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7 Easy Steps for a Pillow Deep Clean

Hey there! Ever wondered if there’s a simple way to freshen up those pillows you cozy up with every night? Good news—you can give your pillows a deep clean without breaking a sweat! Regular washing not only keeps your bedding fresh but also extends the life of your pillows. Here’s a straightforward guide to getting your pillows clean, fluffy, and ready for some serious snoozing.

1. Introduction to Pillow Cleaning

Keeping your pillows clean is more than just a matter of good hygiene; it’s essential for ensuring a comfortable and allergen-free sleep environment. Over time, pillows can accumulate dust, skin cells, and even dust mites, which can exacerbate allergies and disrupt your sleep. Regular cleaning not only removes these irritants but also helps maintain the structural integrity and comfort of your pillows. By adhering to a consistent cleaning schedule, you ensure that the pillows you rest your head on every night are fresh, fluffy, and conducive to a good night’s sleep.

The benefits of regular pillow maintenance go beyond just cleanliness. Freshly cleaned pillows can significantly enhance the overall feel of your bedding, making your sleep environment more inviting and restful. Additionally, regular washing helps extend the lifespan of your pillows by preventing the buildup of oils and skin cells that can break down the materials over time. This means not only better sleep quality but also cost savings, as your pillows will need replacing less frequently.

If the thought of deep cleaning your pillows seems daunting or if you simply don’t have the time, Toronto Shine Cleaning can help. Our professional deep cleaning services are designed to rejuvenate your bedding and other household items, ensuring they are thoroughly cleaned and refreshed. Trust us to handle the heavy lifting when it comes to maintaining your home’s cleanliness, so you can enjoy a healthier, more comfortable living environment.

2. Check the Care Label

Checking the care label is the first and crucial step in your pillow cleaning journey. Before diving into the cleaning process, take a moment to locate and read the care label attached to your pillow. This tag is packed with essential information that guides you on how to properly handle and clean your pillow without causing any damage. It’s like having a mini instruction manual stitched right into your pillow!

Most pillows, especially those filled with synthetic fibers or down, are generally safe to wash in a machine. This makes it convenient to keep them clean and fresh. However, if you’re dealing with specialty pillows, like those made from memory foam or latex, the care label might advise against machine washing. These materials often require more gentle care, such as spot cleaning or airing out, rather than a spin in the washer. So, always check this label first to ensure you’re taking the best care of your pillow, keeping it fresh and extending its lifespan.


Person checking pillow care instructions in a sunlit, cozy bedroom.


3. Remove Pillow Covers

When it’s time to deep clean your pillows, the first step after checking the care labels is to remove all pillowcases or protective covers. These covers often collect a majority of the oils, sweat, and dust that accumulate through regular use, acting as the first line of defense for your pillow. To ensure that both your pillow and its cover are thoroughly clean, it’s crucial to wash these covers separately.

Following the specific care instructions on the tags of your pillowcases and protective covers will help maintain their quality and durability. Washing them separately also prevents any possible transfer of colors or textures that might happen if they were washed with your pillows or other laundry items. Additionally, cleaning the covers at the same time as the pillows ensures that once everything is clean and dry, you can immediately dress your pillows in fresh, clean covers, keeping your sleeping environment hygienic and inviting.

4. Prep Your Pillows

Prepping your pillows before washing them is an essential step in the deep cleaning process. Start by giving your pillows a vigorous shake. This helps to fluff them up and loosen any dust particles that have settled into the fibers. Shaking not only revives the pillow’s shape but also makes the cleaning process more effective by exposing more surface area to the cleaning agents.

For an added touch of freshness, lightly sprinkle baking soda across the surface of each pillow. Baking soda is a fantastic natural deodorizer that works by absorbing unpleasant odors rather than just masking them. Allow the baking soda to sit on the pillows for about 15 minutes. This brief period gives the baking soda enough time to neutralize odors and slightly pull out moisture and oils from the pillow fabric. After the time has elapsed, simply brush off the excess baking soda lightly or vacuum it with an upholstery attachment before proceeding with the wash.


Middle-aged person changing linens in a serene, tidy bedroom with a large white bed.


5. Machine Wash

If your pillow is labeled as machine washable, you’re in luck because it simplifies the cleaning process significantly. To get started, place two pillows in the washing machine to help keep the machine balanced. This ensures that the load runs smoothly without causing excessive vibration or noise during the cycle. If your washer is large enough, fitting two pillows shouldn’t be a problem, but do make sure they aren’t squeezed too tightly; they need some room to move around in order to get properly cleaned.

Select a gentle cycle on your washing machine to treat your pillows with care. Use warm water combined with a mild detergent that won’t be harsh on the pillow’s fabric or filling. This combination helps to clean effectively while being gentle enough to preserve the integrity and comfort of your pillows.

A pro tip to keep in mind during the drying phase is to throw a couple of tennis balls into the dryer along with your pillows. Place the tennis balls into clean socks to avoid any color transfer and add them to the dryer. As the dryer tumbles, these tennis balls will bounce around and help fluff up the pillows, ensuring they retain their shape and don’t clump up as they dry.

6. Rinse and Spin

After your pillows have gone through the washing cycle, it’s crucial to ensure they are thoroughly rinsed. Soap residue can attract more dirt and might even cause skin irritation, so it’s important to make sure all the detergent is washed out. If your washing machine has the option, running an extra rinse cycle can be a great way to ensure no soap remains. This step is especially helpful for pillows because they absorb a lot of water and detergent due to their fluffy nature.

Following the rinse, a robust spin cycle is essential. This part of the washing process helps remove as much excess water as possible, which is key to preventing issues like mold and mildew from developing in your pillows. A good spin cycle effectively extracts moisture, which not only speeds up the drying time but also helps maintain the pillow’s shape and fluffiness. Ensuring that your pillows are properly spun and free of excess water is a simple yet crucial step towards achieving perfectly clean and fresh pillows ready for drying and subsequent use.

7. Dry Completely

The final step in the pillow cleaning process is ensuring they are completely dry, which is crucial to prevent any mold or mildew growth. Given the dense nature of pillows, drying them thoroughly might require some patience, but it’s a critical step. If the weather permits and you have the outdoor space, air drying your pillows in the sun is an excellent option. Sunlight is a natural disinfectant and can help eliminate any lingering odors, leaving your pillows smelling fresh and clean.

If outdoor drying isn’t an option or the weather doesn’t cooperate, using a dryer is the next best thing. Set your dryer to a low heat setting to gently dry the pillows without damaging the material. To help maintain the fluffiness of your pillows and prevent clumping of the filling during the drying process, you can again use tennis balls. Place a couple of tennis balls inside clean socks and add them to the dryer with your pillows. The tennis balls will bounce around and agitate the pillows, ensuring they dry evenly and maintain their shape. Be sure to check on your pillows periodically during the drying cycle and fluff them by hand to help keep their shape consistent.


Person hanging laundry in peaceful backyard for natural drying.


Pillow Cleaning Easy as Never!

You’ve now mastered the steps to keep your pillows fresh and clean, making every night’s sleep more enjoyable. Regular maintenance, ideally washing your pillows every three to six months, is key to extending their life and ensuring they remain hygienic and comfortable. Remember, clean pillows can significantly impact your sleep quality and overall health by reducing allergens and irritants.

While these steps are great for routine pillow maintenance, sometimes your bedding and other home items might need a deeper clean that goes beyond what typical home washing machines can handle. For those times, or if you find that your busy schedule doesn’t leave room for deep cleaning, professional services can be a lifesaver. Toronto Shine Cleaning offers specialized deep cleaning services that are perfect for ensuring every part of your home, including hard-to-clean items like pillows and other bedding, is impeccably clean.

Don’t hesitate to reach out to Toronto Shine Cleaning for a thorough clean that will leave your home sparkling and hygienic. Whether you need help with a one-time deep clean or regular maintenance, our professionals have the expertise to handle all your cleaning needs efficiently. Check out our deep cleaning services on our website and book a session today.