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How to Clean a Mattress

Vacuum Your Mattress
A person cleaning a mattress by vacuuming.

One of the easiest and most straightforward ways to clean your mattress is through vacuuming. This method won’t remove stains, but, it will efficiently remove most dirt, pet hair, dandruff and food that has found its way under your sheets. 


To clean your mattress with a vacuum (handheld vacuums are best for this step), make sure to first remove any sheets and coverings. If you’re looking for specific vacuums to use, The Home Depot offers a variety of options.

Clean Using Baking Soda
Baking soda on a solid background.

Another method of cleaning your mattress is by using baking soda. This multifaceted compound will easily remove stains and odors, essentially deodorizing the mattress. 


In order to begin the stain removal process, sprinkle baking soda over the entirety of the mattress. Then, let the baking soda sit for, at minimum, an hour. The baking soda will then start to absorb excess liquids and odors. 


Once you’ve let it do its job, vacuum up the baking soda. You’re another step closer to making your mattress cleaner.

How to Clean Mattress Stains
Someone using a brush to remove a mattress stain.

If baking soda alone won’t do the job, there are other ways to remove pesky stains and odors. Stains such as sweat, urine or blood will be infinitely more difficult to remove than stains caused by spilled drinks or food. In order to remove these tough stains and clean your mattress, here are a handful of options:


  • Use a combination of cleaning supplies to make your mattress cleaner. Mix together dish soap, baking soda and hydrogen peroxide to create a mattress stain remover. Use a spray bottle to best apply this mixture. Once the stains have been sprayed, blot or rub them using a towel or rag.
  • Another route on how to clean mattress stains is by using natural cleaners and remedies. Many people prefer natural mattress cleaners due to their non-toxic nature. A quick search online should reveal some trusted products to use. You may also use either half vinegar and half water or half vinegar with a sprinkling of baking soda. Mixing together salt and lemon juice can also be effective. Apply any of these mixtures to the stain then wipe away with a rag. For the salt and lemon juice mixture, let sit for about an hour before wiping away. This is how to clean mattress stains while making your bed cleaner.
Air Out Your Mattress
A bedroom with an open window, sunlight spilling onto the mattress.

You can do this step either before or after having cleaned your mattress using the steps above. Airing out your mattress is beneficial in many ways. Not only does it allow any remaining moisture to dry out, but it exposes your mattress to the sun and fresh air. 


To air out your mattress, simply open a window so your mattress is hit with sunshine or pick up your mattress and bring it outside. Doing this will eliminate bacteria and mold that may be present on your mattress. Plus, it will help alleviate or eliminate odor. 

If you’ve done one or all of these steps, you’ve learned how to clean a mattress. To keep it that way, it’s recommended you invest in a mattress topper, mattress pad, or mattress protector. These items will help prevent future stains, dirt and pests from seeping their way in. It’s also important that you flip or rotate your mattress every three to six months. This will help keep each side cleaner, as well as prevent wear and tear. 


Additionally, don’t forget to clean your bedding regularly. Pillow protectors and duvet covers are simple ways to make your bedding last and keep it cleaner.  


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