May 30, 2013

How to Wash Your Pillows (and get all the nasties out!)


Most of us have read by now that our pillows are filled with dust mites and fungus and  and probably a whole host of other things we don't like to think about when we crawl into bed at night. Some researches even suggest that a third of your pillow's weight is from bugs, dust mites and skin cells. 

And while I don't think that this news is something most of us should spend our time worrying about, it is a good reminder to wash our pillows!  Here's how:

1.  Load two pillows at a time in a washing machine, ensuring that they are positioned so that the load stays balanced. 

2. Do a hot wash using your regular detergent with a few drops of tea tree oil (to kill germs and bugs) and half a cup of baking soda (to remove smells and perspiration stains).

3. If you have a laundry line, wash the pillows on a sunny day and hang them to dry (use lots of clothes pins!).  If the pillows have some discoloration due to head sweat it'll almost completely disappear while drying in the sun!

Alternatively, you can dry them in a dryer on the hot setting (Maybe with a few drops of lavender on your dryer balls so that the pillows have a nice relaxing scent?). 

Either way, make sure to get them really dry so that they don't get mildewy!


Thanks so much for visiting The Complete Guide to Imperfect Homemaking.  Now go wash your pillows!







18 comments:

  1. Does this work with feather pillows?

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    1. I imagine it would. Here's a link to where somebody asked this and several people responded saying they've done it before: http://www.apartmenttherapy.com/should-i-wash-my-feather-pillo-151112

      Personally, I'd be willing to possibly destroy a pillow in order to get it clean. I wouldn't want a pillow I can't wash, so I'd wash it and if it doesn't survive it wasn't meant to be! haha.

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  2. If you dry them in a clothes dryer, add a tennis ball or a pair of shoes that you've washed. It really fluffs the pillows and makes sure they get entirely dry :)

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    1. Thanks Sarah! That's why I suggested wool dryer balls ;)

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  3. ya i kind of just want to go buy new ones now...yuck!!! --fyi, i will just end up washing them as usual, but still...yuck!!!

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  4. Remember, if you have allergies, do NOT hang your pillows outside. You'll just pick up outdoor allergens, i.e., pollen, mold, etc.

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  5. I've been thinking about doing this. Thank you for the encouragement! :)

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  6. I can never seem to wash mine and not have them all balled up and ruined. I am definitely going to try the tea tree oil and lavender!

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  7. Mine are foam rubber--can I wash them this same way?

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  8. Oh Kelly, every time I read your blog I am so inspired to go clean things. :)

    This reminds me I really must make dryer balls. Thanks for the pillow-washing tips.

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  9. Great tips! I usually clean them two at a time with regular detergent and dry them in the dryer. They do get all lumpy that way though. I like the idea of the baking soda, tea tree oil, and drying them outside on the clothesline. Do you have any other ideas besides tea tree oil? It's actually one of my favorites but you're not supposed to use it while pregnant (I'm eight months) or even while nursing. I've had to put away all of my tea tree oil homemade cleaners and will apparently have to for some time with nursing. Anyway, just curious if there's something else to kill germs and bugs. Thanks! ~ Jamie

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  10. Thanks for the reminder to keep pillows clean! I agree, they can get really gross! My pillows always ball up into a un-saveable mess too. I have switched to using pillow protectors. I can just slip them off, wash them and put back on. No more ruined pillows, clean, easy.

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  11. Thank you so much for sharing this awesome info! Now I don't have to just go out and buy new ones :) Thanks!

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  12. Hi there....
    I came accross your blog while searching for homesteading sites. I immediately fell in love with it! I am the mother of 6 children (all but 2 are grown). You are so right...raising a large family (or any size family), is crazy, messy and the most fulfilling job in the world! I enjoy reading about your homemade lifestyle, something I'm just beginning to do and wishing I'd been doing for years! I just read a November post and realized you're from Canada...there are few Canadian blogs about homemaking and I'm thrilled to find yours (I'm from Ontario, Canada)
    Thanks so much and please keep on writing!
    Marcy

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  13. I have a front load high efficiency machine ... I'm not sure where to put the tea tree & baking soda -- in the detergent compartment? or in the machine on the pillows?
    I also have one of those dense foam curved pillows for neck support - wonder if I can wash it?
    Can't wait to have clean pillows!

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  14. The best way to clean - http://www.puhodelka.in.ua

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  15. I always try and clean my pillow when I do my big deep cleaning every few months. With a HE washer you can just dump the baking soda inside. It works for me.

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  16. Are those your pillowcases in the picture? We have a set exactly like that which we absolutely love, but we received them as a gift, so we don't know where to buy more. Do you know the brand name or where you found them?

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