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Home » How Do I Keep My Pillows From Turning Yellow? (8 Solutions)

How Do I Keep My Pillows From Turning Yellow? (8 Solutions)

  • Zak 
yellowing of pillows, what causes pillows to turn yellow

Ever since I’ve invested time and money into skincare, I’ve been surprised to learn about how instrumental our pillows are in maintaining good, healthy, and clear skin. Not only are pillows designed to comfort and support us when we rest and sleep, but they play a role preserving our posture as well. I think I speak for all of us when I say that it’s a nightmare to flip over a pillow or pull out the pillowcase and find that our pillows have turned yellow. It looks nasty and probably smells nasty as well. This unsightly issue of yellow stains shouldn’t be ignored. So, with that being said, this article is going to focus on the following question – how do I keep my pillows from turning yellow.

I actually scrubbed the entire internet and experimented with my own pillows to find the most effective tips on preventing pillows from turning yellow.

It will require some effort and a good cleaning regimen, but I promise you that it’s wellworth the effort, especially if you want to maintain good skin and personal hygiene.

Here’s a quick look at the best ways to keep your pillows from turning yellow:

  1. Wash pillowcases regularly
  2. Rotate and fluff pillows regularly
  3. Clean up stains and spills immediately
  4. Use pillow protectors
  5. Follow the appropriate instructions for washing pillows
  6. Don’t eat or drink in bed
  7. Swap out your pillows every other night
  8. Regulate humidity levels

I can assure you that these solutions are effective and will prolong the lifespan of your pillows by a significant amount of time. 

I’ve made sure to check in with my grandmother, and she echoed most of the advice above. In her experience, she has been able to keep pillows stain- or yellow-free for many years using these exact tips.

As they say, grandma knows best. 

With that being said, let’s take a closer look at each of these solutions.

How To Prevent And Clean Yellowing Of Pillows

how do I keep my pillows from turning yellow, yellowing of pillows, pillows turning yellow

1. Wash pillowcases regularly

Whenever you work with material-based items, you have to wash them regularly. This will disinfect them of any pests and fungi, thus removing stains and odors. 

Also, it will preserve the color and texture of the material if you use a gentle cleaner that is designed for soft materials.

The advantage of having clean pillowcases is that they will smell deodorized and be free of bacteria and fungi. Thus, protecting your face and preventing the exacerbation of sinus issues and skin issues.

When I was a late teen, I went through a severe bout of acne. My dermatologist actually suggested washing my pillow cases more often, and I swear that it made a difference to my skin. 

What I’ve also learned is that body sweat, hair oil, and residue from skincare products can rub off onto pillowcases when we sleep. 

Over time, it adds up until it begins to stain and discolor our pillows.

As a rule of thumb, I like to wash my pillow cases once per week, but I switch between pillowcases every other day.

2. Rotate and fluff pillows regularly

As simplistic as this is, it actually helps to keep pillows free of unnecessary dirt and dust. All you have to do is fluff them every morning. 

In fact, I would recommend removing the pillow cases when you fluff your pillows to make sure that you’re getting rid of dirt and dust from both the pillows and the cases. 

Also, switch between pillows every week.

By doing this, you’ll minimize the amount of bodily fluids and skincare products that rub off onto the pillows. 

Thus, reducing the risk of any specific pillow yellowing unexpectedly.

3. Clean up stains and spills immediately

Most materials are absorbent. This is especially true for natural-based materials like cotton or wool because they are porous by nature. They have gaps within their structure that can be filled up with liquid or moisture.

To prevent the spillage or liquid and food from permanently staining and yellowing pillows, you must clean them up immediately.

Rather than scrubbing or rubbing up spills, use a sponge or cloth and blot the spill. 

This will prevent the spill from spreading throughout the surface of the pillow while soaking up most of the liquid so that it doesn’t get absorbed deep into the pillow.

Obviously, you’d also have to wash the pillows or pillow cases with a gentle cleaner and then air dry them until they are good as new.

Don’t leave this for days because liquid stains become a breeding ground for mold or mildew.

Once that sets in, it could result in permanent staining and damage to the pillow and pillow cases.

4. Use pillow protectors

To provide a protective buffer between the pillow and pillow cases, pillow protectors were designed, and they are magnificent.

These are usually high-quality, strong, resilient, and durable protective cases that shield your pillows from the exposure of bodily fluids like sweat, skincare products, water exposure, and liquid spills.

Rather than seeping through the pillow case and being absorbed by the pillow itself, causing yellowing, the pillow protector acts as a buffer that blocks things from reaching the pillow itself.

It’s an added cost, but in the long run, it will save you from needing to buy new pillows much sooner than you normally would.

5. Follow the appropriate instructions for washing pillows

Depending on the design and material used to create your pillow, there may be specific instructions on how to wash and clean them to preserve their appearance and prolong their lifespan.

It’s always a good idea to check the manufacturer’s instructions before washing pillows to prevent damage.

Some pillows can be machine washed, while others may need to be hand washed.

In some odd cases, you may even need to enlist the services of a professional cleaning business. But, in doing so, you’ll drastically reduce the risk of your pillows turning yellow.

If they do, then following these instructions can actually get the yellow out of the pillows. As always, it is recommended to use a mild or gentle detergent or cleaner and run your machine on a low-spin cycle to preserve the shape of your pillows.

6. Don’t eat or drink in bed

As much as I romanticize the idea of breakfast in bed or late night snacks while watching television, there’s too much risk involved with these habits. 

You’re bound to drop food or spill liquid onto the bedsheets and pillows. 

Over time, crumbs and small spills begin to stain, and then they seep deeper into the pillow. At the same time, pests and mold may set in and start to spread, which will only worsen the appearance and odor of your pillows. 

To avoid the above and to ensure that you don’t permanently stain your pillows, try to avoid eating or drinking in bed.

7. Use alternative pillows

If you find that normal pillows tend to yellow too fast in your home, then maybe it’s a good idea for you to invest in something more expensive and better suited for you, like memory foam and/or latex pillows.

These pillows cost a lot more, but they offer more resistance to staining while also offering more longevity in terms of appearance and quality.

I think memory foam pillows are quite a great option, and I would definitely recommend that you try one out if you haven’t already.

8. Regulate humidity levels

When humidity levels are too high, it means that there’s too much water in the air. This can make your bed sheets and pillows feel moist at times.

Excess moisture in the material mixed with things like sweat or body oils can be one of the reasons why your pillows turn yellow.

To remedy this problem, choose an optimal temperature for your HVAC system and invest in a dehumidifier to alter and normalize the moisture levels in the air.

Final Thoughts

It looks like we’ve reached the end of this article on how to stop pillows from turning yellow. I promise you that an effective cleaning regimen can profoundly preserve the appearance and lifespan of pillows and pillow cases.

As long as you put in the time to wash them regularly, fluff them out, clean up spills immediately, and swap them around over time, they’ll remain yellow-free for years.

With that being said, I hope you found this article to be insightful and practical. If you’d like to check out some of our other bedroom cleaning articles, visit some of the links I’ve carefully selected for you below.

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