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How to wash a weighted blanket: Make light work of keeping your bedding clean

Image of a rolled up duvet/blanket inside of a washing machine

Weighted blankets can improve sleep quality and reduce anxiety. Here’s how to keep yours fresh and clean

Are you one of the growing number of people now using a weighted blanket to improve sleep and alleviate anxiety? Then you’ve probably also been wondering about the best way to maintain and keep it clean.

Weighted blankets have become popular with individuals looking to relieve stress, improve sleep, reduce chronic pain and even alleviate the symptoms of depression. They mimic a type of therapy called deep pressure stimulation that helps to relax the nervous system. However, typically weighing somewhere between 2.26kg and 13.6kg, you might be concerned about how best to keep them clean. For example, can you pop them in a washing machine, as you would the rest of your bedding, or is it a hand-wash only item? Despite the best washing machines coming with a whole host of wash settings, are any suitable for such a heavy, singular item?

And you would be right to be cautious. Depending on the type and manufacturer, some weighted blankets have very specific requirements when it comes to washing. In the guide below, we run through the various cleaning methods you’ll find printed on a weighted blanket’s care label, as well as answer some of the most common FAQs.

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What is a weighted blanket?

A weighted blanket looks much like a regular blanket; however, it’s heavier than your regular covering. This is the result of being filled with certain materials such as microfiber beads, steel beads, sand or grains, whose weight creates pressure for anyone lying beneath it, helping to relax the nervous system.

Why use a weighted blanket?

The heaviness of a weighted blanket relaxes the nervous system, which has an impact on stress levels. Research indicates that weighted blankets can help to relieve symptoms of anxiety and depression and, ultimately, promote better sleep.

Are weighted blankets dry-clean only?

That depends on the blanket and materials from which it’s made. The best starting point is to check the care label, which will provide instructions on the best way to clean your specific weighted blanket; but the vast majority of them can be machine washed.

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How to machine wash a weighted blanket

As always, follow the instructions on the care label closely. In general, though, opt for a gentle wash at a low temperature using a bleach-free detergent. In addition, we would advise against using  fabric softeners, since these could have an impact on the quality of the blanket’s filling.

How to spot clean a weighted blanket

In the event that your weighted blanket is marked or stained in a small area, but is otherwise clean, you may wish to spot-clean rather than run a full wash or take a trip to the dry cleaners.

To clean a specific mark off your blanket, use a damp cloth, cold water and either soap or a mild stain remover. Blot the stain with the cloth, rinse with cold water and repeat as necessary until the stain disappears. Then, lay the blanket out or hang it over a bannister or radiator to dry.

How to tumble dry a weighted blanket

Not all weighted blankets can be put in a dryer, but if the care label of your blanket suggests this is possible then follow the instructions provided. Chances are, they will tell you to use a low to medium setting, fluffing the blanket periodically during the cycle to ensure the filling is evenly distributed.

How to air dry a weighted blanket

Alternatively, you can allow your weighted blanket to air dry. Simply lay the blanket out flat, ensuring that the filling is evenly spread out inside. If you don’t have the space to do this, you can hang up your blanket instead – just make sure to give it a good fluff up afterwards.

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