When was the last time you washed your bed pillows? If you’re worried that you will ruin your favorite pillow or that your pillow isn’t washable, most pillows can easily be laundered and returned to their original glory. (And for me, all the gunk that they’re holding onto – bacteria, dust mites, dead skin cells, etc. makes it worth the risk of washing it). It doesn’t matter if your pillows are made of natural materials like down or feather or if they are synthetic, just about any pillow can be washed at home. Pillow washing is easiest in a high-capacity, front-loading machine, but can just as easily be accomplished with a top loading machine as well.
Cleaning Routine Tip:
Pillow cases should be washed weekly with your bedding and pillow protectors should be washed monthly with your mattress pad. Launder your pillows at least 2 times a year – I like to wash mine seasonally.
Step 1 – Wash:
Remove the pillowcase and pillow protector (if you don’t use a pillow protector, put it on your list for your next shopping run). You will want to use the most liquid gentle detergent you have, avoiding harsh detergents loaded with stain removers and scents. Set your washer on the gentle, warm water cycle as well as it’s largest capacity. Put in the detergent and allow the washer to begin filling before putting in your pillows. Wash no more than two to three average pillows at a time to guarantee a thorough cleaning.
Step 2 – Rinse:
After your washer has completed it’s cycle, run it through the rinse cycle again. This is to make sure that the detergent is thoroughly removed from the interior of the pillow. Due to their thickness and density, pillows require a bit more care to be thoroughly cleaned. I like to run my spin cycle twice as well to remove any excess water.
Step 3 – Dry:
Upon finishing the washing portion of cleaning your pillows, it’s time to dry them. If your pillow is foam, you will want to line dry or hang your pillow to dry as a trip through the dryer would cause the material to melt. For other synthetic materials, dry on a low to medium heat cycle and avoid any high heat. Down and natural materials can’t stand much heat, so set your dryer on Air and allow them to dry thoroughly. If you would like to fluff up your pillows again, put a couple tennis balls in some socks and toss them in to agitate and return the fibers to their natural state. Stop the dryer every 30 minutes to rotate the pillows around to make sure that they dry thoroughly.
With a little extra attention, your favorite pillows can feel like brand new again. So go ahead – wash and dry them and look forward to a good night’s sleep.
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