How to Clean Memory Foam

By Axl J. Amistaadt

  • Overview

    Memory Foam, or visco-elastic polyturethane foam, was developed for NASA during the 1970s. It finally arrived on the open consumer market in the early 1990s in the form of mattress-pad toppers, and then as Memory Foam mattresses. These products have rapidly grown in popularity within the bedding industry, but must be cleaned properly. This can be accomplished largely with products you probably already have lying around the house. Anything else you will need is readily available in department, grocery, hardware and discount stores.
    How to Clean Memory Foam
    How to Clean Memory Foam
    • Step 1

      Use a hand-held vac with a soft brush attachment, or a traditional vacuum with a soft brush attachment, to vacuum the foam thoroughly. Place the item either in the bathtub or on a clean tarp or other flat surface outside, within reach of the garden hose.
    • Step 2

      Combine 2 parts water and 1 part Woolite in a clean spray bottle, and shake it well. Spray the entire foam piece with the solution, and allow it to set for about 30 minutes. If it is a mattress you are cleaning, stand it up and make sure to spray the top, bottom and all four sides. You'll probably need someone to help you with this.


    • Step 3

      Rinse the Woolite solution from the foam with clean water. If you're indoors, a showerhead attachment with a long hose is a lifesaver. If you're outside, use a spray nozzle screwed onto the garden hose.
    • Step 4

      Fold the foam item in half and press down on it to gently to squeeze out the excess water. Wringing or twisting Memory Foam will damage it.
    • Step 5

      Empty the Woolite solution from the spray bottle and rinse it out very well. Combine 4 parts water with 1 part white vinegar in the spray bottle and shake it. Spray the entire foam item with the vinegar mixture. You don't need to allow it to set.
    • Step 6

      Use a hand-held blow dryer on the lowest heat setting to help with the drying process. To avoid damaging the Memory Foam, don't hold the dryer too close to it. It's fine to allow the foam to simply air dry (if possible), which you can accelerate by using an electric fan if you like. Be sure to allow the foam to dry completely before putting it back on the bed.
    • Skill: Moderate
    • Ingredients:
    • Vacuum or hand-vac
    • Spray bottle
    • Woolite
    • White vinegar
    • Hand-held showerhead (indoors)
    • Garden hose (outdoors)
    • Blow dryer or electric fan
    • Tarp (outdoors)
    • Tip: Always check the manufacturer's recommendations and follow its instructions carefully when cleaning Memory Foam products.
    • Tip: Rotate and flip your Memory Foam mattresses about twice a year.
    • Tip: Change your linens often and hand-vacuum Memory Foam products regularly.
    • Warning:
    • Never twist or wring Memory Foam, as this will damage your items.

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