Pillows are an important part of your sleep routine. A good one gives you adequate support and helps you sleep better. However, there is a need to keep your pillow well-maintained and clean as dirty ones can have an ill-effect on your health. They can get infested with mold and dust mites and give you allergies as well. A periodic wash care routine for your pillow is the best way to minimize such allergies. You can do it sooner if you are noticing symptoms like watery eyes and runny nose. The care routine has to be more stringent if you use down pillows.
Dry cleaning is not recommended for them because down tends to absorb and retain the carcinogenic chemicals used in the process. They can cause serious health hazards. For this reason, home washing is the preferable option. The best way is to follow the wash care instructions mentioned on the label. Besides this, there are the steps you should take to keep them clean and healthy:
1. Start by inspecting: To begin with, start by inspecting the pillows to ensure that the seams are intact. This is particularly important for down filled pillows because any tear in the seams can cause down to come out while washing.
2. Load and balance the washer: If you are planning to wash them at home, the most significant is loading and balancing the washer. Put in two pillows in the washer and balance the wash load if you are using a top-loader machine. Front loaders are better for washing pillows. Fill the washer to reach the recommended water level and then put in some good-quality detergent.
3. Select the gentle cycle but with high heat: Since down is delicate filler, it is always better to select the gentle wash cycle. At the same time, you should opt for high heat which will get rid of the dust mites. Set the temperature exceeding 130 degrees Fahrenheit. Dust mites will not be able to survive at such high temperature and this will make your pillow mite-free. Alternatively, you can add a quarter cup of bleach to kill the germs. Set the machine on spin and let the pillows go for a gentle wash.
4. Give them a good time for drying: Now that the pillows are washed and clean, it is time to dry them up. Whether you use a dryer or go for air drying, ensure that it is done thoroughly because drying does take a good amount of time. Make sure that you remove lumps in the filler if there are any formed during washing. Drying them in sun is a good option as the ultraviolet rays can kill the mites or germs that are left after the washing process. It will also get rid of the musty odor from the pillows.
Follow the wash care routine at regular intervals, even if the pillows do not look dirty. It ensures that you stay healthy and sleep better with fresh-smelling, dust-free and mite-free pillows on your bed.