How To Fluff A Pillow After Washing?

After washing a pillow, to fluff it, manually grab and squeeze the pillow from different angles, pushing the fill material around to redistribute it evenly. Then, put the pillow in the dryer with a couple of tennis balls or dryer balls, using a low-heat or air-fluff setting. Alternatively, place the pillow in a sunny spot to air dry, intermittently fluffing by hand until it’s completely dry.

Understanding the Need for Pillow Fluffing

After washing, pillows tend to clump up and lose their original fluffiness, which can affect your overall comfort and the quality of your sleep. Fluffing a pillow helps to restore its shape, ensure an even distribution of the fill material, and preserve its loft and support.

Types of Pillows and Washing Considerations

Before discussing the fluffing process, it’s important to know that different types of pillows require various care approaches.

Synthetic Pillows: These include polyester fiberfill and are often machine washable.
Down and Feather Pillows: Made from natural materials, they need more delicate handling.
Memory Foam and Latex Pillows: These should generally not be machine washed but rather spot-treated and aired out.
Buckwheat Pillows: Their hulls should not get wet, so these pillows require emptying before washing the casing.

Always refer to the manufacturer’s care instructions before washing any pillow.

Step-by-Step Guide to Fluffing a Pillow Post-Washing

Removing Excess Water

The first step, after washing your pillow, is to gently remove as much excess water as possible. Avoid wringing out foam pillows as this can damage their structure. For other types, you can press out water gently.

Using a Dryer

Most synthetic and down pillows can go into the dryer. Place the pillow inside along with dryer balls or clean tennis balls wrapped in socks to help break up clumps of filling.

– Set the dryer to a low heat or no heat/air-only cycle.
– Periodically pause the dryer to manually fluff the pillow and prevent overheating.
– Continue the process until the pillow is completely dry to avoid mildew growth.

Air Drying

For pillows that can’t be dried in a machine, air drying is the next best option.

– Place the pillow in a well-ventilated area or hang it outside on a dry, sunny day.
– Fluff and turn the pillow periodically to ensure all sides dry evenly.
– Consider using a fan to increase air circulation if the pillow is drying indoors.

Manual Fluffing

Regardless of drying method, manually fluffing your pillow is essential to regaining its shape.

– Hold the pillow at opposite ends and push the ends inward, then release. Rotate and repeat.
– Grab the pillow on both sides and push the sides inward and outward, like playing an accordion.
– Pinch and pull apart any noticeable lumps of filling.

Repeat these steps until the pillow feels even and fluffy.

Maintaining Pillow Loft and Comfort

Regular Fluffing

Daily fluffing can maintain the loft and extend the life of your pillow.

– Give your pillow a few good shakes each morning.
– Rotate and flip it when making your bed to ensure even wear.

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Protecting the Pillow

Using pillow protectors shields against sweat, oils, and skin flakes which can break down the fill material.

– Choose a breathable, washable protector.
– Wash the protector regularly, depending on use and personal preference.

Knowing When to Replace

No matter how well you care for and fluff your pillows, they won’t last forever.

– A general rule is to replace pillows every 1 to 2 years.
– If a pillow doesn’t spring back when folded in half or has persistent odors even after washing, it’s time for a new one.

Common Mistakes to Avoid


Frequent washing can damage pillows over time. Wash only as needed, typically every 4 to 6 months, unless there’s a spill or soiling.

Using Harsh Chemicals

Avoid bleach and other harsh cleaning agents that can break down pillow materials.

Insufficient Drying

Improper drying can lead to mildew. Ensure the pillow is thoroughly dry before using it again.

Ignoring Care Labels

Always adhere to your pillow’s specific care instructions to avoid damaging it during cleaning and maintenance.

Finishing Thoughts

Caring for your pillows by washing and fluffing them appropriately is not only hygienic but also conducive to a comforting sleep environment. Knowing how to properly fluff a pillow after washing will help to maintain its shape and provide the necessary support for a restful night’s sleep. It may take a little extra time and effort, but the rewards in terms of comfort and longevity are well worth it. Happy fluffing, and sweet dreams!


  • Ollie Lane

    My name is Ollie Lane, the zestful spirit and sleep enthusiast editor at GoodSleepHub. Blending my expertise in Sleep Technology with a dash of whimsy, I'm all about transforming your nights from blah to ta-da! I believe great sleep is a blend of science, art, and a bit of fairy dust. When I'm not knee-deep in the latest sleep gadgetry or jotting down notes for my next blog post, you can find me strumming on my ukulele or chasing after my mischievous beagle, Benny. My approach to sleep is like my music: playful, innovative, and always in tune with your needs.

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