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How to clean a mattress topper in six easy steps

Woman lifting a mattress topper off bed
Woman lifting a mattress topper off bed (Image credit: Amazon)

You probably need to know how to clean a mattress topper if you rely on it for a cozy night’s sleep. Considering how the best mattress toppers are capable of reviving a tired, old bed to make it feel new and comfy again, you’ll want to keep it fresh. 

In addition, we spend an average of seven to eight hours in bed (or more for others), so little wonder that toppers are prone to picking up skin cells, body oil, odors, dust, bacteria and other nasties over time. That’s why it’s so important to know how to clean your mattress topper, give it extra care and keep it refreshed.

Since mattress toppers can’t be thrown into the washing machine like other bedding, knowing how to clean a mattress topper can seem tricky at first. The good thing is, it’s easy to do and doesn’t take long at all. 

So, whether you prefer snuggling in bed watching Netflix or prone to spilling your morning coffee, here’s how to clean a mattress topper in six easy steps.  

How to clean a mattress topper in five easy steps

1. First, prepare the topper and strip all bedding from the mattress topper and remove the topper from the bed. Set it flat on a hard surface such as the floor so that you can easily reach the corners when cleaning. Also, open a window and make sure the room is well ventilated whilst cleaning.

2. Next up, get out the vacuum cleaner and lightly vacuum clean the surface of your mattress topper with a soft brush attachment. Use circular movements to remove any dust particles, hair or grime found on your topper. Plus, this will prevent any bacteria or microorganisms forming.  

Vacuum cleaning a mattress topper

Vacuum cleaning a mattress topper (Image credit: Shutterstock)

If you don’t want to use a vacuum cleaner though, you can always opt for a soft brush to remove any debris.  Make sure to do this on both sides of the topper for the best results.  

Using a brush to clean a mattress topper

Using a brush to clean a mattress topper (Image credit: Shutterstock)

3. Now check for stains and spot clean. A build up of sweat and body oils can cause unsightly stains on the mattress topper. Depending on the stain, spot clean with a good stain remover such as Tide ($14.99 at Amazon), or gently rub with a damp, soapy cloth to gently lift the stain off. Blot the liquid out with a mildly damp cloth and dry with paper towels. Then, repeat until the stain is removed.

4. Another way to remove stains is by mixing a baking soda, vinegar and water solution spray and apply to the area. Use circular movements to rub into the stain and leave for about 30 minutes to seep into the area. If you want to know more, find out what makes baking soda and vinegar so good at cleaning.  

Woman cleaning a mattress topper

Woman cleaning a mattress topper (Image credit: Shutterstock)

5. Next, you’d need to get rid of odors. Just like stains, musty odors can arise from sweat, spills or accidents (especially from young children). Again, this can be treated with baking soda which is a natural odor neutralizer. 

Simply sprinkle baking soda directly onto the surface of the mattress topper, and leave it on for around 8 hours or overnight. Then, vacuum clean the topper, ensuring there are no baking soda particles left on the topper. In the same way baking soda can be used to remove stains, baking soda can deodorize your mattress topper. 

If you want to know more about the wonders of baking soda, find out what makes baking soda and vinegar so good at cleaning.  

Baking soda and vinegar

(Image credit: Shutterstock)

6. Finally, you’d need to air-dry properly before putting the mattress topper back on the bed. If there is still moisture, it may result in mold or mildew forming. 

Memory foam mattress toppers can take a while to dry so it’s recommended to hang outdoors or in a well-ventilated space for up to 24 hours or until completely dry.  

Putting back a mattress topper

Putting back a mattress topper (Image credit: Shutterstock)

What is a mattress topper? 

Mattress toppers are an extra foam layer that rests on top of your mattress under your bed linen. Typically, these are made from memory foam, gel, hollowfibre and microfibre, feathers and latex. Designed to revive an old or uncomfortable mattress, these can offer extra support and comfort. Best of all, a mattress topper can improve your sleep quality and in some cases, far cheaper than buying a brand new mattress.  

Mattress topper on bed

Mattress topper on bed (Image credit: Amazon)

 How long does a mattress topper last for? 

If well maintained, a quality mattress topper can last just as long as a mattress. While a lower-quality mattress topper may only last up to two years. You can always cover a mattress topper with a quality, mattress protector to prevent any stains.

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Cynthia Lawrence

Cynthia Lawrence specialises in Homes ecommerce, covering all things homes and garden-related. She has a wealth of editorial experience testing the latest, ‘must-have’ home appliances, writing buying guides and the handy ‘how to’ features. 


Her work has been published in various titles including, T3, Top Ten Reviews, Ideal Home, Real Homes, Livingetc. and House Beautiful, amongst many.


With a rather unhealthy obsession for all things homes and interiors, she also has an interior design blog for style inspiration and savvy storage solutions (get rid of that clutter!). When she’s not testing cool products, she’ll be searching online for more decor ideas to spruce up her family home or looking for a great bargain!