Tips to keep your pillows in good condition: Consumer Reports

Consumer Reports

CONSUMER REPORTS — From memory foam to feather and down pillows, Consumer Reports experts offer up tips to keep your pillows looking and smelling great.

“Over time, a lot of gross stuff builds up in your pillow. We’re talking about sweat, body oil, dirt, saliva, even dust mites, and mold,” said Haniya Rae, Consumer Reports Home Editor.

There’s an easy fix for keeping pillows fresh. Start with fluffing your pillow every day to get rid of dust and restore its shape. Every month, hang your pillows outdoors for a few hours. If you can’t do that, run them through the dryer on the no-heat cycle.

Consumer Reports says many pillows are washable. But first, take a careful look at those washing labels before you plunge your pillow.

Rae said, “The agitators in traditional top loader machines can be a little bit rough on pillows. Front-loading machines are a bit gentler. So you just want to leave it in there on the gentle cycle for just a few minutes or the shortest setting possible.”

If your washing machine is large enough, wash two pillows at a time. That will help balance the load, allowing the water and detergent to circulate more effectively.

And no matter which type of pillow you prefer, a pillow cover is a good idea. Wash that cover once a week, along with your pillowcases and sheets.

Consumer Reports says after washing, it’s important to get your pillows completely dry or you’ll risk pillows with mildew. Toss in two fresh tennis balls or dryer balls to keep the filling from clumping. Consumer Reports has more tips on how to wash pillows, according to the material inside, like foam or feather.

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