Skip to Content

Why My Memory Foam Mattress Smells Like Sweat

Why My Memory Foam Mattress Smells Like Sweat

Our memory foam mattress will develop an unpleasant smell over time since we are laying our body on it each night. With the amount of body sweat and oil we produce, there is no doubt that even we always clean our memory foam mattress topper, the smell will not easily go away. 

Hence, there is a need to deodorize our memory foam mattress so that we can catch every day's good night's sleep, and here are some simple tips on how to freshen up stinky memory pillow like a pro.

To freshen up memory foam mattress, let the mattress breathe by removing all the bedding materials and air-dry it to remove any moisture trapped inside the foam. Sprinkle your mattress with some baking powder and let it sit for half an hour. After 30 minutes, dust it off using the upholstery brush attachment of your vacuum.

However, aside from the sweaty smell of memory foam mattresses, the most common complaint about this type of mattress is the off-gassing phenomenon, which can disappear over time.

This can be resolved quickly by airing it out outdoor for several hours. The longer the memory foam airs out, the lesser the odor will be noticeable.

So, you can read below are the ways you can do to remove the smell on your memory foam mattress.

How To Get The Smell Out Of Your Memory Foam Mattress

Because of its ability to contour your head and neck while you sleep, memory foam has been known in making different bedding materials such as mattresses and pillows.

However, these memory foams are usually mixed with specific chemicals to provide a spongy structure on which memory foam is known for.

Nonetheless, these chemicals give off a strong odor that smells like gasoline. The smell usually fades away over time, but you can hasten the time it takes to free the offensive of your memory foam mattress by doing these steps.

New Memory Foam Mattress


  1. Open the windows of your room to let your memory foam mattress air out by leaning your memory foam against the window.
  2. If the sun is out, take your mattress outside, but make sure you placed it under a shady tree since too much heat can damage your memory foam.
  3. Once you air out your memory foam mattress, sprinkle a pinch of baking soda all over your mattress and let it sit for 30 – 60 minutes.
  4. Give your memory foam a good shake and vacuum off the baking soda powder left on your mattress using the upholstery brush attachment. This will significantly help in minimizing the smell of your memory foam.
  5. If you are using Febreze or other fabric deodorizers in your home, gently spray the solution all over your memory foam to freshen and mask the smell.
  6. Lastly, you can rely on an air purifier, as this has an advanced HEPA filter that can remove a wide array of air pollutants. Use an air purifier in combination with a humidifier to get the best result.

Sweat and Different Types of Stains

Just like your pillow, your mattress is also exposed to different kinds of dirt and stains such as sweat, hair and skin oil, drool, and even accidental spills. That is why it will give off a bad smell as time passed by.

In addition to this, your mattress plays an essential role in maintaining your body healthy since having a good sleep means having a healthy mind, and a healthy mind is like a healthy body.

Therefore, your memory foam mattress needs proper cleaning and maintenance to keep it clean and fresh at all times. Here are some ways on how to freshen up and clean your mattress:

Cleaning Your Mattress

As a rule of thumb, your mattress needs to be cleaned every six months; however, if you encountered some accidental stains and spills, you need to treat it right away to avoid immediate setting.

Things you will need:

  • Baking  soda
  • Bowl
  • Clean cloths
  • Essential oil
  • Salt
  • Vacuum


  1. Strip all your bedding materials from your memory foam mattress and toss it inside the washer while you are cleaning the mattress.
  2. Once you have access to the core mattress, you need to vacuum the surface of your mattress, which includes the sides and underneath. Don't forget to vacuum as well as the areas between your mattress and the box spring.
  3. In a bowl, mix a cup of baking soda and essential oil (preferably, lavender). Once you have thoroughly mixed, place the mixture in a strainer. Shake the essence baking soda all over the surface of your mattress. Let it sit until your bedding materials are washed and thoroughly dried. Once the beddings are okay, dust off the baking soda on the surface of your mattress using the vacuum.
  4. If you spot some stains on your mattress, make a paste by mixing baking soda, salt, and water. Once you have achieved the paste-like consistency, rub the stain you with the paste and then let it sit for half an hour. After 30 minutes, using the clean cloth, wipe away the paste until no residue is left on the mattress.
  5. With the clean and fresh bedding materials you washed a while ago, you can now remake your memory foam mattress. For extra fragrance, you can spray some fabric deodorizer all over the surface of your mattress.

Removing Sweat And Urine Stains

Bedwetting is usually a common issue when you still have toddlers in your household, and urine stains produce yellowish colored stains similar to sweat.

It is common for a mattress to discolor and have that lingering musty smell IF you are not maintaining it properly.

Therefore, here are some steps on how to freshen up memory foam mattress for these kinds of stains,

Things you will need:

  • Baking soda
  • Hydrogen peroxide
  • Liquid dishwashing soap
  • Spray bottle
  • Paper towels


  1. Grab some paper towels and blot as much moisture as possible that soak inside your mattress.
  2. Make a cleaning solution by mixing hydrogen peroxide with three tablespoons of baking soda and few drops of liquid dishwashing soap in a bowl. Mix thoroughly until the baking soda dissolves.
  3. Pour the solution on a spray bottle, and then you mist the entire stained area of your mattress. Let the solution sit on the stained area for a while.
  4. Leave the treated portion of your mattress to dry. To speed up the drying process, you can place a portable fan near your mattress, or you can use your blow dryer as an alternative; however, make sure to set it in a cool setting.

If you use a vacuum, make sure you take any contaminants away before it totally soaks further inside the mattress. It is advisable to use a wet/dry vacuum and not just your regular household vacuum.

You may repeat the cleaning steps listed above to remove and eliminate any urine stains or odor that still lingers on your mattress.

You may also use a clean towel to dry the area.

Handling Blood Stains On Your Mattress

Due to some unfortunate situations, your mattress could also be stained with blood; therefore, if this has ever happened to you, make sure you treat the stain right away to avoid setting it up.

Things you will need:

  • Hydrogen peroxide
  • Clean towel
  • Spray bottle


  1. Prepare the cleaning solution by filling the spray bottle with hydrogen peroxide.
  2. Check the area of your mattress with the bloodstain, and then spray it gently with the cleaning solution. Using a clean towel, blot the wetted area, and then repeat the process until the stained area is gone.
  3. Let the mattress dry by air-drying it, or you can use a portable fan or blow dryer to speed up the drying process.

Removing vomit stains on your memory foam mattress

Whether you had an upset stomach or your kids eat too many cookies before bedtime; therefore, throwing up in your bed may happen. Hence, you need to act quickly so that it will not set odor and stains on your mattress. 

Things you will need:

  • White vinegar
  • Spray bottle
  • Clean towel
  • Baking soda
  • Vacuum


  1. You need to prepare first the cleaning solution by mixing equal parts of water and white vinegar in a spray bottle.
  2. Shake the cleaning solution vigorously and then treat the area that was stained by spraying the soiled area. Blot it immediately with a clean towel to wipe off the stain. Continue doing this step until no mark is seen on the stained area.
  3. Once you have blotted and wiped off the dirt, sprinkle a pinch of baking soda all over the surface of your treated area. Leave the treated surface for an hour, and then dust it off using your vacuum to remove baking soda powder on your mattress.
  4. To remove dampness or moisture on your memory foam mattress, air-dry your mattress outdoors, or you can use a portable fan to hasten the drying process. Make sure not to dry it directly under the sun since the heat of the sun can deteriorate the memory foam and lose its quality.

Do you want to know how to keep your memory foam mattress smells fresh and clean for a more extended period of time? Well, listed below are some tips you can follow to keep your mattress clean and fresh longer.


  1. Change your bedding linens at least once a week to prevent dirt, dust mites, dead skin cells, and other types of allergens from building up on your mattress.
  2. Invest in a good quality mattress cover, as this will help in preventing moisture from getting into the core of the memory foam mattress since humidity promotes the growth of bacteria, molds, and mildews, this will also help in lessening the growth of this allergens.
  3. Every month, vacuum the mattress to dust away dirt and dust mites. You can use the crevice tool to clean the tight spots of your mattress. To remove lingering odor, you may consider sprinkling baking soda all over the mattress surface and let it sit for 30 to 60 minutes.
  4. Try to flip your memory foam mattress every three months so that it can retain its proper shape. Through this, it can help in preventing body indentations, which results from sleeping on the same spot night after night. Thus, regular flipping and rolling your mattress will help avoid unexpected wear and tear.

Note: If your mattress is a pillow type kind, you can rotate it every six months from top to bottom to retain its shape.

Remember also:

Memory foam has two mortal enemies, liquid and too much heat. Hence, here are some things you should remember when handling a memory foam mattress so that you can prolong its lifespan.

  • Putting memory foam is a BIG NO, NO
  • Never try to machine-washed your memory foam
  • Using hot water to clean it is off-limit
  • Do not use brush or sponge with an abrasive surface to scrub your memory foam

To sum it up, here is a table you can look for as a guide to clean your mattress naturally, and later on, I will share with you some cleaning items you can buy on Amazon for fast and efficient ways of cleaning your memory foam mattress.

Natural ways to clean and deodorize your mattress

For Blood For Odor For Urine and Sweat For Vomit
3 percent hydrogen peroxide Baking soda + essential oil Hydrogen peroxide, liquid dishwashing soap, and baking soda 50/50 water and white vinegar
Spray, blot with a clean cloth, and air dry Sprinkle, leave for 30 minutes, and vacuum Prepare solution, spray, and allow to air dry Spray, blot with a clean cloth, and air dry

Cleaning Items For Memory Foam Mattress

Cleaning a memory foam mattress takes a lot of time to do it successfully. Sometimes you will need some cleaning items that will help the work done easily and efficiently.

Listed below are some essential cleaning items that you can find on Amazon.

Also read: The Best Memory Foam Pillows 

Housmile Mattress Vacuum Cleaner

With its advanced HEPA filtration that captures 99.98% of particles as small as 0.3 microns, which is ideal in cleaning mattress.

It also has an upgraded UV light that is effective in killing bed bugs, mites, bacteria, and other microorganisms.

This vacuum cleaner is lightweight and portable that makes it ideal for people who want to clean large surface such as mattress.

Its bottom features suction inlets that can collect dead bugs and has removable canister with HEPA filter that can keep everything contained.


  • It is lightweight (weighs only 2.8 pounds)
  • It has a long UV tube
  • Has a washable HEPA filter
  • It can suck up dirt from the bottom and top inlet
  • It is easy to use


  • It does not have the strongest suction power
  • Its collection pan can only hold 160mL of debris

Febreze Fabric Refresher

This fabric deodorizer is perfect for cleaning and eliminating bad odors from hard-to-wash fabrics such as upholstery, carpets, beddings, clothing, and even on windows.

It is an ideal choice for your current cleaning routine since it can add more fragrance and have a longer-lasting scent.

No matter where you smell musty or even a smelly mattress can be eliminated with just a few sprays of Febreze.

In short, this spray is designed to help to eliminate odors without leaving a heavy residue of its scent on the surface of the fabric.


  • Nearly safe for all fabric surfaces
  • The bad odor fades away as the product dries and you are only left with just a hint of this product
  • It comes with several scents such as floral, tropical, or clean scents that you can enjoy creating new seasonal scents regularly.


  • Some people who are sensitive to chemicals are still bothered with the smell even though the scent will fade away immediately.
  • Not appropriate to use for fabrics that are delicate and does not do well with water spots; therefore, before using this product, make sure to test it first on fabrics that may water spot. You can try to lightly spray on a hidden inner cloth to see how it reacts.

Woolite Stain Remover

This is an all-in-one product formula that can clean, deodorize, eliminate, freshen, and sanitize different types of allergens on soft surfaces such as your mattress and pillows.

Thanks to its unique penetrating action that can go deep on fabric fibers to cleanse and sanitize dirt, stains, and odor-causing bacteria.

With its Oxy stain destroyer formula that works on contact to lift, penetrate and mobilize the stained area in just 30 seconds.

It is safe to use for kids and pets when used as directed.


  • It is easy to use
  • It does an excellent job in removing most stains and even fresh red-wine stains
  • It is made from ingredients that can safely lighten stains
  • Safe to use on carpets, upholstery, area rugs, bedding materials, and more


  • According to some review, this product struggles to remove overnight gravy stains and fresh coffee

Image credit: Flickr