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A comfortable pillow is essential to a good night's sleep, but over time even covered pillows can get dirty and pick up unpleasant stains and odors. While some people simply throw out their old pillows and buy new ones, regular washing can extend the life of your pillow and save you money. Most pillows are quick and easy to clean.

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1. Prepare your pillow

First, remove the pillowcase, sham, or other covering. Some pillows, particularly memory foam ones, may have a tightly fitting cover with a hidden zipper. Remove that and wash it separately for best results. Cases can interfere with drying and make it difficult for soap to saturate the pillow. Make sure to check the tag for any washing warnings.

Remove pillowcases and coverings cgering / Getty Images
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