Laundry Detergent For Bed Bugs; Expert Approved

Have you ever woken up with mysterious red spots all over your body? Chances are, you’ve got bed bugs. These little bloodsuckers are experts at hiding in your mattress and biting you while you sleep. You should invest in the best laundry detergent for bed bugs.

The good news is that you can get rid of bed bugs. The bad news is that they often leave behind hard-to-remove stains from their droppings and blood spots.

You’ve probably tried every detergent under the sun to eliminate those nasty bed bug stains, but nothing seems to work.

We talked to laundry and bed bug specialists to find the best detergents to eliminate bed bug stains.

The key is using a detergent that contains bleach or ammonia, which helps lift tough protein stains, along with a booster like OxiClean or Spray ‘n Wash.

With the right combo of detergent and patience, you’ll be back to sweet dreams and spotless sheets in no time.

And for the finishing touch, find out how you can make your mattress smell nice for that extra comfort.

Using a Specialized Bed Bug Laundry Detergent to Eliminate Stains

You’ll want to use a laundry detergent specifically formulated to kill bed bugs and their eggs when eliminating stubborn bed bug stains.

Regular detergents just won’t cut it.

Look for a detergent that contains permethrin, a powerful insecticide, and repellent. Permethrin effectively kills bed bugs on contact and provides residual protection against future infestations.

Popular brands of permethrin-based bed bug detergents include:

Bed Bug Patrol Laundry Treatment:

This detergent kills bed bugs and eggs on contact and leaves behind a protective barrier for up to 2 weeks. I

t’s safe for all washable fabrics and leaves no harsh chemical smell.

Rest Easy Bed Bug Detergent:

Formulated with permethrin and natural essential oils like eucalyptus and lavender oil, this detergent eliminates bed bugs and leaves your clothes smelling fresh.

It’s non-toxic, eco-friendly, and safe for sensitive skin.

BuggyBeds Laundry Additive:

Add a scoop of this powder to your regular detergent to kill bed bugs and eggs in the wash. The permethrin formula is unscented, colorless, and won’t damage fabrics.

It provides up to 2 weeks of protection against bed bugs after washing.

When washing bed bug-infested items, use the hottest water setting possible and then run clothes through a hot dryer cycle for at least 30 minutes to kill any remaining bugs.

You may need to wash and dry clothes a few times for severe infestations to eliminate the bed bugs.

Using a specialized bed bug detergent, in combination with high-heat washing and drying, is the most effective way to remove bed bug stains and prevent re-infestation.

How Does Laundry Detergent Kill Bed Bugs and Eggs?

To kill bed bugs and their eggs, laundry detergent must contain certain effective ingredients against these nasty pests.

The key is using a detergent specifically formulated for bed bug removal or one containing natural essential oils known to eliminate bed bugs.

Regular detergents typically won’t cut it. You’ll want a detergent containing the following:

Permethrin or pyrethrin:

These are natural insecticides derived from chrysanthemum flowers that are lethal to bed bugs and eggs.

Many bed bug detergents contain one or both of these.

Lavender, eucalyptus, or tea tree oil:

The strong scent of these essential oils naturally repels bed bugs and can kill them on contact. Look for a detergent containing at least one of these oils.


Detergents with enzymes help break down the exoskeleton of bed bugs, dehydrating and killing them.

Enzymatic cleaners are very effective at eliminating bed bugs and eggs from fabrics.

Hot water:

Washing infested items in the hottest water recommended on the care label, then drying them on high heat will kill all stages of bed bugs.

The heat causes them to dehydrate and die. So choose a detergent that can be used in hot water.

By understanding what makes a detergent effective against bed bugs, you can choose one that thoroughly eliminates these pests from your laundry.

Be sure to wash all items that may have come in contact with bed bugs to avoid re-infestation. Your bed bug problem will be cleaned quickly with the right detergent and heat.

Top 3 Laundry Detergents for Bed Bug Stains

Tide Antibacterial

Tide Antibacterial laundry detergent contains bleach alternatives to help remove tough stains like those from bed bugs.

The formula is free from dyes and fragrances that can irritate sensitive skin. It’s a trusted brand that’s been around for decades.

Persil Power Caps

Persil Power Caps are highly concentrated detergent capsules that pack a punch for stain-fighting power. Their formula contains stain removers to lift even the toughest stains from bed bugs.

The pills are easy to use – just throw one in with your load.

Seventh Generation Natural Detergent

For an eco-friendly option, try Seventh Generation Natural Laundry Detergent.

It’s made from plant-based ingredients and essential oils.

The formula is free from dyes, fragrances, and brighteners. Even though it’s natural, it still has stain-fighting power to help remove bed bug stains and odors.

The company is committed to sustainability and environmental responsibility.

Other tips for removing bed bug stains:

Wash items on the hottest setting possible using a heavy-duty cycle. The high heat will help kill bed bugs or eggs on the clothes.

Use a bleach alternative or non-chlorine bleach in addition to detergent for tough stains.

Dry clothes on high heat for at least 30 minutes. The heat from the dryer is very effective for killing bed bugs.

For items that can’t be washed, try spot-treating stains before drying. Let the item sit for at least 5 minutes and then launder as usual.

Re-treat any remaining stains and rewash the item. Removing bed bug stains and odors may take a couple of washes.

Clean your washer and dryer to prevent re-infestation. Run a hot wash cycle with 2 cups of white vinegar after washing bed bug-infested items.

Laundry detergent for bed bugs

Additional Tips for Washing Items With Bed Bug Stains

Use a detergent that kills bed bugs and their eggs

When washing items that may have bed bug stains, it’s critical to use a specifically formulated detergent to kill bed bugs and their eggs.

Regular detergents won’t cut it. Look for detergents containing permethrin, bifenthrin, or natural essential oils.

The likes of tea tree, eucalyptus, lavender, or peppermint oil which act as insecticides. Some recommended detergent brands for bed bugs include:

Bed Bug Patrol Laundry Treatment

Rest Easy Bed Bug Spray

Bed Bug Killer by Harris

These detergents will help eliminate bed bugs, nymphs, or eggs hiding in your laundry. Wash items on the hottest setting possible using one of these bed bug detergents for the best results.

Wash and dry on high heat

Washing and drying infested items on the hottest settings possible, at least 120°F, will help kill any bed bugs or eggs present.

The heat will dehydrate and ultimately destroy the bed bugs. Be sure to wash and dry everything from the infested area, not just visibly stained.

Wash all linens, clothing, towels, and any other fabric that may have come into contact with bed bugs.

Use bleach alternative

If safe for the fabric, use a bleach alternative like hydrogen peroxide or ammonia to help lift any visible stains from bed bug droppings or crushed bed bugs.

Add 1/2 cup of either solution to the wash cycle in addition to the bed bug detergent.

The bleach alternative will help decolorize the stains without damaging the material.

Dry on high heat for at least 45 minutes

After washing the infested items on hot, it’s essential to dry them on high heat for a minimum of 45 minutes to kill any bed bugs or eggs that may have survived the wash cycle.

The extended time in high heat will dehydrate and ultimately destroy any bed bugs. For the best results, dry items on the hottest setting possible.

The heat penetrates the items deep to eliminate the bed bug infestation.

Consider steaming

For items that can’t be washed or dried on high heat, steam cleaning is an option to kill bed bugs and eggs.

The high heat will instantly kill bed bugs on contact.

Be thorough, steaming all item parts, including seams, piping, tags, and underneath surfaces. In combination with the other tips, steam cleaning will help eliminate a bed bug infestation in your home.

FAQs: Laundry Detergents and Bed Bug Stain Removal

What laundry detergents work best for removing bed bug stains?

When removing those pesky bed bug stains, you’ll want to use a detergent specifically formulated to lift tough protein stains. Enzyme-based detergents that contain stain fighters are your best options.

Look for detergents containing ingredients like:

Protease enzymes: Break down protein stains like blood and feces. Popular brands containing protease enzymes include Tide, Arm & Hammer, and Persil.

Hydrogen peroxide: Helps lift stubborn stains by releasing oxygen bubbles. It can be found in detergents like OxiClean, Clorox 2, and Shout.

Sodium percarbonate: Creates a bleaching effect to whiten and brighten. Found in detergents such as OxiClean and Clorox 2.

Non-chlorine bleach: Brightens and deodorizes without the harshness of chlorine bleach. Look for detergents containing sodium percarbonate, like OxiClean and Clorox 2.

How much detergent should I use?

Use the maximum amount recommended on the detergent’s packaging for bed bug stain removal.

More detergent means more stain-fighting power. Be sure to check if using the total amount in your washer is safe to avoid excess suds. If unsure, start with an average amount and re-treat any remaining stains before drying.

Should I wash bed bug-infested clothes in hot or cold water?

Wash bed bug-infested clothing, linens, and other fabrics in the hottest water recommended on the care labels.

Most experts recommend at least 120°F to kill all stages of bed bugs and their eggs. The heat will also help lift protein stains from blood and feces.

For items that can’t be washed in hot water, tumble drying on high heat can also help kill bed bugs and eggs. Alternatively, you can freeze items for at least four days to kill bed bugs.

Do I need to use bleach?

Using bleach in addition to a detergent with stain fighters and enzymes can help boost the cleaning power for bed bug stains.

However, bleach alone may not remove the stains and can damage some fabrics.

For the best results:

Use non-chlorine bleach, like sodium percarbonate (OxiClean). It’s color-safe and won’t damage fabrics like regular bleach.

Dilute the bleach according to the directions before adding it to the wash. Too much bleach can damage fabrics.

Check if it’s safe to use bleach on the clothing item. Not all fabrics can withstand bleach.

Re-treat any remaining stains before drying.


So there you have it, the top detergents recommended by experts for removing those pesky bed bug stains and keeping your clothes fresh and clean.

These options should do the trick and give you peace of mind that those little bloodsuckers didn’t leave a lasting mark.

The key is to treat stains as soon as possible and be patient. Removing bed bug stains can take a few washes, but you’ll get there with the right detergent and some elbow grease.

Sweet dreams and happy laundering! May your clothes be bed bug-free and your nights bite-less.

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