June 4, 2017


Did you ever wonder if mattress cleaning is a new thing? was the need for mattress cleaning a factor in the evolution of Mattress design?

The first mattresses to be invented were made using a variety of natural material like horse hair, straw, feather and that was 77000 years ago. In 3600 B.C.E. a mattress was made out of goat skin, filled with air, and in 1899,  James Marshall introduced the first individually wrapped pocketed spring coil mattress now commonly known as Marshall coils.

So when did the need to clean a mattress arise?

Historians say the evolution of the bed as an object of modern society has been shaped mostly by hygiene factors. Especially an insect called Cimex lectularius L., Or known as bed bug a small, oval, brownish insect that lives on the blood of animals or humans, and so often takes mattresses as a main hidden home.

“A Strenuous Struggle, a vigorous campaign, is before any housewife who is called upon to dispute the occupancy of her home with that persistent pest unfavorably known as the bedbug, who, gorged with the blood of his victim, lieth up in his lair from daylight to candlelight, only to swoop down upon his helpless sleeping prey during the midnight watches.”

–C. L. Marlatt, The Bedbug, 1916.

Bed bugs spread throughout Europe by 77 C.E., China by 600 C.E., And then found its way to America in the early 18th century.

The rise of bed bugs and other household insects that affected the mattresses has created a new trend for cleaning beds and a huge market for cleaning companies, Making Mattress cleaning one of the oldest cleaning industries.

One of the early exterminators was from England: John Southall, who published the first work on bed bugs, A Treatise of Buggs, in 1730. The 44-page manual contained observations on bed bug behavior and advice for eliminating infestations. Southall was also an advocate of preventive inspections and repeatedly cautioned against bringing in infested belongings:

If you have occasion to change Servants, let their Boxes, Trunks, &c. be well examin’d before carried into your Rooms, lest their coming from infected Houses should prove dangerous to yours. In taking of Houses, new or old, and in buying Bedsteds, Furniture, &c. examine carefully if you can find Bugg-marks. If you find such, though you see not the Vermin, you may assure yourself they are nevrtheless infected.If you put out your Linnen to wash, let no Washer-woman’s Basket be brought into your Houses;for they often prove as dangerous to those that have no Buggs…

(Southall 1730)

To simplify inspection and treatment, Southall recommended that beds be plain, easy to disassemble, and as free from the woodwork as possible. Southall work changed the way manufacturers make mattresses.

Other Factors like Humidity and mold formation have also played a major factor in the industry of manufacturing and cleaning mattresses.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *