clean Mattress Foam
If you love a mattress topper or a fancy memory foam then you have to be ready to clean it as often as you can. Cleaning the mattress foam however, can be quite a hassle because you have to do it by hand. Take off the mattress topper and check for any stains.
Then gently use a vacuum cleaner over the mattress in circular motion to collect as much dust and debris as possible. Once you rid the mattress from any stains use detergent and warm water in a spray bottle and spray it gently on the topper.
Leave the mattress topper outside to air out then sprinkle baking soda on the mattress and let it sit overnight. Make sure you do this for both sides of the mattress and the topper. Before putting the bed back up again, make sure it is completely dried out.
While doing this, also make sure you clean the mattress pad, preferably after every eight weeks. The mattress pad is in direct contact with the mattress and you which makes it the first line of defense. If the mattress pad comes with cleaning instructions make sure to follow them. If it doesn’t have any instructions, clean it using eco-friendly methods.
How to Remove Water Rings or Stains From Your Mattress
Water may be harmless but when it leaves the nasty rings the mattress doesn’t look flattering. The good thing about water rings and stains is that they are easy to get rid of. All you need to do is take a wet cloth and use it to moisten the area that’s affected.
Fold several pieces of a paper towel on the spot and use a heavy object like a vase to layer down the stain. Use a hair dryer or fan towards the spots and force the air to transfer the moisture on the paper towels.
How to Clean the Mattress Using Norwex Mattress Cleaner Spray
This cleaner spray is an enzyme-based formula that has been designed to remove organic materials from the sheets and mattress. The Norwex mattress cleaner spray works because it has live bacteria in their dormant stage.
The live bacteria in the spray works by eating the organic matter on the bed as well as the surface of the mattress. The spray makes the organic matter to crumble to the water and carbon dioxide in the spray. The spray is a good touch because it doesn’t leave any harmful residues in the bed.
This cleaner spray doesn’t contain any harmful chemicals and is definitely not a pesticide which means it doesn’t directly kill dust mites. It works by starving the dust mites and other micro-organisms in the bedding.
It is made up of water, menthol, denatured alcohol, citric acid, and other compounds that help keep the bacteria in the solution alive. The micro-organisms are naturally occurring and are non-pathogenic. It doesn’t have the Paraben compounds making the pH level neural. This makes the spray environmental friendly.
You can use this spray to clean your mattress by removing odor in your beddings, pillows, upholstery, and comforters. It effectively removes urine odor which makes it perfect for pet owners. The bonus factor about this spray is that you can also use it to remove odors from different fabrics as well as te carpets.
How to Air Out Your Mattress
Airing your mattress has to be the most crucial step in keeping the mattress clean and yet we tend to skip this step most times. If you air out your mattress regularly, it will protect you against germs and allergens.
Airing out the mattress is easy to do because you can do it outdoors or indoors even when its cold. You start by pulling out all the bed linen, open the windows to allow the sun rays in. The sun kills the germs and bacteria naturally and you don’t even need to pay for it.
Use a vacuum cleaner to collect any debris and dust before you air out the mattress. This allows the air to flow through the mattress easily and also reduces the airing it out time.
Leave the mattress out for a minimum of four hours or more. Don’t leave the mattress until evening time because the humidity will leave the mattress damp.
How to Store Your Mattress
How you store your mattress influences the cleanliness of your mattress. And not just storing your mattress but doing it properly. Most people think storing the mattress in a plastic bag is the best way to keep it dry.
However, if the mattress has been used before, this is the worst approach you can use. This is because a used mattress has moisture inside and using a plastic bag will only trap the moisture in the mattress which then creates the perfect environment for mildew and mold to grow. Mold and mildew, recipe for disaster!
Before storing your mattress, vacuum the mattress to remove dirt and dust then place it in a light and breathable cover. Once in the cover, store it on a horizontal position and avoid placing any extra weigh on the mattress. Once the mattress is in storage, always vacuum and disinfect the mattress before using the it again.
How to Select the Best Mattress For You
How you clean the mattress is highly determined by the type of mattress you own. We all have different preferences when it comes to the mattress. Here is how you choose the mattress that is best suited for you:
1. Consider your Budget
A good mattress costs between $800 – $2500. The all-natural latex mattress types tend to cost more than the synthetic latex. The memory foam mattress that have higher density cost more than the models that have medium or low-density memory foam.
The good news is, if you are looking for a good mattress you won’t need to break the bank for that. However, if you are looking for a mattress that will last you for years, you may need to set aside a high amount for it.
If you want a queen size mattress you need at least $1000 and you need at least $1500 for a king size mattress.
2. Consider your Weight
The more you weigh the more support you need and hence you need a firmer mattress. With a more supportive mattress you won’t have to worry about sinkage and pressure points. We recommend getting a pocketed coil mattress if you are a heavier-set person since it will hold you up longer.
3. Consider the Firmness of The Mattress
The idea is to get a firm bed and not a hard bed. Basically, make sure you get a mattress that will offer you the best support. Whenever you go out to buy a mattress, make sure you test it out before buying to test the level of support. This should also be based on how much you weigh.
4. Consider Your Sleeping Position
Fan fact! There are mattresses that are specifically designed based on the side you sleep on. There are mattresses for those who prefer to sleep on the side, the stomach, or the back. Whatever position works best for you, always make sure you choose a mattress that will match up your comfort levels.
Eco-Friendly Ways You Can Clean Different Types of Mattress
Any traditional mattress can accumulate dust mites, dirt, bacteria, skin cells, pollen, and oils. In this case, use a vacuum cleaner that has upholstery attachment to vacuum it. To deodorize the mattress use a stiff brush to sprinkle baking soda all over the mattress and let it sit for about thirty minutes.
To remove the baking soda, vacuum again. Always flip the mattress over and do the same on the other side. Let the mattress sit for a couple of hours then place a cover over to protect it. Before placing the cover always make sure the mattress is dry.
For the latex mattress, if it has a cover, remove it. To clean it, add a few drops of natural liquid or organic soap in warm water and mix it up with your hand. Dip a white cotton cloth in the water and remove the excess water before you spot clean the mattress.
To wipe the soapy solution, dampen another white cotton cloth with warm running water then allow the mattress to dry out completely before you replace the cover. Be careful never to expose he latex mattress to direct sun because it will break down its cellular structure.
Memory Foam Mattress
To maintain a memory foam mattress, always make sure to regularly vacuum the mattress including the sides. Avoid using any commercial cleaning products with bleach or ammonia because they tend to ruin the inside.
If the mattress stains, use natural mild dish or organic soap and mix it with water. You can use vinegar if you don’t have any organic or mild detergent at home. Put the mixture in a spray bottle and scrub the stained area with an absorbent cloth.
How to Protect Your Mattress
You can save yourself many cleaning issues with mattress protection measures. You can do this by avoiding moisture growth, spills, and other issues that will keep the mattress clean, safe, and healthy for a long time.
The best way is to use an encasement or mattress cover to protect the mattress from bodily fluids, spills, and other problem causing bacteria. Make sure the cover is well-rated and waterproof. An encasement is best for keeping away bed bugs and dust mites.
Avoid eating in bed because this leads to spills and messes which encourage insect infestations. Make sure you wash the bedding weekly with hot water to kill insects and bacteria. Also make sure you clean the mattress at least once every month. Vacuum regularly to remove the dirt and dust.
At the end of it all, the idea is to clean your beddings and mattress regularly. You also need to make sure you treat every stain as soon as it happens and never saturate the mattress when you are cleaning. You should also consider speaking to an expert if you are struggling with a stain. Always choose a sunny day to air out your mattress. And remember, storing your mattress in a zipped plastic bag: not a good idea.
Fresh and shiny sheets are great, but whatever is underneath the covers is what matters the most. So its time you start looking after your bed.