We have several types of pillows, mostly differentiated in terms of what they are stuffed or filled with. All these types of pillows come with their advantages and disadvantages ranging from cost to the kind of comfort they offer. Above all, some types can be easily cleaned while others can be utterly cumbersome to clean.
Since we spend a good number of hours in a day, snuggling up-close with pillows, we must ensure that they are always kept clean. However it is essential to know what is stuffed in each type of pillows before deciding how to clean them.
The most common fillings found in pillows include:
- Duck down
- Goose down
- Combinations of down and feathers
- Feathers from ducks, geese or chickens
- Polyester fiber that is man-made but comes in different brands
- Ordinary foam made of polyester
- Memory foam pillow
The outer casing of most pillows is made from a blend of poly-cotton or pure cotton. The casings protect the fillings found inside the pillow, but over time, wear and tear sets in as the casings fabric finally becomes stained and even discolored. This is usually due to the fact that, a majority of people takes a bath once a day, which happens to be mostly in the morning.
Therefore, most of us may not be very clean by the time we retire to bed. In addition to this, very many people don’t wash their hair on a daily basis and given the fact that sometimes people sweat while asleep, it is inevitable that dirt and oils will rub off on the cases and even seep through into the pillows themselves.
Besides, there is always a possibility of some fluids like beverages accidentally spilling on the pillows. This is how the pillows end up looking stained and discolored. So how then can we take good care of our pillows and ensure that they remain clean for as long as possible?
Maintenance and cleaning of pillows
This usually depends on the type of pillows you have in your house, since some are easy to maintain and take care of compared to others. For instance down pillows are hard to clean but very easy to maintain. Pillows that are stuffed with feathers, down or both should be taken out and aired under diffused sunlight regularly. This helps to revive them since, as they get older, they are likely to lose their ability to trap air, which is actually what gives them a firm look. The feather and down pillows should not be washed using soap and water since soap tends to dissolve the feathers ‘natural oils. Pillows filled with polyester are normally a natural choice for accommodation establishments, like hotels, since they actually don’t need any particularly strict kind of maintenance. Just like latex and most foam pillows, they only need to be kept as clean as possible.
Method of cleaning pillows
The most ideal way of cleaning a pillow is by sponging it, without necessarily immersing it in water. However, this may not be possible always since it depends on the kind of fillings that you have in the pillows in question, as some of them may get affected so easily.
Down and feather filled pillows
Feather and down pillows should not be washed at home. If something spills on them and it cannot be wiped off so easily, you will either have to take the pillows to professional cleaners or simply discard them. In the case of a spill that can be easily removed, dip a sponge in a warm, soapy solution, and then squeeze it through the pillow very gently. The process should be repeated about two to three times using fresh water but no soap. In case you have access to a washing machine, spin dry for a few minutes then hang the pillows by two corners in fresh air. You may need to shake the pillows now and then as they dry, so as to ensure that the feathers are evenly distributed.
Polyester and foam filled pillows
These ones are easily washable at home, even though specific instructions that can be found on the label may need to be followed. You should never try to tumble dry them unless the instructions from the manufacturer allow it, since the heat may cause damage to the polyester.
Read more How to Wash Polyester Pillows
These ones can be washed at home too. However, the latex shouldn’t be taken out of the casings because it gets affected by sunlight. Latex should also never be put in a washing machine. It should instead be hand-washed in warm soapy water and shouldn’t be wrung or twisted. After it is well rinsed and clean, pressure is gently applied on the pillow to squeeze as much water as possible out of it, preferably with a dry towel placed over the pillow. The towel should be changed when it becomes saturated. Finally put the pillow in a place where it can dry through air only and avoid a sunny place.
Here is another method for cleaning latex pillow at Ehow
If you have a Tempurpedic pillows, read this post to see How to clean Tempurpedic pillows properly