How do I care for my bed sheets and linens?

    A little nighttime reading

    HOW DO I CARE FOR MY BED SHEETS AND LINENS?

    How often should I wash my bed sheets and pillowcases?
    Your pillowcases and sheets (flat and fitted) are in contact with your skin, picking up sweat, oils and dirt. They require more frequent washings than other types of bedding. Therefore, to keep your linens clean and hygienic, we recommend washing your pillowcases once a week.

    We recommend washing bed sheets at least every 2 weeks (and preferably weekly). This will give you the fresh and crisp bed feel.

    If you are one of the estimated 40% of Americans that do not use a flat top sheet, be sure to wash the duvet cover layer that touches your skin more frequently (ie: every 1-2 weeks). If you do use a top sheet, you can typically wash your duvet cover monthly.

     

    What’s the best way to wash and dry my sheets?
    Here are best practices to care for and preserve the life of your sheet sets:

    Washing
    Machine Setting: Machine wash your bed sheets and pillowcases on the regular/normal setting. If your sheets are heavily soiled, you can use the heavy duty cycle, but note that doing so often will wear your sheets out faster.

    Detergent: Use a mild detergent to wash your linens. Make sure to let the detergent get diluted by the water filling the washing machine before putting the sheets in, as undiluted detergent can leave stains.

    Pro Tip 1: Use half of the manufacturer-recommended amount of detergent, as too much detergent residue in the sheets will make them stiff.

    Pro Tip 2: Instead of using bleach or brighteners, add ¼ cup of lemon juice to the wash cycle to brighten whites. Harsh chemical bleaches and brighteners can weaken fabrics.

    Temperature: Follow the manufacturer’s care tag for washing instructions specific to your bed linens. The temperature of the water should be appropriate for the kind of fabric used in your sheets. Generally, white and light cotton linens can tolerate hot water, although you may want to alternate washings between hot and warm/cool water. Hot water will help kill germs (great for flu season), but it can wear the fabric out quicker and cause some shrinkage. Wash polyester sheets in warm water. And for darker fabrics, cool water is best.

    Pro Tip 3: Don’t overload your washing machine, as sheets need room to circulate to get clean. Make sure your sheets are not wrapped around the machine agitator when placed in the washer, and wash them alone to avoid other laundry items getting tangled in them or leaving lint.

    Drying
    Again, refer to your manufacturer care tags for specific drying instructions. We generally recommend to dry sheets and other linens on the low or medium setting to avoid shrinkage and premature wear and tear.

    Pro Tip 4: Remove your sheets while still warm in the dryer, and lay them flat on your bed to cool before folding them. This will help prevent wrinkles.

    Storing
    Once the sheets are dried, store them in a cool, dry place away from direct sunlight, preferably a linen closet.  

    Pro Tip 5: Store your entire sheet set in one of the pillowcases that comes with the set to keep your linen closet neat and the set all together. (Or encase the set in your Slumbr pillow bag!)

     

    How often should I replace my bed sheets and pillowcases?
    Your sheets and pillowcases should last 3-5 years with proper care. Replace if they have many non-removable stains, or if they have started to rip, pill, fray, fade or have thinning patches.

    Sheets made with natural fibers (such as cotton or linen) tend to last longer than synthetic fabrics.

     

    How often should I wash other bedding?
    Blankets and comforters: 3-4x per year. An easy way to remember is to time each washing coinciding with the change in season.

    Mattress pad: 2x per year.

    Read the care labels of your bedding carefully for specific care instructions.

    Photo credit: © Can Stock Photo / kryzhov