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How to Fluff a Pillow

How to Fluff a Pillow

Bedding Guides
Read Time: 5 minutes
  • Fluffing pillows regularly by hand or in the dryer can help maintain their shape and comfort, and giving them fresh air can prevent lumps and odors.
  • Knowing when to replace your pillows is essential to ensure a comfortable and hygienic sleep environment.
  • Protecting your pillows with regular cleaning, using pillow protectors or covers, and investing in high-quality materials can prolong their lifespan and maintain their fluffiness.

No one likes lumpy pillows, so fluffing them from time to time can keep them feeling nice and comfy. There are several ways you can go about fluffing your pillows. Some people prefer to do it by hand, while others see results by placing them in the dryer.

Next, we’ll teach you how to fluff a pillow. Later, we’ll offer some tips to keep your pillows in the best condition.

By Hand

Fluffing your pillow by hand is one of the easiest ways to fluff your pillows. You’ll want to grab the top and bottom of the pillow, then squeeze and release it. Do this for 30 to 60 seconds and repeat the process at least five times. After squeezing the pillows, shake them out and place them on your bed.

Another way you can fluff them is by hitting your pillow against your bed or with your fist. This will help loosen up any lumps and help your pillow regain its shape. If you are willing to go the extra mile, try kneading or massaging the lumps out individually for the best results.

When using any of these methods, it’s important to be patient. It could take a couple of minutes of fluffing for your pillow to regain its shape and resume its duties as your most comfortable pillow.

In the Dryer

Placing your mattress in a dryer is another method, but be sure to read the care instructions before you do so to ensure it’s dryer-safe. If your pillow is not safe for the dryer, it can wear down pillows and create more lumps.

You may be considering washing your pillows in addition to fluffing them in the dryer. This is perfectly fine, but you’ll need to make sure your pillows are completely dry before placing them back on your bed. Putting a damp pillow on your bed will not only keep you from fluffing up properly, but they will also develop a moldy odor.

It’s best to place your pillows in a dryer without any other items. Additionally, you’ll want to avoid putting more than two pillows into your dryer. Place your dryer and tumble dry them on low heat to keep your pillows from shrinking or damaging their material. It may not take an entire cycle for your pillow to fluff up.

Fresh Air

Pillows tend to retain moisture, which could cause lumping and funky odors. So, giving your pillows a little bit of fresh air, do them some good. Letting airflow in and around the pillow, you’ll create separation between the material, which could help regain its fluffiness.

When is it Time for a New Pillow?

Typically, high-quality pillows will last at least 1 to 2 years, sometimes even 5 years or more. However, a cheap pillow may not last this long. If you start to notice rips or holes in rips, tears, or holes in pillows, it’s time to replace your pillow. You’ll also want to consider a new pillow set if you are having trouble removing lumps from your pillows or they are starting to lose their shape.

Pillows can absorb a lot of moisture, whether it’s from sweat or just being in a room that is too hot. Sometimes when your pillow holds onto too much moisture, it will not return to its original shape.

How to Protect Your Pillows

To keep your pillows in the best condition, you’ll want to make sure you are cleaning your pillows regularly. Consistent cleaning will keep your pillows from smelling musty. Not to mention, drying them from time to time will keep them feeling nice and fluffy.

It is also a good idea to invest in high-quality pillows made from durable materials. Pillows are made from all kinds of materials, including memory foam and latex. These types of pillows usually last longer than pillows made with synthetic polyester fiber fills.

Your pillows can hold onto dirt, debris, dust mites, sweat, and other bacteria, which could cause them to lose their structure. We recommend using a pillow protector or pillow covers as they could help keep dirt and oils from ruining the fibers of the pillow.

You can slip a pillowcase over the protector to give it a colorful look that feels plush when you lie down.


How frequently should I wash my pillows?

We recommend you wash your pillow at least every six months. However, cleaning them every three to four months will keep them looking their best. Plus, it will keep funky odors from developing.

You’ll want to clean your pillowcases more frequently than your actual pillow. It’s usually best to wash them with your bedding every 1 to 2 weeks. As for pillowcases, wash them with your bedding, which should be a weekly cleaning routine.

How do you help your pillows last longer?

There are many ways to keep your pillows feeling fluffy for a long time. One way is to fluff them by hand periodically or in the dryer. You’ll also want to properly wash and dry your pillows to keep them looking nice and clean.

Remember to use a mild detergent when you wash your pillow and always dry them on the lowest heat setting. Drying your pillows is key. Wet or damp down can easily attract and grow mold and ruin your items.

How do you get the musty smell out of pillows?

If you’ve noticed your pillows are smelling a bit funky, wash them with baking soda and a mild detergent. You can even spray your pillow with a 50/50 vinegar and water mix to eliminate the smell. Sometimes when pillows develop an odor, it could be a sign mold or mildew is growing. It’s best to get rid of bedroom items with mildew or mold as it could be potentially dangerous to your health.

When should I throw my pillows away?

Most quality pillows will last 1 to 2 years. However, you should replace them once they start to look a bit dingy. When your pillows begin to lose their fill material, or they have tears and rips, you’ll want to get a replacement.

Obviously, you’ll want to dispose of your pillow if they have persisting odors. It’s also a good idea to replace your pillow if they become too lumpy or if it causes you discomfort while you’re sleeping.

Will fluffing my pillow in a dryer cause damage to it?

Drying your pillows on the lowest setting will not cause damage to your items. When you dry your pillow on high heat, it could cause your pillow to shrink up and damage the fill material. You can always air dry your pillow in the sunlight to avoid damaging them in the dryer.


Keeping fluffy pillows on your bed will help you stay comfy throughout the night. When your pillows are starting to lose their fill material, or they feel like a lumpy pillow you may need to swap out your old pillows for new ones.

Sleeping on an old, dirty pillow will only hinder your sleep. For this reason, we recommend purchasing pillows made with quality materials because they are long-lasting and will aid in a better night’s rest.

Harrison Wall is Sleep Junkie’s business strategist and sleep analyst. He also authors posts on bedding and mattress accessories. Harrison regularly coordinates with new mattress companies and tests their products to determine what really helps you get better rest and have brighter mornings.

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