How to Wash Pillows Without a Washing Machine

Washing your pillows is an important part of keeping them clean and fresh. However, not everyone has access to a washing machine, or they may not be able to fit their pillows inside. Luckily, there are alternative ways to wash pillows that don’t require a washing machine. In this article, we will discuss how to wash pillows without a washing machine and answer some related questions.

Why is it Important to Wash Pillows?

Pillows are a breeding ground for bacteria, dirt, sweat, and dead skin cells. Over time, these things can build up and cause unpleasant odors and even acne breakouts. Regularly washing your pillows can help eliminate these issues and keep your pillows fresh and clean.

What Type of Pillows Can Be Washed Without a Washing Machine?

Most pillows can be washed without a washing machine, including down, feather, fiberfill, and foam pillows. However, it’s important to check the care label on your pillow to make sure it’s safe to wash.

How to Hand Wash Pillows

Hand washing pillows is a simple and effective way to clean them. Here’s how to do it:

  1. Fill a bathtub or large sink with warm water and add a mild detergent.
  2. Submerge the pillow in the water and gently knead it to work the detergent into the fabric.
  3. Drain the water and refill the bathtub or sink with clean water to rinse the pillow.
  4. Gently squeeze out excess water from the pillow.
  5. Hang the pillow outside or in a well-ventilated area to air dry.

How to Spot Clean Pillows

If your pillow only has a small stain or spot, you can spot clean it instead of washing the whole thing. Here’s how:

  1. Dampen a clean cloth with warm water and add a small amount of detergent.
  2. Gently blot the stain with the cloth, being careful not to saturate the pillow.
  3. Rinse the cloth with clean water and blot the area again to remove any remaining detergent.
  4. Allow the pillow to air dry.

How to Dry Pillows Without a Dryer

If you don’t have access to a dryer, you can still dry your pillows using these methods:

  • Air dry: Hang your pillows outside or in a well-ventilated area to air dry. This may take several hours or even a full day.
  • Fluff and rotate: If you have a sunny spot, you can fluff and rotate your pillows every few hours to help them dry faster.
  • Use a hair dryer: Set your hair dryer to the lowest heat setting and use it to dry your pillow, holding it several inches away from the fabric. Be sure to fluff the pillow periodically to prevent clumping.

How Often Should You Wash Your Pillows?

You should aim to wash your pillows every 6-12 months, depending on how frequently you use them. If you have allergies or asthma, you may need to wash them more often.

What Should You Do if Your Pillow Isn’t Washable?

If your pillow isn’t washable, you can still keep it clean by using a pillow protector or pillowcase. These can be washed regularly to keep your pillow fresh and clean.


Washing your pillows without a washing machine is a simple and effective way to keep them clean and fresh. Whether you choose to hand wash them or spot clean them, be sure to follow the care label and let them air dry properly. With these tips, you can enjoy a good night’s sleep on clean and comfortable pillows!

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