For parents and pet owners, pee stains are a pretty common problem, so knowing how to remove urine stains from a mattress is a worthwhile skill. With use, even the best mattress (opens in new tab) will naturally discolor over time, so don’t feel embarrassed if you’ve taken off your sheet set and realize it’s time for a deep clean.
We’ve covered some of this previously in our guide to how to clean a mattress (opens in new tab), but here we’re focusing on how to treat mattress pee stains with natural cleaning ingredients.
Although most modern mattresses are durable enough to withstand many cleaning methods, using natural ingredients means you won’t irritate your skin or potentially leave a chemical smell on your bed.
How to remove urine stains from a mattress
When tackling urine stains, it’s best to let your mattress air dry and breathe sheet-free after you’ve cleaned it. If you’re fortunate enough to have a spare bedroom, this shouldn’t be a problem, but you may need to sleep on the couch while your mattress dries if you have no alternative.
If you absolutely have to sleep on your mattress overnight, be sure to clean the urine stains first thing in the day, and leave it until the last possible moment to add sheets. Let’s go through, step by step, how to remove urine stains from a mattress, whether they are old stains or new.
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1. Prepare your bed
Now, it’s time to turn your attention to your bed. The first thing to tackle is the sheets, which you can simply strip and place in your washer with the rest of your laundry. Next, assuming you don’t have a bed topper (opens in new tab), it’s time to clean your mattress itself. For this you’ll need to make a natural cleaning solution which can be used to clean just about anything in your home.
2. Prepare your cleaning solution
When it comes to removing urine stains from a mattress, your basic cleaning solution should consist of water and distilled white vinegar. It’s really simple to make, so here’s the two-step process:
- Take 1 part water, 1 part distilled white vinegar
- Combine and add to a spray bottle
You should make enough to spray generously over the area, but if you have mixture to spare you’ll be sure to use it in other ways. A tip if you want to eliminate odor is to add a few drops of an essential oil such as lavender or peppermint to your cleaning solution. This will keep your mattress clean and fresh.
You should also keep another home cleaning essential, namely baking soda, handy.
3. Blot the excess away
You should act quickly when dealing with urine stains because the sooner you treat them the less likely they are to stain permanently.
Any areas which are wet to touch should be blotted as soon as possible with your vinegar and water solution. Cleaning gloves on, you should press firmly against the wet patches with a clean cloth soaked in your solution. This will take away any excess urine and begin treating any excess stains.
4. Spray generously
Now you’ve removed any superficial pee stains, it’s time to treat deeper into your mattress. You do this by spraying the affected area with your cleaning solution, very generously. When it’s soaked, you can scrub the area to loosen up any stains which may be forming.
5. Top with baking soda
When it comes to how to remove urine stains from a mattress, baking soda is a great way of removing stains naturally. When combined with vinegar it can fizz up, which is a satisfying way of knowing your cleaning solution is working. Top the wet area with a generous sprinkle of baking soda, which will keep your mattress top shiny and new.
Now we wait and allow the natural cleaning ingredients to work their magic on those pee stains on your mattress. Ideally, you should leave your mattress for as long as possible for effective stain removal, but leave it for a few hours minimum to dry.
If you can’t leave your mattress overnight, there are a few things you can do to help. Air drying can take less time in some climates, and you can speed along the process by leaving it in a sunny spot of your home or placing it near a heater. Using a hair dryer can also speed along the process by helping your mattress dry.
7. Vacuum up the dry soda
Once dry, it’s time to break out your handheld vacuum (if you don’t have one, a regular vacuum cleaner will also do just fine) and remove the excess baking soda from the top of your mattress. Be thorough, as it can get stuck easily in the creases and crevices of your mattress.
Also, be aware that some take a look at our cooling mattresses (opens in new tab) may require more care during cleaning due to their higher number of cooling gel layers.
How to remove old urine stains from a mattress
For old urine stains and stubborn pee stains, you can add in a few effective helpers to make it easier to treat discoloration. Hydrogen peroxide and dish soap mixed with water is an effective treatment. Leave for half an hour and then cover with baking soda until dry. Vacuum as normal, and hopefully this will reveal a cleaner mattress which is true to color.