How Often Do You Need to Wash Your Mattress Pad?

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It’s a sunny Sunday morning; your weekend chores are almost over, your washing’s dry, and you’re about to fit your bed with freshly clean sheets. The only problem is your mattress topper looks a waxy yellow against your bright white bedding!

Mattress toppers are an excellent way to protect your mattress from the less-glamorous aspects of bedding life, working hard to keep your mattress looking just as fresh as when you brought it. 

They can even extend your mattress’s life by up to ten years!

However, all that hard work comes at a cost. So, exactly how often do you need to wash your mattress pad, and how do you do it? This article will cover:

  • Understanding your mattress pad and its purpose
  • General guidelines for washing 
  • Clean techniques to use
  • Factors influencing cleaning frequency 
  • Maintaining a clean sleeping environment.

Let’s get into it!

Need to Wash Your Mattress Pad

Understanding Your Mattress Pad  

First things first: you need to know what you’re packing under those sheets! Various mattress pads are available, and the specific material of the mattress pad will determine the washing method.

Materials and Fabrics

Each mattress pad type offers different advantages due to its materials and design. Some provide added comfort, some regulate temperature, and others are cost-effective. 

These mattress pads can’t be machine washed:

  1. Memory Foam
  2. Innerspring
  3. Latex
  4. Gel-infused Foam
  5. Polyurethane Foam and
  6. Hybrid Composition.

Memory Foam, Latex, and Gel-infused foam are hailed for their added comfort and durability, whereas polyurethane foam is an inexpensive option with a shorter lifespan.

Pads made from a hybrid of materials will vary in spring and cushioning, offering added comfort. Innerspring offers comfort and increased support.

However tempting, don’t throw these mattress toppers in the washing machine! Instead, adopt the vacuum and spot clean method. If stains persist, keep trying with baking soda or a hand wash.

These mattress pads can be machine-washed:

  1. Cotton
  2. Polyester
  3. Wool
  4. Silk
  5. Bamboo
  6. Tencel
  7. Microfibre.

Good news: these mattress pads can all be popped into your washing machine on a warm or cool cycle with a mild detergent. However, just make sure you vacuum before the washing process with microfiber mattress pads.

With all mattress pads, make sure to check the care instructions. Otherwise, it’s best to err on the side of caution and go for cold water and gentle detergent.

Purpose of the Mattress Pad

If you have a mattress pad, you’re already aware of the benefits of this bedroom essential!

However, if you’re new to the world of premium protection and comfort, it’s worth understanding just how important the decision to invest in a mattress pad is.

Your sleep and hygiene are crucial to a healthy life, and a mattress pad will help improve these areas of well-being. 

A mattress pad protects the mattress, absorbs moisture for hygiene, and can improve comfort through its design and temperature regulation. Moreover, the longer your mattress lasts – the more bang for your buck!

General Guidelines for Washing

There are three recommended methods for cleaning your washing mattress pad:

  1. Vacuum + Spot Cleaning
  2. Handwash
  3. Machine Wash.

Frequency Recommendations

Now you know how to clean your mattress topper, you need to know just how often to do so!

A good rule is every two months, with your sheets washed more frequently as they are the first line of defense. 

However, cleaning your mattress pad more often is recommended if you have health conditions or allergies or share your bed with pets. 

The exact frequency is a personal choice that depends on your allergy symptoms or how much your pet(s) shed.

If you have any spills or accidents, especially blood or urine, it’s essential to wash the mattress pad immediately!

Cleaning Techniques

Vacuuming + Spot Cleaning

Mattress pad types: Memory Foam, Innerspring, Latex, Gel-Infused Foam, Polyurethane foam and Hybrid.


  1. Lay out mattress pads on a clean, hard, flat surface
  2. Run over the pad with a soft brush vacuum cleaner
  3. Use a light-colored, clean cloth dipped in cold water and a gentle or mild detergent to spot-clean any visible stains. Do not use fabric softener or a detergent that contains a fabric softener, as this can affect the water absorbance of the pad
  4. For more stubborn stains, sprinkle baking soda over the stain and leave for 30 minutes to an hour before vacuuming off.


Mattress pad types: Cotton, Polyester, Wool, Silk, Bamboo, Tencel, and Microfiber.


  1. Fill a basin with water and a gentle or mild detergent (a teaspoon for every gallon)
  2. Place the pad in the basin and let it soak, submerged, for at least 10 minutes
  3. Squeeze out any dirt by pressing down on the stain
  4. Drain the basin, then add more water
  5. Repeat until there are no more suds
  6. Do not use a dryer; instead, wring out the mattress pad and flat dry it or hang it up to dry for at least twenty-four hours.

Tip: For a thorough wash, you can vacuum, spot clean, and machine wash Cotton, Polyester, Wool, Silk, Bamboo, Tencel, and Microfiber mattress pads!

Machine Wash

Mattress pad types: Cotton, Polyester, Wool, Silk, Bamboo, Tencel, and Microfiber. 


  1. Use a cold or low heat and delicate or gentle washing machine setting with a mild detergent. Do not use fabric softener or a detergent that contains a fabric softener, as this can affect the water absorbance of the pad
  2. Do not use a dryer; instead, wring out the mattress pad, air dry flat, or hang up to dry for at least twenty-four hours.

Factors Influencing Cleaning Frequency

If you have allergies or share your bed with your pets, it might pay to clean your mattress pad more often. If you have any spills or accidents, wash the pad immediately.

Allergies and Health Conditions

To manage allergies or health conditions, regularly wash, dry, and air your mattress pad. A clean, dry mattress pad will mitigate any build-up of bacteria, dust, mites, bed bugs, or mold. 

Accidents and Spills

Wash your mattress topper as soon as an accident or spill occurs to prevent staining and eliminate unwanted bacteria.

Environmental Factors

Damp, poorly ventilated areas may necessitate more frequent mattress topper washing. A clean, dry mattress pad will mitigate any build-up of bacteria or mold.

Maintaining a Clean Sleep Environment  

Sleep hygiene is critical to sleep quality. A hygienic sleeping environment can improve your resilience to illnesses, provide better air quality (integral for people with allergies), and give you a mental boost.

Regular Vacuuming

Experts recommend regular vacuuming of sheets, mattresses, and mattress pads to remove dirt, grime, and dust and prevent any chance of mites or bed bugs.

Using Protective Covers

Additional covers fitted on top of your mattress pad can provide further protection and improve the lifespan of your mattress and mattress pad. Added layers offer another layer of defense against spills and accidents, further prevent exposure to allergens, and can provide added comfort.

Routine Airings

Airing out a mattress pad every three months can remove any lingering moisture and kill any dust mites that might get locked in. 

It’s a simple, low-effort way of keeping your mattress pad hygienic. Make sure you vacuum your pad right after airing.


How often should the average person wash their mattress pad?

Every two months. However, allergies, pets, and other environmental factors such as humidity could warrant more frequent washing.

Can frequent washing damage my mattress pad?

Washing too often can reduce the lifespan of your mattress pad. Incorrectly washing and using harmful chemicals may also contribute to the decline in overall lifespan.

What’s the best way to tackle spills or stains on a mattress pad?

Spot clean with a light-colored cloth dipped in cold water mixed with mild detergent. For tougher stains, sprinkle baking soda over the stain and leave for thirty minutes before vacuuming.

How can I ensure my mattress pad dries completely after washing?

Once you are satisfied with the mattress’s cleanliness, you should leave your mattress to dry in a clean, ventilated space for at least twenty-four hours.

Are there any specific detergents recommended for mattress pads?

Use mild or gentle detergents. Avoid fabric softeners, as this can reduce the absorbance of your mattress pad.

Can I machine wash all types of mattress pads?

No! It will depend on what mattress pad you own. Always check care instructions and avoid machine washing pads: memory foam, innerspring, latex, gel-infused foam, polyurethane, or a hybrid composition.


Emily Johnstone

Emily is the creator and owner of Emily's scientific background gives her an analytical, critical, and discerning eye to bring unbiased, thorough, and helpful content to the site. Your good sleep is her top priority. Find out more about Emily and here.