How to Clean a Mattress Topper Safely

Mattress toppers are an excellent way to add comfort and support to your mattress. They’re a simple and inexpensive solution to get that just-right level of comfort that you’re looking for. But do you know how to clean a mattress topper?  Cleaning mattress toppers isn’t as easy as throwing them into the wash and dryer. There are important steps that you must take to wash them safely and properly. You spent time and money selecting the perfect mattress topper, don’t ruin it by being neglectful during the cleaning process.

To learn how to clean a mattress topper the correct way, continue reading below. We’ve put together a full guide on properly cleaning mattress toppers just for you!

how to clean a mattress topper

Supplies You’ll Need

Different mattress toppers require different cleaning instructions and supplies, but in many cases, you’ll need the following supplies:

  • Mild (non-abrasive) Washing detergent
  • Large enough flat surface or clothesline for drying the topper
  • 2-3 clean and soft towels
  • Vinegar, lemon juice, water
  • Spray bottle for spot cleaning
  • Dryer or fan
  • Vacuum with a hose attachment or a wet/dry vacuum with a hose

You might not need all of these ingredients depending on what type of topper you have. However, these ingredients can be used on any mattress topper if desired.

Always Follow Instructions

The first step in cleaning your mattress topper is to always follow the care instructions given for that specific topper. Some mattress toppers require specific cleaning care due to its material or its manufacturer. Before completing any type of cleaning process on your mattress topper, be sure you know the material that it’s made out of and the specific dos or don’ts given on the tag.

Mattress toppers come in a variety of materials such as mattress toppers with foam, cotton, egg-crate, down, plastic-backed, and more. Because of this, there isn’t just on way to clean all types of mattress toppers. Some materials, however, are much easier to clean than others.

Remember to always start off by reading the care instructions, and then follows these steps below.

how to clean a vinyl backed mattress topper

Vinyl-Backed Mattress Topper

In many cases, vinyl-backed mattress toppers are machine washable. For machine washing, you’ll want to use warm or cold water and run it on a gentle cycle. Don’t go for harsh detergent when washing your mattress topper in the washing machine.

Instead, choose a mild detergent. You also don’t want to use bleach when washing this type of mattress topper as bleach is too harsh for the material. A good idea is to allow the washer machine to fill up with water first, then add in the mild detergent, mix it around, and finally place the mattress topper inside.

This is a great way to get the detergent to distribute across the mattress topper evenly rather than only reaching the areas where you pour it on. If the care instructions permit, tumble dry this mattress topper on low heat. Drying it on high-heat will ruin the vinyl.

If placing it in the dryer is not advisable, then allow it to air dry. You can hang it on a clothesline outside or place it on a large enough surface in your house. If you don’t hang it up to dry, make sure you flip it occasionally for even drying.

Cotton Mattress Topper

After reading the care instructions, you should be able to place your cotton mattress topper in the washer machine. Wash with warm or cold water using a mild detergent. Tumble dry on low or air dry if it’s recommended. Cotton mattress toppers are one of the easiest toppers to clean.

Egg-Crate Mattress Topper

If you have an egg-crate mattress topper, then you know just how easy it is for debris to build up in the egg-crate design. Whether it be lint, fuzz, or anything else, the best way to begin cleaning this type of mattress topper is to break out your vacuum cleaner! Vacuum it on both sides using the hand tool.

If the care instructions permit machine washing, then remember to only machine wash in oversized washers or commercial washers. A normal-sized washing machine might cause the foam on the topper to tear. Use warm or cold water on the gentle cycle with mild detergent.

Lay it on a flat surface to dry, flipping it occasionally for even drying. If you don’t own an oversized washer machine or if the care instructions don’t permit washer machine cleaning, then you’ll need to spot dry your mattress topper. Spot clean the areas that need cleaning by spraying it with a mixture of equal parts water, white vinegar, and lemon juice.

Allow this to sit for 15-20 minutes before rinsing in the shower and then using a wet/dry vacuum to dry. You can also fold and press or dry out on a flat surface as mentioned before as well.

how to clean a down mattress topper

Down Mattress Topper

If the care instructions permit washer machine cleaning, then the first thing you should do is check the entire mattress topper for any rips. If there are rips, you’ll end up with feathers covering your washer machine and a less fluffy topper. Next, you’ll want to find any stains and pretreat them with down detergent or a mild detergent.

Allow for the detergent to sit on the stain for about 15-20 minutes before washing the entire topper.

Also, keep in mind that when machine washing a down mattress topper, it’s best to use a washer machine that doesn’t have an agitator (that large middle piece inside many washer machines).

When washing, use cold water on the gentle cycle with a small amount of down cleaner. Rinse the topper twice to ensure all cleaner is removed. Dry in your dryer on the lowest heat setting. During the drying process, remove the topper several times to smooth out clumps.

Ensure the entire topper is dry before removing from the dryer.

how to clean a bamboo mattress topper

Foam Mattress Topper

Keep in mind that foam mattress toppers like ours lined with Bamboo, are the most delicate type when it comes to cleaning. Because of this, it’s best to spot clean your foam mattress topper. Before you spot clean, grab your vacuum cleaner and vacuum both sides of the topper.

For spot cleaning, you can either use an enzyme-based cleaner or use a cleaning solution with equal parts of water, lemon juice, and distilled white vinegar. Start by spraying the outside of the stain and scrub in circles working your way in. This keeps the stain from spreading.

Allow it to sit for about 15-20 minutes before rinsing with a clean sponge soaked in cold water. Pat it clean with the sponge and then use a dry, soft towel to pat dry. Continue this until all of the moisture is removed from the topper.

If needed, you can take a wet/dry vacuum and vacuum it dry. Lay the topper on a flat surface, flipping it occasionally for even drying. If the entire topper needs cleaning, spray the topper with the solution, allow it to sit for the same amount of time, and then rinse it out in the shower.

Never wring it out to dry. Fold and squeeze it, use your wet/dry vacuum, or lay it out for drying.

Removing Odor From the Mattress Topper

If your mattress topper holds in stubborn odors, then you’ll want to clean it first as listed above and then sprinkle baking soda on top of it. Let the baking soda sit for at least 8 hours, but overnight is ideal. Once the baking soda has sat for at least 8 hours, take your vacuum and vacuum the baking soda off of the topper.

Tips For Regular Maintenance

Other than when your mattress topper is due for a good cleaning, there are some tips for regular maintenance to keep your topper in tip-top shape.

  1. Use your vacuum regularly– don’t only turn to your vacuum when it’s time to deep clean the topper. Vacuum your topper regularly to keep dust mites, dead skin cells, lint, and other debris from accumulating.
  2. Use a mattress topper cover– Although placing a mattress topper cover/protector on your topper won’t keep you from never needing to clean your topper, it will lengthen the time in between cleanings. Covers are easily washed and dried in the washer and dryer.

These tips are simple to do and are worth the extra steps. It’s much easier to clean a well taken care of mattress topper than a mattress topper that’s been neglected for quite some time.

Need A New Mattress Topper?

After reading this guide, you should know whether to clean your old mattress topper or purchase a new one, like our foam mattress topper.  If you decide to clear your current mattress topper, remember to always read the care instructions for your specific mattress topper first, and then follow this helpful guide!

And for more mattress toppers, we made our own by hand. Shop it here!

SHOP NOW  Find a Store

Learn more about how a better mattress and mattress topper can improve your sleep and health. Download our Mattress Buying Guide now!

Ultimate Mattress Buying Guide


We look forward to serving you. Don't forget your coupon! Visit a Store