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How to Get a Stain Out of Your Mattress

Someone cleans a mattress
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Your mattress is your sleep sanctuary, offering you a cozy haven to rest and recharge. But accidents happen, and sometimes pesky stains make their way onto the mattresses in your home. Here are some easy and effective ways to remove common stains, from wine spills to pet accidents.

How to Get Stains Out of Mattresses

Someone cleans mattress stains

People spend a lot of time in bed, so stains are bound to happen. Fortunately, these common stains can be removed when treated correctly.


Few things are more enjoyable than drinking a glass of wine in bed while reading a book or watching TV, but sometimes the wine makes its way to your bed too. To tackle a wine stain, start by blotting the stain with a clean cloth or paper towel. Mix a solution of mild dish soap and warm water, and gently dab the stained area, working from the outer edges towards the center. Blot with a dry cloth, and repeat if necessary.

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If that doesn’t work, generously sprinkle salt or baking soda over the affected area, allowing it to absorb the liquid. Then, carefully pour a small amount of boiling water onto the stain to flush it out. Remember to allow the mattress to dry thoroughly before covering it with bedding again.


The aroma of freshly brewed coffee can awaken your senses, but a coffee spill on your mattress is much less pleasant. Act quickly by blotting the stain with a clean cloth to absorb as much liquid as you can. Create a mixture of one part vinegar and two parts water, and dab it onto the stain using a cloth.

Afterward, blot the area with a clean cloth soaked in cold water. Finish by blotting with a dry cloth, and allow the mattress to air dry completely.

If that doesn’t work, you can try evenly distributing a layer of baking soda onto the stain. Then prepare a cleaning solution using warm water and detergent powder and apply the solution to the affected area to let it sit for a few minutes. Afterward, gently blot the stain using a clean cloth.


Whether it’s a pet accident or a late-night accident by a toddler, urine stains on your mattress require a two-step approach. For fresh urine stains, blot the area immediately with a cloth or paper towel. Then, apply a mixture of equal parts water and white vinegar onto the stain and blot gently. Next, combine a teaspoon of dish soap with warm water and sponge the area. Blot with a dry cloth, and let it air dry.

When it comes to pet urine stains, a specialized enzyme cleaner will be your best friend (and is often the only way to get rid of the pungent smell). Follow the instructions on the product, typically involving spraying the affected area and allowing it to sit for the recommended time. Use a clean cloth to blot away the moisture, and let the mattress air dry completely.

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Blood stains on your mattress may seem like a nightmare, but they don’t have to be permanent. First, blot the stain gently with a cloth soaked in cold water to remove as much blood as possible. Then, create a paste using hydrogen peroxide and a small amount of dish soap. Apply the paste to the stain using a clean cloth and gently rub it in. Blot the area with a cloth soaked in cold water and allow the mattress to dry thoroughly.

If that technique doesn’t work, try using a laundry stain remover that contains enzymes, as they can effectively break down the stain molecules. Apply a small amount of the stain remover to the affected area and allow it to sit for a few minutes. Afterward, use a clean cloth to gently blot the stain.

Yellow Stains

Yellow stains caused by sweat and body oil can build up over time and leave your mattress looking less than pristine. If you’ve noticed these stains, start by stripping your bedding and sprinkling baking soda liberally over the mattress. Let it sit for a few hours to absorb odors and moisture. Then, vacuum the mattress to remove the baking soda.

For stubborn stains, create a paste using hydrogen peroxide and baking soda, and apply it to the affected area. Allow it to dry before vacuuming the mattress again.

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Dealing with a vomit stain on your mattress is never fun, but it can be managed. Start by using paper towels or a disposable cloth to remove as much vomit as possible. Mix equal parts water and white vinegar, and gently dab the stain with the solution using a cloth. Continue blotting until the stain is removed, and then sponge the area with cold water. Blot again with a dry cloth, and let the mattress air dry.

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How to Avoid Mattress Stains

Someone puts on a mattress protector

Prevention is always better than cleaning up a stubborn mess, so here are a few tips to help you avoid mattress stains.

  • Invest in a mattress protector: A waterproof mattress protector acts as a barrier against spills, accidents, and other mishaps, keeping your mattress clean and fresh.
  • Practice good hygiene: Regularly wash your bedding, including sheets, pillowcases, and mattress protectors. This helps minimize the buildup of sweat, body oils, and other potential staining agents.
  • Set house rules for drinks and snacks: Enjoy your morning coffee or midnight snack in a designated area away from the bed to reduce the risk of spills and stains.

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When Should You Replace Your Mattress?

A couple sets up a new mattress

A stain that won’t come out isn’t necessarily a call for replacing your mattress, especially if it’s in good condition otherwise. As long as you’ve cleaned the stain to the best of your ability and there is no lingering smell, you can continue to use your mattress. A stain only becomes a long-term issue if an unpleasant odor won’t leave or it is affecting the exterior look of your mattress in a way that bothers you.

While stains can be bothersome, it’s also essential to consider the overall condition of your mattress. If you frequently wake up feeling stiff, sore, or unrested, it may be a sign that your mattress has lost its ability to cushion and support your body properly. Visible sagging, lumps, or indentations are also clear indications that your mattress is no longer providing the necessary support. Additionally, if you notice that you’re tossing and turning more frequently during the night or experiencing increased pressure points, it could be a sign that your mattress is past its prime.

On average, mattresses should be replaced every 7 to 10 years, depending on the quality and usage. If your mattress is nearing or surpassing this timeline, it’s worth considering a replacement, even if it still appears to be in decent condition.

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Accidents happen, but they don’t have to leave a lasting mark on your mattress. These tips and tricks will help you get rid of stains and sleep well at night on a clean bed.

Anne Taylor Anne Taylor
Anne Taylor is a writer with a BA in Journalism and a passion for storytelling. Her work has been published on a variety of websites including Mental Floss and Well + Good, and she recently published her first novel, What it Takes to Lose. When she's not writing, Anne loves to travel (19 countries and counting), spend time outside, and play with her dog, Pepper. Read Full Bio »
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