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A Simple Mattress Stain Remover That Really Works

A good night's sleep starts with your mattress. When you find the right one, you want it to last for years to come... that is, until it is marked by an irreversible stain. How do you get it out? Try these handy tips excerpted from "Martha Stewart's Homekeeping Handbook."

Photography by: James Ransom

What to Know


Most commercially manufactured mattresses come with a stain guard to protect the exterior, but they still require diligent care. So first for mattress care: Rotate your mattress every three months (top to toe and side to side) to distribute the wear evenly. This is usually also a good time to vacuum your mattress using the upholstery attachment. Additionally, consider a mattress pad -- this machine-washable layer slips snugly over the mattress to protect it from stains and spills.


How to Make (and Use) Stain Remover


If a spill does occur, work fast. Beware of using dry-cleaning fluid -- the chemicals can damage some of the construction materials in your mattress. You can apply warm water with an eyedropper to the area; then apply a small amount of mild detergent or baby shampoo with a soft clean toothbrush; sponge the area thoroughly with warm water; and blot dry with a clean, color-safe towel. For stains on mattress pads and toppers, the treatment depends on the material. Wool or fleece should be treated using a solution of one part white vinegar to three parts water and then air-dried completely, in sunlight if possible. Egg crate should be treated with warm water and mild detergent. And memory foam should be treated by hand-washing the topper in warm water with a mild detergent.

Once your stain is treated, all that's left is to make the bed! Watch Martha make the comfiest bed for a perfect night's sleep: