We may wash our bed sheets a lot, however what number of us, hand on heart, can say we are as in-depth when washing our duvets and pillows? All things considered, washing the bedding consistently can be sufficiently monotonous, not to mention the rest of the bedding.
Be that as it may, our pillows and duvets take a battering – for around 56 hours per week, the perspiration, spill, dead skin and other grime from our heads and bodies (sorry!) is getting all over them.
It’s realised that duvets and pillows can harbour both live and dead dust mites, skin scales and fungus, which can prompt allergies and infections, for example, rhinitis or conjunctivitis.
A study driven by Dr Arthur Tucker, a clinical researcher at Barts and The London NHS Trust, found that up to 33% of the heaviness of a pillow could be comprised of bugs, dead skin, dust mites and their defecation. Furthermore, another investigation, led by the University of Worcester, found that except if duvets are washed like clockwork, they can contain up to 20,000 live house dust bugs. Yuck!
In any case, before you stress you’re the only one left in the UK not washing their bedding, don’t fear, just 66% of the population clean their duvets two times every year, with more individuals discarding their bedding and replace it.
Often duvets are overlooked – but they should really be cleaned twice a year to keep the dust mites at bay, this is particularly important for people who suffer from asthma or other respiratory ailments.
Tips to wash and dry a duvet at home:
Establish what the duvet is made from. Determining whether your duvet is feather, hollow fibre or a down comforter, will dictate the best way to wash it.
Check the label. It’s important to find out whether your duvet can be machine washed at home – if it says dry-clean only, it really is best to leave it to the professionals.
Check the size of your machine. Is it possible a queen or king-sized duvet can fit comfortably inside? Remember, your local launderette will have washing machines with much bigger drums.
Check for holes and tears. You can wash some feather duvets, but check they’re in good condition, with no holes or loose feathers. If there are any, sew them up first.
Use a mild detergent. The Good Housekeeping Institute recommends using one-third the usual amount of detergent.
Repeat the rinse cycle. Persil recommends you keep an eye on your program and, at the end of the rinse cycle, before the spin begins, stop the machine and repeat the rinse. This is because big, fluffy and absorbent duvets can retain some of the soapy detergent.
It’s okay to tumble dry. But again, take into consideration the size of your home dryer. Shake out the duvet while damp to stop it going lumpy, then dry thoroughly and leave out to air for a day.
Be aware of mould. If you want to line dry, bear in mind how long it will take, and be cautious of mildew and mould that may grow. If the care label allows it, why don’t you partially tumble dry the duvet before air drying instead?
How to wash and dry pillows at home:
- Read the care label. Again, it’s important to read the care label on your pillows and follow the directions. If you’ve clipped off the tag, use warm water and a gentle cycle – or take it to your local launderette. The Good Housekeeping Institute warns us not to take them to the dry cleaners as the chemicals are difficult to remove and you don’t want to be breathing in toxic fumes.
- Give them a hug. Giving pillows a big squeeze ensures that all the air is removed from them.
- Load two at a time. This ensures that the load is balanced out.
- Repeat the rinse cycle. Once the cycle is complete, do one more rinse cycle to ensure detergent is effectively removed.
- Tumble dry on a low heat. Do this almost immediately after the washing cycle has finished to prevent mould.
- Leave them in the airing cupboard. Persil recommends you leave pillows in your airing cupboard for one to two days to ensure they’re completely dry.
- Avoid washing foam pillows. Use a vacuum to remove dust from the pillow instead.