An often-overlooked aspect of bedroom hygiene, cleaning a mattress isn’t as straightforward as it may seem. There are lots to consider and hidden obstacles to manage, which is why so many of us choose to not bother cleaning our mattresses.
Over time, mattresses develop smells, stains, and other gross imperfections through years of use. While this is totally normal, there’s nothing stopping you from fighting back against the bacteria that thrive on your mattress’ fibres.
If you’re looking to get your mattress back in tip-top shape, have a read of our full guide on how to clean a mattress.
The level of cleaning and attention your mattress deserves ultimately depends on its condition. An older mattress will show greater signs of use, such as frayed edges on stitching and numerous inexplicable stains throughout. Here are some quick tips for frequent mattress maintenance.
In the morning, the highly productive among us will achieve the first task of the day by tidying up their bed. Putting pillows back in place, re-rolling the duvet and decluttering the floor are all things that some of us prioritise before going downstairs and getting ready for the day.
But could it be possible that this is actually doing more harm than good? Throughout the night, our body temperatures fluctuate in order to keep us comfortable while we sleep. This is normal behaviour, but in extreme cases, this can result in sweating. Heat and humidity create perfect environments for bacterial growth, which is why you should always allow your mattress to breathe for a short while before making the bed after a good night’s sleep.
Although this is effective, it alone will not combat any bed bugs or smells; but it’s a good thing to be mindful of if your morning routine involves a quick bit of cleaning.
This tip might sound strange, but think about it – mattresses are filled with dust, dead skin, and probably crumbs. The best method of getting rid of these is to use a vacuum cleaner.
When changing your sheets, consider giving your mattress a quick run-over with the vacuum cleaner on a low setting. This is much more effective than simply shaking the mattress or whacking the dust out of it. When doing this, all you’re doing is re-introducing those unwanted particles into your bedroom, giving them the chance to fall on your bedroom furniture.
Prevention is better than cure, there’s no doubt about it. So, a mattress protector is a great tool in the fight against mattress hygiene. Providing another layer of defence against all of the usual offenders for mattresses, mattress protectors do exactly what they say.
Plus, mattress protectors are much easier to clean. High-quality ones can survive a wash at upwards of 40 degrees, eliminating any harmful bacteria in a flash.
As previously mentioned, we recommend you clean your mattress every six months. At this point, your mattress will have accrued plenty of use, signalling the perfect time for a deep clean.
It’s important to be consistent with this, as doing so will prolong the lifespan of your mattress. This saves money and keeps your mattress comfortable for as long as possible.
Although a deep clean is something that can be done now and then, something that should be done frequently is a mattress flip.
This does depend on the type of mattress you have, as different springs compress at different rates. So, a good way of finding out is to consult with your mattress manufacturer. Some may tell you to just rotate the mattress, while others may recommend a full flip in regular intervals.
Generally, mattresses should be maintained once every six or so months. Over the course of those six months, owners will have racked up an impressive 720 hours of mattress use, potentially more if you’re a fan of daytime naps, so it’s definitely worth doing.
Cleaning is one thing, but removing stains is an entirely different process when it comes to your mattress. It all starts depending on the type of stain you have encountered:
Red wine stains unforgivably. Walls, floors, hard materials, soft materials, it stains them all. If you’ve found a red wine stain on your bedding, chances are that it has seeped into the mattress below. But fret not; cleaning red wine stains off a mattress isn’t actually that difficult.
Start by dabbing sparkling water into the stain with a damp cloth. This should help penetrate the mattress material and begin to stimulate the wine within. After that, pour some salt on top. The salt works its way into your mattress’s fibres, further aiding the sparkling water by lifting out the deep stain.
If there’s no explanation for your stain, try starting with a stain removal spray. While most will work, you’ll want to find something that is activated with enzymes, as this is what will fully remove both the stain and any left-over smells. Simply spray a little amount on top of the stain, allow it to sit for 30 seconds to one minute, and gently wipe away.
Accidents happen. When they happen at nighttime, it’s something that’s best dealt with right away to avoid any nasty smells remaining in your mattress.
Start by drying the affected area as much as possible. Dabbing with a towel is best for this, but kitchen roll also works in a pinch. By far the best way of cleaning up these nighttime accidents is with hydrogen peroxide. Grab a small cup full of 3% hydrogen peroxide and mix it with three spoonfuls of baking soda and some drops of washing-up liquid.
Once dissolved, add this concoction to a spray bottle and lightly cover the stain with the mixture. Leave this for an hour until coming back and hitting it again. When it’s then dry, cover the area with baking soda and leave overnight if possible. After this, vacuum the baking soda up and the stain and smell should disappear.
The short answer: yes. Steam cleaning a mattress has a few different benefits to it. It can remove stains from sweat and urine, as well as disinfecting it and removing allergens. Vacuum the mattress first as mentioned above, then steam clean it every few months.
Be wary of your particular mattress, however, as exposure to steam could affect the function of adjustable beds over time. There is also a potential for steam cleaning to fade the colour of the mattress, so if you’re keen to avoid discolouration, steaming a mattress might not be for you.
An alternative way of cleaning your mattress is, surprisingly, with baking soda. This method is best if you’re planning on spending a night away, as the longer you can leave the baking soda to sit in your mattress, the better the result will be.
First of all, remove all bedding and vacuum the mattress to remove any excess dust, skin and crumbs from the surface. Then spot clean it to remove any specific stains that you’re aware of.
Apply baking soda generously to the mattress and leave it to sit for as long as possible; you’ll see the best results after 24 hours. It’s important that during this time, your mattress is exposed to plenty of sunlight.
If you’re confident that it won’t rain any time soon, consider leaving it outside throughout the day. If not, just leave it somewhere that the sun can reach it through the window. Sunlight helps the baking soda sink deeply into the mattress, removing any odours that have become lodged over time.
Now that you know how to make your mattress last with plenty of deep cleaning tips, make sure you have a mattress that you will want to last. Our hybrid mattresses let you pick and choose the best parts of different mattresses, resulting in your personal perfect night of sleep.