There is no set answer as to how often you should wash your bedding, as it will depend on an individual’s lifestyle. However, generally people should wash their bedding at least once a week where possible. Keeping your bedding is important to ensure proper hygiene. And after all, nothing quite beats getting into a fresh set of bedding after a long, tiring day!
How Often Should I Wash My Bed Sheets?
If the average person sleeps 8 hours per day, that would mean we spend at least 229,961 hours sleeping in our beds in our lifetime. Considering how long we spend in our beds, it is therefore important to keep it clean.
General research suggests people should wash their sheets at least once per week; this includes duvet covers, pillow cases and under sheets. Duvets and pillows, meanwhile, can be washed more irregularly. Pillows, for example, should be washed every 4 to 6 months (if they’re washable), while duvets are recommended to be cleaned at least twice a year.
However, if you sleep with your pets, perhaps eat in bed or have allergies then you should probably be washing your sheets at least every 3 to 4 days. Similarly, if you exercise regularly or perhaps suffer from night sweats then it is advised you wash your bed sheets in a similar timeframe. This would also apply during the spring and summer months when it is hotter, and people either sweat more or suffer from seasonal allergies.
What Setting to Wash Bed Sheets?
Before washing your bed sheets, you should check the label and see what the recommended temperature settings are for washing. Generally speaking, most duvet and pillow covers should be washed at at least 60°C.
While washing bedding at a temperature below 60°C will get rid of dirt, it won’t kill any pathogens. Therefore, it is important to check the product label and wash the sheets at the highest possible setting. Cotton, typically, can handle hotter settings while materials like polyester cannot.
How to Wash Bed Sheets?
There’s no need to visit a laundry service to wash your bed sheets. Simply separate them by colour (like you would with clothes), pop them into the washing machine and wash at 60°C. You’ll only need to add washing detergent, as fabric softeners can result in bedding becoming less breathable.
If you have any stains on your bedding, then it is key to pre-treat these before washing. Either use an oxygen cleaner or stain remover; using a small brush may even help get the stain out by softly brushing.
When it comes to drying your bedding you can either opt for a dryer or a clothes rack or line. If you don’t have access to an outdoor space or garden in your home, then you could either dry your bedding on a low temperature in the dryer (as hotter temperatures will wear away the fabric) or by placing them on a clothes rack.
However, drying your sheets outside is always a great option on a sunny day. The sun is both a natural disinfectant and brightener, so will leave your bed sheets extremely fresh!
Can You Wash Bed Sheets with Clothes?
When washing your bedding you shouldn’t overload the washing machine, as doing so will mean your bedding won’t get as clean as there’ll be less water to circulate in. It is advised, furthermore, advised that you don’t wash your bedding with any clothing. Zips, buttons and other materials can cause piling on your bed sheets over time.
Another reason why you shouldn't wash your bed sheets with your clothes is because they’ll often end up trapped inside the sheets. Consequently, meaning your clothes aren’t washed properly either! If you can, wash your towels, bed sheets and clothes separately to ensure they last longer, and are cleaner for you.
What Happens If You Don’t Wash Your Bed Sheets?
While washing bedding, and putting it back onto the bed, might seem like a boring or excessive chore, it is actually really important for your health. When bedding is left unwashed, it begins to build up:
- Dead skin cells
- Body oils
- Dust mites
The presence of dust mites, while it might not bother some, can lead to allergy symptoms such as rashes and skin irritation. Without washing your bedding regularly, these will build up and could result in thousands living in your bedding without you knowing!
Not washing your bedding can also lead to other health or skin problems, such as:
- Skin breakouts
- Skin irritation or eczema
- Allergy symptoms
- Bacterial or fungal infections
Therefore, it is important to wash your bed sheets regularly. If you can, also avoid letting pets into your bed, shower before you sleep, remove any makeup and try not to eat or drink in bed. This way, you’ll ensure your bedding is kept fresher for longer!