Updated at: 04-10-2020 - By: Jane Brody

Speaking the truth, most of us have never cleaned our pillows. It could be because we assume that it is not necessary to clean them. After all, don’t we regularly wash and change our pillow cases? Most people spray their pillows when it is time to wash pillow cases and sheets, but they don’t pay more attention. Probably you have never thought that they need a wash since you think pillows do not get dirty. Now that you know that they need some cleaning, do you know how often to wash pillows?

Here is what you need to know:

When you are sleeping, your body gets rid of the dead skin cells, which is a good attraction for dust mites. The dust mites could be harmless, but their droppings have allergens. Accumulation of the allergens can lead to health problems such as rhinitis, asthma, or itchy eyes. Additionally, your body pores and sweat glands are highly active, and you will find dribbles, oils, or skin from your body going past your pillowcase and soaking the pillow. It already sounds disgusting, right?

You could be using protective pillow covers, but most are made of cotton or any other porous materials and such easily absorb saliva bacteria. A collection of all those unwanted things increase the weight of your pillow over time. The dirt will definitely ruin your skincare routine, and you will be suffering persistent acne despite taking good care of your skin.

A pillow case could give a barrier between your face and the pillow, but bacteria can find its way and seep through your skin. Failure to regularly wash pillows extensively contributes to subclinical acne, which lies deep into your skin and appears like red bumps.

With all these risks, how often are you supposed to wash your pillows?

Most people avoid washing their pillows because they are afraid that they will break down. Your pillow, too, needs regular cleaning like the pillow cases, duvet covers, and bedsheets. You can always check the care label found on your pillow for cleaning advice depending on the type of the material. How often to wash your pillows relies on a couple of factors.

Experts say that while you clean your pillow covers as often as after weeks, or with your other beddings, you can leave your pillow a little longer and wash it after a couple of months. On average, a pillow can be machine washed at least two to three times annually. That can also mean once every four to six months. However, this is subject to change depending on a few factors:

Using a zippered pillow protector could mean that you can safely wash your pillow two times every year, but the cover needs a wash at least every month. Sometimes you might need to wash your pillow more often if you share it with a pet or wear some face lotion when going to bed. If your skin or scalp is oily, your pillow needs more frequent cleaning to keep it fresh.

You might have had a cold recently; you need to give your pillow a wash after the cold is gone. How about if you drool? Imagine the musty smell on your pillow; clean it up as soon as possible if you do not use a pillow protector. Once a month will be good enough.

The climatic conditions also affect the intervals between which you should wash your pillows. If you live in a hotter and humid region, you need to wash your pillow more frequently than someone living in colder parts. Dust mites are known to grow more in tropical climatic regions.

The type of material used helps determine how often to wash pillows. Here are different types of pillows and how often to wash each.

How Often to Wash Throw Pillows

You might be having a couple of throw pillows on your sofa and bed for some cuddling, and sometimes it hard to determine when to let them go and toss them in your wash for cleaning. How often to wash your pillows relies on whether it has protective covers or not. The protective covers need to get a wash as often as possible, at least every three to four weeks, and weekly if you have kids or pets.

The pillow requires to get a wash at least monthly, depending on how you use them. If your covers are not removable, then you should toss your throw pillows as soon as the covers get soiled. There are clear instructions on how to clean each pillow on its sticker. We have also done a detailed discussion of how to wash your pillows in a separate article.

How Often to Wash Couch Pillows

Just like the throw pillows, how often to wash your couch pillows depends on a couple of factors. If you have zippered covers, you might want to reduce the number of times you need to wash them. You can change the covers and clean them every two to three weeks. You can also clean the covers weekly or as often as they get soiled if you have kids or pets that mess them up.

With the filling, you can stay for a couple of months before cleaning them, thanks to the protective cover. Some couch pillows need dry cleaning, and you don’t want to clump them together by throwing them in your wash every other time. Some fillings cannot last long enough if you keep washing them while others can withstand a monthly cleaning routine.

How Often to Wash Foam Pillows

On average, we spend around one-third of our lifetime sleeping, and for that, we need to have clean foam pillows. Lying down on a clean foam pillow improves not only the quality of your sleep but also your general health.

Pillows are known to accumulate dead skin cells, dust mites, and sweat. However, foam pillows are unique since they are hypoallergenic. They repel both bacteria and dust mites, making them the best pillow choice.

Although foam pillows are hypoallergenic, they trap and accumulate sweat and dead skin cells. Keep your pillow clean and fresh by cleaning it after two or three months. Ensure that you check the cleaning instructions on the pillow and follow them to keep the fillings intact. When washed appropriately, a form pillow can last up to three years or more. Once you feel that you have had your pillow long enough and need to see if you should replace it, fold the long sections together, and if it takes time to regain its shape, get another one.

How Often to Wash Down Pillows

Down pillows are made from natural fiber, and nothing is sweeter than having easy to wash pillows. Relax and enjoy using your down pillows since you can safely throw them in your wash for proper cleaning.

Just like other pillows, down pillows are prone to odors, mold, and bacteria. The only way you can protect your pillows and slow the accumulation of the unwanted inhabitants is by using heavy pillow covers. The covers require frequent washing since they trap most dirt, get drool stains and other messes.

The only sure way to take god care of your down pillows is by washing them. Do you know how often to wash the pillows? Experts advise that it is good to wash your pillows at least every three to six, or two to four times per year. The time-lapse between one wash and the next one now depends on how you use the pillows. Anytime you have new pillows check the tag to see if they are dry-cleaned type.

How Often to Wash Feather Pillows

Feather pillows are not only soft but also luxurious, and all you can do is take good care of them for the service you get from them. Like any other pillow type, they attract dirt, oils, dust, sweat, and saliva if you drool when sleeping. The foreign bodies in the pillow eventually form bacteria and dust mites. You already know the effect of these, and trust me, you need to give your pillow a good wash to get rid of them.

You do not have two worry about cleaning up your feather pillows since they are washing machine safe. How often to wash your pillows depends on a few factors but on average, you should give your feather pillows a good wash at one to two times a year or after every six months. If you have thick padded pillow covers or you do not have pets to lie on your feather pillows, once a year is good enough. For the pillow covers, you can wash them regularly or anytime they get messes.

How Often to Wash Pillows and Comforters.

After a long working day, we all go back and lay down on our beds, thanks to our pillows and comforters. To a large extent, the quality of sleep you get depends on your beddings’ cleanliness and freshness. Some of us sweat at night or drool when sleeping; you can imagine the odor that will build up after a week of using the same beddings. The bedsheets and pillow covers need to be changed and get a wash every other week.

For your pillows and comforters, you can get away with it and clean them at least every four to six months or two to three times every year. That means that you need to wash your comforters and pillows as you transit from one season to the next. If you experience tropical climates or live in warm and humid regions, you might need to wash them more times than someone in a colder area.

There are other exceptional cases where you will need to wash your pillows and comforters soon after another wash. For instance, if a pet soils them, or if you accidentally spill something on them, you cannot just assume and continue using them. You will need to throw them in your wash to clear the mess. Some other instances, like when someone is ill, you will need to clean their beddings as soon as they get well.

How Often to Wash Decorative Pillows

Decorative pillows are only there to add some detail to your interior. They may not necessarily come into close human contact to get things such as sweat, oils, or dead skin cells like other types of pillows. However, dust mites and bacteria will always build up one way or the other. If you need to maintain and take good care of them, you can always throw them in your wash at least once a year to remove the dirt and keep them smelling fresh.

In a wrap

Every household must have a pillow, be it couch pillows, bed pillows, or throw pillows. Whatever the type of pillows you own, they all need some care and maintenance. They are all prone to dust, absorbing sweat, oils, and dead skin. Over time they will accumulate dust mites and bacteria, which can harm your health.

You can reduce the rate at which your pillows get dirty using thick pillow covers to protect them and absorb most of the dirt. The covers are more comfortable to wash at least after every one to three weeks. How often to wash your pillows depends on how you use each. The weather conditions also affect the rate at which you will need to wash your pillows.

The material used as the filling can also determine how often to wash pillows. Some pillows only need to get a wash once a year. However, on average, experts say that you can throw your pillows in the wash two to three times a year. You may also need to wash your pillows as you shift from one season to the next.

Regardless of how often you are supposed to wash your pillows, ensure that you check the tag on it for washing instructions so that you will not find yourself wetting pillows that need dry cleaning. Always have two pillows in the wash to keep balance and protect them.