How To Remove Blood Stains From Your Mattress
Last Updated on February 14, 2024
You likely already know that you spend almost a third of your life sleeping. Now, think about what your mattress goes through during all that time. It’s a lot! And—let’s face it—accidents may happen along the way.
Whether you had a cut or scab, your kid hopped on the bed with a bloody nose, or Aunt Flo showed up when you weren’t expecting her, knowing how to remove blood stains from your mattress is a handy trick to know.
Here, we will share some simple ways to get blood stains out of a mattress and also provide some tips on how to keep your mattress clean to prevent any further accidents.
Overview: How To Remove Blood Stains From Your Memory Foam Mattress
- Keep it cool. Always use cold water when removing a blood stain; hot water may set the stain even further.
- Dab, don’t rub. Rubbing can actually spread the stain and make the situation worse.
- Reach for a more powerful cleaner, if needed. Enzymatic cleaners and ammonia are two powerful cleaners you can use to clean blood stains off your mattress.
- Be proactive against stains. Mattress protectors help protect your mattress from accidents.
Preparing to Remove a Blood Stain From Your Mattress
Before we dive into all the supplies you will need to get blood stains out of your mattress, let’s look at some tips to help you succeed even before you bust out all the cleaning supplies.
The first thing to note is to always use cold water. Warm or hot water will actually make the situation worse as it can set the stain forever! Instead, use cold water, which will help flush out the stain.
Next, always dab instead of rub. This is the case with most stain removal, including getting dirt, sweat, or urine out of a mattress. Rubbing can actually spread the stain and make the situation worse.
To prepare, strip the bed of all the bedding and pillows, which you can wash separately. Once your bed is clear, you are ready to tackle the task of removing a blood stain from your mattress.
How to Get Fresh Blood Out of a Mattress
If you can get to the stain right away, we recommend starting with a gentle approach. Blood dissolves in cold water, so this can be your first go-to. Simply dab the blood stain with a cloth dipped in cold water until the stain is totally removed—just be careful not to soak or oversaturate the mattress while you do this.
If the stain isn’t budging, reach for the baking soda. Here’s how to use baking soda to remove blood stains from a mattress:
- First, dab the stain with cold water like we mentioned above. The trick is to try to absorb as much moisture out of the stain as possible before you even start cleaning.
- Next, sprinkle a generous amount of baking soda onto the stain and let it sit for at least 30 minutes. Baking soda is great for removing moisture naturally.
- Lastly, clean off the baking soda by dabbing it again with your (cold) wet cloth.
- Repeat these steps as many times as needed to remove the stain.
How to Get Dried Blood Out of a Mattress
Removing dried blood from a mattress may be a bit more challenging, but not impossible. For stubborn blood stains, we recommend a mix of table salt and hydrogen peroxide.
Hydrogen peroxide can be used at full strength, but pouring it directly onto the mattress will just soak through the layers of memory foam and will take forever to dry. Instead mix up a recipe to create a stain-removing paste. Here’s how:
- Create a paste using about ½ cup corn starch, ½ cup hydrogen peroxide and about a tablespoon of salt. You can adjust the mixture as you need, but it should be about the consistency of toothpaste.
- Before applying the paste to the blood stain, dampen the stain with cold water.
- Apply the paste onto the entire stain using a spoon, spatula or soft-bristled toothbrush.
- Let it sit for about 30 minutes. The paste will dry and the hydrogen peroxide will start to bubble.
- When the hydrogen peroxide bubbles stop, dab the stain again with a clean, damp cloth to remove both the stain and the solution.
- Let the mattress air dry completely before putting any bedding back on.
How to Get Period Blood Out of a Mattress
Period blood is one of the most common mattress stains, and it’s nothing to be embarrassed about. Luckily, it’s easy to clean—as long as you get to it quickly, before it has a chance to set. To clean a period stain, make a paste with about ½ cup cornstarch, ½ cup hydrogen peroxide and about a tablespoon of salt. Dampen the stain with cold water, and then apply the paste to it. Let sit for about 30 minutes while it starts to bubble. When the hydrogen peroxide bubbles stop, dab the stain again with a clean, damp cloth to remove both the stain and the solution.
Other Options to Get Blood Stains Out of Your Mattress
The DIY solutions we shared are great in a pinch, but having a commercial-grade cleaner on hand is also a good option. Below are a few more options for removing blood stains from mattresses, as well as one to steer clear of.
The fabric cleaners you see in the laundry aisle at the grocery store are most likely enzymatic cleaners. These popular solutions work by breaking down the stain, which then makes it easier to remove. Look for an enzymatic cleaner that’s specifically made for upholstery, fabrics or mattresses. That way, you know it won’t do further damage. Spray or pour on a towel or rag, and use that to blot the area—do not apply directly to your mattress. Let it air dry, and then follow with a vacuum to get rid of any residue.
When you have a heavy duty stain, ammonia is another powerful cleaner to try. For this method, mix a tablespoon of ammonia with about a cup of cold water (a little goes a long way here!). Dip a towel into the ammonia mixture and dab the stain. Repeat until the stain is gone.
Note: Wear gloves and open a window if you’re going to try this!
Although it may sound strange, using meat tenderizer—yes, the same seasoning mixture you use to make your steaks tastier—works to break down the proteins in blood. To try it, create a paste of meat tenderizer and cold water, and pat it on top of the stain. Cover and let sit for one hour. Then, remove by dabbing with a dry towel.
You may have heard about using Coca-Cola, or any similar carbonated cola, to remove blood stains. It may sound a little strange, but does it work? The idea is that the carbonation and phosphoric acid in cola work together to break down stains. While we haven’t tried it ourselves, there are plenty of people that vouch for it for cleaning blood stains from clothes and sheets. However, we do not recommend using this method to remove blood from a memory foam mattress, since you’re not able to fully wash it afterward.
Always, always, always make sure you let your wet mattress air-dry completely before replacing any covers or bedding! Open a window or set up a fan nearby if needed. Sunlight also works, if you’re able to get the mattress outside.
Protecting Your Mattress from Blood and Other Stains
Of course, you can’t completely prevent stains on your mattress, but there are a few things you can do to protect your mattress and keep it clean.
One of the first things you should do is invest in a high-quality mattress protector. A mattress protector provides an extra layer of protection against spills, stains and accidents. Our GhostProtector mattress cover has a super-soft knit top for quiet breathability and provides a waterproof layer built to last.
You could also consider getting a mattress topper, which is another layer that goes on top of your mattress. While traditional mattress toppers aren’t waterproof or as protective as mattress protectors, you can use a mattress topper and a mattress protector together. The GhostBed Memory Foam Topper is an all-in-one option, with its comforting gel memory foam and waterproof cover included.
Marc has spent the last two decades designing & manufacturing mattresses and other sleep products, drawing on a lifetime of experience working with the material sciences. With several patents to his name, he works closely with the GhostBed team to create products with the perfect balance of comfort & support. Learn More