mattress-stains

How To Get Stains Out of a Mattress

Spilled some coffee, or your toddler had an accident? Maybe you just want to keep your mattress in tip top shape? Having to get stains out of a mattress is just as inevitable as getting them out of your couch or your carpet.

Tackling the stain when it’s fresh before it sets into the fibers reduce the chances of your mattress getting smelly and soiled. And in some instances, those stains appear gradually or without you realizing it–until one day you pull back the sheets and—woah! When did that get there?

So to get your sleep haven back to its pure and clean state, we’ve tracked down the best mattress cleaning tips.

How To Treat General Stains:

  1. Absorb: If the spill or accident just occurred, gently blot using a cloth. Do not scrub, just blot. If the stain is dried—vacuum or scrape the excess and with a slightly dampened cloth, blot the area.
  2. Treat: Use a cleaning solution (see our stain-specific recommendations below) and gently spray the area. If the mixture is from a bowl, dip a damp cloth in the liquid and dab the area. Avoid saturating the mattress. Let the solution sit for 10-15 minutes.Pro Tip: do a spot test–if you’re unsure how the solution may react with your mattress, test it out on a small and hidden spot
  3. Blot: Once the solution has had time to work its magic, blot the area gently with a clean cloth to absorb excess liquid.
  4. Air-Dry: Let the stain air out a bit. Ideally, bring the mattress outside to a sunny spot if you can. If not, open the windows and the shades, or turn on a fan. Try to get the air circulating.

How To Get Stains Out Naturally:

Certain stains are more likely to disappear if you target them with a specific technique and cleaning solution. We’ve rounded up the most common below:

Sweat:

How to get a sweat stain out of a mattress:

Natural Cleaning Solution: Mix one cup of hydrogen peroxide, 3 tablespoons of baking soda and a few drops of liquid dishwashing soap. Stir until the baking soda dissolves.  Feel free to add some drops of lavender oil to the mix.

Technique: Pour the solution into the spray bottle, and generously spray the entire stained area. Let the solution soak in, and give it about an hour to dry.

Urine:

How to get a urine stain out of a mattress—If the urine stain is old, treat the same way as a sweat stain (see above). If the urine stain is brand new, (aka your child had an accident last night, sorry about that) then use this.

Natural Cleaning Solution: Mix one cup of hydrogen peroxide and 3 tablespoons of baking soda. Add a drop or two of liquid dish soap.

Technique: Dab or spray the solution onto the stain, and let air dry for an hour. Then, sprinkle baking soda over the stain and let sit it sit for  8-10 hours. Using a handheld attachment, vacuum up the baking soda. Air dry

Blood:

How to get a blood stain out of a mattress:

Natural Cleaning Solution: hydrogen peroxide, a few drops of laundry detergent, or white vinegar—choose one, whatever you have on hand

Technique: dab a little bit of your chosen solution directly onto the stain, and blot with a clean cloth to remove it. Air dry

Vomit:

How to get vomit out of a mattress:

Natural Cleaning Solution: Mix 50% water and 50% vinegar in a spray bottle. Have baking soda ready to use as outlined in steps below.

Technique: Scrape the surface clean, and blot with a clean cloth. Spray down the stained area with the 50% water, 50% vinegar solution. Blot the stain. Continue spraying and blotting until the stain is gone. Sprinkle with baking soda when finished to neutralize the odor. After sitting for 15 minutes to an hour, vacuum up the baking soda. Air dry.

Lotions or Oily Food:

How to get oily food or lotion stains out of a mattress:

Natural Cleaning Solution: dish soap and baking soda

Technique: Scrape off residue with a spoon or credit card. Blot with a clean cloth. Liberally sprinkle baking soda over the stain, covering it completely. Let the baking soda sit for 20 minutes, then vacuum up. If stain persists, mix some warm water with a little dish soap and gently wipe the area. Use a dry towel to blot and eliminate the stain. Air dry.

Wine:

How to remove wine from a mattress:

Natural Cleaning Solution: Sparkling water and table salt

Technique: Using a paper towel, soak up as much wine as possible. Dab sparkling water onto the stain, and generously sprinkle salt. Wait up 3-5 minutes. Dab sparkling water onto the cloth again, and rub into the stain. Repeat as needed until the stain is lifted.

Who-Knows-What Mystery Stain:

Pulled back the sheets to reveal a stain, and not sure what it’s from?

Natural Cleaning Solution: Make a mixture of 50% white vinegar and 50% water

Technique: Spray or dab the mixture onto the stain. Let the mixture sit before blotting with a cloth. Repeat as needed

Remember, getting stains out is a process of trial and error. Solutions react and respond differently to certain fabrics and fibers. Be diligent and patient, and you can get that stubborn stain out!

How To Generally Clean Your Mattress:

Although we all think about our mattress lovingly, what’s really hidden in there can be pretty ugly. It’s comforting to think of the soft fabrics and luxurious materials that went into your perfect sleep haven, and very unsettling to picture the dead skin, sweat, drool, hair, skin oil, and—who knows what else—that is nestled right in there with you. Gross.

  • Change your sheets every once or two weeks to prevent dust mites—that feed on dead skin cells— from building up in the bed
  • Invest in a mattress with a removable cover that’s washable (or maybe even replaceable), or purchase a mattress cover
  • Once a season, vacuum the mattress itself and wipe down your bed frame while you’re at it
  • Once a season, check the mattress instructions to see if you need to rotate or flip it
  • The lifespan of a mattress should be no more than 10 years, if you’re at the 7 year mark, consider researching if it’s time for you to invest in a new mattress