How to Clean Velvet Pillows

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Velvet pillows can provide a plush addition to your home aesthetics, giving a feel of luxury and regal elegance. However, their beautiful, plush texture can be a magnet for dust, dirt, and stains. But, don’t worry. With the right approach, your velvet pillows can look as good as new in no time.

This guide will walk you through the steps on how to clean velvet pillows without causing any damage.

Why Cleaning Velvet Pillows is Important

Maintaining Hygiene

Over time, velvet pillows can amass dust, dirt, and allergens, posing potential health risks, especially for individuals with allergies or respiratory issues. Regular cleaning helps remove these particles, promoting a healthier indoor environment.

Preserving Quality

Proper cleaning extends the lifespan of velvet pillows by preventing dirt buildup and minimizing the risk of fabric deterioration. By maintaining cleanliness, you can enjoy your velvet pillows for years to come without compromising their quality.

What You’ll Need

Before you begin, gather the following items:

  • A soft, clean cloth
  • A small brush (like a soft-bristle toothbrush)
  • Mild liquid soap or upholstery cleaner
  • Vacuum (with the brush attachment)
  • A hairdryer or fan

How to Clean Velvet Pillows

Step 1: Read Care Labels

Just as the saying goes, “Prevention is best than the cure”, your first step should be to understand the care instructions on the label of your velvet pillows. Manufacturers often include specific methods for the best possible cleaning and maintenance.

You may find out from these labels if the pillow can be cleaned in the washing machine or requires specific cleaning solutions.

Step 2: Vacuum the Pillow

To begin the cleaning process, carefully vacuum the velvet pillows using an upholstery attachment. This step will help remove any external dirt, dust and lint that maybe present on the surface.

It’s recommended to vacuum both sides of the pillow, ensuring that you’re not pressing too hard to avoid damaging the fabric.

Step 3: Spot Cleaning

After vacuuming, if you notice any localized stains, it’s time for spot cleaning. Dampen a cloth with a bit of mild soap or a specialized velvet cleaner and gently dab the stain. Never rub or scrub, as it can damage the velvet fibers. Making small, gentle movements around the stained area should get the job done.

Step 4: Remove Residues

Post spot-treating, it’s crucial to remove any soap or cleaning solution residues. Use another clean, damp cloth to gently dab the area until the residue is completely removed. Leaving soap or cleaning solution on the velvet can lead to discoloration, so don’t skip this step.

Step 5: Dry the Pillow

After cleaning, it’s essential to let your velvet pillow dry completely. Never use a hairdryer or place your pillow in the dryer; the high heat can ruin the fabric. Instead, let it air dry naturally, out of direct sunlight, to keep the color vibrant.

Step 6: Brush the Fabric

Once the pillow is completely dry, use a soft-bristled brush to gently brush the velvet fabric. This will help restore the plush texture of your velvet pillow by realigning the fabric fibers.

Step 7: Fluffing and Restoring Shape

After drying, gently fluff the velvet pillow by hand to restore its original shape and loftiness. Lightly brush the surface with a soft-bristled brush to remove any remaining wrinkles or flattened areas.

Washing Velvet Pillows (optional)

How to Clean Velvet Pillows

For more extensive cleaning, you can wash velvet pillows following these methods:

Hand Washing Method

Pour some lukewarm water and a tiny bit of mild detergent into a sink or basin. After putting the pillow in the soapy water, give it a little shake with your hands. Make sure you completely rinse with fresh water to get rid of any soap residue.

Machine Washing Method

To protect the velvet pillow during the wash cycle, put it in a mesh laundry bag if the handling label allows machine washing. Make use of cold water and a moderate detergent on a soft or sensitive setting. Strong chemicals and bleach should be avoided since they can harm the cloth.

Additional Tips

Do a spot test with your cleaning solution on an invisible area of the pillow before you go ahead and apply it to any more visible parts.

Avoid washing velvet pillows in the washing machine – it can damage the fabric easily.
Never apply direct heat to a velvet fabric, as this could shrink or crumple the material.

Preventative Measures for Maintaining Cleanliness

To keep your velvet pillows clean and fresh for longer, consider the following preventative measures:

Regular Maintenance

Regularly vacuum or gently brush your velvet pillows to remove surface dust and debris. This prevents buildup and prolongs the time between thorough cleanings.

Using Pillow Protectors

Invest in pillow protectors or covers to shield your velvet pillows from spills, stains, and dust mites. Wash the protectors regularly to maintain cleanliness.

Frequently Asked Questions

No, it is not usually recommended to machine wash velvet pillows because the tumbling action can crush and potentially damage the velvet pile. Always check the care label; if the label suggests dry cleaning, then that is the safest method to keep your pillows looking their best.

Use a soft-bristled brush, such as a baby brush or a velvet brush specifically designed for such fabric. The key here is to be gentle to avoid crushing the velvet’s pile.

For regular maintenance, vacuum velvet pillows weekly and spot clean as needed to keep them looking fresh. A thorough cleaning may only be necessary a few times a year, depending on use and exposure to dirt and stains.

Using a steamer can help lift the fibers and revive the pile of the velvet. Hold the steamer slightly above the fabric without making direct contact. However, too much heat or moisture can damage velvet, so use this method cautiously.


With these easy steps, you now know how to clean velvet pillows at home, ensuring that they remain a luxurious and elegant addition to your decor. Remember, the key to maintaining the longevity of velvet lies in gentle care and regular cleaning.

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