How to Clean Memory Foam Pillow

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Comfort plays an integral role when the topic of a good night’s sleep is on the table. Among the key elements that contribute to this comfort are memory foam pillows. Known for their exceptional support and superior contouring ability, memory foam pillows have garnered a lot of praise.

However, maintaining these pillows and keeping them at their peak involves cleaning them regularly. In this article, we’ll help you through the methods needed to keep your memory foam pillow hygienic and comfy for as long as possible.

What are Memory Foam Pillows?

Memory foam pillows are more than just ordinary pillows. They are a perfect blend of comfort and technology, designed to guarantee a peaceful slumber every single night.

They are crafted from a unique material called viscoelastic foam. This substance is renowned for its ability to evenly distribute weight, allowing the pillow to adapt perfectly to the contours of your shoulders, neck, and head.

This ability ensures that you receive just the right amount of support where you need it the most, inherently improving your sleep quality.

Importance of Cleaning

Hygiene concerns

Pillows can often become a breeding ground for dust mites, bacteria, and other allergens, which may precipitate various health risks such as allergies and skin irritations. Memory foam pillows are no exception.

Additionally, factors such as sweat, drool, and oils from our skin can permeate into the pillow over time. Regular cleaning helps mitigate these risks, keeping your sleeping environment sanitary and inviting.

Prolonging pillow lifespan

Ensuring your memory foam pillow lasts long isn’t just about the material’s quality—it also hinges on regular maintenance. Cleaning your pillows regularly helps maintain their shape, texture, and general functionality, allowing them to serve you comfortably for an extended period.

Gather Your Cleaning Supplies

First things first, let’s gather all the necessary supplies needed to cleaning:

  • A vacuum cleaner with an upholstery attachment
  • Baking soda
  • Mild detergent
  • A clean cloth
  • Clean lukewarm water
  • A ventilated spot for air-drying

Steps by Steps Cleaning Process

How to Clean Memory Foam Pillow

Check Care Label

Every pillow, no matter the make or model, comes with specific care instructions from the manufacturer. Often found on a tag or label attached to the pillow, these guidelines are critical as they offer crucial dos and don’ts that can help you avoid inadvertently damaging your pillow during cleaning.

Remove The Pillowcase

This step may seem apparent, but it’s essential nonetheless. Remove the protective pillow case and any other coverings. These can usually be thrown into the washing machine for a quick and easy wash—just be sure to follow any specific washing instructions provided.

Vacuum the Pillow

The next step involves vacuuming the pillow using an upholstery attachment. This step helps get rid of any superficial and lightly embedded dirt, dust, and potential allergens clinging onto the surface of the pillow. It provides a great start by cleaning the pillow’s surface before the deeper cleaning commences.

Start with Spot Cleaning

Spot cleaning is especially effective on memory foam pillows as it targets localized stains without getting the entire pillow wet. Ideally, use a mild detergent mixed in water and a clean white cloth. Lightly dab the mixture onto the stains, working it in gently—a ‘pat and lift’ method often works well. Remember to be tender during this process as harsh scrubbing can damage the foam.

Use Baking Soda for a Deeper Clean

To further uproot any residues hiding deep within the pillow, and to combat any lingering odors, we turn to baking soda—a natural odor absorber. Sprinkle an ample amount all over the surface of the pillow and let it sit for about one hour. Afterwards, proceed to vacuum the pillow again to get rid of the baking soda.

Hand Wash for Intensive Cleaning

Sometimes your memory foam pillow might require a more extensive cleaning. In such cases, hand washing can be an effective method. Submerge the pillow in soapy, lukewarm water, and gently squeeze it—again, steer away from harsh scrubbing, twisting, or ringing, as these actions can damage the foam.

Also, be sure not to over-soak the pillow, as this could prolong the drying process unnecessarily.

Dry Thoroughly

Finally, Let the pillow air dry in a well-ventilated area. This process can take up to twenty-four hours depending on the size of the pillow and the climatic conditions. It’s crucial to ensure the pillow is fully dry, as any remaining moisture can cultivate mold or mildew.

Avoid using direct sunlight as it can cause discoloration, and stay away from machine dryers, as excessive heat can damage the memory foam.

Tips for Maintaining

Maintenance, just like cleaning, plays a profound role in the lifespan and efficacy of your memory foam pillow. Regular vacuuming and spot cleaning not only keep the pillow clean but also reduce the frequency with which you need to conduct intensive cleans.

Using a pillow protector can amplify these efforts by acting as a barrier against the penetration of dust, oils, and allergens.


It’s recommended to spot clean and vacuum your memory foam pillow once every month or two. However, for a more intensive cleaning, depending on use and the individual, aim for about twice a year.

No, Washing Machine memory foam pillows is not recommended. The agitating motion of the machine can damage the delicate foam. Instead, they should be hand washed gently or spot cleaned.

It’s typically recommended to avoid drying your memory foam pillow in direct sunlight as it can cause discoloration. The safest way to dry it is in a ventilated, shaded space.

It’s not advisable to use bleach or any harsh chemicals on your memory foam pillow. These can degrade the foam material. Mild detergents or vinegar solutions are safer options for cleaning.

Memory foam pillows can sometimes have a slight odor when new, known as “off-gassing”. This is normal and usually goes away with time. However, if your pillow develops an odor with use, it could be due to sweat, oils or mildew. Regular cleaning using baking soda can help to eliminate these odors.


Cleaning your memory foam pillows doesn’t have to be a complicated chore. As this guide illustrates, with the right steps and diligence, maintaining the condition and comfort of your pillow becomes quite achievable. This effort can make a world of difference in enhancing your sleep quality and preserving your investment in a top-tier pillow.

Remember, your pillow deserves care, and a little regular maintenance can reward you with restful, comfortable nights for years to come.

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