As the name implies, a mattress topper is a padded layer that rests on top of a mattress. Toppers are designed to add comfort to a bed either through greater firmness or softness. Whether from a bedtime snack gone wrong or general use over time, cleaning a mattress topper is necessary at times. Read on for tips on how to keep your mattress topper in tip-top shape.
Mattress Topper Type Matters
Here are a few of the most common types of mattress toppers available today:
- Memory Foam and Synthetic Latex
- 100% Natural and Organic Latex
- Feather Down
Keep in mind that some toppers are made of more than one type of material, such as memory foam and gel or a foam/latex combination. These are commonly known as hybrid toppers. Each type of topper material has its own unique properties and cleaning instructions.
What You’ll Need to Clean a Mattress Topper
Common cleaning agents and supplies for a topper include:
- Mild dish soap
- A white vinegar and water solution
- Baking soda
- Enzymatic cleaning solution
- A spray bottle
- Paper towels or cleaning cloths
- A vacuum cleaner
- Cleaners with harsh chemicals or bleach
- Deodorizing or disinfecting sprays
- Concentrated detergents or dish soaps
These types of products can stain or even damage a topper, or in the case of detergents, can prove difficult to remove with adding more water than is suitable for a mattress topper.
Keep in mind that the type of topper you own and your reason for cleaning it will determine the cleaning products and techniques you use to clean it. Look for care labels or check the manufacturer’s website for specific cleaning instructions for your topper.
How to Do a General Cleaning of a Mattress Topper
Vacuuming your topper each time you change the sheets is a good practice to remove dust mites, dead skin cells, crumbs, and other dirt of everyday living off the surface of your topper. Sprinkling baking soda over the surface of a mattress topper and leaving it for an hour or two before vacuuming it up can help remove odors.
Tip: Don’t forget to wash your mattress topper cover. These covers can often go in the washing machine; follow the instructions on the label for best results. According to Durability Matters, wool toppers and covers and water don’t play well together, because water can shrink them.
How to Clean Spills, Liquids, or Stains from a Mattress Topper
Whether from people, pets, or an evening cup of bedtime tea, accidents sometimes happen on a bed. The good news for latex mattress topper owners is that latex is naturally water-resistant. Quickly blotting up a spill with a clean cloth and then wiping clean with a damp cloth should take care of any spills easily.
For other types of mattress toppers, gently blotting up any spills is the first line of defense. The Sleep Foundation recommends a vinegar and water spray treatment of any soiled areas. After the cleaning solution dries, add a layer of baking soda, which will absorb odors, including the vinegar. Let the baking soda sit for a few hours, and then vacuum it up.
Tip: Putting a waterproof mattress cover over your mattress and topper can prevent dirt and liquids from reaching your mattress topper and bed.
To Keep it Clean, Know Your Mattress Topper
The bottom line is to:
- Know the materials that make up your topper
- Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for cleaning your topper
- Be gentle when cleaning to avoid damaging your topper
- Make sure your topper is completely dry before covering it or replacing it on your bed
Absent strong odors or major spills or stains, keeping your topper covered and regularly vacuuming and then doing a quick wipe-down should suffice to keep it clean.