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How To Wash & Dry Body Pillows (Including Pregnancy Pillows)

Updated: Jun 29, 2023

Large body pillows provide exceptional comfort and support for a restful night's sleep or lounging experience.

However, due to their size and frequent use, they can be hard to know how to wash and they get dirtier than other types of pillows as well.

Regular cleaning of large body pillows is essential to maintain their cleanliness, freshness, and prolong their lifespan.

In this guide, we will walk you through the step-by-step process of washing and cleaning large body pillows, ensuring they remain clean, fresh, and comfortable.

By following these techniques, you can revitalize your body pillows and enjoy a hygienic and cosy sleep experience.

Washing and Cleaning Body & Pregnancy Pillows

Due to their larger size, it's best to hand wash body pillows, especially if you don't have a very large washing machine. To do this, fill your bathtub with warm water and detergent. Gently agitate the fibres with your fingers and then gently squeeze out the excess water. Allow to air dry, DO NOT USE HEAT.

Pillow Materials

Before initiating the cleaning process, it's crucial to assess the materials used in your large body pillows. Different pillow materials such as memory foam, polyester fibrefill, or down alternative may have specific cleaning requirements. Understanding the materials will help determine which method is best for it and which products you should avoid.

Preparing for Cleaning

Checking Care Labels: Read the care labels or manufacturer's instructions on your large body pillows. They may provide specific guidance on cleaning methods, recommended products, or if the pillow is machine washable.

Spot Cleaning: Inspect the pillows for any visible stains or spills. Spot clean these areas promptly using a mild detergent or stain remover appropriate for the fabric.

Cleaning Methods

Machine Washing

Check the care label to determine if your large body pillow is machine washable. If it is, place the pillow in a large capacity washing machine.

Use a gentle cycle with cold water and a mild detergent suitable for delicate fabrics. To maintain balance, wash two large body pillows or add towels to the load. Don't spin dry the pillow afterwards.

Once the cycle is complete, remove the pillow and squeeze out excess water without twisting or wringing. Repeat the process if you have multiple pillows.

Hand Washing

If your body pillow is not machine washable, or you prefer a gentler approach, hand washing is a better alternative.

Fill a bathtub or large basin with lukewarm water and add a small amount of mild detergent.

Submerge the pillow and gently agitate the water, focusing on stained areas. Rinse the pillow thoroughly with clean water until all detergent is removed. Squeeze out excess water gently without twisting.

Read our how to hand wash your pillows if you want a full guide on how to do it as well as some professional tips.

Drying and Fluffing

Air Drying: It is recommended to air dry large body pillows to preserve their shape and integrity. Lay the pillow flat on a clean towel or drying rack in a well-ventilated area. Rotate and fluff the pillow periodically to ensure even drying. Avoid direct sunlight, as it can cause discoloration or damage.

We recommend sprinkling baking soda onto your pregnancy pillow. This will help it dry faster but also prevent any problems such as mould if the pillow is taking too long to dry. Body and pregnancy pillows can take a while to dry and that's because of the sheer size of them.

Machine Drying: If your large body pillow is machine washable and the care label permits machine drying, choose a low heat or air-only setting. Add dryer balls or clean tennis balls to aid in fluffing and prevent clumping. Check the pillow frequently to prevent overheating, and remove it from the dryer when it's completely dry.

Read our guide on 'how to dry body pillows' for a full explanation.

Maintenance Tips

To maintain the cleanliness and freshness of your large body pillows between washings, consider these tips:

  1. Use Pillow Protectors: Invest in removable pillow protectors to shield your body pillows from sweat, oils, and stains. These protectors are easily washable, extending the life of your pillows. Of course, getting the right sized pillow protector can be tough but it's worth the research!

  2. Regular Fluffing: Give your large body pillows a good fluffing and shaking to redistribute the filling and maintain their loftiness. Do this regularly to prevent them from becoming flat or lumpy.

  3. Spot Cleaning: Address spills or stains promptly with a mild detergent and clean cloth. Blot the affected area gently, taking care not to saturate the pillow.


Cleaning your large body pillows is crucial for maintaining their cleanliness, freshness, and prolonging their lifespan.

By assessing the materials, following the appropriate cleaning techniques, and practicing regular maintenance, you can ensure that your body pillows remain comfortable and hygienic.

Whether you choose to machine wash or hand wash, always refer to the care instructions provided by the manufacturer. With proper care, your large body pillows will continue to provide exceptional comfort and support for a rejuvenating sleep experience.

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