How To Clean A Memory Foam Mattress?

How To Clean A Memory Foam Mattress

Are you stressing about stains on your memory foam mattress? Have you noticed discolouration after removing your beddings? Did you just spill wine last night while sipping in bed?

Knowing how to clean a memory foam mattress saves you from this stress.

Stains and bad smells can haunt mattress owners, especially memory foam types, even when cleaned. Its soft structure makes it harder to clean as it needs extra care, especially when vacuuming.

But don’t worry.

We will share tips on cleaning and maintaining your memory foam mattress. We also cover the different stains that you might encounter and how to deal with them.

Different Stains You May Have to Deal With

We spend a third of our day on our bed, which leads to all kinds of dirt and stains from:

  • Urine
  • Sweat
  • Blood
  • Vomit
  • Semen
  • Food
  • Mould
  • Coffee
  • Wine

Don’t worry. We cover each of these in some form below!

What Cleaning Goods Do You Need?

To clean a memory foam mattress, you will need the following:

  • Water
  • Mild detergent
  • Small bowl or container
  • Clean cloth
  • Baking soda
  • Distilled vinegar
  • Enzymatic cleaner


  • Empty water sprayer
  • Vacuum cleaner (on low setting)
  • Hairdryer (on a cool setting)

FAQ: Can I use a carpet cleaner on my memory foam mattress?

Memory foam mattress surfaces, like

tend to be soft. Carpet cleaners use a scrubbing brush and strong vacuum suction to clean carpets. This aggressive cleaning approach can be too harsh for memory foam’s delicate and soft material.

Cleaning your Memory Foam Mattress

Depending on the age of the mattress, cleaning of the mattress, and frequency of vacuuming done in the bedroom, even a hypoallergenic memory foam mattress is not an exemption from dust and dust mites.

Depending on the level of cleaning you want, we can do two types of cleaning:

  • Regular cleaning
  • Deep cleaning 

How to clean a memory foam mattress?

Regular cleaning only takes 30 minutes. And doing this once a week helps maintain a clean bed and avoid bigger cleaning sessions. This deals with surface dust and small debris like food crumbs, hair, dead skin, and insects.

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Washing and cleaning beddings

We need to clean the first items, which are the beddings and mattress cover. Since dust and small dirt cannot infiltrate the mattress, most of the dirt will only sit outside the memory foam. This means dirt will accumulate primarily in your beddings.

Vacuum cleaning

Cleaning with a vacuum is a reliable method as we found it gets rid of most of the surface dirt.

Since memory foams are soft, use the lowest setting of your vacuum cleaner. This reduces any unintentional damage to the memory foam mattress surface.

How do you deep clean a memory foam mattress?

Deep cleaning will take 1 to 2 hours of your day. You can do this once a month to address stubborn stains and dirt that infiltrate the mattress.

Warning: Do not oversaturate the mattress with water when cleaning the memory foam mattress.

Memory foam, like traditional foam, has a porous structure that can accommodate moisture absorption. When memory foam is wet, moisture clings to the tiny pores within, making it hard to dry.

Good news for potential mould growth, but bad news for you.

Mould grows in a moist and humid environment, and a wet mattress is precisely that.

Proceed with stain cleaning with minimal liquids using mild detergent and water.

  • Mix one part of detergent and 2 parts of cold water in a container. You want to use cold water to clean bloodstains because warm water will bind the blood to the material.
  • Dip a clean cloth into the soapy mixture and squeeze any excess liquid.
  • Gently dab over the stains until stains are removed.
  • Using another dry and clean cloth, squeeze out excess moisture on the area to avoid oversaturation.
  • Repeat steps 2 to 4 until satisfied with stain removal.
  • Make sure the memory foam mattress is completely dry before using it again.

FAQ: Can I steam clean my memory foam mattress?

Steam cleaning can damage your memory foam mattress if done incorrectly.

Per the experts at Tempur, extreme heat can damage the integrity of the memory foam. The memory foam can soften beyond its intended capacity and cause irreversible damage when exposed to extreme heat.

Another thing is that steam cleaning can introduce dreaded moisture to your mattress. We know what that can do!

Always check with your mattress care guide if steam cleaning is allowed, or it can void the warranty.

How to Clean Memory Foam Mattress after Bedwetting?

Bedwetting is more common than you think.

In fact, one out of 100 adults still wet the bed at night because of accidents and health problems. Even if that’s not you, your child, or your pet may have caused the accident.

In any case, using an enzyme cleaner can help you clean urine from your memory foam mattress. Enzyme-based cleaners break down both stains and pungent smells caused by protein-based sources like:

  • urine
  • sweat
  • vomit
  • faeces
  • blood.

There are wide varieties of enzyme-based cleaners on the market, from powder-based such as happyzym to liquid-based such as Simple Solution.

To clean urine on the mattress,

  • If the urine is still fresh, use a paper towel or dry cloth to dab as much of the liquid up as possible.
  • Once dried, address the stain and smell using an enzyme cleaner.
  • Refer to the instructions provided by the enzyme cleaner for correct application.
  • For best practices, start by using small amounts and only on small areas first.

You can also check out this blog for a complete guide on How to Get Pee Out of a Mattress.

What causes yellow stains on your memory foam?

Aside from the stains mentioned above, memory foam mattress owners also commonly report yellow staining on their mattresses. Yellow stains on your memory foam mattress can be caused by two reasons:

  • discolouration caused by oxidation
  • urine, body oil, or sweat stain

Yellow stains caused by oxidation

It might not be a stain if you’ve noticed that your whole mattress is yellowish. Discolouration on memory foam can be caused by high temperature and UV exposure.

Flame retardant chemicals are used in manufacturing memory foam. When the foam is exposed to heat and UV rays, these chemicals oxidise and cause yellow discolouration.

The bad news is that this colour change is permanent, and no amount of cleaning can reverse this effect.

However, the good news is that the discolouration doesn’t affect the quality of the memory foam mattress. Ergoflex, a mattress manufacturer, also assures that the discolouration is not toxic or harmful.

Yellow stains caused by urine, body oil, and sweat

On the other hand, if the yellow stain is from an accident caused by urine, body oil, or sweat. You can still remove these stains using the method just above this!

How to Use Baking Soda and Vinegar in Cleaning?

When baking soda and vinegar are combined, the acid in the vinegar breaks down the baking soda, producing carbon dioxide gas that can help remove dirt from surfaces.

This makes them a power cleaning duo in the bedroom as well as kitchen and bathroom. To use baking soda and vinegar in cleaning:

  • Sprinkle baking soda over the stained area.
  • You can leave the baking soda for 30 minutes to an hour.
  • Dab small amounts of vinegar on the baking soda. The mixture will bubble as a result of a chemical reaction.
  • Dampen another clean cloth with cold water and wipe the mixture.
  • Repeat steps 1 to 3 until the stain is completely removed.
  • Using a clean cloth or tissue, dab any excess moisture on the memory foam mattress.
  • Make sure the mattress is completely dry before using it again.

FAQ: Can you leave baking soda on your mattress overnight?

In dealing with stains and odours, baking soda can be left as long as possible on a surface for maximum effect. There is no definite time for how long you should leave baking soda on the mattress; the longer, the better.

So if you have a spare bed, yes, you can leave baking soda on your mattress overnight. This will not cause an adverse reaction to your mattress and, more likely than not, leads to better results.

How to Deodorise a Memory Foam Mattress?

White vinegar is an ingredient people swear by for deodorising anything pretty much.

Sounds crazy as vinegar itself has a pungent smell!

The acetic acid in the vinegar bonds and neutralises odour-causing molecules. White vinegar available in the UK market like Golden Swan or Jocker Woods will work in deodorising your mattress.

Here are the steps involved:

  1. Use vinegar without diluting. If the vinegar smell is too strong for you, mix equal parts of distilled vinegar and water.
  2. Use an empty water spray to apply the vinegar to your memory foam mattress. If you don’t have one, dab small amounts where the source of the smell is.
  3. Make sure to not oversaturate the mattress.

FAQ: Will vinegar make my memory foam mattress smell bad?

If you’ve dealt with how to clean a latex mattress before, you’ll know that vinegar is also a key ingredient in spot cleaning.

But we get it.

The vinegar smell can be too strong for some people.

If you worry that the vinegar smell will make your mattress odour worse or that it won’t go away, this will not be the case. The vinegar smell will dissipate on its own after a few hours.

To speed up the smell dissipation, open your window to increase ventilation.

How to Dry Your Memory Foam Mattress?

Oversaturation can harbour mould growth. To ensure your memory foam mattress is completely dry after cleaning or water spilling, use the following methods:

Method 1: Sun drying the memory foam mattress

Heat and UV rays can accelerate the drying process of the memory foam mattress. UV rays also kill bacteria in the mattress, and this removal of smell-causing bacteria helps with deodorisation.

Because of their dense structure, memory foam mattresses are usually heavy and can weigh up to 40 kg for a queen size. Hence, it can be challenging to transfer the mattress and will typically need two people to lift it.

  • Place a protective sheet where you will place your memory foam mattress to avoid it getting dirty.
  • Leave the memory foam mattress in the sun for 1 to 2 hours.
  • Memory foam mattresses that are double-sided should be flipped halfway through drying so each side has equal drying time. Double-sided means memory foam on the top and bottom,

Method 2: Drying using a hairdryer, fan, or reverse function of a vacuum cleaner

If today’s not a sunny day, use a hairdryer or fan to dry your mattress. Make sure to use only the cool setting of the hairdryer to avoid heat damage to the memory foam.

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If your vacuum cleaner has a reverse function, you can also use this to blow air on your mattress and help speed up drying.

Method 3: Drying using baking soda.

Aside from its cleaning properties, baking soda can also absorb moisture on your memory foam mattress. To do this,

  • Sprinkle baking soda on the wet area of the memory foam.
  • Leave it as long as possible for maximum absorption.
  • Remove the baking soda by dusting off or using the low setting of the vacuum.

How to Keep your Memory Foam Mattress Clean?

Aside from doing the steps above on regularly cleaning your memory foam mattress, here are some extra tips to keep your memory foam mattress clean:

Avoid too much moisture on your memory foam mattress.

Now you know how hard and tiresome it is to dry a wet mattress, avoid wetting the memory foam mattress by doing the following

  • Don’t sleep on your memory foam mattress with damp hair.
  • Don’t let pets stay in bed
  • Don’t eat or drink in bed.

Use a waterproof mattress protector.

We love our pets, and most of the time, we want to let them stay in bed. If this is also you, use a waterproof mattress protector like this one, which is waterproof and machine washable.

For spills and pee accidents, you can just wash the protector instead of all the fuss of cleaning the memory foam itself.

Open windows for ventilation.

Opening your windows will allow enough ventilation in the room. This will avoid having a moist and humid environment that moulds love to thrive on. You can open your window every morning after waking up.

How To Clean A Memory Foam Mattress? – Takeaway

Memory foam mattresses are resistant to dust and dust mites because of their dense structure. This makes it easier to clean since the dirt doesn’t infiltrate the foam. It is crucial not to oversaturate the memory foam mattress in any cleaning method because it can lead to mould growth if not dried properly.

Just remember that yellow discolouration in a memory foam mattress is:

  • normal
  • irreversible
  • does not affect the quality of the mattress


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Chief Editor here at The Sleep Checklist. Suffered from a seemingly infinite knot in my thoracic area (between the spine and shoulder blade) due to my lifelong side sleeping habits. With my girlfriend, we look to provide the most relevant and best mattress advice.