Wool blankets are a great investment because wool is breathable and naturally waterproof. A great way to reuse a wool blanket is to turn the blanket into a mattress protector. Wool mattress protectors are very expensive, but a blanket is an easy substitution. Many people are trying to be eco-friendly these days, and wool is in high demand because it doesn't use chemicals. Parents and grandparents are especially interested in using wool because they like to keep plastics and harmful chemicals away from their children. Also, waterproof mattress pads can be loud when you move around on them or make you sweat because they do not breathe. Wool solves both of these problems.
Wash the wool blanket on the hot/cold setting on the washing machine using your regular washing powder. The blanket will shrink, but this is good because it makes the fibres tighter, which will prevent dust mites, water and other tiny things from penetrating the blanket.
Soften and condition the wool blanket by running hot water in the bathtub and mixing in lanolin until it is completely dissolved. Using solid lanolin, add about 2 inches of lanolin per blanket. Fill the rest of the tub with water and immerse your blanket in the tub. Move the blanket around in the water, ensuring the blanket is properly covered. Let the blanket soak for 10 minutes. The lanolin seals your wool so water will not penetrate the surface, giving you a waterproof mattress pad without the chemicals.
Empty the bathtub and squeeze out as much water as possible from the blanket.
Hang-dry the wool blanket; either dry it outside on a line or inside. Hanging the blanket outside in the sunlight will sun-bleach the blanket, which will help eliminate any germs that may remain. It may take the blanket two to three days to completely dry.
Lay your old blanket/new mattress pad on top of your bare mattress. Make up the bed with the rest of your bedding as usual.
Make sure the mattress protector covers the entire mattress in case of accidents. You may have to retreat the blanket/mattress pad with lanolin after you wash it multiple times. You can find lanolin in the baby aisle of most drug and grocery stores. Mothers use lanolin for breast care when they are breastfeeding.
Do not use this type of mattress pad in a crib for a baby. Baby bedding should be completely tight and free of bulk to prevent SIDS.
Tips and warnings
- Make sure the mattress protector covers the entire mattress in case of accidents.
- You may have to retreat the blanket/mattress pad with lanolin after you wash it multiple times.
- You can find lanolin in the baby aisle of most drug and grocery stores. Mothers use lanolin for breast care when they are breastfeeding.
- Do not use this type of mattress pad in a crib for a baby. Baby bedding should be completely tight and free of bulk to prevent SIDS.