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Understanding the Washing Process for Different Types of Pillows

Understanding the Washing Process for Different Types of Pillows 

When it comes to sleep, pillows are your best friends. Sadly, they are one of the most neglected items in your bedroom. Just think about it. How often do you add “Wash Pillows” to your to-do list? Or when was the last time you made time for pillow maintenance? Probably not very recently, right?

So, today, we’ll discuss everything related to pillow care. From the importance of proper pillow cleaning to the washing process of different types of pillows, our guide covers them all.


Like all household items, pillows accumulate dust, dirt, bacteria, and mites over time. Along with that, they are also victims of our sweat, oil, and drool. Just imagine resting your face on a surface carrying multiple irritants every night. 

These accumulated elements can cause allergic reactions and discomfort for individuals with sensitive skin. Therefore, proper maintenance and periodic cleaning of pillows are essential. We suggest cleaning your pillows at least 2-3 times a year. 

That way, you can ensure a healthier and more comfortable sleeping environment. 

Can You Wash Pillows in the Washer? 

Can You Wash Pillows in the Washer

Yes, you can wash pillows in the washer if they are stuffed with cotton, polyester fiberfill, and down. However, you should never wash pillows stuffed with other materials like buckwheat or memory foam in the washer.

  • The best way to determine if your pillow is machine-washable is by reading its care label. 
  • Always use cool or warm water and mild detergent for washing pillows. 
  • Dry on low heat.
  • High heat can damage the pillow’s stuffing.
  • Sometimes, there is a risk of washing pillows in the washer with an agitator (usually found in top-load washers). You can minimize it by placing two pillows in the drum vertically.

The Specifics of Washing Decorative Pillows

When washing decorative pillows, things can get a little confusing. This type of pillow is usually made with delicate materials like silk, velvet, or wool. But you just need to go back to the basics even with them. That is, read the pillow’s care label and follow the instructions.

While some decorative pillows might need dry cleaning, others can safely endure a cycle in the washing machine. 

Can Decorative Pillows Be Washed?

Yes, decorative pillows are washable. Just make sure to follow the guidance provided on the label.  

The Specifics of Washing Decorative Pillows

How to Clean Decorative Pillows?

Here are the steps to clean decorative pillows:

  • · Vacuum or brush the pillows to remove excess dirt and debris.
  • · For pillows with decorative accessories, opt for handwashing. 
  • · Fill a bucket with warm water and mild soap.
  • · Submerge the pillow in the soapy water and agitate.
  • · Gently scrub the pillow’s surface.
  • · Rinse with cold water to get rid of the suds.
  • · Finally, allow the pillows to air dry completely before use.

Machine-Washing Decorative Pillows

  • · For machine-washable decorative pillows, simply toss them in the washer.
  • · Add mild detergent and cool water.
  • · Hit the gentle cycle.
  • · Repeat the cycle if required.
  • · Once washed, allow the pillows to air dry.

How to Clean Fluffy Pillows? 

How to Clean Fluffy Pillows

Fluffy pillows are usually stuffed with polyester fiberfill, cotton, down, and feathers. Follow these steps to clean them:

  • · Pretreat stains by using an enzyme-based laundry stain remover.
  • · Toss the pillows in your washer. 
  • · Add 1-2 teaspoons of low-sud detergent.
  • · Hit the gentle cycle.
  • · Once washed, add a second rinse cycle to remove all the suds from your washed pillows.
  • · Next, place the pillows in your dryer. Add some wool dryer balls between the pillows to fluff them again. 
  • · Set to medium heat, and voila! Your pillows should be as clean and fluffy as when they were new.

Can Fluffy Pillows Be Machine Washed?

Yes, fluffy pillows are machine washable. Just follow the steps we discussed above.  

Can Fluffy Pillows Be Machine Washed

Tips For Cleaning Fluffy Pillows

  • · Repair rips before cleaning your pillows.
  • · Wash fiberfill pillows in cold or warm water. 
  • · Use only cold water for feather pillows.
  • · Always use a low-suds detergent for washing pillows.
  • · Always do a second rinse while washing pillows.
  • · Tumble and fluff the pillows by hand every 15 minutes during the dryer cycle.
  • · You can dry the pillows on a rack, too. Just make sure to turn and fluff them frequently during the drying process.

Cleaning Throw Pillows

In this section, we’ll discuss cleaning throw pillows in the washer and spot-cleaning them.

Can You Wash Throw Pillows In The Washing Machine?

Yes, most throw pillows are machine washable. Here are the steps:

  • · Remove the pillow’s cover if possible.
  • · Vacuum the pillow and cover to remove loose dirt and debris.
  • · Wash them in warm water and low-sud detergent on the washer’s gentlest cycle. 
best way for Cleaning Throw Pillows

How To Spot Clean Throw Pillows?

Use a laundry stain remover for stubborn stains or a cleaning solution of mild detergent and water for normal dirt and grime.

Do a spot test first on the pillow’s fabric.

Dampen a cloth in the solution and blot the dirty area for about 30 seconds or until the dirt/stain vanishes.

Take another damp, clean cloth and blot the area to remove the remaining residue or suds.

Allow it to air dry.

Machine Washing Vs. Hand Washing Throw Pillows

Machine washing is generally safe for throw pillows. However, those that come with accessories or soft fabric may require a more delicate approach- hand washing.

Simply submerge your pillows in soapy water and let them sit for about 10 minutes. Then, scrub the pillows gently by hand or with a soft cloth.

Rinse the pillows with lukewarm water, squeeze out the excess water, and let them air dry.

Washing Stuffed Pillows

Washing stuffed pillows is similar to cleaning plush toys. Typically, both are made with soft outer fabric and filled with stuffings. So, how can you wash these types of pillows? Let’s find it out below.  

Washing Stuffed Pillows

Can You Wash Pillows With Stuffing?

Yes, you can wash pillows with stuffing, provided the stuffings are of cotton, polyester fiberfill, feathers, or down. 

How To Wash Couch Pillows With Stuffing?

Firstly, read the pillows’ care label. If they are machine washable, simply toss them in the washer with the stuffings intact.

Add a mild detergent and warm water.

Hit the gentle cycle.

Add a second rinse cycle to remove all remaining residue.

Dealing With Potential Clumping Issues

Should you encounter clumping issues during the washing process, rest assured that you can easily resolve them. Here’s what to do:

Once washed, transfer the pillows to the dryer and set to medium heat.

Fluff the pillows every 10-15 minutes to prevent clumping as they dry. 


Can You Put Pillows In The Washer?

Yes, you can put pillows with cotton, polyester fiberfill, down, feathers, or fiberfill stuffings in the washer. 

How Do You Wash Couch Pillows Without Ruining Them?

The best way to wash couch or throw pillows without ruining them is to follow a delicate approach – hand wash. The steps are mentioned in the above article. 


Now that we have come to the end of our write-up, we hope you are now an expert in tackling the demanding task of cleaning pillows. Let’s take a step back to revise the basics, shall we?

Recap On The Key Points And The Importance Of Cleaning Pillows Correctly

  • · Clean your pillows every 3-6 months, depending on how often you use them.
  • · Pillows with cotton, feathers, down, or polyester fill stuffings are machine washable.
  • · Any other stuffing should be hand-washed or dry-cleaned.
  • · Always use a low-sud detergent for cleaning pillows.
  • · Turn and fluff your pillows every 10-15 minutes as they dry. 
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