How to Wash White Sheets

High-Quality white sheets make the room elegant, luxurious, and less cluttered. They are a minimalist’s dream because they are calming, gorgeous, and easily paired with other colors.

However, they are high maintenance; even little stains can’t hide in white sheets, and they also start to turn a dull yellow color after a while.

With the correct wash and care practices, you can have pristine white sheets for a long time.

Step 1: Sort the White Sheets

Sort white sheets

Your white sheets may have different fabrics that require individual wash practices, so you will still have to sort them even though they are the same color.

Also, separate your sheets according to the soil level. Heavily soiled white sheets need a deeper cleanse than lightly-soiled ones and can transfer debris and dirt.

Step 2: Pre-Wash the White Sheets

Some procedures are taken before your white sheets even enter the washer to improve their look and feel and preserve the sheets’ life span.

Remove Stains from the White Sheets

Owners of white sheets have to rearrange their habits to prevent stains because even the tiniest ones show clearly and can start permanently altering the color of the sheets.

You can perform two stain treatments on the white sheets depending on the extent of the stains; either spot clean the sheets or pre-soak them.

Spot Cleaning

Spot clean your white sheets, even without removing them from the bed, when you get those annoying little stains, removing them quickly before they dry and set, which will worsen over time.

Many commercial spot cleaning products can effortlessly dissolve stains and separate them from white sheets. You can also use household items like baking soda, white vinegar, hydrogen peroxide, lemon juice, etc.


  • Remove excess stains immediately with a spoon, blunt knife, or paper towels.
  • Spray the stain remover on the stains and allow the treatment to soak for 15 minutes.
  • Gently scrub with a soft brush without extending the circumference of the stains.
  • Rinse the treated area.
  • Leave the white sheets to air-dry.


When the stains are old and dry, they are tougher to remove, and spot cleaning will take forever, risking damage to the stained areas.

Soaking the white sheets will loosen the stains, making them easily removable. Check the sheet’s care label to ensure you’re using the correct water temperature to avoid damaging the sheets. Though, you should avoid hot water as it will set the stains further.


  • Remove excess stains immediately with a spoon, blunt knife, or paper towels.
  • Fill a sizable bowl or your bathtub with cold or warm water.
  • Pour the stain remover or oxygen bleach inside the water. Stir well till it dissolves.
  • Place the stained sheets into the water and allow them to soak for 30 minutes to an hour, based on the time recommended on the stain remover label.
  • Rinse the white sheets with cold water to remove the stain remover.
  • Afterward, wash the white sheets.

Whitening the White Sheets

Borax Whitens Sheets

Unfortunately, white sheets do not maintain their color forever. It can be upsetting when your pretty sheets become a dull yellow or brown.

Luckily, there are some methods you can use to revive the color, and no, it’s not bleach.

Some Items that Whiten White Sheets

  • Borax

Borax is a household cleaning agent that strips and whitens clothes. It can revive your white sheets by stripping the dirt and residue that causes the discoloration.

  • Lemon Juice

Lemon juice is a natural bleaching agent used in bleach of harsh bleach because it won’t cause damage to the sheets.

  • White Vinegar

White vinegar is a household cleaning agent that removes stains, degreases, brightens, and deodorizes clothes. A vinegar soak will revive the color of your white sheets.

  • Bluing Agent

Unlike these other items, you should not soak the white sheets with the bluing agent but add them during the wash.

The bluing agent adds a hint of blue color to the white sheets to counteract the yellow hue turning the sheets white. Use the tiniest amount to prevent dyeing the white sheets blue.

  • OxiClean

OxiClean is an oxygen bleach that removes stains and brightens clothes. For the sheet whitening treatment, ensure to get the correct OxiClean.

  • Liquid Laundry Detergent

Some detergents can remove tough stains, but be careful not to use too much, or detergent residue will remain on the white sheets, causing more problems.

Method 1:

  • Pour a gallon of hot water into a sizable bowl or bathtub – use cold water for delicate fabrics.
  • Add ½ a cup of the preferred whitening item into the water.
  • Let it dissolve and place the white sheets inside the solution.
  • Soak the sheets for hours or overnight.
  • Wash the sheets.

Method 2:

This method is for less severe cases. Pour the whitening item into the washer together with the detergent. However, pour white vinegar during the rinse cycle because the acidic content will destabilize the detergent and stop the washing of the sheets.

The Problem with Bleach

Bleach is famous for turning clothes white. It is the first item people reach for when they want to whiten their clothes, but it should be the last thing on your mind when you want to whiten your sheets.

Bleach contains chlorine which will react with the sweat stains on the sheets and turn them yellow, the exact opposite of your intentions.

Wash the sheets before treating them with bleach to prevent this problem, but even that method is risky.

The harshness of bleach can also ruin the texture of the white sheets, making them rough.

Oxygen bleach, like OxiClean, is a perfect alternative because it will remove the stains and whiten the sheets without turning them yellow.

Step 3: Wash the White Sheets

Washing your white sheets can ruin the color and feel if you don’t follow the proper procedure.

Machine Washing the White Sheets

  • Sort the white sheets into separate loads.
  • Check for stains and remove them beforehand.
  • Choose the correct liquid detergent based on your white sheet and machine’s needs that can clean the white sheets without leaving residue.
  • Pour the correct amount of detergent described on the bottle to avoid using too much.
  • If necessary, use laundry boosters like borax, washing soda, or whitening items to whiten the sheets.
  • Choose the correct wash cycle based on the care label instructions.
  • Use hot water unless the care label states otherwise.
  • Place the white sheets in the washer in smaller loads to avoid overloading. Overloading the washer will not allow the sheets to wash correctly.
  • Start the wash cycle.
  • Pour one cup of vinegar during the rinse cycle to aid in detergent residue removal.
  • When the washing ends, remove the white sheets immediately to avoid wrinkles, creases, and mold formation.

Hand Washing the White Sheets

  • Sort the white sheets into separate loads.
  • Check for stains and remove them beforehand.
  • Fill a sizable bowl or bathtub with hot water unless the care label states otherwise.
  • Pour the correct amount of detergent described on the bottle to avoid using too much.
  • Place the white sheets in the water and gently and gently wash them.
  • Rinse the sheets till there are no more soap suds left.

Step 4: Dry the White Sheets

Hanging your white sheets on a clothesline to dry under direct sunlight is a great way to preserve your sheets’ white color. The sun has natural bleaching properties that will brighten the sheets.

However, tumble drying is also a suitable option for white sheets. Place wool dryer balls inside the dryer to aid even circulation, increasing drying time and removing hidden wet spots.

Infuse essential oils in the wool dryer balls to add scents to your white sheets.

Dry your white sheets immediately after washing and ensure it is dry before folding and storing. These simple practices will protect the pristine look of your white sheets.

White Sheets Care Tips

  • Wash your white sheets at least once a week. Wash twice weekly if you have allergies or exercise regularly.
  • Remove stains immediately it happens to avoid worsening the situation.
  • Wash your face every night before you go to sleep to prevent staining.
  • Do not use fabric softeners; they leave residue on the white sheets, which will discolor them over time. Use white vinegar to soften your sheets.
  • Try not to eat in bed.
  • Store your white sheets in a well-ventilated drawer.
  • Always avoid chlorine bleach.

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