WE'VE all probably assumed that we're changing our bed sheets often enough.
But what really is the right amount of time to leave it before you freshen things up? Here we tell you everything you need to know.
How often should you change your bed sheets?
Your bed sheets should be changed once a week, every two weeks at most.
However, some people, those who have pets in particular, need to wash their sheets more than that.
These people should wash bed sheets every three to four days, especially if they suffer from conditions such as asthma or allergies.
This might help to make any symptoms lessen.
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During the summer, it is also recommended that sheets are washed at this rate because of the sweat that piles up in them.
Why is it important to wash your sheets?
It is important to wash your sheets because of any dust that might pile up during the day on them, and also because of the sweat, body oils, and dead skin cells that your body releases while you're sleeping.
Psychologist Dr Lindsay Browning told Radio 1 Newsbeat: "Sweat goes into the sheets making them not only smell disgusting but also become quite clogged up.
"If you don't wash your bedsheets enough, your dead skin cells are going to build up in these sheets.
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"You won't only be sleeping in the yuckiness of the sweat and dead skin cells, but the mites too."
How to wash bed sheets
Dr Browning said that once a week "would be ideal" while " we can be slightly more forgiving in the winter months."
If you're edging over two weeks then "you're getting into not-so-great territory."
Despite it being winter, it doesn't mean that our body doesn't release sweat and dead skin cells as Dr Browning explained: "And you're still going to bed with slightly dirty hands, the same breath coming out of your mouth.
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"It's really important to wash your sheets regularly because you'll get those allergens in the bed, which will cause to have that congestion."
And here we show you how to wash your sheets and make sure that you're following Dr Browning's advice.
To wash your sheets:
- Make sure that you read the product label to see whether there are any specific instructions.
- Wash it with the hottest water that the label limits you to. Cotton can handle hot water normally while some other materials such as polyester can handle warm water.
- Wash your sheets in a washing machine with detergent.
- You can rinse the sheets for a second time after the first wash, especially if you have sensitive skin, to remove any excess detergent.
- Tumble dry them on low and hang them to dry.
What about other bedding?
When washing your bed sheets, remember to also wash your pillowcases, duvet covers, comforters, blankets, and pillows if washable.
Here is a guide on how to wash these too.
Ideally, you wash the pillowcases along with your bed sheets every once a week.
To wash pillowcases simply just put them in your washing machine on a normal or casual cycle in warm or hot water, depending on the instructions given on the label.
Make sure to add detergent and wash away.
You can wash the pillowcases together with your bed sheets in one wash.
If you both them in a pack together, then they were probably made from the same material and have the same washing instructions.
You should wash your duvet covers once every two weeks, a month at the latest.
Check the label on the covers to reassure yourself what heat levels they can stand.
Add some detergent to the washing machine, and wash your covers accordingly.
It's best to wash your comforters once every two to three months.
Washing a comforter is similar, but you'll probably have to wash this alone.
Add the detergent and wash in cold or warm water, depending on the heat that your comforter can handle.
You should find this on the label attached to it.
Rinse your comforter without any detergent for a second time, to remove any excess soap which it might have stuck to it.
Blankets should be washed once every two to three months too.
These can be annoying because if you wash them the wrong way, they might have their fluff and softness removed.
If you have a fleece blanket, wash it with a gentle cycle and cold water separately.
Do not use too much soap or else it will stick to the fleece fibers and remove the softness of your blanket.
As for weighted blankets, check with their label first to see how's best to wash them.
It should indicate the heat level it can stand, and the same goes, do not use too much soap.
Using a lot of soap will not make your blankets any cleaner.
If you have an electric blanket, check the label to make sure that it is washable, and once you've done that unplug from all its chords to ensure safety.
Wash it with the gentlest cycle on your machine and with cool water and detergent, and after give it a rinse cycle too.
When washing a wool or faux-fur blanket, first check the label to make sure that they are not dry-clean only.
Faux-fur blankets tend to be like that.
Wool on the other hand might be good to put in the washing machine.
If so, let it soak in water and detergent for 15 minutes in the washing machine and then give it a gentle cycle for about two minutes before giving it a rinse cycle.
If your pillows are washable, then wash them once every four to six months.
Cotton, down, or synthetic pillows are normally washable.
Read the instructions that you get on the label and if they are, you can wash them together in the washing machine.
If they are not washable, we suggest either vacuuming both sides of the pillows to remove any dust or else put them in the tumble dryer for 20 minutes on a no-heat or no-air cycle.
And if you're unsure of the easiest way to put your fresh sheets on, one pro is setting the record straight.
Sophie, aka The Folding Lady, starts by laying the duvet on top of a clean cover.
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While making sure all the corners stay together, the mum rolls the duvet down until it resembles a sausage.
She then tucks the corners in each side, before flipping it and unrolling it to reveal the duvet is miraculously inside the cover – with minimal effort.
Cleaning hacks and tips
Here are some tips to help you clean your home like a pro:
- How to clean your washing machine in a few easy steps
- Keep on top of cleaning your oven regularly
- Clean your shower to ensure it's always sparkling
- How to clean your microwave using cheap household items
- Here's how to get rid of that nasty limescale in your kettle
- You're cleaning your carpet all wrong – here's how to get it spotless again in no time
- Unblock a toilet without a plunger
- Clean your fabric or leather sofa in a few easy steps
- If you haven't cleaned your mattress in ages, here's how
- Steps to cleaning your dishwasher to leave it looking brand new
- This is how to clean mirrors and windows without streaking
- Keep your toilet clean in four easy steps
- Give your TV screen a once-over
- Did you know your Venetian, Roman, vertical, or roller blinds also need cleaning?
- Deep-clean your fridge in five simple steps
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