How To Get Stains Out Of Mattress

How To Get Stains Out Of Mattress

Is there anything worse than having a stain on your mattress?

While this can be disappointing, there are simple ways to eliminate a variety of stains.

What are the most common mattress stains?

Mattress stains can happen quickly, and the most common ones are from sweat, urine, and blood. These human stains can happen to everyone at some point, especially if you consider that you spend one-third of your life in bed!

Although discovering mattress stains can be unpleasant, to say the least, you don’t have to be stuck with them.

Let’s look at how to get stains out of mattress really quickly, starting with sweat stains.

Eliminating Sweat Stains From Your Mattress

Filthy Mattress

Sweat is by far the most common stain that can occur on your mattress.

Over time, sweating onto your mattress will form those horrible yellowish-brown stains. (FYI, urine can also cause those dreaded stains.)

You can easily get rid of sweat stains with a natural DIY cleaner. You just need lemon juice and salt, as Life’s Carousel reports.

How much of both you’ll need depends on how large the stain is because you’ll have to make a paste with these two ingredients that cover the entire stain.


  • Mix the lemon juice and salt together.
  • With an old toothbrush, scrub the two ingredients together to make a paste. If the paste is too runny, adjust your quantities of both ingredients so that it becomes thicker.
  • Place the paste onto the sweat stain and rub it into the stain with the toothbrush.
  • Leave the paste on the stain for about half an hour so that it can get to work.
  • When the time is over, wipe off the excess paste, such as with a damp cloth.
  • Make sure you air-dry the mattress so that you don’t cause a secondary problem, such as dampness and mold!

Pro tip: To prevent sweat stains from your mattress in the future, always cover your mattress well to protect it. You can do this with a fitted sheet. This will prevent sweat from accumulating into the mattress. It might also be a good idea to sleep in breathable clothing fabrics, such as cotton, to prevent you from sweating during your sleep.

Now that we’ve tackled those pesky sweat stains, let’s look at how to remove other stains from mattresses.

Blood Stains

Cleaning Blood Stains

You’re lying in bed reading a book or watching TV when you get a nasty nosebleed.

Or perhaps you scratch a scab on your leg and climb into bed, not realizing that it’s bleeding into your sheet and mattress.

Bloodstains can happen. Here’s how to deal with them.

  • Wet a cloth with cool water. Wring it out so that it’s damp but not dripping. Make sure you use cold water as hot water will just make the blood stain more difficult to remove!
  • Dab or press the damp cloth onto the bloodstain. Avoid rubbing it as this will make the stain penetrate the mattress fibers even more.
  • Repeat the process of wetting the cloth and then dabbing the blood stain until your cloth doesn’t have any blood on it and comes away clean. Now, you need to get your hands on some cleaning products.
  • Mix together ½ cup of cornstarch with 1 tablespoon of salt and ¼ cup of hydrogen peroxide to form a paste.
  • Cover the bloodstain with the paste. Dab it a little with a cloth and then leave it to work for about half an hour.
  • Once the half-hour is over, get a cloth or old toothbrush and scrub the paste into the stain. This is done to loosen up the particles of the stain.
  • Then, you have to blot the stain with water again! Use a cloth and blot the stain over and over until you can see that the blood and cleaning ingredients you’ve used are no longer on the mattress.
  • Make sure you dry the stain completely before you make your bed.

You can read more about how to remove blood stains from a mattress by reading the article “How To Get Blood Out Of Mattress?”

Urine Stains

Urine Stains On Mattress

Urine is another common stain that can happen to a mattress, especially if you have young children or pets.

Often, what’s even worse than the actual stain is the smell the urine produces.

To successfully remove urine stains and their bad odor, you will need the following items:

  • Spray bottle
  • 3 tablespoons baking soda
  • 1 cup hydrogen peroxide
  • Vinegar
  • ½ teaspoon dishwashing liquid
  • 2 drops of lavender essential oil (optional)


  • As mentioned on Sleep Advisor, you need to add all the ingredients to your spray bottle and shake it well.
  • Spray the solution onto the urine stain. Leave it to soak into the stain for about 10 minutes.
  • Note: if the urine stain didn’t just happen and has instead set into the mattress, you should leave the cleaning solution on it for about 20 minutes.
  • When that time is up, take a towel or cloth and carefully blot the stain until the cleaning solution has dried.

If you do this and the stain is still there, you’ll have to repeat the steps until you can see the stain start to lift.

As the website reports, it’s a good idea to use a light-colored towel or cloth so that you can see the stain get transferred from the mattress onto the towel or cloth.

What If The Urine Stain Is From A Pet?

In this case, it’s probably best to use an enzymatic cleaner.

This will help to remove the odors from the urine stain and prevent pets from continuing to urinate in that spot because they can still smell it and think it’s their new place to pee.

Using an enzymatic cleaner is usually enough to eliminate the stain.

For more information about how to remove urine stains from mattresses, read “How To Get Urine Smell Out Of Mattress.”

Food Stains

Eating On Mattress

Snacking on oily crisps in bed might sound like a treat, but it can easily lead to mattress stains if you’re not careful.

Kids are often a culprit of food stains from snacking in bed, but there are ways to eliminate these stains easily.

Let’s look at some of the common food stains that can end up on a mattress.

Oily Food

Oily food can stain mattresses quickly, so the first thing to do is scrape away the grease. To do this, you can use a credit card or knife.

  • Then, sprinkle baking soda over the oily stain and let it work for about 20 minutes.
  • Scrub the baking soda into the stain and then use a vacuum cleaner to clean up the excess granules.
  • If the stain hasn’t been eliminated, you should use a bit of Dawn dishwashing liquid on the stain. As reported by NPR, this liquid is so powerful and effective that it’s even used to clean oil spills on birds. You only need a few squirts of it. Mix it with warm water before using it on the stain.
  • Gently dab the dishwashing liquid onto the stain, then blot it dry with a cloth or towel.


Yes, chocolate is delicious, but it can be a nuisance when it ends up staining your mattress. Follow these steps to remove it without a hassle.

  • Allow the chocolate stain to dry. Then, scrape it with something hard like a knife.
  • Grab a few paper towels from the kitchen and place them on the stain.
  • Take iron and place it on the paper towels. This is done to melt the remaining stain, but always follow this step with an iron that’s on low heat, as Hunker advises.
  • Clean the rest of the stain with the paper towel.
  • A bit of laundry detergent spritzed onto the stain will send it packing. Gently scrub it with water and a cloth, then allow your mattress to dry.


Vinegar is a great stain-removal ingredient for coffee.

  • First, you want to remove the excess liquid by mopping it up with a cloth or paper towel.
  • Then, put a few teaspoons of baking soda in a bowl. Add a cup of white vinegar and four cups of water.
  • Dip a cloth into this cleaning solution and wring out the excess liquid so that it’s damp.
  • Gently blot the cloth onto the coffee stain. You can also rub it a little bit to lift the stain.
  • Then leave the cloth on the stain for about an hour.
  • When you return, remove the cloth. Dry the stain well so that it’s not wet. You can also sprinkle a bit of baking soda onto the stain to remove any excess moisture.
  • Leave the baking soda on the stain for about 15 minutes, then clean away any excess granules with a vacuum cleaner.


The kids aren’t to blame for this one! If that glass of wine you enjoyed after dinner in bed has ended up on your mattress, eliminate it quickly with these steps.

  • Mop up the excess wine with some paper towels.
  • With a cloth, dab some cold water onto the stain.
  • Sprinkle salt onto the stain and let it soak for about five minutes.
  • Dab the cloth onto the stain with cold water again and gently rub it.
  • You might have to do this process a few times to eliminate the stain.

Pro tip: There’s a good stain remover called Wine Away that works well on wine stains. It’s also efficient at lifting stains made from other red substances, such as pasta sauce, juice, and blood. You can purchase it on Amazon.

How To Get Rid Of Vomit Stains

Man Vomiting In A Bucket

Whether it’s from something they ate or a tummy bug, sometimes kids vomit.

It might happen when they’ve already crawled into bed, which leads to nasty mattress stains.

As soon as the vomit happens, you want to get in there and treat it fast.

  • First, you’ll have to remove any solid particles from the vomit, and you can do this by picking them up with a plastic bag or some paper toweling sheets.
  • In a spray bottle, add a few squirts of dishwashing liquid to the water. Shake it well.
  • Spray this onto a cloth or rag that you’ll then use to dab at the stain.
  • Then, use another cloth to remove the cleaning solution. Wet it and dab it onto the stain until it’s removed.
  • You can also add vinegar to the stain to further clean it. As Hunker reports, you should mix three parts vinegar and one part cold water in a bowl.
  • Take a cloth and dip it into this vinegar solution. Make sure you squeeze out any excess liquid.
  • Then, dab the stain. Vinegar is great because it also disinfects the mattress and doesn’t worry about its strong smell – it will go away once it’s dried.

How To Clean Stains On A Second-Hand Mattress

If you’ve bought a second-hand mattress only to discover that it has horrible stains on it, you’ll want to eliminate them ASAP.

The problem with second-hand mattress stains is that they’ve probably been on the mattress for a while, so they can seem a bit more stubborn to treat.

Even trickier is that these stains are probably unidentified, so you can’t just try specific stain-removal strategies to remove them.

But don’t worry! There are effective ways to eliminate them. You just need a more general stain-removal liquid solution for these types of stains.

Luckily, you can use a citrus type cleaner or mild dishwashing liquid, as Cleanipedia reports.

Allow it to sit on the stains for about five or 10 minutes. Then, use an absorbent cloth to blot the cleaning liquid.

If the stains are stubborn, you can repeat the above steps and then apply some baking soda to the mattress.

Sprinkle it over the stains and leave it to sit overnight. The next day, vacuum the excess baking soda.

A Note On Eliminating Stains From A Memory Foam Mattress

If you have a memory foam mattress that’s got a nasty stain on it, you might wonder if you should tread carefully when it comes to stain removal.

You absolutely should!

Memory foam is a bit more delicate than other types of mattresses.

Although you can use the same cleaning tips like those mentioned in this article, you should know that it’s never advisable to use harsh chemicals or products on memory foam.

So, avoid using bleach or ammonia, for instance, as these can damage the memory foam, as Apartment Therapy reports.

What about hydrogen peroxide? It’s been mentioned in some DIY stain-removal recipes we’ve outlined in this article, but is it safe for memory foam?

Hydrogen peroxide comes up in a lot of stain-removal recipes for memory foam mattresses, as featured on sites such as Sleep Junkie, so it does seem safe.

However, whenever you apply the liquid to your memory foam mattress, you should do so sparingly and ensure that it dries up quickly to prevent problems such as mold or damage to the adhesive that’s keeping the layers of the mattress together.

When drying your memory foam mattress, be patient as it can take longer to dry than other types of mattresses.

Put it outside in the sun or use a strong fan to speed up drying times after cleaning it.

Related Questions

What’s a natural way to eliminate bad odors from a mattress?

Baking soda is a natural and effective treatment that absorbs odors.

After vacuuming your mattress, sprinkle baking soda on it and scrub it with a brush. Leave it for 10 minutes, then vacuum the excess powder.

Should you air your mattress outside after cleaning it?

It’s always the best way to ensure that your mattress dries properly. Plus, the UV sunlight will make it smell lovely and clean it of bacteria, as How Stuff Works reports.

How can you protect your mattress against future stains?

Your best bet is to cover it with a mattress cover.

These are better at preventing stains than covering your mattress with a sheet because they’re hypoallergenic and usually designed to be water-resistant.


Life happens, and so do accidents.

While you might try to protect your mattress from stains, you can’t always achieve this. Even just sweating during sleep can lead to unsightly stains.

In this guide, we’ve looked at how to successfully and easily remove a variety of stains from a mattress, often with the use of DIY natural ingredients, so you don’t have to let mattress stains get in the way of your precious sleep.