How Can I Clean my Mattress?

Want to know how to clean a mattress? Perhaps you're wondering what you can use to clean your mattress. You've come to the right place! In this guide, we'll help show you how to clean your mattress, how to freshen up a mattress - and much more.

You spend around a third of your life asleep, so it's important to keep your mattress clean, hygienic and in good condition. It's easy to forget to clean your mattress, since it's usually hidden underneath sheets and bedding. However, cleaning your mattress regularly can help to reduce unwanted build-up of dust, dust mites, dead skin cells, mould and bacteria.

It's particularly important to clean your mattress if you suffer from allergies. Regular cleaning reduces the opportunity for allergens, such as dust, to settle within your mattress. For more allergy advice, check out our guide.

There are lots of quick and easy ways you can care for your mattress to keep it in great condition for longer and ensure you get the best value for money. Read on to discover how to clean your mattress and enjoy a healthier sleeping environment.

A person vacuuming a mattress
Clean your mattress regularly to keep it in great condition

How to clean a mattress in five easy steps for under £5

Follow our five easy steps to clean your mattress and freshen it up, too. Always remember to check the manufacturer's care guide for your mattress before cleaning, and open your bedroom windows to improve bedroom ventilation.

Complete these five steps in just 40 minutes, with 1 hour waiting time, spending only £4.78 to clean your mattress properly.

Step 1: Remove your bedding and wash it

Time: 10 minutes

Cost: £1.80 for 1 litre bottle of detergent

Start by taking your sheets, pillows and duvet off the bed. Put them on a hot wash (but check the label first!). We recommend washing over 60°C as this will help kill any germs and dust mites. Tumble-dry your bedding on a high heat if you can.

If you have a mattress topper, you should remove this and clean it as well.

Step 2: Vacuum your mattress and bed

Time: 10 minutes

Cost: Free

Now that your mattress is bare, you can begin vacuuming it. Make sure the vacuum cleaner attachments are clean. Use the brush or upholstery attachment on your vacuum cleaner, if you have one.

Carefully vacuum your mattress and bed in small sections, paying particular attention to seams, corners and crevices where dust can build up. Take care not to damage the cover or dislodge the mattress fillings. Remember to vacuum underneath your bed and down the sides if your bed is pushed up against a wall.

Step 3: Deodorise your mattress

Time: 1 hour 5 minutes

Cost: £1.29 for 500g baking soda

Lightly sprinkle a small amount of baking soda over your mattress. Baking soda helps to absorb moisture and keep your mattress smelling clean and fresh. Let it sit for at least an hour - the longer, the better. Vacuum thoroughly to remove it.

Step 4: Spot clean any mattress stains

Time: 10 minutes

Cost: Use the detergent you already have from washing your bedding, plus £1.69 for a pack of microfibre cloths

Always remember to refer to the manufacturer's care instructions before cleaning your mattress, as different fabrics may require different methods of cleaning.

However, as a general guide, Bed Advice UK recommend using a very mild detergent and warm or cold water to spot-clean your mattress. Use a clean, damp cloth and take care not to over-soak your mattress. Air your mattress thoroughly to ensure it's properly dry before you put the bedding back on.

A person putting bed sheets back on the bed
Only make the bed once your mattress is thoroughly dry

Step 5: Flip your mattress and repeat!

Time: 5 minutes

Cost: Free

Is your mattress double-sided? You'll need to clean the other side by repeating steps one to four. However, if your mattress is single-sided, simply vacuum the underside to keep it dust-free.

Not sure how to flip your mattress? Check out our guide on how to turn your mattress correctly.

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How to maintain a clean mattress

Now that you have a squeaky-clean mattress, you'll want to keep it that way for as long as possible! Follow our top tips for that fresh feeling in-between mattress cleaning.

1. Air your mattress

Throw back the bed sheets every morning for at least 20 minutes.

2. Open your windows

This improves bedroom ventilation and allows excess moisture to evaporate.

3. Wash and tumble-dry all bedding

Wash your bedding every week. Choose a high heat setting to kill dust mites and germs.

4. Spot-clean stains

Stains are easier to tackle when they're fresh.

5. Use a mattress protector

Protect your mattress from spills and accidents.

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Buy a mattress protector

As the old saying goes, prevention is better than cure! A mattress protector acts as a barrier for your mattress, and it's an easy, cost-effective way to keep your mattress clean.

Our range of mattress protectors includes waterproof mattress protectors that protect against spills and accidents. Our anti-allergy mattress protectors are ideal for those who suffer from allergies.

You may be thinking at this point "can you tumble dry a waterproof mattress protector?". The good news is that the majority of mattress protectors can be both machine-washed and tumble-dried to keep them extra clean and hygienic. We recommend that you always check the individual product's care information first.

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Mattress protectors: three of the best

Not sure which mattress protector to choose? Why not take a look at our three best-selling mattress protectors:

Harwoods Quilted Anti Allergenic Mattress Protector

Harwoods Quilted Anti Allergenic Mattress Protector

  • From £16.95
  • Anti-allergenic
  • Fits mattresses up to 33cm (13 inches) deep
Protect A Bed Premium Waterproof Mattress Protector

Protect A Bed Premium Waterproof Mattress Protector

  • From £47.95
  • Anti-allergenic
  • Waterproof
  • Fits mattresses up to 36cm (14 inches) deep
Dreameasy Luxury Waterproof Mattress Protector

Dreameasy Luxury Waterproof Mattress Protector

  • From £18.95
  • Hypoallergenic
  • Waterproof
  • Fits mattresses up to 40cm (16 inches) deep

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Replace your mattress every seven years

Keeping your mattress clean and in good condition is important. This helps to ensure that your sleeping environment is healthy and supports a good night's sleep.

However, after seven years your mattress will begin to lose its shape and comfort. Is your mattress lumpy? Does it sag or look worn out? These are signs that you need to replace your old mattress. Head over to our mattress replacement guide for help and advice.

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A clean and fresh mattress is the key to a good night's sleep. We hope this guide has answered all the questions you have about how to clean your mattress.

If you're looking to give your mattress a deeper clean, why not check out the following guides: