How to refresh bedding without washing - 5 ways to keep your sheets fresh without the washing machine

Freshen up in between washes

White guest room
(Image credit: Future PLC)

If you’re wondering how to refresh bedding without washing, it’s important to note that these expert hacks shouldn’t replace washing your bedding in the washing machine. But they can certainly help you freshen up your sheets in between washes. 

Yes, we all know how often you should wash bedding, but have you ever thought that your sheets needed a little TLC before their next wash day? With energy bills due to rise in the coming months, this will make the cost of running a washing machine even more expensive, so washing your bedding twice a week isn’t an option most people can consider. 

That’s why we’ve consulted with bedding professionals to figure out the best ways to refresh bedding without washing. And these hacks will have your bedding smelling and looking fresh in no time.

How to refresh bedding without washing 

‘Keeping your bed linen clean is important to protect your mattress, duvet and pillows from body oils, fluids, hair, etc. When you don't wash your sheets, these oils and fluids can build up and become embedded in the fibres,’ explain Emily and Jonathan Attwood, founders of scooms

While it’s certainly important to wash your bedding regularly, there are ways to refresh your bedding in between these washes. 

Emily and Jonathan Attwood
Emily and Jonathan Attwood

Emily and Jonathan Attwood are the Co-Founders of family-run, independent, luxury bedding and bath brand, scooms. Offering a simplified range of what they believe are the best pillows, duvets, bedding and towels on the market, scooms help make buying luxury and high-quality, natural bedding and towels easier.

1. Un-make your bed

If you’re a master at making your bed, it may sound counterintuitive to un-make your bed when you wake up in the morning - but that’s exactly what you should do if you want to refresh your bedding without washing it.

Emily and Jonathan suggest, ‘Pull back the duvet cover every morning to expose the underneath of the duvet cover and the sheet and prop your pillows up against your headboard to give your pillowcases an airing. Open the window wide to let the air circulate around your bedroom.’

This advice is echoed by Rachael Shah, head of sustainability at Linen Connect. She says, ‘Dust mites can still live in bedding even in the cleanest households, so actually airing your bedding by pulling the covers back can get fresh air into sheets and kill off any mites too. This also airs out any aromas that come from sleeping for 30+ hours a week in a bed.’

White guest room

(Image credit: Future PLC)

2. Pop it outside

Did you know that a mixture of sunlight and fresh air can naturally disinfect your bedding? This is a handy tool if you’re looking for how to wash pillows without getting them wet but the same concept can also apply to the rest of your bedding. 

If you want to avoid a wash for a few days, then you could hang your bedding out in the fresh air and sunlight for a few hours,’ says Emily and Jonathan.

There are so many benefits to doing this, and not just the fact that the fresh air will leave your bedding with a crisp and natural scent. The UV rays from the sun will also help to kill any lingering bacteria and potentially bleach any unwanted stains. 

3. Sprinkle on some baking soda

baking soda and flour in glass jar

(Image credit: Future PLC/Andrew Woods)

Although you might associate baking soda with baking, it’s one of the best natural cleaners you could have in your arsenal. In fact, it’s generally considered to be one of the best methods for how to clean a mattress. But you can also use it to refresh your bedding without washing. 

All you have to do is sprinkle some baking soda onto your bed sheets and let it sit for a while. The baking soda will absorb any excess oils and eliminate any odours, but you need to give it a significant amount of time to work its magic.

After an hour, you can vacuum up the baking soda using the best vacuum cleaner and relish in the fact that your bedding feels and smells fresh. 

Green bed with botanical wallpaper

(Image credit: Future PLC)

4. Use pillow and room sprays

Most pillow sprays are designed to help you sleep better, but they also have the added bonus of refreshing your sheets and adding a welcoming fragrance to your bedroom. Plus, they’re extremely easy to use, as you just need to spray your pillows and sheets in between washes.

While we love the Apothecary Sleep Room & Linen Spray from M&S, it’s important to note that you don’t need to spend any money on sprays if you don’t want to. You can make your own room spray by adding some water, witch hazel, and the essential oils of your choice to a spray bottle. 

If you are a Lenor unstoppable fan for scenting your bedding in the washing machine, you can also pick up a Lenor Unstoppables Spray on Amazon, to refresh bedding in between washes.

tiny guest room ideas, white bedroom with single bed, desk, chest of drawers, shutters, mirror

(Image credit: Future)

5. Make use of dryer sheets

If you have a tumble dryer, there’s a chance that you have a whole stack of dryer sheets in your utility room. But one thing you might not know is that these sheets have so many other uses. Not only can you clean blinds with dryer sheets, but you can also refresh your bed sheets with dryer sheets!

Ideally, you’d pop your bed sheets into the tumble dryer with some dryer sheets and let them spin for a little while. This has the added bonus of ironing out any wrinkles in your bedding.

But if you’re worried about how much it costs to run a tumble dryer, you don’t necessarily have to pop your sheets into a tumble dryer. You could just run the dryer sheets up and down your bed sheets while they’re in situ to rub the fresh fragrance onto them. Fabulousa is famous for its scented products, so you can be sure this trick will work a treat with the Fabulosa Cotton Fresh, Tumble Dryer sheets which cost £1.79 for a pack of 40.


How do you refresh a duvet without washing it?

One of the cheapest and easiest ways to refresh a duvet without washing it is to hang it outside in the fresh air. This will naturally disinfect the duvet, while the UV rays can also kill any lingering germs and bleach any stains. 

For a more intense refresh, you could sprinkle your duvet with baking soda before hanging it outside. Just remember to vacuum up the loose baking soda when you bring it back in.

How do you freshen bed sheets between washes?

If you want to freshen bed sheets between washes, it’s suggested that you unmake your bed every morning. Instead of making it straight away, you should pull back the sheets to allow air to circulate. 

You can also hang it outside on the line, sprinkle it with baking soda, tumble dry with some dryer sheets, or spray with linen spray.

Ultimately, how you choose to freshen your sheets between washes is up to you. But it’s still important to actually wash your sheets on a regular basis. 

While it’s recommended to wash your sheets every week to maintain a hygienic sleep schedule, that doesn’t mean that you can’t refresh your bedding in between washes. 

Lauren Bradbury

Lauren Bradbury is a freelance writer and major homes enthusiast. She graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in English and Creative Writing from the University of Chichester in 2016, before dipping her toe into the world of content writing. After years of agency work, writing everything from real-life stories to holiday round-ups, she decided to take the plunge and become a full-time freelancer in the online magazine world. Since then, she has become a regular contributor for Real Homes and Ideal Home, and become even more obsessed with everything interior and garden related. As a result, she’s in the process of transforming her old Victorian terraced house into an eclectic and modern home that hits visitors with personality as soon as they walk through the door.