How To Clean Feather Pillows?

Most of us prefer down and feather pillows over foam or polyester, as the former offers comparatively better comfort and airflow. If you own a feather pillow, then it is essential to clean them after regular intervals to maintain the freshness. On this post, we will discuss how to clean feather pillows easily.

How To Clean Feather Pillows The Right Way

Feather Pillow Cleaning: Why it is Necessary?

Dead cells, sweat, moisture, oil are the few things we produce while sleeping, which penetrates the pillows. Such elements result in unpleasant odor and harmful bacteria. So, you should clean the pillows after every six months to kill the allergens and bacteria that results in sneezes and sleep disruption.

If you are not allergic to anything, you might experience sore throats, eye scratching, and respiratory troubles. Even if you do not experience any of these, there are other reasons to wash the feather pillows.

  1. Unpleasant smell. One of them is the greasy smell that might arise after a few months of use if you do not clean it regularly. Apart from that, the sweat, oil, and moisture will degrade the quality of pillow covers as well as the feather fills.
  2. Slow recovery. If you are sick and still sleeping one of the dank smelling pillows that contain several pathogens, you will not be able to recover quickly. When we mention pathogens, we also mean dust mites, who survives on your dead skin and starch present in the fills. Over the time, your pillow may accommodate hundreds and thousands of dust mites. Soon, they will start shedding their exoskeleton and faces that will be inhaled by you while resting. Overall, even if they are unable to cause any harm to you, there are chances that you will raise some alarming situations yourself by inhaling them.
  3. Enhances durability. Regular cleaning and washing of pillows keep them fluffy, fresh and they last longer.

These are the reasons why we need to clean the pillow, whether it is made of feather fills or foam. The best way to clean the pillows or the mattress is a steam vacuum. Steam will not only kill the fleas, dust mites and other insects from the pillows but will also remove their eggs to prevent their regrowth. has published their product research and recommendation on the best vacuum for dust mite allergies, that you might check for better guideline.

Clean feather pillows Using Steam Vacuum

Steam vacuums clean the pillow, mattress, and many other materials or surfaces in your house without any chemicals. They only use water and high-temperature steam to clean dust and all other microbial. Steam cleaning is fast, and once you are done, the pillows will dry faster as compared to traditional washing methods. Also, you do not have to think about feather shedding. Handheld steam cleaners are better to do this. Visit to learn more about handheld steam cleaners.

Please follow the instructions to use a steam vacuum on your pillows.

  1. Fill the vacuum tank with the required level of water and attach the upholstery cleaning tool. Plug in the unit and wait for the water to get heated.
  2. In the meanwhile, remove the cover from the pillows you need to clean.
  3. Look for a hard floor or countertop, something that cannot be harmed by high-temperature steam. Place the pillow on that surface.
  4. Start spraying steam from one edge to another. Move slowly, so that the steam can reach to the core and sanitize it deeply. Once done on one side, flip the pillow and repeat the same back and forth motion.
  5. Steam cleaned pillows will dry in a fast manner. However, if you want or if it’s taking extra time, you can put a pillow in the dryer with some tennis balls, which will bring back its fluffiness. You can also dry them in the sun.

Clean Feather Pillows using the Washing Machine

Apart from steam cleaner, you can also use a washing machine to clean the feather pillows. You can machine wash the pillows if there are some deep stains too stubborn to be removed by a steam cleaner.

Please follow the given instruction to wash them carefully, so that they can last for long.

  1. Check the pillows for any tears or rips and mend them. Otherwise, it will start shedding the feathers inside the washing machine, and you will regret your decision.
  2. Use a top or front load washing machine. We recommend you to use a machine without an agitator – the spindle that revolves while the machine does the job. If you only have access to a machine with an agitator, place two pillows vertically to avoid any damage. You can also add a couple of towels to maintain the balance.
  3. Add one or two spoons of detergent. We recommend Gain liquid detergent as it is low in suds.
  4. Use a gentle cycle wash but not at a high temperature.
  5. Once done, remove the pillows from the washer and fluff them using your hands. Place them into the dryer at medium heat.
  6. Add a few tennis balls or wool dryer balls into the dryer to break up the feather clumps.
  7. Stop the dryer after every 15 minutes and fluff the pillows by hands. Total drying time depends upon the shape and size of pillows.
  8. If you sense any unpleasant smell from the pillows, let it dry in the sun for a couple of hours.

Tips to follow

  1. Always use pillowcases to protect the pillow from debris and other dust particles.
  2. Keep at least a pair of pillow covers, so that you can always have a clean spare while you wash one of them. You can also use protector covers or liners to keep dust mites at bay.
  3. Wash and change the pillow covers every week to keep the pillow clean and save yourself from any allergies or unpleasant smell.
  4. Always try to keep the pillow dry, do not leave wet towels or clothes on it and do not go to sleep with wet hair.
  5. Do not let dry the pillows outside on a humid day.
  6. If you want to freshen up the feather pillows, you can put them inside a tumble dryer for fifteen minutes. Use low air or heat settings.
  7. Make sure that the pillow is completely dry before you put on the cover. Even slight amount of moisture can develop a musty smell.
  8. Do not machine wash the feather pillow more than once a year. You can regularly use steam cleaners to keep the pillow hygienically clean.
  9. Use the steam vacuum at its highest temperature while cleaning the pillows. Feather fills will like the hottest and driest vapors, not moisture droplets.

Bottom Line

Steam cleaning and machine wash will not only give you an allergen-free and clean place to rest your head, but it will also encourage the durability of feather pillows. Now, you know how to steam clean and machine wash the pillows. So, you should be able to take care of them in a better way to give them a long life. However, there comes a time when you have to replace them.

Do you know when to replace the pillows? If you fold a pillow into half and it does not bounce back to its original shape. It’s time to browse some feather pillow on Amazon.