Do Upholstered Headboards Get Dirty?

Do Upholstered Headboards Get Dirty?

Does an upholstered headboard get dirty? Let’s get right to it and learn the truth. Yes, they do. Like most things in the world, upholstered headboards collect dirt over time, especially without proper care. 

Yet, many people go for upholstered headboards, and who can blame them? Cushioned and fabric-clad headboards can make bedrooms look extra cozy. Plus, they provide a soft and comfortable place to rest your head as you read or binge on Netflix shows. Not to mention with fabric like velvet (and the right kind of tufting, to boot!), they add a touch of luxury to your space.  

So, your heart might really be set on upholstered headboards, and we definitely understand. But there are a few things you need to know and consider before you make that order final. 

1. Upholstered headboards simply attract dirt. 

You can’t change the reality that upholstered headboards are magnets for dirt—stains, pet hair, dust, and quite possibly bedbugs. The fabric (plus the cushion) also tends to soak up moisture, which means the headboard may develop grime and odor over time. 

We’re not saying that upholstered headboards are a bad choice for a bedroom. The comfort and aesthetic value they add to your resting place make them worth it. But they do require some extra upkeep, and this is exactly what you need to be ready for. 

2. Be prepared to give your upholstered headboard some love and care.

  • Frequent vacuuming is the key. The best way to keep an upholstered headboard in good condition is to clean it often with a vacuum. Run it with a vacuum at least once a week or as often as you change the sheets. Use the extension wand to remove dust and other tiny debris from tough corners. Sometimes, pet hair persistently sticks to fabric, even with a vacuum. A lint roller might help you out. 
  • Steam and spot clean as needed. If heavier dirt is not removed by a vacuum, a steam cleaner might. Steaming cleaning is more thorough and can remove tougher stains and grease. It may also get rid of allergens, dust mites, and bedbugs and even prevent mold from developing. But if steam cleaning is a bit too taxing, use a spot remover to clear out small stains and marks. Of course, you can always ask professional cleaners for help.
  • Keep moisture away. Anything that makes your upholstered headboard damp is an enemy. Prevention is important here, so it’s important to avoid exposing it to moisture. If If you use a humidifier in your bedroom, place it away from your headboard. If you live in an area with a humid climate or if your home recently had a leak or flooding, you can use a dehumidifier for a couple of hours (or as needed) to remove excess moisture. 

3. Know your fabric. 

Cleaning fabric is not “one size fits all.” How you remove dirt and stain varies, depending on the type of fabric used. As you can imagine, velvet and leather may require a different cleaning process than, say, cotton or linen. 

You really need to amp up your headboard maintenance game by learning how to clean a specific material. Otherwise, your effort might wind up in vain. The upholstered headboard may come with cleaning instructions, anyway. And if doesn’t, you can always do a quick search on Google or ask a professional cleaner. 

4. Don’t worry–there are alternatives to upholstered headboards. 

You don’t have to choose upholstered headboards. If you’re still considering your options, you might find other materials (even other types of bedframe) more convenient. 

Wood headboards are the classic choice–versatile and very easy to manage. If you’re into feng shui, you should know that solid wood is the best material for a headboard. A sturdy headboard that’s attached securely to the bed frame helps provide you balance and stability in life. 

Aside from solid wood, you can go for metals, such as wrought iron, brass, copper, and stainless steel. Leather is also a good choice of fabric if you really want to go for the upholstered look. Another option is rattan. With the rise of bohemian design, using rattan as a headboard material could make your bedroom look chic and trendy.


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