Caring for Your Pillow – A Home Guide

I don’t know about you, but I can be very finicky when it comes to my pillow. I need MY pillow to properly access my REM cycle, yes I can fall asleep anywhere if I am tired (yes, I’m 39 with high blood pressure and asthma so bite me!) however that is more a nap and never really lasts longer than like 10 minutes to an hour maximum. But when I want to sleep properly, like you know wake up and look like a troll properly, then I need MY pillow.

caring for pillow

Everyone has their preferences of a good pillow when it comes to firmness and softness. Finding the right pillow for YOU, is like the holy grail. When you find one that ‘fits’, you need to make sure you do your best to make sure it lasts as long as possible before you have to repeat the whole pillow quest yet again. 

My preferred pillow is a memory foam pillow, I love that maintains its shape and does not look like how I sleep. So, if you have the same preference, here are some answers to some frequently asked questions on maintaining your memory foam pillow hygiene.

1. How often should I clean my pillow?

These pillows are hygienic in that they do not allow dust mites to gather on the material. As such they do not need frequent cleaning. Once every six months will be sufficient. And twice as often during an extremely hot, season.

However, if you have recently been sick or ill, your pillow should be washed immediately after. Spillages and stains should also be cleaned as soon as they occur. You do not want them seeping into the material or forming mildew or mould.

2. When do I change my pillow?

Memory foam pillows last longer than your traditional pillows but even they eventually become worn out. Over an extended period of use, the material will start to break down and deteriorate. Ideally, you can replace your pillow with a new one every year or two. Just do not let it die under you before giving in and tossing it to the side.

cleaning pillow


1. Change pillowcase

When sleeping one sweats and their skin exfoliates onto the pillow. The pillowcase gets it first, so it needs to be kept clean. The dirt and smell will go onto the pillow therefore change your pillowcase for a fresh one every other week.

2. Wash pillow covers

If you use a pillow cover or protector for your memory foam pillow, then consider washing it at least once every month.

3. Vacuum

Whenever you are changing the bedding take this as an opportunity to also vacuum your pillows. Strew some baking soda on the pillow, leave it out in sunlight for a couple of hours as you go about your work. Then clean it out with a handheld vacuum cleaner. Now you will have a fresh and rejuvenated pillow with significantly lower amount of dust mites than when you started. Thanks to the sunlight and baking soda your pillow will have a fresh smell.

4. Clean spots

Regularly check your pillow for stains and any spots. Clean any spots on your pillow following the directions on stain cleaning stated earlier.

5. Better on warm days

The material of memory foam pillows means it takes longer to dry and cannot be tossed into the dryer for that will surely shred it. You do not want it taking too long to dry because then mildew will form. Wash pillows on a warm day, especially deep cleaning, so that it becomes dry faster.

pillow caring


Now you know how to take care of your memory foam pillows and maintain the freshness as long as possible. It is also good to know when your pillow has given in and you need to begin a new quest to find another. A good memory foam pillow can spring back to its shape in under a minute if compressed. 

Easily test if your pillow is not dead by folding it then applying pressure, after removing the pressure, the pillow should go back to how it was before. If it does not or it takes too long to spring back then, your pillow is dead, and you should immediately morn its loss. R.I.P. Dear pillow…

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