For all the excitement and messes and life that happens in them, our beds are notoriously difficult to clean. Here are some pro tips for effectively cleaning up spills and stains without having to hose the whole thing down in the yard...
- SF Gate has a six-step system for removing stains and odors from pillowtop mattresses. Secret ingredients: vinegar and baking soda (just not at the same time)!
- Good Housekeeping stands by Pet Stain And Odor Remover, whether your mattress stains are pet-related or not.
- The Hairpin's Ask A Clean Person recommends an initial blotting and cornstarch-ing, then a good scrub with OxyClean.
- Real Simple touts enzyme odor removers for removing stains as well as odors.
- CBS New York recommends fresh air and sunshine for drying cleaned-up stains. This can be tricky if you don't have any outdoor space, but even an open window helps.
- Lifehacker passed along this trick from Home Ec 101: when blotting the spilled breakfast-in-bed (or what have you) won't do the trick, consider steam cleaning the affected area.
- To remove lotion/oil/moisturizer stains from sheets, Ask A Clean Person recommends focusing on the stains with Shout, or throwing a cup of ammonia in the washing machine when you launder all of your linens.
- You could also treat such spots with oxygenated bleach, according to Martha Stewart — as long as your sheets are pale or white.
- To spot-clean a bulky comforter, Martha Stewart prescribes a bit of Dawn detergent.
- If somehow you manage to spill red wine on your down comforter, SF Gate has the solution: a generous sprinkling of salt. Fun fact: I saw this trick used on the one and only episode of Curb Your Enthusiasm that I ever saw.
- For priceless heirloom quilts, Good Housekeeping's Heloise is staunchly in favor of spot-cleaning over full-on washing. She advises a trip to your local fabric store to find the appropriate soap.
- Similarly, foam pillows should only ever be spot-washed, according to Good Housekeeping. Wipe them with a gentle solution — perhaps some Dawn, as recommended above by Martha.
- If dramatic circumstances lead to blood stains all over your wool blanket, Pendleton Mills recommends having your dry cleaner use a "digester" on the spots.