Useful things you can do with an old mattress | homify
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Useful things you can do with an old mattress

Sheetal Bhandari Sheetal Bhandari
scandinavian  by Cuckooland, Scandinavian
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It's that time when you decide to spruce up the house and take stock of things that need repair, replacement or refurbishment. Of many other things, your mattress is finally done its time and now it needs to be gotten rid of. An old mattress can be a nuisance if overused! It can be a source of many back aches, breeding ground for germs (that's right, remember those spills you had many years ago) and cause social embarrassment (a guest comes visiting and sinks right in or can feel those springs!). 

Another situation, you have re-designed the bedroom and the new bed calls for a new mattress. Out goes the old mattress again! But what do you do with the mattress, now that you have a new one? It is a huge piece so you cannot simply dump it your garbage. Here is an ideabook that helps you deal with it. Some ideas that will allow you to dump the mattress responsibly, recycle or upcycle it to a whole new thing. Have a look!

Give it to someone

One of the easiest ways to find a new use for your mattress and keep it out of a landfill is to give it away. You'd be surprised how many people might be in the market for a free mattress. Speak with your friends, coworkers, nieces or nephews headed to college, recent graduates, or even post a message on a community board at your apartment or condo complex. The list of possible recipients is endless. Offer your free, gently used mattress in return for the new owner picking it up from your home.

If you can't think of anyone you know who might want a free mattress, you can turn to the Internet. There are several websites and online groups that encourage this trend. If you're feeling generous, you may even want to have it cleaned before giving it away. However, unless you're going to sell it or give it to an organization with rules about accepting mattresses, the responsibility for having it cleaned can fall on the new owner.

Sell it

classic  by brush64 , Classic

Handmade organic wool & horsehair mattress


If you're looking to make a little extra cash, you might consider selling your mattress. In this case, you will definitely want to have your mattress professionally cleaned. Once you've done so, post your mattress on Olx, Quickr or another similar site. Be sure to include a photo showing your mattress is clean and free of stains, and add a detailed description of how it's been cleaned and maintained to attract the most buyers. You should also note the brand, a description of its firmness and other features, as well as the price you paid for it. Although you won't get anywhere close to the cost you put into the mattress, this helps build the legitimacy of your post. A second-hand shop in your community might also purchase your gently used mattress. Search for shops online and call ahead to make sure they purchase mattresses. Have a lot of other household stuff to sell? Then arrange a garage sale for all.

Disassemble and use the parts

scandinavian  by Suzie Lee Knitwear, Scandinavian
Suzie Lee Knitwear

Knitted Fair Isle cushion with cross stitch

Suzie Lee Knitwear

If you're crafty, you might want to disassemble your old mattress yourself instead of taking it to a recycling facility. There are many components that make up a mattress that could be useful to you. If you're a sewer or seamstress, you might be interested in the buttons or fabric from the mattress. The stuffing can be used for new pillows or even reupholstering furniture. If you're a craftsman, you might be interested in the wood from the frame for carpentry work or even in your next campfire. Even the metal springs can be used creatively for wine bottle holders or anything you can conjure up.

Donate to an animal shelter

Humans aren't the only ones who can benefit from old mattresses. In addition to shelters for people in need, you may also want to check with local animal shelters. They could use your old mattress as beds for animals they've rescued who are awaiting adoption. A dog daycare or other similar businesses might also be interested in your old mattress. Call around to see who might take it off your hands. Again, you'll need to have the mattress professionally cleaned before donating. However, an animal shelter might not be as concerned about a stain, as long as they know the mattress is clean. Ask if they will send someone to your home to pick it up in exchange for getting it for free.

Reuse for children's playtime

scandinavian  by Cuckooland, Scandinavian

Leander Junior Bed and Mattress in Whitewash


You may be able to reuse your mattress in your own back garden. If you have children, your old mattress might be the perfect protective layer for the bottom of a jungle gym. It might also be a creative substitute for that expensive trampoline your kids have been begging for. Remember when your little ones could play for hours with an old moving box, turning it into a fort or whatever their imagination conjured up? Your mattress could be anything your child imagines. Again, just be sure to have it professionally cleaned. Even if you think you've kept your mattress in tiptop condition, body sweat and dust mites, invisible to the naked eye, can cause illnesses.


Mattress recycling is a great way to make an effort to be green and help the environment. But you can take it a step further and use your mattress to help you compost. Both the wood frame and the stuffing of the mattress can be used to create a compost pile in your backyard. The wood slats of the frame can be repurposed to create the actual bin for the compost, while the foam padding or cotton stuffing can be used as a cover to protect the compost from the elements and to keep the pile warm, which accelerates the composting process. You can even use stuffing from your mattress as landscape fabric to keep weeds out of your garden, and the springs as trellises for climbing plants.

Isn't it amazing what all could be done with an old mattress. We suggest if gently used, always try to give it or sell it to someone for further use. If the mattress is past its expiry date, recycle and put it to other uses. One man's garbage is another's treasure they say. So think before you get rid of the mattress and do all you can to help extend its usage in one form or the other.

So what did you do with your old mattress? Share with us.
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