We’ve always suspected that most guy’s sheets didn’t get properly laundered as often as we’d like. In the past, we’ve seen the stains (snot? cum? Doritos?) and tried to will ourselves to imagine we were covered in an invisible, full body shield of antibacterial gel where no microbes could harm us. A horrifying new study confirms our very worst imaginings of dust mites and fungal spores. It found that single dudes ages 18 to 25 only wash their sheets — wait for it — four times a year because they “didn’t see the need” or “didn’t care.” That’s once a quarter if he’s feeling enterprising. Oh God, what if he’s not!? We can’t even think about it. Not that we always wash our sheet every two weeks as recommended by Martha Stewart, sometimes we’re lazy too — not nearly THAT lazy, but still. For the single dudes and the laundry-hating ladies, here’s a reminder about what needs to be done to keep your sheets from being absolutely disgusting (read: acceptable enough for people to want to sleep with you).
How To Tell If Your Sheets Are Dirty
Lingering odor. Does it smell like something might have crawled under your mattress and died? Are your Dutch ovens not dispersing as quickly as they used to? Yeah, it miiiiiight be time to throw those bad boys in the washing machine.
Hot Tip: In a pinch, you can use linen spray to freshen up the smell of your bedding.
Stains. Whether it’s bodily fluid or mustard (sometimes we want to eat a roast beef sandwich while watching “Breaking Bad” in bed, so sue us), this is always a good indicator that your bed could use some freshening up.
Hot Tip: Flip your pillows over every few days between washings to avoid your sea of drool conglomerating in one spot.
The appearance of any of the following: dandruff, blood, hair, semen, sweat outlines, skin flakes, crusty drool puddles. Seriously, it’s time to wash your damn sheets.
Hot Tip: Buy multiple fitted sheets and put more than one on your bed every time you make it. That way, when you’re pressed for time or feeling lazy, you can just take the top sheet off to reveal a pristine sheet underneath!
It’s been two weeks since you last washed them. Even if you manage to avoid any of the above signs of uncleanliness (please tell us your secrets!), two weeks is generally a good timeline for sheet washing.
How To Wash Your Sheets
Toss them in the machine. Throw your sheets into the washing machine with some nice-smelling detergent and wash in hot water. Tumble dry. Put back on the bed. Voila! Your life just got a million times better.
Hot Tip: Keep an extra set of sheets in your closet so you’re not sheet-less while they’re in the laundry bin.
Drop them off at the fluff and fold. Lazy launderers and washing machine-free folks can lug their sheets to a laundry service to get them cleaned, dried, and crisply folded. (Side note: we want to start an emo folk band and name it “Fluff & Fold.” Don’t steal our band name, OK?)
Hot Tip: If you really want to score some points with the ladies, iron your sheets. Even if the rest of your apartment is a cesspool of filth and detritus, this one little detail will make you seem like a classy, cultured man from a Dos Equis commercial.