Jonathan got us thinking when he wrote in to inquire about cleaning his memory foam topper. Jonathan said: “I recently allowed a few drunken friends to spend the night at my apartment. I woke up the next morning to find that the memory foam topper was soaked with urine. I did some research, and most places say not to wash it. Can you please tell me how I can clean the memory foam mattress?”
Can You Wash Memory Foam?
Ideally, memory foam is not designed to be washed with water. There is a lot of air bubbles in memory foam that form the structure. The structure of the foam can be disturbed when washed too many times with water.
Think of what happens when you use a dish sponge to wash plates a few times. That is what can happen to your memory foam when you wash it a few times with water.
We recommend that you use the method listed below to clean your memory foam just this one time, and then take measures to protect it so you won’t have ever to wash it again.
Cleaning Memory Foam, the Easy Way
This guide is for cleaning a memory foam topper but can be scaled up to clean a memory foam mattress.
- Woolite Delicate Care Liquid Laundry Detergent
- A vacuum cleaner with brush attachment (A hand vacuum cleaner is recommended if you have one available)
- Spray Bottle
- Access to a garden hose if cleaning the foam outdoors
- A detachable shower head if cleaning the foam in the bathtub
- White Vinegar (Distilled)
Settle down and strap in for a long ride.
Step 1: Attach a soft brush attachment to your vacuum cleaner and then vacuum the surface of the topper to get rid of surface dust and other debris. Turn it over and vacuum the other side.
Step 2: If your mattress topper is large, we suggest you work outdoors. Lay a tarp outdoors (or place large plastic sheets on the ground) and place the mattress topper on it. If the topper is small enough, then you can continue in the bathtub.
Step 3: Mix one part Woolite with two parts water and pour into a spray bottle. Shake the bottle to mix the solution thoroughly.
Step 4: Lay the memory foam flat on your bathtub and spray the surface thoroughly with the Woolite and water mixture. Turn the topper over and spray the other side. Spray enough to soak the surfaces of both sides of the topper.
Step 5: Allow the cleaner to sit on the foam for about 30 minutes then rinse off with cold water. You can rinse with your detachable shower head. If cleaning outdoors, use the garden hose to rinse the cleaner off the mattress.
Step 6: Gently press down on the memory foam topper to remove excess water from it.
Step 7: Fill a spray bottle with a 1:4 mixture of vinegar and water and spray both sides of the mattress with the solution.
Step 8: Let the solution sit on the mattress for about 30 minutes then rinse it off with water. The vinegar solution eliminates odor from the mattress.
Step 9: Squeeze out excess water by pressing down on the memory foam topper. Repeat the rinsing process a few more times to get rid of the vinegar solution and clean the topper further.
Step 10: Get as much moisture out of the topper as you can so the topper can dry faster.
Step 11: Dry the topper after getting as much moisture out as you can. If you have a clothesline, hang the topper on it in the sun to dry. If you do not have a clothesline, you can lay a tarp on the floor outdoors and place the memory foam topper on it to dry. Turn it over occasionally for the other side to dry.
- If your memory foam topper is very thick, you’ll need to dry it in the sun for a few days to ensure that it dries completely, especially in the middle.
- If you need to dry it for multiple days, don’t leave it outdoors overnight. Moisture might reaccumulate on it and get it wet again. Instead take it indoors and leave a fan on in the room to continue the drying process. Return it outdoors to dry in the sun the next day.
How to Remove Stains from Memory Foam Topper
If you need to remove a stain from the memory foam topper, use any of the following procedures.
Treat with Boric Acid (Borax): Dampen the stain with cold water and sprinkle some Borax (such as “MILLIARD Borax Powder“) onto the stained area. Use a soft cloth to blot the stain using a circular motion. Then use a vacuum cleaner with a brush attachment to get rid of any residue
Treat with enzyme stain remover: Buy an enzyme stainer remover such as “Rocco & Roxie Professional Strength Stain & Odor Eliminator” or “Particular Paws Pet Stain and Odor Remover.” Follow the instructions on the bottle to remove the stain.
Protect Memory Foam Toppers and Mattresses
As we mentioned earlier, memory foam mattresses and toppers are not designed to be washed. There are measures you can take to protect the foam and ensure that you never need to clean them again.
- Get a waterproof cover. To avoid getting spills, urine, and dirt onto your memory foam topper or mattress, get a mattress protector such as “SafeRest Premium Hypoallergenic Waterproof Mattress Protector.” You can visit this link to check out other mattress protectors you can use. If you have a memory foam mattress or topper, a waterproof mattress protector is a worthwhile investment
- When not in use, you can store your memory foam toppers in a vacuum storage bag. It offers excellent protection from dirt and liquids. SpaceSaver Premium *JUMBO* Vacuum Storage Bags allow you even to store memory foam pillows with no issues.
Take the above precautions and your memory foam toppers and pillows will last much longer.
Did any of the above work for you or do you have any tips on how to clean and protect memory foam? Please share with your fellow readers by leaving a comment below.