How To Care For Your Bedding

There’s nothing quite like the heart-sinking feeling of pulling a brand-new (Expensive!) comforter out of the dryer and realizing you’ve destroyed it.

What's the right way to wash one of those things, anyway? And what about sheets? Pillow shams?

What even is a sham and why do they call it that?

Well, we aren’t exactly sure about that one (If you figure it out, let us know!) but we can walk you through the basics of bedding care so you can stop tossing your sheets into the abyss and praying for the best as you hit “start.”

Couple eating breakfast in bed.

How often should you wash your bedding?

While there’s no law that dictates when you should wash your bedding, getting on a regular schedule helps keep your sleep hygiene in check.

The general suggestion from most experts is to wash your sheets at least once a week. You can throw your duvet cover in with your sheets, but you don't have to wash your duvet insert as often. Unless something has spilled and seeped through your cover, washing the insert a few times a year should be fine! Experts recommend washing your pillows two to three times a year and the covers every other week or so.

A lot happens overnight and sheets can get pretty dirty in a short period of time, so while keeping up with the laundry might not sound like the ideal way to spend your weekend, your health and sleep benefits in the long run.

Down duvets


Down and down-alternative comforters can always be taken to professional cleaners, but if you’re looking for the DIY treatment, washing your comforter at home is manageable as long as your washing machine is large enough to accommodate it! Crank up that spin cycle, you’ll want to make sure that as much moisture as possible is out before you dry your comforter.

Every comforter is different, so always check the care tag before washing it, but the trouble with comforters generally comes from the loss of the fluffy feeling when they come out of the dryer. The solution? It might sound kind of silly, but if you throw a few tennis balls in with your comforter, it should come out lump free and ready for bed.

If tennis balls aren’t your style, you can find dryer balls on Amazon, or if you’re feeling a little fancy, you can get a set of dryer hedgehogs to help you out.

Tuft and needle sheets


Depending on the material of your sheets, care will differ from set to set. Most sheets will be machine washable, but extremely hot temperatures can weaken fibers. Washing on cool or warm water will help prolong the life of your sheets.

Bleaches and other harsh brightening chemicals can also harm fibers. Line-drying your sheets can protect them from the high heats of a dryer but placing your sheets in direct sunlight can fade dyes, so drying them in a shadier area can help prevent faded colors. If you prefer to use your dryer, tumble drying on low is probably the best option!

Tuft and needle foam pilllow


If you love a good throw pillow but the cover isn’t removable—not to worry! Spot treating can come to the rescue if you need to do a little cleanup. But first, ensure your pillow isn’t silk or velvet. If they are, dry cleaning may be your best option.

If your pillow is made from cotton or similar fabrics, you can spot treat them as you would with your mattress.

Your memory foam or other foam pillows shouldn’t be washed in the machine, but most come with removable covers that can be washed. Check the care tag before you start! If you’d like, you can purchase pillow protectors to prolong their lifespan.


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Shelly Weaver-Cather
Shelly Weaver-Cather

Shelly Weaver is part of the Content Team at Tuft & Needle, leading the writing and editing of our blog. Not quite a Phoenix native, (They take that sort of thing super seriously.) Shelly has spent most of her life in the Phoenix Metro area and has no plans of leaving anytime soon. She made the unexpected jump out of wedding photography and onto T&N’s team in 2016, and found a passion for the people that keep the lights on. She still finds herself shooting in her free time, though these days there are less bridal portraits and more masterpieces of her first child, Duke, a lab-pit mix with an unparalleled love for both T&N mattress hogging and couch destroying.

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