How to Get Smell Out of Your Mattress [Odor Removal Guide]

Discover easy and natural ways to deodorize your mattress. Follow our step-by-step guide to remove unpleasant odors for a hygienic, fresh-smelling bed.

Dr. Ifran Saddique

Are you one of those people who wake up in the morning, cringing at some god-awful smell reeking from their beloved bed? Don’t you wish you could get up to the smell of fresh lavender instead of a mattress that smells musty? Well, fear not, dear friends, because, in this delightful little guide that we’ve prepared, we'll immerse you into the art of how to get the smell out of a mattress and ensure your sleep sanctuary remains as fresh as a daisy. We’ll teach you everything you need to know, from how to get the sweat smell out of your mattress to how to make a natural mattress freshener from your household items. So, without further ado, get those snoots ready, and let’s sniff our way to mattress freshness.

Key Takeaways

  • Stubborn odors can be eliminated with simple everyday household items.
  • Baking Soda and White Vinegar can work wonders in your quest for freshness.
  • Consistency is key for maintaining a fresh and spotless mattress.
  • The best way of getting the smell out of your mattress is to prevent it - Invest in a mattress protector
  • Sunlight is a natural mattress deodorizer.

How to Prepare for Getting Smell Out of Your Mattress

Before diving headfirst into our aromatic battle, let's prepare our arsenal of freshness. First things first, let’s understand the issue we’re dealing with—is it the aftermath of a sweaty night, a mysterious mustiness, or the unfortunate result of a spillage? Once you've identified the culprit, gather your tools and prepare for a mattress rescue mission. At first glance, here’s what you’ll need.

  • Baking Soda
  • Spray Bottle
  • White Vinegar
  • Mattress Protector.
  • Essential Oils
  • Hair Dryer

Pro Tip: Tackling the stench in your mattress requires a multi-pronged approach. With enough patience, you will become one step closer to knowing how to make a mattress smell better.

Identifying the Cause

Why does my mattress smell in the first place? To conquer the stink, you must first understand it. Let's unravel the mystery of how to get the stinky smell out of your mattress:

Sweat and Body Odor

The human body is marvelous, but it tends to produce sweat and body odor when we sleep, especially when we are sick or extremely fatigued. Over time, these bodily unpleasantries can emanate and creep into your mattress, leaving behind a less-than-pleasant aroma, or should we say, waft.

Spills and Accidents

Whether it's a spilled drink, a pet-related accident, or even a vomit incident (we won't judge), liquids can seep into your mattress and create a breeding ground for odors. To save yourself some embarrassment, you’ll definitely want to know how to get any vomit smell out of your mattress.

Mold and Mildew

A damp environment is a playground for mold and mildew. If your mattress has been exposed to moisture, you might find yourself dealing with these unwelcome guests and their distinct musty smell. Always inspect your mattress for signs of mold, especially if it has been exposed to any dampness. If you spot any, you'll need to address it promptly.


Accidents happen, especially if you have young children or pets. Urine stains not only discolor the mattress but also contribute to persistent odors. Knowing how to get dog pee out of your mattress, or God forbid poop, is essential for a happy pet home. 

Now that we've Sherlock-ed our way through potential causes, let's equip ourselves for the battle against the stench and learn once and for all how to get these nasty smells out of your mattress.

What Tools and Products You Will Need

To tackle mattress odors effectively, we’re going to need a decent odor-fighting arsenal:

Baking Soda

This humble kitchen staple is a powerhouse when it comes to knowing how to remove any odor or smell from your mattress. It's like a magical deodorizer that absorbs and neutralizes smells, leaving your mattress fresh and crisp.

White Vinegar

Known for its antimicrobial properties, white vinegar is excellent for tackling mold, mildew, and general odors. Plus, it helps break down stains.

Essential Oils

For those who crave a fragrant touch, essential oils like lavender, tea tree, or eucalyptus can add a delightful scent while also boasting antimicrobial properties. Oils will also solve the problem of how to get a strong vinegar smell out of a mattress.

Spray Bottle

A trusty spray bottle is your weapon for applying solutions evenly. It ensures that you target the smelliest areas without drenching your mattress.

Mattress Protector

Prevention is the best medicine. Invest in a good mattress protector to shield your bed from spills, sweat, and potential odors.

Mattress Pad

Adding an extra layer with a mattress pad not only enhances comfort but also acts as an additional barrier against odors.

The Great Outdoors

Sunlight is a natural disinfectant. If possible, air-dry your mattress in the sun after cleaning to eliminate any lingering odors. If you’re in a hurry, you can carefully use a hair dryer on specific sections that need drying fast.

Vacuum Cleaner with Upholstery Attachment

Your go-to tool for a thorough cleaning. It’s worth noting that some high-dollar mattresses will recommend a dedicated vacuum cleaner, so always ask your manufacturer. Regularly vacuum your mattress to remove dead skin cells, a common food source for dust mites, which can also cause odors over time.

Alright, so now that you have the tools and know-how of a professional mattress odor remover, let's explore the step-by-step process of how to deodorize a mattress.

How to Remove Odor from Your Mattress

As we mentioned before, the trick of knowing how to get any odor out of your mattress lies in knowing the exact cause. Now let us show you exactly how to get any odor out of your mattress:

Sweaty Nights

1) Strip the Bed

Begin by removing all bedding, including sheets, pillowcases, and mattress covers. This exposes the mattress for a thorough cleaning and allows you to pinpoint the exact areas that have been affected.

2) Baking Soda Blitz

Sprinkle a generous amount of baking soda over the entire mattress surface. It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas, actually. Let it sit for at least 8 hours or overnight. Baking soda works its magic by absorbing and neutralizing odors.

3) Vacuum Power

After the baking soda has worked its charm, go over the whole mattress surface and vacuum all the visible baking soda. Use the upholstery attachment to ensure no residue remains.

4) Essential Oil Elegance

If you're aiming for a fragrant finish, mix a few drops of your favorite essential oil with water in a spray bottle. Lavender and tea tree oil work best. Lightly mist the mattress before allowing it to air-dry.

Pro Tip: Did you know that lavender has been proven to promote a deeper sleep at night?

Spill Mishaps

1) Blot, Don't Rub

For liquid spills, start by blotting the area with a clean, dry cloth. Avoid rubbing, as it can push the liquid deeper into the mattress. A classic example of less is more.

2) White Vinegar Victory

Mix equal parts water and white vinegar in a spray bottle. Spritz the affected area and let it sit for 5-10 minutes. Blot with a dry cloth to absorb excess moisture.

3) Baking Soda to the Rescue

Follow the same baking soda and vacuum routine as mentioned in the sweaty nights section to ensure all odors are neutralized.

Musty Moments

1) Sunlight Soiree

If your mattress has a musty odor due to mold or mildew, take advantage of a sunny day. Place your mattress in direct sunlight to air-dry and kill any lingering mold spores.

2) Vinegar Vigilance

Create a solution of white vinegar and water (1:1 ratio) in a spray bottle. Spritz the affected areas and allow the mattress to air dry.

3) Mattress Protection 

To safeguard all your hard work, place a high-quality mattress protector or cover over the mattress to prevent any future moisture issues and keep it fresh.


1) Immediate Action

Act swiftly. Remove any wet bedding and pat the affected area gently with paper towels to soak up excess liquid.

2) Vinegar to the Rescue

Apply a mixture of white vinegar and water, ensuring thorough coverage of the affected mattress areas.

3) Baking Soda Blitz and Essential Oil Elegance

Follow the same baking soda method as the "Sweaty Nights" section. Mix a few drops of lavender or tea tree oil with water into your spray bottle and lightly mist the mattress for a fragrant finish.

Tips on Keeping Your Mattress Fresh and Clean

Congratulations! You've successfully eliminated the funk! Now, to keep it that way, follow these tips:

  • Use a Mattress Protector: As mentioned before, this is your first line of defense against spills, stains, and odors. Considering its importance, we would definitely recommend getting up to speed with how to wash a mattress protector.
  • Regularly Wash Bedding: Sheets, pillowcases, and mattress covers should be washed regularly to prevent the buildup of odors and allergens.
  • Choose the right mattress materials: Try to opt for mattresses with materials resistant to moisture and odors, such as memory foam or latex. Be sure to follow these steps on how to clean a memory foam mattress for the best results.
  • Vacuum Your Mattress: Using the upholstery attachment, vacuum your mattress every few months to remove dust, dead skin, and any potential odors.
  • Rotate and Flip: If your mattress is flippable, rotate and flip it every few months to ensure even wear and tear.
  • Invest in a Mattress Pad: Adding an extra layer with a mattress pad provides an additional barrier against spills and stains.

Final Thoughts 

When you think about it, we spend a large part of our lives in bed, so it makes sense that we would expect nothing less than perfection from our favorite sleeping spot. Having said that, there's nothing worse than being greeted by a stinky bed when you're ready to rest your weary head after a hard day’s work. Whether it’s a traditional mattress or a budget-friendly futon, knowing how to clean a futon mattress, or any other one for that matter, is a step in the right direction. Your bed deserves to be a haven of freshness, welcoming you with open arms after a long day. With the help of our guide, bid farewell to the stinky days of yesterday and embrace the promise of the sweetest dreams you have ever had.

Frequently Asked Questions

How long does it take for mattress smell to go away?

The speed at which you can get rid of the pesky smell in question really depends on the strength of the odor and which methods are used for removal. Typically, following our guide should lead to noticeable results in about a day or two at most. Make sure it’s a practical approach that fits seamlessly into your routine so that it’s a plan you can stick to.

Is it normal for a mattress to smell?

While a faint odor is normal and generally expected, a persistent, unpleasant smell should raise alarm bells and indicate that there is an underlying issue you need to deal with pronto. As long as you take good care of your mattress and regularly clean it, as our guide suggests, you can keep your mattress smelling fresh for eons to come. Well, maybe not eons, but definitely enough to keep your nose happy for a few months.

Is it safe to sleep on a new mattress?

Rest assured, fellow sleepers, it's entirely safe to enjoy your slumber on a new mattress. ust be aware, however, that it's not completely unheard of for new mattresses to have a temporary off-gassing and somewhat chemical smell. If you’re wondering how to get rid of the new mattress smell, consider allowing it to air out for a day or two before indulging. The only real danger here would be getting too comfy and not wanting to get back to your busy lifestyle.

How can I deodorize my mattress without a vacuum?

If you don't own a vacuum or have one handy, you can simply grab a clean, dry cloth to wipe away the baking soda after it has sat for the recommended time. Be sure to familiarize yourself with the right methods on how to dry a mattress. Repeat this process until all the powder has disappeared, ensuring a refreshed mattress without the need for a vacuum.

How to get pee smell out of mattress without baking soda and vinegar?

So, if you're wondering how to freshen up a mattress that has been exposed to urine, but you don't have any baking soda or vinegar handy, then fret not. In this case, create a mixture of hydrogen peroxide and dish soap. Blot the affected area with the solution using a clean cloth. This alternative method effectively neutralizes odors, leaving your mattress fresh without the need for traditional household ingredients. Alternatively, air-dry the mattress in direct sunlight to help eliminate the pee smell naturally.

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