How to Deep Clean a Mattress: Disinfect, Remove Stains and Deodorize

Posted by on July 6, 2018 in Cleaning Tips

Most of us spend about one-third of our life in bed. A good night’s sleep is so important and the mattress plays a major role in keeping our mental and physical health.

How to clean mattress
Image source: Pixabay. License type: CC0 1.0

But while we are dreaming at night, we expose our mattresses to the worst of us – dead skin cells, sweat, skin and hair oil, bodily fluids. Add to that the dust, indoor pollution, allergens, germs, bacteria and pet hair, and the bed isn’t so tempting place, is it?

In this article, the Go Cleaners Professional Cleaning Company will help you learn how to clean, disinfect and freshen your sleeping space, remove smelly stains and leave your mattress pleasantly deodorised to ensure the most healthy sleep.

How to Disinfect a Mattress

Washing the sheets every week and flipping the mattress every few months is a good cleaning practice that helps keep it last longer. But unfortunately, it isn’t enough! To be sure your mattress is clean and fresh, give it a deep disinfecting and sanitise at least twice a year. Ideally, do it each season.

Use the following methods and simple homemade solutions to disinfect your mattress:

Method 1: Antibacterial Spray with Vodka

Vodka is a great disinfectant not only for your mattress but also for the skin. It doesn’t matter the vodka quality – cheap vodka works and the expensive one when used for sanitising. So just take a bottle from the nearest store and follow the steps below to disinfect your mattress in no time:

  1. Vacuum the top of the mattress with a wide brush attachment. Use a long upholstery nozzle to clean the sides, corners, edges, and get into cracks. This will remove dirt, mites, dust, dead skin, hair, and other particles from the mattress.
  2. Mix a small amount of vodka and several drops of essential oil in a spray bottle. Shake it well and lightly spray all surfaces of the mattress. Avoid soaking the area!
  3. Allow the mattress to air dry completely before putting on the sheets and using it.

Method 2: Steam Cleaning

Heat treatment is a reliable choice for sanitising a mattress, especially when you want to get rid of all small creatures lurking in your bed such as dust mites and bed bugs.

You may not see them with a naked eye but certainly, you can feel them in itchy eyes and runny nose. To remove these enemies from your mattress, take the following steps:

  1. How to steam clean a mattressRemove as much outward dust, hair and debris as possible by vacuuming the entire mattress with the crevice tools of your vacuum cleaner.
  2. Run a steam cleaner across the mattress surface through short bursts, followed by dry passes. You can use a hand-held steamer or rent a commercial one. Do not steam at a continuous cycle to prevent soaking the mattress.
  3. Let the fabric dry completely before sleeping on it. To speed up the drying process, open the windows and turn on a fan.
NOTE: Mattresses can’t handle moisture well. The method above can be hazardous if you allow over-wetting of the fabric during the process. For your peace of mind consider trusting a professional mattress cleaning company to take care of your most beloved sleeping mat.

Method 3 (Advanced): Pressurised Hot Water Extraction Cleaning (PHWE)

The pressurised hot water extraction cleaning is the most advanced and efficient way of tackling dirt and filth.

How to Remove Stains from a Mattress

Cleaning mattress stains may seem like an impossible task, but here are several tips that will help you get rid of them with little effort.

  • The most important thing to do is to take care of the spot before it dries.
  • Be sure to check the manufacturer’s washing instructions on the care tag. Follow this advice for cleaning stains from your upholstered dining chairs.
  • Test the cleaning solutions on an invisible part of the fabric.
  • Be careful not to use too much liquid to avoid soaking the mattress.

Let’s have a look at the most common mattress stains and the ways to clean them successfully:

Urine Stains

  1. Lightly blot up the excess urine with paper towels or a cloth. Do not rub to avoid soaking the urine into the mattress.
  2. Saturate the affected area with white vinegar using a spray bottle. Let it sit for 15 minutes.
  3. Soak up the vinegar by pressing several layers of paper towels into the mattress.
  4. Sprinkle baking soda over the entire stained surface. Let the powder sit for several hours or even overnight to absorb the remaining moisture and odours.
  5. Vacuum the baking soda off and go over the crevices several times.

Vomit Stains

  1. Scrape the vomit off the bed surface using a paper plate. To protect yourself from any germs put on rubber gloves before cleaning up the mess.
  2. Remove the sheets and mattress pad and put them in the wash. To kill any lingering germs, wash the bedding on the highest temperature settings.
  3. Blot up any remaining liquid from the vomit with a dry, clean cloth. Don’t rub the stained area to avoid spreading the vomit around.
  4. Spray a mixture made of 1 cup warm water, 1 cup of white vinegar and 1 teaspoon of liquid soap with an intense flavour, such as lemon. Don’t saturate the mattress, just spray the affected area until it is damp.
  5. Soak up the fluid with an absorbent towel.
  6. Repeat the spraying process if you still notice the stain.
  7. Let the mattress air dry overnight. To speed up the drying process, open the windows in the room and turn on a fan.
  8. Spray the soiled area gently with some rubbing alcohol to kill any remaining germs. Allow the mat to dry again before using it.


  1. Take the bed sheets off right away, soak them in cold water for several hours and wash them.
  2. Dab the stained area using cold water dampened cloth.
  3. Combine ¼ cup of 3% hydrogen peroxide, 1 tablespoon of salt and ½ cup of cornstarch. Apply the stain removing paste onto the entire area with a spoon or spatula. Let the paste dry completely.
  4. Remove the dried paste easily by scraping it away using a dull knife. Then vacuum the surface thoroughly.

Sweat Stains

  1. Add ½ cup of powder laundry detergent to 2 cups of warm water and mix well until suds form.
  2. Apply a thin layer of suds onto the affected area using a clean sponge. Rub the mattress stain lightly in circular motions until you notice the sweat start to fade.
  3. Once the stain has disappeared, take a new clean sponge and wipe to remove the detergent. Let the mat dry completely.
  4. If you still notice the sweat stain, sprinkle a small amount of Borax on it and rub gently with a moistened cloth. Leave the solution to dry on the spot.
  5. Vacuum the mattress thoroughly.
NOTE: Don’t use a bleach solution when removing a sweat stain. Bleach is too hazardous to be used on common mattress materials and can make the situation worse by spreading the stain. Learn more about dangerous household products.

How to Deodorise & Freshen a Mattress

Like any other fabric, the upholstered mattress surface gets stale and soaks in odours over time. Even if you wash your sheets regularly, the mattress may not receive the attention it needs. You can remove the unpleasant odours and freshen up your mattress in no time, just by using common household products.

  1. Vacuum the entire mattress with an upholstery attachment and set the vacuum cleaner on the low suction setting. This will help to remove any accumulated dust and dirt.
  2. Spray the top of your mattress with a solution made of equal parts of water and distilled white vinegar. Apply enough of the mixture to moisten the fabric, but not to soak it.
  3. Allow the vinegar to air dry. Once the mattress has completely dried, flip it over and repeat the procedure.
  4. Cover the mattress surface in a thin layer of a mixture made of 1 cup of baking soda and 15-20 drops of essential oil of choice. Let it sit overnight to soak up the odours.
  5. Vacuum up the mattress in the morning using hose attachment. Flip the mattress and repeat the process with the baking soda solution.

For a thorough clean of your home, look at our deep cleaning checklist.

Looking for a Mattress?

You can freshen up your mattress, but if you’re regularly waking up with back or neck pain, or little aches and pains, these are all telltale signs that it’s time to replace your mattress.

So if you know you need a new mattress but aren’t sure where to start, check out SleepingCulture, where the expert team honestly review all the new mattresses on the market, as well as providing expert advice on how to beat sleep disorders and have a good night’s sleep.