How to clean a mattress, bed and bedding – for a sweeter night’s sleep

It’s not pretty, but mattresses tend to harbour dust, germs and mites (yuck!). Follow these steps to maintain a super-hygienic bed…
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  • It’s not pretty, but mattresses tend to harbour dust, germs and mites (yuck!). Follow these steps to maintain a super-hygienic bed…

    When you’ve made the investment of buying a mattress you’ll want to keep it in tip-top condition – after all you’ll be sleeping in it for years to come. To ensure sweet dreams, we’ve come up with a few key cleaning tips to rid your mattress of irritants like bed bugs, and some pre-emptive measures that will ensure that your mattress looks (and smells) good for longer.

    1. Root out the dust

    Mattresses are breeding grounds for dust mites, as they live off dead skin cells and thrive in humid environments. Vacuuming or steam-cleaning your mattress will remove or kill the majority of mites and their allergens, but check with your mattress manufacturer first, as steam could damage the filling and/or springs.

    2. Let your mattress breathe

    Airing your mattress every day will stop stale sweat smells permeating the surface, saving you the hassle of cleaning it later. Get into the habit of airing your bed every morning by drawing the covers off and letting your mattress (and sheets) breathe for 20 minutes before making it.

    3. Protect your mattress with a cover

    Preserve the surface with a mattress protector – go for a design with quilting and extra padding for comfort, or wicking and waterproof top layers for practicality. Look out for a machine-washable option, so you can clean it with your bed linen.

    4. Use natural cleaners wherever possible

    Natural cleaners, such as bicarbonate of soda and even vodka, are less harsh than chemical solutions, so try these before using the harder stuff. Use vodka neat on stains or mix it with water in a spray bottle and spritz your mattress to remove odours. Ensure you leave you mattress to air-dry completely before you make the bed again. Bicarb is a handy deodoriser – sprinkle it on your mattress, leave it for at least an hour to soak up the smells, then vacuum it (and those pesky odours) off.

    5. Remove stains

    Ideally, you want to tackle new stains on your mattress as soon as they happen. Soak up the spill with a dry absorbent cloth, dab it away with cold water and a sponge. Don’t use hot water as it will only set the stain. Existing spots will be harder to shift – use a stain remover on more stubborn marks.

    6. Know when to replace you mattress

    Angela Moran, Product Strategy Director at Silentnight Group tells us, ‘your mattress should last 8-10 years, so invest wisely. Replacing it every 8 years is sensible, particularly when you think about its heavy daily usage. Even if your old mattress still feels comfortable and supportive, it will have softened over time. It will also be hygienically ready for renewal after 8 years.’

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