pillowtop mattress pad3 inch pillow top mattress pad

How To Really Clean A Pillow Top Mattress Pad

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By Johnny Bevers

Keep your pillow top mattress pad clean with our simple (easy-to-follow) instructions…  It’s easier than you might think!

A good quality pillow top mattress can provide wonderful cushioning and comfort for a great night’s sleep, especially if you suffer from any kind of back or muscle pain. However, like all mattresses, they occasionally need cleaning. There are several ways to clean a pillow top mattress pad and the one you choose will depend on the severity of any stain, and the results you wish to achieve. Let’s examine some of the options available to you.

Prevention Rather Than Cure

The first thing to emphasize is that if you want to keep your pillow top mattress pad clean, then you should be using a mattress cover.  These thin sheets, often elasticized around the edge to form fit the mattress, are cheap and provide a reasonable amount of protection to the mattress itself.  Every week, or more if you choose, simply remove the mattress cover, wash it in hot water in the washing machine, dry it and replace on the bed.  Thus, cleaning the mattress pad itself becomes much, much simpler, except when dealing with spillages and their resultant stains.

Regular Machine or Hand Washing

If you were to examine your sheets and mattress under a microscope, the results might shock and perhaps disgust you. Human beings are constantly shedding dead skin.  This dead skin is too small for us to see, but it is everywhere: it’s on our sofas, on our carpets and yes, in our beds.  Now this is pretty disgusting in itself, but it gets worse; Dust mites are tiny creatures, invisible to the naked eye, that feed on this dead skin and our beds are often teeming with them.  In fact your mattress and its sheets and pillows provide the ideal habitat for dust mites to thrive: lots of crevices and folds to hide in, nice and warm and a constant supply of dead skin to feed on.  There can be literally millions of the little beasties in your bed and you wouldn’t even know it; except that is, if you are one of the 10 percent or so of the population who suffer allergic reactions due to the presence of dust mites in your house.

So, how can we get rid of them? Well, get rid of the dead skin and you get rid of the dust mites’ source of food and thus the dust mites themselves. So, wash everything possible in very hot water in a washing machine as often as possible. This includes sheets, duvets, pillows, pillow cases and so on. This will remove both the dead skin and the dust mites from your bedding.

Check the label on the actual pillow top also.  If it allows machine or hand washing and is removable, remove it and wash according to the directions on the label.  It could be that a simple machine or hand wash of the pillow top will get it looking clean enough that you don’t need to consider more complicated or expensive methods.

A Baking Soda Clean

This baking soda and essential oil clean works really well if you want to freshen up your entire pillow top mattress pad and get rid of those pesky mites. First, take of all the sheets and covers that you can and wash them separately in hot water. Next, vacuum the mattress thoroughly making sure you get into all the nicks and crevices, especially around the edge of the mattress. Now, mix a cup of baking soda with five or six drops of your favorite essential oil. I generally use lavender as it has that kind of bedroom smell, but the choice is yours. After that, using a sieve, sprinkle the baking soda all over the mattress and leave it for a couple of hours. When you return, vacuum the mattress thoroughly once again until all the baking soda has been removed. The result should be a clean, fresh smelling mattress free of dust mites and dead skin.

Stain Removal

Even if you are using a mattress cover and cleaning it regularly, accidents can still happen. Unfortunately, the pillow top to your mattress, and also the mattress itself, is very absorbent. This means it will soak up liquids like coffee, blood, urine, ketchup, or even vomit very efficiently, and this, unfortunately, will often result in a stain. Don’t worry though. Most stains can be removed fairly simply.

1. Ensure that the stain is dry.  You can soak up any moisture with a dry cloth or kitchen towel. Try and get to the stain as quickly as possible in order to soak up the stain. A stain that has had time to become absorbed into the pillow top material will be harder to remove.

2.  Apply a small amount of upholstery shampoo to the stain.  Do this by lightly dampening a clean cloth with upholstery shampoo and dabbing this onto the stain and rubbing lightly. Remember that your goal is to very lightly moisten the stain not to soak it in the upholstery shampoo; less is more! Use dry paper towels to soak up the upholstery shampoo.  Repeat this step one more time.

3. Apply a small amount of white vinegar to the stain.  Do this in the same way as you applied the upholstery shampoo and dry thoroughly with dry paper towels once more.

4. Although you have been drying the mattress with paper towels, some moisture may remain.  Place the mattress or just the pillow top if it is removable, outside in direct sunlight in order to dry it completely.  If it’s not a particularly sunny day, then use a hair dryer or fan to dry the pillow top, aiming the hot air directly at the wet spot you have been working on.

5. Pour a tablespoon of baking soda over the area where the stain was and leave it for a few hours before vacuuming up the baking soda.  This will remove any lingering smell from the mattress.

Dry Cleaning

If the label on your pillow top mattress pad indicates that it is not washable, or you have a stain that is proving just too stubborn to remove at home, then it is time to seek expert help.  Take your pillow top or the entire mattress to a reputable dry cleaner’s where, with a number of special chemicals, the dry-cleaner can completely clean, de-odorize and sterilize your mattress.  This option is the most expensive, and may be quite inconvenient if you choose to take the entire mattress to the dry cleaner’s, but the results can be fantastic.

A good-quality pillow top mattress can last you many years if you treat it correctly.  Remember to keep drinks and food away from the bed in order to limit the chances of accidental spillage.  In addition, regularly wash all sheets and covers in hot water to keep dust bites at bay and vacuum the mattress whenever you have the opportunity.

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