Cleaning pillows

How to Wash a Memory Foam Pillow

Mary Smith
By Mary Smith. May 3, 2021
How to Wash a Memory Foam Pillow

Under estimate the importance of your pillow at your peril. Not only do you need a pillow which is the right size for your head and the right material for your sleep needs, you need a pillow to be clean. Too many of us think it is sufficient to simply clean pillow cases, but leave the actual pillow alone. If we do not wash our pillows periodically, we could have a pillow filled with bacteria on which we put our faces every evening. How we clean it depends on the material from which it is made. Memory foam is one of the best materials for comfort and rest, but we need to know how to clean it properly.

At oneHOWTO we show you how to wash a memory foam pillow. We explain why cleaning is so important and help you to removal any stains which may have developed over time.

You may also be interested in: How to Wash a Feather Pillow
  1. How to wash a memory foam pillow step by step
  2. How to wash stains from a memory foam pillow
  3. How to eliminate bad odors from a memory foam pillow
  4. Can I wash a memory foam pillow in the washing machine?
  5. How to dry a memory foam pillow

How to wash a memory foam pillow step by step

Cleaning a memory foam pillow needs to be specific to the material. Memory foam is a special polyurethane product which is designed to create high viscosity so that it can contour to our face and head. This material is very durable and resistant. Smells won't seep into it as easy as some other materials, but when they do, its density means they can be trapped in there well.

We tell you how to wash a memory foam pillow step by step, starting with some basic maintenance tips:

  1. Read the label on the memory foam pillow and see if it can be washed with any product. This is an essential step, since it will clarify how to clean it without damaging the material. Although the label indicates that it can be washed in a washing machine, at oneHOWTO we recommend that you opt for hand washing whenever possible. This helps protect the material from high temperatures and damage in the machine drum.
  2. Wash with a mixture of mild soap and warm water. Do not use abrasive or aggressive products that endanger the memory foam. You can apply the mixture with a soft bristled brush.
  3. Rinse the brush well in clean water and clean it again. Brush the entire surface to get rid of all the soap suds and rinse the brush again when necessary.
  4. When you have finished washing the pillow, you have to dry it well so that it does not create moisture stains. Below, we will explain the best ways to dry it.
  5. Remember that the cover can be washed separately, either by hand or in the washing machine, according to the indications on its label.

Maintaining our mattress and pillow is essential for proper rest. Here we share a related article on how often you should change your mattress.

How to Wash a Memory Foam Pillow - How to wash a memory foam pillow step by step

How to wash stains from a memory foam pillow

Stains on memory foam pillows usually derive from sweat stains from our head and face, or from spillages onto the pillow itself. When we sleep in a room with high humidity, staining is even more likely since the pillow will take longer to dry. To clean stains from a memory foam pillow without using a washing machine, follow these directions:

  • If you detect a stain quickly, for example if you have just spilled something on it, act immediately. Take a piece of kitchen paper to soak up as much of the spillage as possible and use more once it is sodden.
  • You should clean the yellow stains by applying a mild detergent or a mild household bleach. Use a damp cloth and wear gloves. If you opt for the bleach, you only need to mix water (3 liters), a little lemon juice (125 ml) and hydrogen peroxide (250 ml). With this mixture, the ingredients will be sufficiently diluted so as not to damage the material, but they will be able to clean it. You will have to apply it little by little, in small areas to see how the stain reacts. We recommend using a soft bristle brush. Stop if the material seems to be deteriorating.
  • Once you have managed to remove all the stains, dry the pillow well. If you need to speed up the drying process, use a hair dryer at a safe distance so as not to burn the memory foam.

Using this method you can remove stains from memory foam pillows. However, we recommend washing the entire pillow afterwards if the stain has seeped down. For some general tips, take a look at how to whiten a pillow.

How to Wash a Memory Foam Pillow - How to wash stains from a memory foam pillow

How to eliminate bad odors from a memory foam pillow

Although memory foam pillows should not give off aromas, the accumulation of saliva, sweat or other secretions can lead to a funky odor. When this happens, washing it will provide you with a simple solution to getting rid of the smell.

There are air fresheners capable of neutralizing the bad smells of the pillow and treating the stains with a disinfectant power. However, these can cause irritation to your skin, especially if you have sensitive skin on your face. This is why the best way to remove bad smells from pillows is to use natural products such as baking soda. Here we show you how to clean a memory foam pillow with bicarbonate of soda:

  1. Remove the memory foam pillowcase, which you can machine wash according to the label directions.
  2. Apply the baking soda all over the pillow.
  3. Wait for the product to act for 30 minutes.
  4. Finally, remove the baking soda from the pillow with a vacuum cleaner.
  5. If you see that the smell persists or you see stains, prepare baking soda with a little water to form a paste that you can pass over the stained areas of the pillow with the help of a brush. Let it act for 30 minutes and vacuum.
  6. Clean as detailed in the previous steps.

If you wonder whether or not a memory foam pillow is the best option for you, take a look at what to look for when choosing a new pillow.

Can I wash a memory foam pillow in the washing machine?

This is another very frequent question asked by those wondering how to wash memory foam pillows. It usually seems to us the most practical and easy method. Before putting a memory foam pillow in the washing machine, you should first check that this washing method is compatible with the material. For this reason, it is important to know that there are two varieties of memory foam pillows: molded and breathable.

Molded memory foam pillows cannot be washed in the washing machine because it would make them lose the memory effect they have. This means they will no longer act as a shock absorber and won't guarantee the rest of the neck and head resting on the pillow.

On the other hand, as a general rule, you can wash a breathable memory foam pillow in the washing machine. However, to be sure of this, read the instructions on the label. If the opposite is indicated, do not put it in the machine either.

Regardless of its material, you won't be able to clean a memory foam mattress in the washing machine. It's simply too big. Instead, check out our article on how to clean a memory foam mattress.

How to Wash a Memory Foam Pillow - Can I wash a memory foam pillow in the washing machine?

How to dry a memory foam pillow

Knowing how to dry a memory foam pillow is just as important as knowing how to wash it. There are different ways to dry a memory foam pillow:

  • Wrap the memory foam pillow in a thick towel and squeeze it dry.
  • Another option is to leave it exposed directly to the sun, drying more quickly in direct sunlight. However, we need to be careful in very hot sun as it can damage or warp the foam.
  • In winter or in places with high humidity, opt for the use of a vacuum suitable for humidity and that contains a soft bristle brush. You must use it carefully and slowly so as not to damage the material.
  • You should also read the manufacturer's recommendations on drying the pillow on the label.
  • It has to be completely dry before you put the cover back on. For this reason, resort to the hair dryer when you cannot dry it in the open air. Take extreme precautions. Do not put the dryer in direct contact with the pillow, there must always be at least ten inches of distance.

After knowing all these about how to clean a memory foam pillow, you may also be interested in this other article on how to dry a wet memory foam mattress.

If you want to read similar articles to How to Wash a Memory Foam Pillow, we recommend you visit our Home cleaning category.

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How to Wash a Memory Foam Pillow