How to Care for Goose Down Pillows

Goose down pillows can be expensive, and tend to be considered a luxury item, but their superior quality and ability to provide a great night’s sleep cannot be denied. Unlike their harder, cotton stuffed varieties, down pillows provide even balance, and the down ensures that the pillow always stays fluffy, as opposed to becoming flat and depressed with use and the passage of time. However, even down pillows need care, although this is generally simple and no-fuss, and can easily be incorporated into your regular routine.

Things Required:

– Zippered pillow protector
– Washing machine
– Dryer
– Detergent or non-detergent soap
– Clean tennis ball or sneaker


  • 1

    To begin, make sure you keep your down pillows covered with a high quality pillow protector at all times. This is used in addition to a pillowcase, and will help protect the pillow from dust, dirt, and body oils that might rub off during sleep. Make sure this pillow protector has a zippered closure, so you can easily remove it and wash it as and when necessary.

  • 2

    In order to keep the fluff evenly distributed throughout the pillow, make sure you shake the pillow frequently. You can do it every morning when you are making the beds, to make sure the down remains fluffy and the pillow keeps its shape. Another way to fluff up a down pillow is to run it through the dryer on low or no heat, along with a clean tennis ball or sneaker.

  • 3

    When it comes to cleaning down pillows, dry cleaning might seem like a good option, but this can strip the down of its natural oils, and result in a flat and decompressed pillow. Instead, try washing the pillow at home, so you can make sure it is taken care of throughout the procedure.

  • 4

    To begin, pour 1/2 cup of non-detergent soap or detergent into a washing machine filled with warm water, and agitate it, to make sure the detergent is mixed in. Then wash the pillows two at a time – place them in the washing machine, making sure they are evenly distributed in the washer drum, and push them in until all the air is squeezed out of them and they are filled with water. You might have to push the pillows in a couple of times, as goose down is naturally buoyant, and may resist the saturation.

  • 5

    Soak the pillows in this for around two hours, in order to make sure surface stains are removed and to allow the down to absorb all the soap. Then, rinse the pillows three times, making absolutely sure that all the soap or detergent is washed out of them. Follow this up by spinning three times, so that the moisture is removed from the down.

  • 6

    Now, proceed to dry the pillows in a dryer set on medium heat, and add in a tennis ball to make sure they are fluffed up. The drying will take several hours, and you can keep removing the pillows to fluff them up every now and then. You will know they are completely dry when no clumps of down remain in the pillow, and it becomes light and airy.

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