Handle (and launder) both with care to maximize their lifespans.

Your duvet, that fluffy bed covering that keeps you warm on chilly nights, can have a long and happy life if you take care of it properly. That's why laundering a duvet and its soft, comfy insert is a job that needs to be handled correctly. After all, your duvet is far more than just something to snuggle under for warmth—it's also a decorative accessory that contributes to your bed's status as the room's focal point. So, how do you wash a duvet, and how often should this job be done? And what about washing the insert? Here's what you need to know.

master bedroom blue-gray and white patterned bedding with double nightstand and lamp sets

A duvet, defined.

Before attempting to clean your duvet, make sure what you bought is really a duvet and not a comforter. Though they look alike, the major difference is that a comforter has a cover that can't be removed while a duvet's cover is made to be taken on and off and closes with buttons or ties.

Give it a good cleaning.

Most duvets can be washed in a machine (you'll probably have to use a commercial washer due to the duvet's bulky size). "We recommend using cold water and the gentle cycle," says Taylor Batlin, brand director for the luxury linen company Bella Notte. She also suggests closing the duvet cover (via its buttons or ties) before washing to avoid smaller pieces becoming tangled inside, or the buttons and ties coming loose from excess friction.

Wash it once a week.

"Depending on how close the duvet cover is to your body while you sleep (do you use a top sheet?) and how much general use it gets (are pets and kiddos crawling around on top?), we recommend washing your duvet cover once a week, possibly extending to every two weeks if a top sheet is used," says Batlin. 

Professionally launder inserts.

Besides a cover, a duvet comes with the all-important insert, which can be filled with feathers, wool, fibers that are sustainably grown, or synthetic fibers. Though some inserts can be machine-washed, it'll last longer if you get it professionally laundered once or twice a year, Batlin's preference.

Dry your duvet on low heat.

"To prolong the life of your duvet cover, dry it on low heat or line dry; high heat can weaken or break the fibers over time," says Batlin. For delicate textiles—silk, lace, or linen gauze—no heat dry or line dry is essential. Additionally, avoid over-drying to preserve the integrity of each fabrication.


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