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Accidentally Washed Memory Foam Pillow? Recovery Guide

Accidentally Washed Memory Foam Pillow? Recovery Guide

While you are doing your general cleaning for this coming holiday season, from kitchen tops, living room, and up to your bedroom, you want to work fast and get the household chores done easily.

Your mind is so preoccupied with all the tasks that should be done before the holidays in which you forgot that your pillows couldn't be washed. Well, are you just going to throw them?

Accidentally washing your memory foam pillow can be the worst day ever of your life.  However, you can still save your pillows by absorbing as much water as possible using paper towels, and then pressing it down with your hands. Afterward, you hang them outside to dry your pillows completely.

There are many questions on your mind right now about the proper care and maintenance for your memory foam pillow. Therefore, let me answer all your possible questions one by one by reading the whole article below.

Is It Okay To Wash a Memory Foam Pillow?

The answer is "It Depends."

It depends whether you will wash them in the machine or you will wash them by hand. Washing your memory foam pillows by hand is okay; however, tossing them inside the washing machine is a BIG NO-NO.

Therefore, kindly take note of this simple advice that your memory foam pillows never ever goes inside the washer and/or the dryer.

In short, you clean them by hand and dry them in the most natural way through air or sun drying.

Hence, you can see below the reasons why memory foams cannot be machine-washed.

Why Can't I Machine Wash Memory Foam?

This is simply because memory foam cannot hold and maintain its shape when it gets wet, which makes the pillow crumbly and brittle later on.

A very good analogy of this is a kitchen sponge. Think about how your kitchen looks like after several uses.

In addition to this, memory foam has many air pockets wherein when you machine-washed your pillow, it can open up the cell foam that allows the material to become saturated and too heavy to pick up.

This also has an effect on the quality and odor of your pillow, which I will be discussing on the next topic.

Another reason why washing your memory foam pillows inside the washing machine is a BIG NO is due to the strong agitation of a washing machine that can break and tear the padding inside your pillow.

What Happens to Memory Foam When It Gets Wet

Due to its porous characteristics, memory foam can absorb water right away once you have soaked it in the water. Therefore, once your memory foam pillow gets wet, the moisture will easily penetrate down inside the core that makes it hard to dry UNLESS you let your pillows hang outside to air dry or sundry to remove all the moisture completely and properly.

If ever you have not removed the moisture inside your memory foam pillow, definitely you will feel uncomfortable. Moreover, this can become a breeding ground for bacteria and molds, which makes your pillow to smell musty and stinky over time.

Another thing worthy of taking down is that when your memory foam gets wet, it can hasten or speed up the deterioration of your pillow's performance. Thus, it can also weaken the adhesive that sticks the memory foam together that makes it sag.

If this happens to your pillow, you can find below the steps on how to restore your memory foam pillow for your guide.

How to Revive Memory Foam Pillow

There are several factors why your memory foam pillows become lumpy and saggy. This makes them uncomfortable to sleep on; here are some of the reasons:

  • Too much moisture
  • Poor maintenance or improper handling
  • Due to often use
  • Storing them on an uneven surface
  • Foam can become saggy because of its age

Therefore, it would be best if you will start taking care of your memory foam pillow as soon as you bought them.

If ever you want to revive your old memory foam pillows, here is a step-by-step guide on how to fix them.

Shake your memory foam pillow

First things first, grab your memory foam pillow and give it a good shake by flipping it over several times. Through this, it allows your memory foam to spread out and to let out some moisture trapped inside the foam.

Give it a few punches

Once you have shaken your memory foam pillow, it is now time to turn it sideways and show your martial art skills by throwing some punches and karate chop. In this way, it helps you recondition the memory foam and re-fluff if it became saggy.

Push both ends of the pillow

Grab your memory foam pillow and push both ends with your hands together and then pulls back apart. Repeat this a few times. Once you are done with the first three steps, it is now time to dry your pillow to get the trapped moisture inside the foam.

Later on, I will give you some tips on how you will dry your memory foam pillow, but for now, you must know how long to dry these kinds of pillows as this can allow you to do other things instead of waiting for them to dry completely.

How Long to Dry Memory Foam Pillow

If you are going to ask me how long it takes to dry memory foam pillows completely, well, simply the answer is "It Depends."

It depends on the thickness of the filling of your memory foam if it is thick. Definitely, it will consume longer hours to dry, compared to those with normal thickness.

Remember that we cannot toss memory foam inside the dryer since high heat can damage and deteriorate the quality of the foam.

That is why memory foam pillows are dried outside since it is the most natural way. Normally, it can take 24 hours to dry your memory foam completely.

TIP: To hasten up the drying process, you can use a portable fan to help the pillows dry quickly.

How Do You Get the Moisture Out of Memory Foam?

Getting moisture out from your memory foam is simple and easy; however, you need to prepare first the materials you will need in order to do this properly.

Things you will need:

  • Paper towel
  • A piece of cloth
  • Baking soda
  • Vacuum
  • Vinegar
  • Water

Once you have prepared all the things you will need, it is now time to get the moisture out by doing these steps below.

Step 1

Using a paper towel or clean cloth, blot the surface of your pillow as much moisture as you can. This is to remove any moisture that has not yet sipped down into the foam.

TIP: Instead of blotting in a circular motion, use the dabbing technique as this can prevent the moisture from getting deeper into the memory foam pillow.

Step 2

Once you feel that there is no moisture left in the pillow, sprinkle the affected area with baking soda and let it sit for 10 minutes to do its work.

TRIVIA: Baking soda acts as an additional adsorbent agent by soaking up any remaining moisture inside the pillow.

Step 3

After 10 minutes, vacuum the sprinkled baking soda. You can use the upholstery attachment of your vacuum cleaner to dust off the baking soda.

Step 4

Assess the affected area if you still feel moisture inside your memory foam pillow. If YES, simply repeat the steps from one to three. Once, you redo the steps, make sure the pillow is dry, and you can no longer feel any moisture.

Step 5

For the final touch, deodorize your memory foam with vinegar and water by mixing equal parts in a spray bottle. Mist the affected portion with the solution to eliminate some musty smell.

These steps are only applicable if your pillow got some small spills; however, if your memory foam pillows absorbed too much water or it is totally wet; therefore, you can see below are the steps on how to dry your memory foam pillows efficiently.

How to Dry Memory Foam Pillow?

If your memory foam pillow gets wet, it will take a long time to dry on its own since it is made from porous materials.

Therefore, for the sake of not hitting a damp pillow tonight, make sure you follow these steps to help in the drying process.

Undress the memory foam pillow

Remove the pillowcase from your memory foam pillow and set aside for separate washing and drying

Squeeze out the pillow

Grab your pillow in the sink and then wring out the pillow. Squeeze out the water as much as you can. Repeat this until no more water comes out from your pillow.

Hang your pillow outside

Using a clothesline, hang your memory foam pillows during a hot and sunny day. With the help of the sun's heat, it can dry and evaporate water quickly.

In addition to this, sunlight acts as a natural deodorizer that can eliminate bacteria, mold, and mildew growth, leaving a fresh scent in the pillow.

Alternative: You can dry your memory foam pillow in a well-ventilated area. Use a portable fan to help in the drying process.

Leave the pillow for a couple of hours

Once you set your memory foam pillows to dry, leave the pillows for at least four hours to dry the pillows completely.

Check for any moisture

Before you call it a day, make sure your memory foam pillows are completely dry by pressing the foam between your hands. If you still feel the moisture on your memory foam pillows, repeat steps three to four until no moisture remains.

In addition to this, you can mist the surface of your memory foam pillow with a vinegar and water solution. In this way, it can help in eliminating any lingering odor from your memory foam.

Optional: For extra fragrance, add 3 to 4 drops of your favorite essential oil.

Can You Dry a Memory Foam Pillow in a Dryer?

Due to its structural composition, drying memory foam using a dryer is not advisable. However, if you follow these tips, you can toss your wet memory foam pillow inside the dryer.

Tips on how to dry memory foam in the dryer

  1. Set your dryer in a no-heat setting with a tumble-dry option
  2. Do not dry your memory foam pillow together with other garments with buttons or zippers
  3. Make sure you set it in a gentle cycle to avoid the foam being crumpled

Otherwise, air-drying is the best and safest way to dry your memory foam pillows. Just make sure you flip the pillow every hour, to ensure that both sides are dried completely.

How to Clean Memory Foam Pillow

As a rule of thumb, memory foam pillows should be washed once every two months or depends on the severity of the dirt and smell of your pillow. To do this, just follow the steps you can find below as your guide.

Step 1: Remove the pillowcases of your memory foam pillows. Once you have access to the core pillows, fill your bathtub or sink with lukewarm water. Then, pour a generous amount of mild detergent in the tub.

Tip: Use low sudsing detergent so that your memory foam pillows can be washed easily. Some people prefer using a lavender-scent detergent as this can promote sleep.

Step 2: Submerge the memory foam on the tub and then gently squeeze the foam to remove dirt from your pillow. Make sure you massage areas that have stains or spilled.

Step 3: Once you are done washing your memory foam pillows, drain the tub or the sink. Refill the tub with clean water and then submerge the memory pillows again. Repeat this step until your memory foam pillows do not feel soapy.

Step 4: You have two options on how to dry your pillow. Either you dry them outdoors or use a dryer. Either way, you must be very careful with the drying process, especially when using a dryer as this can melt and deteriorate the foam when exposed to extreme temperatures.

General Cleaning Instructions for Memory Foam Pillows

Vacuum your memory foam pillow once a week

This will keep your pillows clean and fresh against dead skin cells and other foreign particles.

Make sure you spot-clean at least once a month

Spot cleaning your pillow will maintain the cleanliness and freshness of the pillow. This can prevent any lingering odor from your memory foam pillow. Here are the steps on how to do it:

  • How to spot-clean memory foam pillows
    • Pour 3% of hydrogen peroxide directly on the stain and then dab it using a clean towel
    • Mist the surface of the stain with cold water to remove the hydrogen peroxide residue
    • Lightly scrub the stain until the surface is clean
    • Press the stain with a clean and dry towel until you absorb much moisture
    • Dry the pillow under the sunlight or using a portable fan to dry the pillow completely

Regular changing of your pillowcase

Even though your pillows are clean and fresh, if your pillowcases stink and are dirty, it does not matter. That is why it is very important to change your pillowcases regularly.

Change pillow protectors and covers every month

If you are using a pillow protector to cover your memory foam pillow, it is recommended you wash it every month. This is to keep your memory foam pillows clean and fresh since these are the first line of contact on your pillow.

Also read:

How do I Get the Sweat Smell Out of My Memory Foam Pillow

Laying your head in a sweaty and foul-smelling pillow can be grossed. This can also be an initial sign that your pillow harbors dirt, germs, and bacteria.

Therefore, to destroy and eliminate these foul and offensive smelling odors, below are the steps on how to deodorize your memory foam pillow. This method can keep your memory foam pillow hygienic and fresh.

Step 1: Take the pillowcase and lay your memory foam in a clean and dry surface

Step 2: Get a pinch of baking soda, and then sprinkle it on the surface of your pillow.

Step 3: Alongside with the baking soda, drop your favorite scent of essential oil. I would recommend you use lavender oil as this can help in promoting a good night's sleep.

Step 4: Sunbathe your pillow for at least 2 to 3 hours. It is very important to let the pillows absorb the baking soda and essential oil, as this can pull out the stinky smell from your memory foam pillow.

Step 5: After two hours, get your pillows and grab your vacuum. When using your vacuum, use the upholstery attachment to dust off the baking soda together with the dirt and dead skin cells.

Image credit: SleepJudge