Cleaning Guides

How to Clean a Mattress

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On average, we all spend a third of our lives sleeping. Why so much time? Well, if we don’t get a proper amount of sleep, our brains won’t function as well as they are supposed to.

Sleep comes with a lot of benefits: it increases our productivity, it regulates our metabolism, and it reduces the risk of getting sick. And on that note, you can’t really enjoy all the benefits of a healthy sleep without having a clean and comfortable mattress to lie on. But in case you haven’t been paying much attention to yours, there is no better time than the present to give it the special care it deserves.

Steps to Clean Your Mattress:

How to be sure that your mattress needs cleaning

Mattresses are highly absorbent. Meaning that liquids can easily damage their material. Additionally, dust, dead skin and other allergens can also get trapped causing more than just discomfort, but also health complications for children and more sensitive people.

So, regular deep mattress cleaning is definitely required for both protecting your health and extending the lifespan of your bed piece. But which are the obvious indicators that can tell you it’s time to clean the mattress?

  • Visible Stains – Either you’ve noticed a stain on your mattress while changing the bedding or you accidentally spilled something on it. That’s a definitive sign that you need to clean that particular area. Even if the stained area is small, you can still give your whole mattress a thorough cleaning to freshen it up.
  • Unpleasant odour – If there’s an unpleasant smell coming from your mattress, that’s a clear sign that your mattress needs to be disinfected.
  • Allergy reactions – You are experiencing allergy symptoms more often than usual? Better check the mattress. The accumulated dust, along with other factors, could be responsible. Keep in mind that even if you have a hypoallergenic mattress, you will still have to give it a proper cleaning.
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How to clean the mattress the right way

A lot of people dread this task, but honestly, it’s not that hard at all. Like car upholstery cleaning, it will take just a few hours of your day, some simple ingredients, which you certainly keep somewhere in your cabinets and a little bit of elbow grease. Are you ready? Let’s do this!

Get your supplies ready


  • Vacuum cleaner (preferably with upholstery or mattress attachment, as well as a crevice tool for more flexibility, if available)
  • Gloves
  • A small bowl
  • Spray bottle
  • Clean cloths and sponges


  • Like car upholstery cleaning,Baking soda
  • Hydrogen peroxide (3%)
  • White vinegar
  • Salt
  • Liquid soap or laundry detergent
  • Your favourite essential oils

Strip everything from the mattress

Get everything off the mattress, including pillows, linen, covers, mattress toppers and protectors. Now is the perfect time to give them a good wash, so you can place nice-smelling and clean sheets on your already cleaned mattress later.

Before you put everything in the washing machine, though, check the label for instructions. Not all pillows tolerate moisture, in which case you can just leave them for a few hours on a sunny spot outside. It is possible to clean some mattress toppers and protectors in the washing machine, given that only the gentle cycle and cold water is used. Still, follow the manufacturer’s instructions to be on the safe side.


Put on the upholstery or mattress attachment on your vacuum cleaner and start cleaning the surface. Work your way from top to bottom and make sure everything is fully covered. Be more careful around the seams and any hard-to-reach places where dust, particles and harmful bacteria are usually hiding. For these, you can use the crevice tool.

Clean all visible mattress stains

Now comes the tough part. Years of use inevitably leaves its mark on the fabric and accidents happen constantly, often giving us little chance to react on time. Still, there is no point in wondering when the cat peed on the bed or what that brown spot you’ve never seen before is. Better put your gloves on and give some of the stain removal solutions below a try!


Urine stains on the mattress are very common. Whether it comes to human or animal urine, there are some natural homemade cleaners that have been tested and proven to work. Of course, keep in mind that the longer the pee stays on your mattress, the tougher it will be to get it out completely.

Step-by-step cleaning of the urine stains on the mattress:

  • If you are dealing with a fresh stain, use a dry cloth or a paper towel to blot the excess moisture.
  • Mix well the hydrogen peroxide with just a few drops of the soap or laundry detergent.
  • Spray the whole stain.
  • Sprinkle baking soda excessively over the stain and blend until a white paste is formed.
  • Leave to dry for a few hours.
  • Vacuum the dry paste.
This recipe works for both dry and fresh pee stains. However, the hydrogen peroxide can disinfect, but also bleach the material. Therefore, it is not recommended to use it on coloured mattresses. You can substitute it with white vinegar when cleaning fresh urine stains.
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Blood is impossible to miss on a clean white surface and it is one of the toughest stains to remove. It is crucial, though, that the right methods are applied depending on whether you are trying to clean a fresh or old blood stain off your mattress. Here a few things to try:

  • Cold water – When it comes to fresh blood stains, nothing works better than cold water. You don’t have to pre-treat the stain with any chemical or other types of cleaners. Just take a clean cloth or sponge and get them wet. Then, gently blot the stain. Do not scrub, though, or you could spread it further and deeper into the mattress. Clean the cloth/sponge and repeat until the stain is fully removed.
  • Baking soda – While we are on the topic of removing fresh blood stains, baking soda is great for emergencies. Its absorbing and whitening properties will work in your favour, preventing deeper penetration of the liquid into the fabric and change of colour. Sprinkle generously over the stain until completely covered, leave to dry and then wash with cold water.
  • Salt and Hydrogen peroxide – If you have a few days or weeks old blood stain on your mattress, you can try getting it out with these two products. First, you need to wet the stain with cold water again, then apply some salt on it. To agitate the stain, you can gently scrub with an old toothbrush. Let it sit on the stain for an hour or two, then rinse with cold water. You can repeat this if there is still some of the blood left or dab with a little bit of hydrogen peroxide to give the material that perfectly white look again.

Bleach is often a preferred method to treat blood stains because of its effectiveness. However, it may cause some yellowing on certain fabrics and it comes with a strong smell that is hard to ignore. If bleach is still your choice for fighting mattress stains, then we would recommend you go with the non-chlorine kind.

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This is certainly not the most pleasant thing to clean, but it can leave a permanent mark on your mattress, so act fast! There is a simple and easy solution – white vinegar and warm water cleaner. Before you apply it, though, you have to scrape as much of the vomit as possible. Then, combine the two ingredients, either in a spray bottle or in a bowl, and start applying. Then, you can blot with a cloth and repeat until the area looks clean. Opening a window will help it dry faster and this will also make the vinegar scent disappear.

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Sprinkle baking soda all over

Baking soda has many great cleaning properties, including whitening, disinfection and removing odours. Even if your mattress is fairly new with no staining, spreading some of the bicarb soda on top will quickly freshen the material. You can use only baking soda or combine it with your favourite essential oil if you wish to deodorise your mattress, as well.

Sprinkle the baking soda evenly over the entire mattress.Then leave it there for as long as you can, why not even overnight. The white powder will absorb any liquid left from treating the stains and will neutralise any unpleasant smells.

If you decide to mix the bicarb soda with any kind of essential oils, make sure you use a small amount of the latter. Pure products have a strong lingering smell, which not everyone can tolerate, especially when sleeping.

Do a final vacuuming

Once the baking soda does its work, you can remove it with the help of the vacuum cleaner. Go over the entire mattress without pressing too hard..

Flip and repeat

Since it’s beneficial to flip your mattress at least twice a year, now is a great time to do it. Giving both sides a good clean will guarantee that your mattress will be well-preserved and will serve you for longer.

Make the bed

Give the mattress enough time to dry completely before making the bed because moisture is a well-known mould breeder. Taking it outside to air dry, if possible, will speed up the process, but a fan or blow dryer will help, too.

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Mattress Cleaning FAQs:

How often should you clean the mattress?

The answer depends on whether you sweat more than normal during the night, whether you often eat in bed, whether your pets sleep with you, etc. Unlike your bedsheets, which require frequent washing, your mattress can benefit from less frequent but more thorough care. For instance, you can try a DIY cleaning every 3 to 6 months (depending on how you treat the mattress) and schedule a deep mattress disinfection in the form of steam cleaning at least once a year, which can be easily done by a local professional cleaner.

Should you flip/rotate the mattress and when?

Absolutely! Most mattresses need to be flipped every six months for your comfort and for extending their lifespan, giving a chance to both sides to be used equally if you have a double-sided mattress that is. If you happen to have a pillow top or memory foam mattress, it is recommended only to rotate it at the beginning of every season.

How to preserve your mattress for longer?

Keeping a well-maintained mattress will pay off in high-quality sleep and money saving, as you will not have to invest in a new one over the next 8-10 years. However, keeping up with a mattress cleaning schedule is not the only thing you can do. You can also:

  • Cover your mattress with a protector – Unlike mattress toppers, which main goal is to bring comfort, a protector’s main purpose is to prevent staining and keep dust mites and bacteria away. There are different kinds to choose from, including hypoallergenic and waterproof protectors, which are very convenient for baby crib mattresses. The protectors are easy to clean, even in the washing machine, and it’s good to wash them at least once a month, as they collect everything instead of your mattress.
  • Wash bed sheets regularly – It’s good to wash the bedsheets at least once per week, as they easily absorb everything from sweat to skin cells. Otherwise, an unpleasant odour starts to form, which, if given enough time, can easily spread to the mattress.
  • Get your pet a separate bed – Sharing a bed with the cat or the dog is great for bonding, but this may lead to some unpleasant surprise later. Maybe, it will be better to have your separate beds, at least in the beginning until your furry companion is properly trained.


  • As soon as you notice heavy staining, bad smell or the presence of frequent allergic reactions, you can be sure that your mattress needs to be deep cleaned.
  • It is important to vacuum prior to spot cleaning to collect debris and particles that may, otherwise, affect the results of your hard work.
  • Do not use too much liquid when cleaning the mattress because you risk damaging it and stimulating mould growth.
  • It’s preferable to clean the mattress every 3 to 6 months with homemade solutions and consider investing in a deep steam cleaning at least once per year.
  • Getting a mattress protector is a small but essential investment that will help preserve the bed piece in good condition and save you a lot of stain removal time.

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