How Often Should You Wash Your Sheets?

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There’s nothing quite like the feeling of slipping into a freshly made bed: the crispness of the sheets against your skin, and the comforting scent of cleanliness. A good night’s sleep is a vital component of our overall well-being, and the condition of our bedding plays a significant role in achieving that much-needed restful slumber.

Beyond the visible stains and odors that accumulate over time, our sheets harbor an unseen world of microorganisms, dead skin cells, oils and allergens. As we spend a significant portion of our lives nestled in our beds, it is essential to invest in sheet hygiene. So we need to strike the delicate balance between maintaining a healthy sleep environment and the practicality of everyday life.

Why it’s Important to Wash Your Sheets

Keeping your bed clean can prevent the buildup of dirt and allergens in your bedding that could contribute to making you ill over time. 

Sweat and Body Oils

Sebum, a body oil secreted by your skin as a natural moisturizer, will build up in your bedding over time. This, along with sweat, can accumulate in your bedding, fueling the necessity to wash your bedding on a frequent basis. 

If you suffer from night sweats, the problem could be more severe. In this case, you should stay away from synthetic bedding that could trap heat, which would cause you to sweat more. 

Dead Skin Cells

Humans shed around 600,000 skin cells per day, which adds up to 1.5 lb per year. Because we spend almost half of our lives in bed, this is where it falls off and builds up most over time.  

Pets In The Bedroom

If your pets are allowed in your bedroom, pet dander and fur will also collect in your bedding over time. This can add to allergy problems as well as making your sheets dirtier more quickly. 

man asleep with dog in bed

Dust and Indoor Pollutants 

As much as we hate to hear it, our sheets also accumulate dust, dust mites, mold spores and bacteria. The more often we are able to cleanse our sleeping space of these indoor pollutants the better it will be for our health. 

How to Wash Bed Sheets

Before diving into how often we should be washing our bed sheets, let’s take a look at the process we should follow when cleaning our bedding. 

Treat Stains First 

You should pre-treat stains on bedding before actually washing it to ensure the stain doesn’t seep further into the bedding, which will make it harder to get out.  

Wash With High Heat

When washing your bedding, ensure you are doing so with high heat. This will ensure that mold spores, bacteria and dust mites are actually killed during the wash. This is better for people that suffer from allergies as the allergens will be killed off. It’s also an important part of maintaining the ideal sleep environment

Tumble Dry on Low 

Tumble drying your bedding on low heat helps preserve the integrity of the material used in your bedding so it will last longer. At this stage of the process, all bacteria, dust mites and mold spores should have been effectively killed. 


How Often Should You Wash Other Bedding Items

It’s important to wash your bedding frequently to ensure you are practicing good sleep hygiene. Experts recommend washing your sheets at least once every two weeks, but preferably every week as these come into direct contact with your skin. The good news is that you don’t need to wash all of your bedding that frequently.  


When it comes to pillowcases that are in direct contact with your body on a nightly basis, they should be washed on a weekly basis or once every two weeks along with your sheets. Oils from your head also build up quickly on your pillowcases, which can make your hair dirty more quickly if you don’t wash these items frequently. 


You can get away with washing comforters every three to six months, as they are not in direct contact with your body during the night. The exception would be if you have pets that frequently sit on your comforter. Pet dander might build up, triggering your allergies. In this case, you might want to wash your comforter more frequently. 

Duvet Covers

Duvet covers only need to be washed between every two weeks to a month, depending on how much contact they have with you during the night. If you are in direct contact with your duvet cover, then it’s best to wash it along with your sheets on a weekly basis. 


Your blankets, as well as the pillows themselves, don’t need to be washed as frequently because they are generally protected by a cover. But dust mites and allergens can make their way into your blankets and pillows, so they should be washed occasionally. Once or twice a year should be enough to keep your blankets and pillows clean.  

Final Thoughts

Washing your bedding is not just a mundane chore but a gateway to a rejuvenating and restful night’s sleep. By incorporating regular sheet washing into your routine, you can bid farewell to the hidden world of microorganisms and allergens, welcoming the freshness and comfort that clean sheets bring.

While the ideal frequency may vary from person to person, we’ve learned that regular laundering is key to promoting better sleep hygiene and overall well-being. So, whether it’s a weekly ritual or a bi-weekly affair, make a conscious effort to prioritize the cleanliness of your sheets and, in turn, the quality of your sleep.


What happens if you don’t wash your sheets? 

If you don’t wash your sheets, allergens, dust, dust mites and mold spores will build up in your bedding, becoming a breeding ground for bacteria and fungi which can make you sick.

How often do you need to wash your sheets?

Your bedding should be washed every week, or once every two weeks. Other bedding such as comforters and pillows can be washed less regularly, as they don’t come into direct contact with your skin.

Is it okay to wash your sheets every week?

Yes, in fact washing your sheets on a weekly basis is ideal for sleep hygiene. It ensures bacteria, allergens, animal dander, dust, dust mites and mold spores don’t get a chance to build up in your bedding.

Can you get bed bugs if you don’t wash your sheets? 

Having bed bugs is not connected to washing your sheets. But washing your sheets will allow you to find and get rid of any bed bugs before it becomes an infestation.

Tyla Oliver

Tyla Oliver is a passionate SEO content writer. In her free time, she enjoys reading, mountain climbing and sky diving.