Sheets, Pillows, and More: Here’s How Often You Should Replace Common Bedroom Items
Your bedroom is one of the most important rooms in the home. After all, it’s the one place to call your own, where you spend one-third of your life sleeping, where you retreat to curl up with a good book, binge your favorite TV shows, and recharge for the day ahead. So it’s important to keep this haven in pristine condition.
But are you aware of the life span of the items you probably have sitting in your bedroom right now? Some things need to be replaced every few years, while others should last until they break.
“Bedroom items, just like all items in a house, should be replaced if they are not functioning well, falling apart, no longer match your aesthetic, or are not the right size for the space,” says Shaolin Low, interior designer at Studio Shaolin.
To help you keep your bedroom a tranquil escape, we looked at common bedroom items and took a deep dive into how often they should be replaced.
Quality sleep is important for your physical and mental health, and investing in a quality mattress will support a good night’s sleep.
“Without the proper support, even the highest quality of mattress can quickly lose its shape and comfort,” says Channa Alvarez, production designer at Living Spaces Furniture.
So how do you know when it’s time for a new bed? Most beds will last seven to 15 years, but it’s time for a new one if your current platform bed and its components, including the mattress foundation, are creaking, splintering, or sagging—no matter how long you’ve had it.
Also, if you feel joint pain and suffer allergic reactions, you might need a new mattress.
“An old mattress can be a hub of bacteria, as mattresses can accumulate dust mites, bacteria, mold, and different allergens over time,” says Lauren Bowen, director of franchise operations at Two Maids & a Mop. “Homeowners should replace their mattresses sooner if they notice an uptick in allergy symptoms.”
Dirt, dead skin cells, body oils, sweat, and dust mites can all find a home on your sheets after you’ve used them. A poll by the National Sleep Foundation found that 91% of people change their sheets every other week, but this norm may be a little too infrequent. The foundation recommends washing or changing sheets once a week or more often if you suffer from allergies. If you have pets, change every three to four days.
“I would also replace bedding based on seasons—a warmer down comforter for winter months and a lighter, all-season comforter for the hotter summer months,” says Low.
Pillows and pillowcases
Everyone has their favorite pillow, but pillows don’t last forever.
“You’re supposed to replace pillows every one to two years, but it depends on the quality and construction of the pillow,” says Low.
The sleep foundation recommends washing them every four to six months; pillowcases should be washed or changed once a week.
“With proper maintenance and washing, pillowcases can last up to five years. Pillowcases can attract dust mites, body oils, dead skin cells, hair, and more, so it’s important to wash or change your pillowcase every week to prolong the life span of the fabric and keep yourself and your bedroom healthy,” says Bowen.
It’s nice to have a dresser to organize all your clothes, but dresser drawers can get jammed and become faulty.
“One of the sure signs that your dresser’s time is up is a stubborn drawer mechanism, especially if the drawer is constantly falling off its guides or failing to budge,” says Alvarez. “Also, look for wobbly legs, and loose drawer pulls, both symptoms of overuse—and potential accidents waiting to happen.”
Most age-related impairments will crop up after five to 15 years, but replace a dresser when you first sense a safety risk—especially if it’s a piece designed for children.
If you are looking to save space in a bedroom, Low recommends removing a dresser and installing a built-in closet system with drawers instead.
Throw rug and area rug
Nothing brings your room’s decor together like a throw or area rug. But with constant foot traffic, it can get dirty fast.
“Coming in direct contact with feet, pets, and more, rugs can be a space for major dirt,” says Bowen.
“Take care of your rugs, and monitor for odors, stains, and other wear and tear. If you spot-treat stains, deep vacuum, and clean them regularly, throw or area rugs can last up to 10 years,” she continues. “If you think it’s time to replace your rug, then it probably is.”
Having the right lighting can set the mood in your bedroom, but lampshades can get discolored and look dated over time.
“Lampshades can get worn or fade quickly if they are in a lot of direct sunlight, so it might be time to replace those if you see the wear on them,” says Low.
Also, styles change, and you might get the urge to swap out your lampshades. Luckily, they come in all shapes, sizes, colors, materials, and textures. When replacing lampshades, remember to measure correctly and to choose something that matches your decor. Check out our lampshade guide for more information.
Furniture and accessories have expiration dates, including that bedroom bench you initially used for decoration but has since become a place to sit and throw your things on.
“When used mostly for decorative purposes, and when routinely cleaned and maintained, a quality bench can technically last forever,” says Alvarez. “On the other hand, if a bedroom bench is used regularly for sitting, then it should, for safety reasons, be replaced at the first creak or wobble—which can usually appear after as little as seven years.”