How To Clean A Pillowtop Mattress?

Cleaning a Pillowtop Mattress: Step-by-Step Guide

Taking care of your pillowtop mattress involves regular cleaning to maintain its comfort and longevity. A thorough clean can be achieved by stripping the bed, vacuuming the mattress, spot-cleaning stains, deodorizing with baking soda, air-drying the mattress thoroughly, and protecting it with a mattress cover.

Steps to Clean Your Pillowtop Mattress

It’s important to follow a gentle yet effective cleaning regimen to ensure you do not damage the structural integrity of your pillowtop mattress. Here is a step-by-step guide that will help you clean your pillowtop mattress with ease.

Step 1: Strip The Bed

Begin by removing all bedding, including sheets, pillowcases, and mattress covers. This is also an excellent opportunity to launder your bedding. Check the washing instructions on your mattress cover to see if it can be machine washed and follow the care label.

Step 2: Vacuum The Mattress

Using your vacuum cleaner’s upholstery attachment, carefully vacuum the top of your pillowtop mattress. Be sure to focus on seams and crevices where dust and debris can accumulate. If you have a handheld vacuum with a HEPA filter, this can be particularly effective at trapping allergens.

Step 3: Spot-Clean Stains

Stains should be treated as soon as possible. For biological stains like sweat or urine, an enzyme cleaner can be especially effective. You can also mix a solution of mild dish soap and water. Dip a clean cloth into the solution, wring it out, and gently dab the stain. Avoid saturating the mattress, as excessive moisture can lead to mold and mildew growth.

For stubborn stains, you can try a paste of baking soda and water. Apply the paste directly to the stain, let it sit for up to 30 minutes, then gently scrape away and blot any residue with a clean cloth.

Step 4: Deodorize with Baking Soda

Baking soda is a great natural deodorizer. Sprinkle a light layer over the entire surface of your mattress and let it sit for several hours or even overnight if possible. The baking soda will absorb odors and moisture from the mattress.

Step 5: Vacuum Again

Once the baking soda has done its job, vacuum it up along with any odors or residual moisture that may have been absorbed.

Step 6: Air out the Mattress

If the weather and your living situation permit, placing the mattress outside in a sunny, dry spot can be beneficial. Fresh air and UV rays can help kill remaining odor-causing bacteria. If this isn’t an option, standing the mattress up near a window with direct sunlight can also help.

Step 7: Protect Your Mattress

Finally, once your mattress is clean and dry, use a protective cover before re-making your bed with clean sheets. Choose a cover that is waterproof to shield against future spills and potential staining.

Maintenance Tips Between Deep Cleans

To keep your pillowtop mattress in top shape, follow these simple maintenance tips:

Regular Vacuuming

Vacuuming your mattress monthly can help prevent the accumulation of dust mites and allergens. Make this part of your regular cleaning schedule.

Rotate Your Mattress

Rotating your mattress 180 degrees every three months can help maintain even wear and extend its lifespan.

Spill Management

In case of spills, immediately blot the area with a clean, dry cloth. Avoid rubbing, as this can push the liquid deeper into the mattress.

Use of Protective Covers

A good quality, breathable mattress cover can help keep the mattress clean and protect it from spills and stains.

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What to Avoid When Cleaning Your Pillowtop Mattress

While cleaning your mattress, there are several things you should avoid doing in order to prevent damage:

Harsh Chemical Cleaners

Avoid using harsh chemical cleaners, bleach, or dry-cleaning agents on your mattress as they can compromise the integrity of the materials.

Steam Cleaning

Steam cleaning is not recommended for pillowtop mattresses, as the excessive moisture can lead to mold and mildew.


When spot-cleaning stains, never oversaturate the area. A mattress that is too wet can be difficult to dry out completely, leading to potential odor and mold issues.

Finishing Thoughts

Knowing how to effectively clean and maintain your pillowtop mattress can go a long way in ensuring you enjoy a comfortable and hygienic sleep environment. A regular cleaning routine can help extend the life of your mattress, hold allergens at bay, remove stains, and keep your bedroom smelling fresh. InternalEnumeratorether you’re dealing with regular maintenance or an unexpected spill, the key is to handle it gently and to avoid introducing too much moisture or harsh chemicals. With these simple steps, you can achieve a clean, fresh, and inviting pillowtop mattress that’s ready to offer a good night’s sleep.


  • Dominic Johnson

    Hello! I’m Dominic Johnson, the whimsical wizard behind the world of sleep at With a background in Sleep Psychology and a quirky love for all things dozy and dreamy, I bring a sprinkle of fun to bedtime blues. I've spent my career unraveling the mysteries of the Sandman, turning dense science into cozy bedtime stories. When I'm not buried in research papers or testing the fluffiness of the latest pillows, I'm usually found playing impromptu lullabies on my old guitar for my twin daughters or teaching my labrador, Rocket, new tricks. My approach to sleep is simple: blend science with a touch of magic and a hearty laugh.

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