Confession: I wash my bed sheets when I get around to it. Generally, I don't leave it longer than two weeks, but I do rely on the fake tan stains to force me to change them (ew, I know). I'm sure if you asked anyone how often they wash their bedding, most would say once a week. And if that's the truth, then I'm impressed. But honestly, stripping your sheets, doing the laundry, and making the bed again (I mean, mainly trying to stuff my duvet insert into its cover) is a chore I'm convinced we'd all skip if we could.
The fact is, we spend about one-third of our lives in bed (if not more for our lazy girls out there), meaning it's essential we keep our sheets clean. So how often should bed sheets be washed? Once a week? Every two weeks? When they start to smell? The question has sparked responses from celebs, including Khloé Kardashian, who admitted she washes her sheets every couple of days.
Yup, it can get confusing — especially since we all have different routines, lifestyles, and bed sharers. So, to get the real answer to how often we should be washing our bed sheets, I've spoken to experts from Bed Threads and Brooklinen. If this isn't the motivation you (and me) need to do our laundry, I don't know what is.
How often should bed sheets be washed?
One to two weeks! The experts have spoken and are in agreement that how often you change your sheets will actually depend on a few factors, including what type of bedding you have, whether you're a hot sleeper, eat in bed, or have pets.
Katie Elks, Brooklinen's director of design and product development generally suggests "washing your bed sheets every two weeks, and alternating between two different sets to increase longevity." But if you do sleep sweaty (like me), then Elks recommends throwing them in the washing machine more often. Bed Threads' founder Genevieve Rosen Biller agrees: "Ideally you should be washing your bed linen once a week." But if you have bedding made from natural fibers, she says "these will need to be washed less frequently than synthetic materials." If washing them more frequently is getting on your nerves, shop for bedding that keeps your body temp down "Linen sheets tend to be moisture-wicking, lightweight, and cooling, to prevent you from overheating," she says.
Top tip: "Pillowcases should be washed the most frequently as they generally absorb more sweat or body oils and wear in faster due to the weight on top of them," says Elks, adding that you should change your pillowcase a minimum of once a week.
Why do I need to wash my bedding?
When your sheets look and feel clean, you may be wondering why you need to wash your bedding. "It’s important to remember to wash your bedding regularly because dirt, fungi, bacteria, skin cells, and sweat can accumulate in the fibers," says Biller.
"Washing your sheets and pillowcases more frequently is great for your skin and will extend the life of your pillows, mattress, and comforter," adds Biller. "Over time dust, dirt, sweat, and body oils build up and can break down fibers and damage the fabric."
Our guide on how to wash your bed sheets properly will help you out if this chore wasn't usually at the top of your list.