How to Deep Clean Your Mattress in 5 easy steps.

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There’s nothing like getting into clean bedding. But what about that nagging feeling that your mattress is a bit worse for wear?

As we sleep, we sweat and shed skin cells. Dust mites love to feed on this debris and as the weeks, months and years go by, the dirt really begins to build up.

Of course our mattresses also collect stains, spills and bacteria and when you realise that you spend around a third of your life lying on your bed* it makes sense to give your mattress a clean regularly. That way you avoid risking high levels of dust mites, bed bacteria, fungal and bacterial skin infections.

The good news is we’re here with our 5 step guide to an immaculate mattress. 

1. Vacuum your mattress. 

Begin with an all over vacuum of the mattress to remove dead skin, dust and hair that can collect on the surface. It’s a good idea to do this anyway, each time you rotate your mattress.

Put the vacuum to one side (you will need it again later).

2. Remove spots and stains. 

Time to tackle any marks. Whatever has caused the stains you are tackling it’s important to remember that you need to dab at them - not rub. This helps lift the stain rather than drive it deeper into the mattress. The most common stains you will be dealing with are caused by any (or all) of the following:

Blood stains. 
  • When tackling blood stains ALWAYS use cold water as warmer water can ‘cook’ the proteins further into the fabric
  • Also, don’t use too much water, especially if your mattress is a memory foam one (water can damage the foam and fillings). Just ensure your cloth is damp, not soaking wet. If you do accidentally get your mattress too wet, dry using a fan or a vacuum cleaner that uses water and can suck up any excess.
  • Mix some smol bio or smol washing up liquid in a bowl with some lukewarm water. Gently dab at the stain until it has lifted.
  • Once the stain has gone, let your mattress dry. 
Sweat stains. 
  • Mix some smol bio or smol washing up liquid in a bowl with some lukewarm water.
  • Use a clean cloth to dab at the stain with the solution until the mark fades.
Urine stains. 
  • Mix some smol bio or smol washing up liquid in a bowl with some lukewarm water.
  • Dip some paper towel into the solution and press them into the stain. Use a new paper towel each time to ensure you aren’t redepositing the urine back into the mattress.
  • Dab at the stain until it has gone, it can take quite a long time to lift urine stains but persevere and you should get there!

3. Steam. 

Step 3 is an optional for those that have a steam cleaner and useful if you really want a deeper clean. 

It’s popular with those who suffer allergies also as it’s one more way to kill off any dust mites. 

Aim your hand-held steamer over all the surface areas (including along the sides and the underside) of the mattress but be careful not to let the mattress get too wet. 

4. Bicarbonate of soda. 

Sprinkle the surface of your mattress with a good dose of bicarbonate of soda and gently pat it into the fabric. Leave it for at least an hour to absorb any odours. Bicarb is brilliant for neutralising and removing smells and the longer you leave it the better the results.

5. Final vacuum. 

Vacuum up the bicarbonate of soda and your mattress should be looking (and smelling) a whole lot better!

Extras that are good to know…

Of course you’ll want to wash your bedding (once a fortnight is a good rule of thumb) and you’ll get wonderful results with either smol bio, non-bio or fragrance-free (whichever works best for you!). And if you can line-dry your bedding outside in the sunshine so much the better when it comes to killing bacteria. 

And pulling back the covers on your bed for 30 mins each day will really help to keep dust mite numbers down.

Turning your mattress with every new season is great especially if you share a bed with somebody of a different size and weight. It will stop one side becoming more compressed than the other. 

Mattress protectors will give you one more line of defence and of course they are easily cleaned using your washing machine. Having one on your mattress is a cheap and simple way to extend the life of your mattress.

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*Aminoff et al January 2011 Handbook of Clinical Neurology


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