If you are wondering how to clean a mattress without baking soda you will be glad to know that there are several other (and probably more effective) ways to remove stains and freshen up your mattress.
If you don’t want to use chemical-based cleaners, then I have options for you that are all-natural using ingredients that you probably already have in your kitchen.
Why not use baking soda?
Baking soda is brilliant at absorbing smells which makes it great for cleaning a mattress. Usually, you would sprinkle it over the bare mattress (removing the protector sheet) and then leave it to work before vacuuming it all up.
But what it won’t do is remove stains such as blood and urine. For those types of stains, you will need a more powerful cleaning method and a little scrubbing action to get your mattress looking clean again.
If you have bicarbonate of soda instead, know that it is the same as baking soda. In the UK we call baking soda ‘bicarbonate of soda’ and you will usually find it on the baking shelf at the supermarket rather than the cleaning aisle.
Perhaps you don’t have any baking soda, or perhaps you don’t like it on your skin? If that’s the case I have you covered because there are several other ways that you clean your mattress without using baking soda. Read on!
I sometimes use affiliate links. When you click these links and make a purchase, I may get a small commission. It won’t cost you anything but it helps me to run this site.
Why clean your mattress?
Over time your mattress will get dirty, dusty and possibly stained.
If you have kids, urine stains might be a problem and even blood too. My kids regularly experienced nose bleeds when they were growing up which unfortunately led to plenty of stains to clean up on mattresses and pillows.
As well as stains there is dirt you can’t see. Tiny flakes of skin collect in your mattress along with the dust mites that feed on it. It sounds horrible, but it is totally normal to have dust mites in a bed. In fact, the average mattress contains 10-10,0000 million dust mites. If you have allergies or asthma then your mattress may be causing health issues for you.
Vacuum your mattress first
Before you start cleaning your mattress give it a really good vacuum. Mattresses get dusty with flakes of skin and dust mites. This problem is worse if you didn’t use a mattress protector on your bed.
If you are not already using a mattress protector I recommend you invest in one because it will keep your mattress cleaner. All you need to do is launder the protector once per month.
Set your vacuum on a low setting and use the crevice tool to get right into the dips and around the edges. Turn your mattress and vacuum on the other side too.
Seven ways to clean your mattress without baking soda
If you don’t have baking soda to hand or want to use it, there are plenty of alternative ways to clean your mattress and remove stains.
Let’s have a look at all the options.
1. Upholstery or carpet cleaner
Upholstery and carpet sprays are ideal for spot removal of stains on mattresses. All you usually need to do is spray on, and work it in with a brush. I like to use a washing-up brush for this.
Here are some carpet stain removers that also work on mattresses.
- Vanish Carpet Cleaner Spray
- Dr. Beckmann Carpet Stain Remover
- OzKleen Carpet Power Cleaner
- 1001 Trouble Shooter Spot Stain Remover Trigger Spray
- Astonish Premium Carpet and Upholstery Shampoo
How to remove mattress stains with Vanish carpet cleaning spray
- Spray the stain and then rub it in with a cloth or a washing-up brush
- Leave it to work for 5 minutes
- Wipe off
If you are worried about bleaching test on a small area of the mattress first.
To give the whole mattress a freshen up try some carpet and upholstery deodorizer. Shake it over the mattress and then rub it in before vacuuming it up. Leave it to air.
2. Vinegar spray
If your mattress smells musty or needs a freshen up vinegar is an ideal natural choice. Vinegar is a natural disinfectant, and odor neutraliser The best type to use is distilled white vinegar which you can usually buy in your supermarket.
Make up a spray bottle of neat distilled white vinegar and spray your mattress all over lightly. There will be a strong smell of vinegar to start with but don’t worry because the smell quickly disappears.
3. Dish soap and water
If you don’t have baking soda or vinegar to hand and you have a stain to deal with, plain old dish soap will work effectively.
How to clean a mattress with dish soap
- Whisk together a few drops of concentrated dish soap in a bowl of water until you get plenty of suds.
- Use just the suds on a sponge and work into the stain.
- Dry with a towel.
- Leave to air
4. Bleach spray
Bleach or hydrogen peroxide will remove stains on your mattress but unfortunately will leave behind a white mark instead.
How to clean a mattress with bleach
- Make up a spray bottle of bleach and water
- Spray directly on the stain
- Work it in
- Leave to dry and air.
Warning: If you use bleach on a stain, don’t use vinegar too. The combination of bleach and vinegar will produce toxic fumes.
5. Lemon juice and salt
Lemon juice is a natural stain remover, whitener and disinfectant. When mixed with salt it makes a scouring paste which is great for spot removal of stains.
- Make a paste with salt and lemon juice
- Apply to the stain and work it in
- Leave it for an hour
- Wipe off
If you don’t have a fresh lemon to hand use bottled lemon juice instead.
6. Stain remover bar
I am a long time user of Vanish stain remover bar for removing stains from clothing. I found it works just as well on soft furnishings and mattresses.
Here are two stain remover bars that work well:
To remove a stain from a mattress, wet the bar and then rub it into the stain until it’s gone.
7. Soap nuts
Last but not least are soap nuts. Soap nuts are a natural and sustainable alternative to regular soap. You can usually buy them in a 1kg bag and they have multiple uses, including washing your laundry, hair, hands and body.
How to clean your mattress with soap nuts
- Make up some soap nut liquid by boiling 15 soap nuts in 6 cups of water, and then letting it cool.
- Whisk up the soap nut liquid to produce suds.
- Use the suds only on the stain and work it in.
- Leave to air.
How to look after your mattress
If you spend a little time looking after your mattress then you will prevent it from getting stained and impregnated with dust. Keeping your mattress well maintained will help prevent allergies and asthma, and keep it smelling fresh.
Get into the routine of doing this regularly, and even better make it one of your 10 minute clean up tasks.
Here are some tips for looking after your mattress:
1. Use a mattress protector
Always put a mattress protector underneath your bottom sheet. Launder it once per month.
2. Turn it regularly
A mattress can form dips where you lie on it which is especially worse when two people are sleeping on it. Turn your mattress over and around regularly to help it wear evenly.
3. Vacuum it regularly
Vacuum your mattress once per month to remove dust.