You probably sleep on the same comfortable memory foam pillow night after night. As you sleep, dead skill cells, sweat, body oils, and even drool can get on the pillow.
Even though memory foam is dust mite resistant and hypoallergenic, the smell of sweat can affect your sleep, so you need to clean it once or twice a year.
So, how do you get sweat smell out of your memory foam pillow? First of all, use a pillow cover as that will soak up most of your sweat. Wash this cover every 1-2 weeks to get rid of the sweat. Second, to remove sweat stains on your memory foam core, use distilled vinegar or boric acid.
Read on as I will describe more in depth how to get rid of sweat smell from your memory foam pillow.
Are memory foam pillows machine washable?
Short answer, No; memory foam pillows are not machine washable. Due to the constant agitation putting them in a washer can break down the pillow’s structure and even cause cracks. Even though memory foam looks squishy and firm, machine cleaning it will cause irreparable damage.
How to wash away sweat from a memory foam pillow
It’s important to practice good pillow hygiene as sweat can build up on your pillow faster than you think and cause an odor. This can adversely impact the quality of your sleep, leaving you grumpy and irritable all day. Since you cannot put your memory foam pillow into the washer machine, you should wash it by hand to clean it deeply. Here’s how you do that:
- Fill a sink or bathtub with some warm water and add in a small amount of mild detergent. About a teaspoon of detergent mixed into about a gallon of water will do. You don’t want to use any harsh detergents or chemicals as they can damage the memory foam. You can add in several droplets of your preferred essential oil, such as lavender if you choose.
- Remove the pillow from its cover and slowly immerse it into the soapy water while gently squeezing it to let out the air and allow the water to penetrate it better. Repeat this until the pillow is fully submerged.
- Remove the soapy water and fill up the sink or bathtub with clean water. Once the pillow is submerged, squeeze it a couple of times to help rinse out the soapy water and wash away any dirt and sweat that was in the pillow. Repeat this process until the water runs clear.
- Gently remove out all the water you can. Do not twist or wring your pillow as this will damage it.
- Leave your pillow out to air dry, preferably in direct sunlight or outdoors. If neither one is available, you can use a ceiling fan on high to dry your pillow.
- Once it dries, you can spray it with your preferred essential oil if desired.
How to remove sweat stains
Despite what material your pillowcase or over is made from, sweat can seep through and get into the pillow. When sweat dries, it can leave a yellowish stain on your pillow, which can be unsightly. To remove sweat stains, you can use distilled vinegar or boric acid.
Combine equal parts distilled vinegar and water into a bowl. Using a soft piece of cloth dipped in the solution, gently rub the sweat stain in circular motions moving inwards. Cleaning it this way reduces the chances of spreading the stain.
Repeat this process until the stain is gone. Once you are done, use a clean cloth dipped in clean water to wipe away the vinegar solution. Pat dry the area and leave the pillow out or dry.
Alternatively, you can use boric acid. Sprinkle some boric acid onto the pillow and dab or blot the stain with a sponge or clean cloth in circular motions. Repeat until the stain is gone. Avoid scrubbing as this will cause the stain to set, making it even harder to remove. Once the stain is gone, vacuum the pillow thoroughly to ensure no boric acid residue is left.
How to deodorize a Memory Foam Pillow to get rid of sweat smell
If your memory foam pillow isn’t new, but you notice a sweaty odor, you can deodorize it. To do so, sprinkle some baking soda onto the pillow and let it sit for about 2 to 3 in a well-aerated room or even out in the sun. Use a vacuum with an upholstery attachment to clean the baking soda off the pillow thoroughly.
What’s even better, the upholstery attachment can remove hairs and other nearly invisible debris from your pillow. For the best results, apply the baking soda onto the memory foam pillow rather than the pillowcase or cover.
Alternatively, you can just air your pillow out for a couple of hours without covering it with baking soda. Sunlight, air, and baking soda can revive your pillow, eliminate any odors, and leave it feeling fresh, practically brand new.
How to clean your memory foam pillow cover and case
Cleaning your memory foam pillows about two times a year is enough to keep it fresh and in good condition. However, it’s more important to clean your pillow cover and case more regularly.
To get good quality sleep, changing your bed linens is key, and this includes your pillowcase too. Other than washing your pillowcase, you should wash your pillow cover every month.
Just unzip the pillow cover and toss it into the washer while following the care instructions. If you mistakenly cut off the care instructions, you can simply look them up online, search through the manufacturers FAQ page is a good idea. Some pillow covers are specially designed and can be damaged if the care instructions are not carefully followed.
Memory foam pillows are great. They are durable and offer great support while sleeping. Regularly cleaning and deodorizing your pillow can help eliminate that sweaty odor that comes with frequent use.