How to Wash Stuffed Animals & Pillows

There are things around the house that you may not think about washing, like your kids' stuffed animals or the pillows on your bed. Both of these things need to be washed periodically to get rid of dirt, dust mites and other debris that accumulate on them over time. It is important to wash stuffed animals and pillows properly so they don't get damaged in the process.

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Keep pillows and stuffed animals clean by washing them regularly.

Cleaning Machine-Washable Stuffed Animals

Step 1

Take off any removable parts of the animals. Bows, pins, ribbons and any other accessories that can be removed must be taken off. If there are any holes in the animals, sew them up before washing.

Step 2

Put the stuffed animals inside of a pillowcase and tie it shut with a string. This helps to protect the plush during washing.

Step 3

Put the pillowcase in the washer with cold water and mild laundry soap. Wash on the gentle cycle.

Step 4

Let the stuffed animals air-dry. To restore the fur on the animals, put them in the dryer (after they have air-dried) for five to 10 minutes on the fluff or no-heat setting.

Cleaning Non-Washable Stuffed Animals

Step 5

Moisten a soft scrub brush with all-purpose cleaner. Make sure the cleaner does not contain bleach or you may discolor the fur.

Step 6

Scrub the stuffed animals gently with the scrub brush until they are clean. Let them air-dry completely.

Step 7

Remove dirt and grime from any plastic parts on stuffed animals with rubbing alcohol. Dampen a rag with rubbing alcohol and use it to wipe down the plastic parts.

Step 8

Remove dust mites from non-washable stuffed animals by placing them in a sealed plastic bag and putting them in the freezer overnight. Remove the animals the next day and vacuum gently with a hose attachment.

Hand Washing Pillows

Step 9

Fill the bathtub with warm water. Add the recommended amount of mild laundry detergent, according to the label's instructions.

Step 10

Put the pillow into the water so it is submerged. Use your hands to agitate the pillow for a few minutes in the water.

Step 11

Wring out the pillow very lightly (just so it's not dripping) and lay it flat on a towel to air-dry. Flip it over every couple of hours to ensure both sides are dry.

Machine Washing Pillows

Step 12

Fill the washer with cold water. Add the recommended amount of mild laundry detergent, according to the label's instructions.

Step 13

Put two pillows into the washer. Make sure to wash two at a time so the washer stays balanced.

Step 14

Wash the pillows on the gentle cycle. Stop the washer after they have been agitating for one to two minutes, then set it to rinse and allow the cycle to finish.

Step 15

Put the pillows in the dryer, along with a couple of tennis balls to help "plump" them up. Add a dryer sheet as well to make them smell fresh. Tumble dry the pillows on low, fluffing them every 20 minutes, until they are dry.