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Bed Basics
Bed Basics

When to Replace Bedding Accessories

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We've all got items that we hold onto for a little bit too long. Whether it's that antique table from grandma that has been with you since your first apartment in college or a handmade quilt you've curled up in since you were five years old: holding onto keepsakes can be a wonderful trait, except when it comes to your bedding accessories.

Here is our expert advice on how often your pillows, mattress protectors, sheets and linens need to be replaced, in order to keep you snoozing soundly.

How Often to Replace Pillows, Sheets and Mattress Protectors


Bed pillows are often overlooked when it's time for replacing bedding and bedding accessories. However, like all other bed linens, pillows wear with use, losing their firmness and ability to adequately support your neck and spine. A large number of painful aches and pains related to sleep can be resolved with adequate head and neck support from a properly contoured pillow.

Pillows should be replaced every one to two years, or when you start to feel loss of support when you lay down. If you are an allergy sufferer, you may want to replace your pillow every six months or invest in a pillow protector to prevent allergens for building up in your pillow. Dr. Robert Oexman, President of Somly, said, “Depending on your cleaning habits and allergies, you may need to replace your pillows as often as every six months. People talk about how nasty a mattress gets, but pillows are often forgotten. You must keep them clean!”

Your pillow makes up 25 percent of your sleep surface, so finding the perfect pillow will ensure your head, neck and upper back are supported and comfortable all night long. Your comfort and sleep rely on having good support, so don't be afraid to explore your options and upgrade to a pillow for neck pain or a pillow for side sleepers when you have the chance.

Mattress Protectors

Mattress protectors, or a mattress encasement, serve dual purposes; they help to prevent stains on your mattress from unwanted substances or liquids, and also help reduce the number of allergens and dust mites that can embed themselves in your mattress over time. By reducing moisture from getting into your mattress, this will also help increase the life of your bed — preventing materials from breaking down prematurely.

To keep your mattress protector in tip-top shape, make sure you are regularly washing it with your sheets and replacing mattress protectors every one to two years unless you see everyday wear and tear. Holes and worn spots in your mattress protector are obvious signs it's time to make a change. Tattered areas on the material mean less protection, and it's only a matter of time before those spots become real holes.

Sheets and Bedding

After years of use, you may be thinking that you are just now breaking in your favorite set of bed sheets. Keep in mind stains, fraying hems and color fading are all signs that it's time to replace your sheets. When you begin to see these symptoms depends on two factors: how often your wash/dry your sheets, and the quality of sheets you are using based on material and thread count.

Cheaper materials are likely to wear out quickly resulting in fewer uses of your favorite set of sheets. Quality is key here. As a general rule, replace your sheets every two years and wash your bed sheets every one to two weeks. And while it may not seem intuitive, Mattress Firm is a great place to purchase bed linens.

Duvet Covers and Comforters

Most of us don't wash our duvets or comforters very often. In fact, bedspreads should be washed every few months, and at a minimum of twice a year. Duvets age from sweat and skin cells just like the rest of your bedding and should be replaced every five years. If you want a little more mileage out of that bedspread, use a duvet cover and keep to a schedule when you throw them in the wash.

Be on the lookout for wear and tear, and know that any items with holes should be replaced immediately. Come to a Mattress Firm location near you or shop online to see our selection of durable, long-lasting pillows, sheets, mattress protectors and more.

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