Who knew? National Laundry Day is a thing. Though we’re not sure if it can be warranted a day of celebration, after all, who really enjoys doing their laundry? If you’re reading this and can comfortably say ‘I enjoy doing my laundry’ then we want to hear from you and find out what you do to make it enjoyable.
While this one day of the year marks laundry day, it’s no doubt you’re faced with laundry days all year round. If not - then you might need to re-evaluate your laundry habits. We’ll take a look at the history of laundry and how exactly you should be doing your laundry, specifically looking at bedroom items like bed sheets, duvets, and mattresses.
The history of laundry day
Dating back to the mid-1800s following the invention of the laundry basket on wheels, Laundry Day was conceptualised to promote the celebration of cleanliness. In a time where inventions were on the rise and clothing was changing, laundry began to pave the way for the mundane task we know today.
The invention of the very first washing machine is up for debate as records point in different directions. Yet, it is thought to have been first brought to life in the 19th century, around the time that the dryer, known as the ventilator, was invented. Before that time, laundry was much more of a chore and people would rely on local resources like lakes and rocks to clean and dry their clothes. As soap wasn’t widely available until the 19th century, the ‘fresh linen’ scent that we so love and strive for today, unfortunately, ceased to exist. Since then, washing machines and dryers have made doing laundry much easier and it’s as simple as throwing your clothes into a machine and pressing a few buttons.
How often should you clean your bed sheets
While it’s likely you tackle the pile of clothes mounting up in your laundry basket on an almost daily basis, cleaning your bed sheets, duvet, and mattress is a different story. Having a clean sleep environment is important for reducing human contact with bacteria and can actually help prevent the spread of viruses, which is extremely relevant to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic. Plus, a clean sleep environment can also improve sleep quality, with people reporting they get a more comfortable night’s sleep on fresh bed linen.
While cleaning bed sheets is recommended at least every two weeks, with the optimum being once a week, other bedroom items can often be forgotten about. We’ve pulled together a list below which provides you with the prime times to clean your bedroom items:
- Mattress - once a year,
- Mattress protector - every two months,
- Duvet - every 3 months,
- Pillows - every 3 months.
How should you clean your bedroom items?
It’s all well and good advising how often to clean your bed linen and mattress, but how to go about cleaning it is a different story. After all, a mattress clearly isn’t suitable for the washing machine. While your sheets, mattress protector, and pillows are fit for the size of a washing machine, it’s always worthwhile checking the advice provided on the products label in case there is a certain temperature you shouldn’t exceed, or if your products should be hand-washed or dry cleaned only.
While your duvet might be suitable for your washing machine, you might find that you have to make use of another household item; the bathtub. To do this, simply fill your bath with tepid water while adding detergent. Following this, submerge your duvet fully and rinse with water until there are no more signs of soap. As for a mattress, some come with removable mattress covers which can either be cleaned in the washing machine, dry cleaned, or spot cleaned. As for the mattress itself, this is a spot clean job and more often than not, should avoid the use of soap. Rather, you can use stain removers or baking soda as an alternative, with minimal water so that your mattress doesn’t get too wet.
What we know about your laundry habits
At the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic over a year ago, we published an article that revealed laundry habits of the nation, alongside expert advice from Lisa Evans, spokesperson from myjobquote.co.uk. Our key findings suggested that generally, the UK are fairly good at cleaning their bedroom items, with some cleaning more than advised, and some a bit less. You can read more about our findings here.
So, there you have it - a brief look into the history of laundry day! We hope we’ve offered some useful advice this Laundry Day and we wish you all happy cleaning.