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How to Clean a Down Comforter

Your comforter probably has a label that says dry-clean only, but if you’re feeling daring (and want to save a few bucks), this way should work just as well.

Photo: Mark Lund

1. Put your comforter in the washing machine, without any other clothes. Use a big enough front-load washer so it isn’t stuffed too tightly in -- that can damage both the comforter and the machine. (You might have to head to a Laundromat for a big front-loader if your washer isn’t big enough.)

2. Add a mild detergent. Use sparingly -- and make sure the detergent itself isn’t colored (that can stain your comforter).

3. Run the washer on the cold, gentle cycle. Make sure you send the comforter through at least two rinse cycles. If you suspect there is still any detergent residue, rinse again.

4. When cycle ends, remove your comforter from washer. It might look a little gray, but don’t worry -- that’s normal when it’s wet.

5. Put it in the dryer on the lowest setting possible.

6. Before you start the dryer, add either some (new!) tennis balls or dryer balls to fluff up the comforter. For a fresh scent, you can also toss in a dryer sheet.

7. Check on it every so often to take it out and fluff it up. Keep resetting the dryer until your comforter is completely dry. This will take a few cycles. If it’s not fully dry, the down feathers will flatten, so be patient!

8. Once it’s finally dry, take it out of the dryer and put it back on your bed -- fresh and clean.

-- Kristin Koch

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