A Guide to Caring for Your Cushions

A Spring Cleaning Guide

Pillows are among the most well-loved amenities in our homes, but how can we best care for them? Regularly washing sheets and linens is a good place to start, but the pillows themselves might seem tricky to treat. Read on for a quick overview to get you started caring for your pillows and cushions with confidence.

caring for your cushions | rows of white pillows in sky blue background

An Ounce of Prevention

Preventing stains, spills, and bacterial build-up will go a long way in extending the longevity of your pillows. Take care not to eat or drink in bed, and change linens frequently, especially when sick. Use protective pillow coverings underneath pillowcases and shams to add an extra layer of protection against debris, allergens, sweat, and makeup.

Sunning Pillows

An easy way to refresh your pillows is to set them in the sun for a few hours a week. Excess moisture is the enemy of upholstery, and a few hours of bright sunlight helps evaporate any lingering dampness. The sun’s ultraviolet rays also reduce dust mites and other irritants that can accumulate in the pillow.

Spot Clean

In between deep cleans, regular care and stain treatment will ensure a long lifetime for your pillows. For starters, periodically vacuum your upholstery with a brush attachment. If there are odors, sprinkle baking soda over the pillow and allow to sit overnight before vacuuming. To spot-treat stains, spray a mixture of one part distilled white vinegar and one part cool water on the pillow and air dry.

Will it Wash?

When determining how to wash a pillow, it’s what’s on the inside that counts. Pillows filled with polyester fibers can usually withstand regular machine washing and drying. Latex or memory foam pillows, however, won’t stand up well to machine laundering and should be spot-cleaned as necessary. When in doubt, always check the tag for care instructions!

Down & Feather Pillows

Touted for their plushiness and comfort, down and feathers are among the more popular options for pillow fillings, but they require a little extra TLC. These pillows can typically be thrown in the washing machine on a cool cycle with a small amount of gentle detergent. When drying, use several cycles with little to no heat, and be sure to break up feather clumps periodically. This may seem like extra work, but it will ensure that your feather pillows are as fluffy as the day you bought them.

Outdoor Pillows

Outdoor upholstery is especially prone to accumulating stains, dust, pollen, and mold over time. When not in use, store away your patio pillows and cushions in a dry place. For an added layer of protection, fabric sprays are readily available to shield against strong sun rays and create a water-repellent surface.

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