Do you regularly wash your bed linens each week to remove stains, odors, and dirt that has accumulated within this time span? It is recommended that households should wash their sheets at least once a week to reduce allergens, to remove dirt, and even expel body odors that the bedsheets have absorbed through your use of the sheets. However, do you include your pillows in this weekly washing process as well? Probably not, as most households simply neglect to wash these regularly used items inside of your home – and this could be contributed to limited knowledge on how to wash bed pillows.
Bed pillows can harbor a lot of putrid things that will build up over time – dirt, oils, saliva, sweat, bacteria, mold, and even fungi can be among the bacteria that can be present on the material of your pillows. All of these different contaminants and bacteria can taint your pillows material and produce odors within this material.
In this article we are going to discuss why you should wash your pillows and how you can properly clean, dry, and deodorize your bedding pillows thoroughly.
Can You Wash Pillows
Many people attribute their lack of pillow washing on the simple fact that they were unaware that the pillows could be washed, but don’t hesitate any longer – wash them! It is recommended that you wash your pillows at least twice a year and replace these pillows every 18 months. The reasons behind washing your pillows is due to the buildup of allergens that can collect on the pillow including dust mites that are prone to the material of bed pillows, since these allergens gravitate towards bedding where there is an excess of dead skin for the mites to feed on in the environment. Also, pillows will become stained and develop odors that will emanate from the pillow and leave you running to the washing machine with your pillows in tow.
Each and every pillow that you purchase will contain a tag for care instructions on how to wash this item, and this varies based on the material that the bed pillows are constructed of. It is important to read these care labels before washing your pillows in the washing machine.
How Often Should You Wash Your Pillows
When it comes to washing your pillows, it is a matter of personal preference – whether you want to wash it every month or every year. According to a study conducted, it was found that 16 species of fungi can live in an average pillow, and thus it is necessary to wash your pillows a few times throughout the year. If you live in a warm, humid climate than you will need to wash your pillows even more often to minimize the buildup of bacteria and odors that can collect on the pillow’s fabric.
There are a variety of pillow materials that are available for purchase that can all act differently and need different care – whether it be more, or less washing care needed.
Types of Machine Washable Pillow Materials
When it comes to selecting a type of pillow to use on your bed, the choice can be a daunting one as there are many different types available for purchase in today’s market. From down and fiberfill, to feather, memory foam, and even polyester pillow, they each can work specifically to contour the head or provide a certain level of comfort depending on personal preference.
These different types of pillows will each contain specific care instructions that will provide insight on whether or not you can wash these different types of pillows.
- Down and Fiber Fill: A down and fiber fill pillow is a type of pillow that is easily washed inside of a washing machine. These types of pillows can be placed in either a top or front load washer without an agitator that can have the potential to damage the pillow in the machine. When washing this pillow, it is recommended that you use warm water and place the cycle on a gentle cycle with an extra rinse and spin. It is best to tumble dry these pillows on low heat.
- Feather: Feather pillows are another machine washable type of pillow that can be placed in a front or top load washing machine. Before placing a feather pillow(s) in the washer, be sure that there are no slits or tears in the pillow and load the washer with two pillows at a time and use only a small measure of detergent in the wash cycle. When drying these pillows, place them in the machine with serval clean tennis balls to help aid in the fluffing of the pillows.
- Foam: A type of mold that cannot be placed in the washing machine, foam pillows are not a candidate for washing machines, but you can place any removal covers from the pillow into the washing machine. It is recommended to vacuum both sides of the pillow to remove dust that cannot be removed by using a washing machine.
How to Wash and Dry Pillows
Prepping to wash your pillows will require the proper washing items and the knowledge of how to care for the fabric material that is used in your pillow. Down and fiber fill and feather pillows are classified as permissible to wash in a washing machine, but it is still important to learn the best way to treat these pillows when you place them in the washing machine and/or dryer.
It is always important to read the care label found marked on your pillow before attempting any washing procedures – as some pillows will be labeled ‘dry clean only’ and should not be placed in the washing machine and/or dryer. If the care label designates the ability to wash these items in the washing machine and dryer, then you will be ready to go with your washing process. Place the pillows in the washing machine, if the machine is big enough place two pillows within the machine and add detergent to the load but keep a gentle hand with the amount of detergent you place in with your pillows.
Along with detergent in your washing cycle, it may be necessary to implement an odor neutralizing solution to the load as well to combat the broad array of odors that can be harbored within the material of the pillows – especially since pillows are only a bi-annual washed item in a home.
Removing Odor from Pillows in Wash Cycle
When it comes to removing odors from pillows in the washing machine, you will need help from an effective laundry odor remover additive that will be added to this wash load. The OdorKlenz Laundry Additive is a laundry additive that provides complete odor elimination from such a wide array of sources including those odors that can be found trapped within a pillow. The OdorKlenz patented earth mineral technology and non-toxic ingredients will not expose your pillows to harsh chemical, dyes, or perfumes – only introducing your pillows to an effective odor neutralizing laundry additive.
The OdorKlenz Laundry Additive can easily be added to your wash load, along with your laundry detergent on a warm water cycle to provide the perfect condition for OdorKlenz to completely neutralize any odors present on the pillow’s material.
After you have completed the wash cycle, along with odor elimination, the next step will be to thoroughly dry these pillows – but do so without damaging and/or ruining the pillows. A dryer can be used to dry these pillows, but it is important to only dry them on a low heat setting and add tennis balls into the dryer to help fluff the pillow. Also, you can also place the pillows outside to air dry in the sunlight to minimize the risk of damage that may occur when placed in the dryer.