How do you actually clean your mattress?

Francesca Specter
Yahoo Style UK deputy editor

A hack for cleaning your mattress using baking soda has gone viral.

The video, shared by Facebook account DEMIC, has garnered thousands of reactions.

It demonstrates a quick, simple method for cleaning your duvet, through sprinkling the popular kitchen cupboard staple all over your mattress before using a hoover to remove it.

“Along with freshening your bed, this mixture helps lift dirt and residue while wicking away moisture,” the video promises.

READ MORE: You're probably washing your frying pans wrong

But is this an effective method to clean your mattress – and what else is involved in keeping it germ-free? We spoke to Neil Robinson, chief sleep officer at Sealy UK, to get the lowdown.

You can clean your mattress effectively with baking soda. [Photo: Getty]

How often should you clean your mattress?

OK, we all know we should change our bedding at least once a week, but what’s expected when it comes to our mattresses?

“There’s no hard and fast rule on how frequently you should clean your mattress, but as a general rule of thumb you should clean some mattresses every six months to prevent dust mites, dead skin and dirt accumulating,” says Robinson.

That said, this doesn’t hold true for everyone. If you’re an allergy sufferer and experiencing flare-ups, you should be looking to clean your mattress more regularly, he advises.

How to clean your mattress

First thing’s first: what’s the verdict on the baking soda method? Those putting their faith in the viral cleaning hack can rest assured, as Robinson’s on board.

“Sprinkling baking soda onto the mattress, leaving it to air for a few hours, and then vacuuming it off, can help to air it out,” he says. This helps to remove “dirt, hair and crumbs” from the mattress, he explains.

However, there’s one exception – and that’s if you’re the proud owner of a snazzy Purotex mattress, which releases friendly bacteria into the mattress in order to create a clean sleeping environment. In this case, hold off the baking soda and simply hoover your mattress on both sides.

And if you want to stop your mattress getting dirty in the first place...

Save yourself valuable mattress-cleaning time by maintaining good hygiene in the first place.

This starts by banning pets from the bedroom – that’s right, no more letting Bailey jump under the covers for a morning cuddle.

“Your dog or cat might make a great sleeping partner, but their fur can be a magnet for pollen, dust and other allergens,” says Robinson.

READ MORE: Why cleaning is good for your mental health

Next step is to invest in a handy mattress protector, which provides “an extra layer to shield your mattress from bed bugs and dust mites”.

When do you need to call in the professionals?

Mattress cleaning can generally be done in the privacy of your own home, but there’s one occasion when you without a doubt have to call in the experts, and that’s in the case of bed bugs.

“Calling in some professional help can to nip these in the bud early and stop them from returning,” says Robinson.

And if there’s a stubborn stain situation going – say you split a bottle of red wine over your bed (no judgement here), then a professional steam clean is the way to go for those stains that won’t budge.

Finally, if you’ve had the same mattress for almost a decade, it may be time to part ways.

“We’d recommend replacing your mattress every eight years to help maintain a supportive and hygienic sleep environment,” says Robinson.

Another common mattress question is how often you should flip it.

But some mattresses don’t involved flipping at all – read more to find out what you should be doing with yours.

Shopping Solution: Invest in a mattress protector

  1. Natural Cotton Quilted Mattress Protector by John Lewis | £25-£45 | Shop here

  2. Utopia Bedding Quilted Fitted Mattress Protector by Amazon | £12.49 | Shop here

  3. Gel Fusion Memory Foam Mattress Topper by Dunelm | £125 | Shop here