How to make a DIY Bed Bug Mattress Cover?

DIY cover to protect from bed bugs

In this article, we will answer the question: How to make a DIY Bed Bug Mattress Cover?
Bed bugs are pesky insects that can disrupt your sleep and infest your home. Protecting your mattress from these unwelcome intruders is essential for maintaining a clean and healthy sleeping environment.

While we recommend you professional bed bug-proof encasements, a do-it-yourself (DIY) approach can be a cost-effective option for some. In this article, we’ll explore simple and practical DIY mattress protection methods that can help prevent bed bugs from infiltrating your bed and safeguard your peace of mind. Discover effective strategies you can implement to create an added layer of defense against these persistent pests.


What Fabric is Bed Bug proof?

When it comes to fabrics, there isn’t one that is entirely bed bug-proof. They are skilled at finding hiding spots and can potentially infest any type of fabric. However, certain fabrics may be more resistant to bed bug penetration or make it harder for them to establish themselves.

  • Synthetic fabrics: Synthetic materials such as polyester and nylon can be less susceptible to bed bug infestations. These fabrics tend to have a tighter weave and smoother surface, making it more difficult for them to find crevices or hide within the fibers.
  • Tight-weave fabrics: Fabrics with a tight weave, regardless of the material, can be more resistant to bed bugs. This includes options like tightly woven cotton or microfiber fabrics, which have a denser structure that makes it harder for bed bugs to penetrate.
  • Bed bug-proof encasements: While not a fabric per se, mattress and pillow encasements made specifically for bed bug protection can provide an effective barrier against infestations. These encasements have typically tightly woven materials with specialized features to prevent them from entering or exiting the encased area.


If you want to know the type of mattress that will prevent having bed bugs. You can check our article on Mattresses that do not get Bed Bugs.


Best Fabrics to do a DIY Bed Bug Mattress cover?

When it comes to making a DIY bed bug mattress cover, it’s essential to choose the right fabric that can effectively prevent bed bugs from entering or escaping. Here are some fabric options that are commonly recommended:

  • Allergen-Proof Fabric: Look for fabrics specifically designed to be allergen-proof or dust mite-proof. These fabrics typically have a tight weave that prevents bed bugs from passing through.
  • Microfiber: Microfiber fabrics are tightly woven and have a fine texture, making them difficult for bed bugs to penetrate. They are also known for their durability and ease of maintenance.
  • Vinyl: Vinyl is a popular choice for bed bug encasements as it forms a barrier that bed bugs cannot penetrate. Ensure that the vinyl fabric is thick and of good quality.
  • Polyurethane-Laminated Fabric: This fabric has a layer of polyurethane applied to it, creating a waterproof and bed bug-proof barrier. It is commonly used for mattress protectors and encasements.
  • Polyester Fabrics: Some polyester fabrics, especially those with a high thread count, can be effective at preventing bed bugs. Look for tightly woven polyester fabrics.


In addition to selecting the right fabric, it’s important to ensure the mattress cover completely encloses the mattress and has a secure closure, such as a zipper with small teeth or a Velcro fastening, to prevent bed bugs from getting in or out.


How long can Bed Bugs live in a sealed Mattress?

They are resilient pests that can survive for extended periods without feeding. In a sealed mattress, their survival can depend on various factors such as temperature, humidity, and available oxygen. While exact timelines can vary, here’s a general understanding of how long bed bugs can potentially live in a sealed mattress:

  • Without feeding: They can survive without feeding for several months to over a year in ideal conditions. Their ability to endure long periods without a blood meal is one of the reasons why they can be challenging to eliminate.
  • Limited oxygen: They have a low tolerance for oxygen deprivation. In a tightly sealed mattress, where oxygen supply is limited, they may not survive as long as they would in an unsealed environment. However, the exact timeframe can vary depending on the sealing effectiveness and the number of bed bugs inside the mattress.


It’s important to note that while a sealed mattress may restrict bed bugs’ movement and prevent them from infesting other areas, it doesn’t guarantee complete elimination. They can still hide within the mattress, and their eggs may survive even in a sealed environment.


Can Bed Bugs eat through Mattress Protectors?

They are generally not capable of eating through a mattress protector or encasement made of quality materials. Mattress protectors will provide an additional barrier between the mattress and potential pests, including bed bugs. They are typically made of tightly woven fabrics or specialized materials. Those are resistant to bed bug penetration.

However, it’s important to note that not all mattress protectors are created equal. Lower-quality or damaged protectors may have weak spots, loose seams, or tears that could potentially allow bed bugs to bypass the barrier. Additionally, if you did not properly install the mattress protector or it doesn’t fully encase the mattress, it may leave gaps where they can enter or exit.

To ensure maximum effectiveness, we recommend you to choose a high-quality, bed bug-proof mattress protector or encasement that specifically states its ability to prevent pest infestations. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for proper installation and regularly inspect the protector for any signs of damage or wear. If you notice any issues, it’s advisable to replace or repair the protector promptly to maintain its effectiveness.


Can Bed Bugs live in a Mattress Covered with plastic?

Bed bugs can survive for extended periods in various environments, including mattresses covered with plastic. While a plastic cover can create a barrier that restricts their movement and access to food sources, it does not guarantee complete eradication or prevention of a bed bug infestation. Here’s what you need to know:

  • Bed bug behavior: They will find hard-to-reach hiding spots and can squeeze into tight crevices. They can crawl on the surface of a plastic-covered mattress and potentially find small openings or seams to access the interior or other areas of the bed. (source)
  • Limited food source: They primarily feed on blood, and if they are trapped inside a plastic-covered mattress. Then their access to a host for feeding may be restricted. However, they can survive for months to over a year without feeding, so they can potentially survive within the sealed mattress until they find a way out or until a host becomes available.
  • Eggs and nymphs: They reproduce by laying eggs, which can be small and difficult to spot. Even if adult bed bugs are trapped inside a plastic-covered mattress, any eggs or nymphs already present can hatch and continue the infestation once they mature.


While a plastic cover may provide some temporary control or containment, it is not a foolproof solution for eliminating or preventing bed bugs.


How do you wrap a Mattress for Bed Bugs?

Wrapping a mattress with a bed bug-proof encasement can help protect it from infestations and prevent them from hiding or breeding inside. Here are the steps to properly wrap a mattress for bed bug prevention:

  • Choose a bed bug-proof encasement: Select a high-quality mattress encasement specifically designed to be bed bug-proof. Look for encasements that have been tested and proven effective against bed bugs.
  • Prepare the mattress: Remove all bedding, sheets, and pillows from the mattress. Ensure the mattress is clean and dry before proceeding.
  • Zipper side down: Place the encasement on a clean surface with the zipper side facing down. Position it in a way that aligns with the length and width of the mattress.
  • Slide the mattress into the encasement: Carefully lift one end of the mattress and slide it into the encasement. Use the assistance of another person if needed. Ensure the mattress is centered within the encasement.
  • Zip up the encasement: Starting from the open end, slowly zip up the encasement. which will ensure that the zipper is fully closed and sealed. Be cautious not to force the zipper, as it can cause damage or create gaps.
  • Secure the closure: Some encasements come with an additional feature to secure the zipper closure, such as a fabric flap or Velcro straps. Follow the instructions provided with the encasement to properly secure the closure.
  • Check for tight fit and no gaps: Ensure that the encasement fits snugly around the mattress without any loose areas or gaps where they could enter or escape. Smooth out any wrinkles or folds on the encasement for a tight fit.
  • Repeat for box spring: If you have a box spring, consider wrapping it in a bed bug-proof encasement as well, following the same steps.


How to make a DIY Bed Bug Mattress Cover?

Creating a DIY bed bug mattress cover can be challenging. Because commercial bed bug-proof encasements are specifically designed and tested for their effectiveness. However, if you are unable to obtain a commercial encasement and still want to attempt a DIY option, here is a basic method to make a homemade bed bug mattress cover:

Materials needed:

  • Heavy-duty, tightly woven fabric (such as thick cotton or polyester)
  • Sewing machine or needle and thread
  • Measuring tape
  • Scissors
  • Zipper (preferably a bed bug-proof zipper)



  1. Measure the mattress: Measure the length, width, and height of your mattress to determine the dimensions for the cover.
  2. Cut the fabric: Using the measurements, cut a rectangular piece of fabric that is slightly larger than the dimensions of the mattress. Leave extra fabric for seams.
  3. Sew the sides: Fold over the edges of the fabric and sew along the sides to create a sturdy seam. This will prevent fraying and reinforce the edges.
  4. Attach the zipper: Sew the zipper onto one of the shorter sides of the fabric, ensuring that it runs across the entire width of the cover. Make sure to attach it securely to prevent any gaps.
  5. Zip up the cover: Close the zipper to fully seal the cover, ensuring you aligned it and closed it without any gaps or openings.
  6. Test the cover: Place the DIY mattress cover over the mattress and zip it up completely. Check for any gaps or loose areas where they could potentially enter or escape. Make any necessary adjustments or repairs.


Keep in mind that a DIY bed bug mattress cover may not provide the same level of effectiveness and durability as commercial encasements. It may not have the same specialized features. Such as bed bug-proof zippers or reinforced seams, which are crucial in preventing them from infesting or escaping the mattress.


Is a DIY Bed Bug Mattress cover effective?

A DIY bed bug mattress cover can be effective if it is properly made and securely installed. The key is to ensure that the cover completely encases the mattress and has a secure closure, such as a zipper with small teeth or a Velcro fastening, to prevent bed bugs from entering or escaping.

Here are some factors to consider regarding the effectiveness of a DIY bed bug mattress cover:

  • Quality of the Materials: The choice of fabric is crucial. Use a fabric with a tight weave that bed bugs cannot penetrate. Look for fabrics designed to be bed bug-proof, allergen-proof, or dust mite-proof. Ensure the fabric is durable and resistant to tearing.
  • Proper Encasement: The mattress cover should fully encase the mattress, including all sides and corners. There should be no gaps or openings where bed bugs can enter or escape.
  • Secure Closure: The closure mechanism, such as a zipper or Velcro, should be secure and tightly sealed. It should have small teeth or hooks to prevent bed bugs from squeezing through.
  • Regular Inspection and Maintenance: Periodically inspect the mattress cover for any signs of wear, damage, or openings. Repair or replace the cover if necessary. Regularly clean and vacuum the cover to maintain its effectiveness.


While a homemade bed bug mattress cover can help prevent bed bugs from infesting or escaping from a mattress, it is important to note that it may not eliminate an existing infestation.


How to make a DIY Bed Bug Couch Cover?

Here’s a step-by-step guide to help you create your own couch cover:

  1. Measure your couch.
  2. Cut fabric pieces to cover the seat, backrest, arms, and sides of the couch.
  3. Pin and sew the fabric pieces together.
  4. Try the cover on and make adjustments.
  5. Sew the final seams.
  6. Optionally, add elastic or Velcro for securing the cover.
  7. Press the seams with an iron.
  8. Enjoy your DIY couch cover!


Remember to be mindful of fabric choice, take accurate measurements, and make necessary adjustments for the best fit.


How to remove Bed Bugs from Mattress by yourself?

Removing bed bugs from a mattress naturally can be a challenging task, as these pests are resilient and can quickly multiply. While natural methods may help reduce bed bug populations, they may not completely eliminate them. Here are some natural approaches you can try:

  • Vacuuming: Use a high-powered vacuum cleaner with a crevice tool attachment to thoroughly vacuum the entire surface of the mattress. Pay special attention to seams, crevices, and tufts where they may hide. Empty the vacuum bag or dispose of the contents in a sealed plastic bag immediately after vacuuming.
  • Steam cleaning: They are sensitive to high temperatures. Using a steam cleaner, apply steam to the entire mattress, focusing on seams and other potential hiding spots. The heat from the steam can help kill them and their eggs. Ensure that the steam penetrates deeply into the fabric to be more effective.
  • Washing and drying: Remove all bedding, linens, and covers from the mattress and wash them in hot water (at least 120°F or 49°C) if possible. Dry them on the highest heat setting to kill any remaining bed bugs. Keep in mind that this method is more effective for linens and fabric. Because you can launder them.
  • Diatomaceous earth: Apply food-grade diatomaceous earth to the surface of the mattress. This fine powder consists of microscopic fossilized algae that can effectively dehydrate and kill bed bugs. Make sure to use food-grade diatomaceous earth, as other forms may contain harmful chemicals. Leave it on for a few days and then vacuum it thoroughly.



In this article, we answered the question: How to make a DIY Bed Bug Mattress Cover?
By implementing these DIY mattress protection methods, you can take proactive steps to safeguard your bed from these pests. While professional bed bug-proof encasements are the most reliable option, these simple DIY strategies can provide an additional layer of defense.

Regularly inspecting and cleaning your mattress, sealing any cracks or crevices, and using homemade repellents can help create an unwelcoming environment for these pests. Remember, prevention is key when it comes to bed bug infestations. So, stay vigilant and take swift action if you suspect an infestation. With these DIY techniques, you can rest easier knowing you’re actively protecting your mattress from bed bugs and promoting a healthier sleep environment.

If you want to know the best mattress encasements for bed bugs in the market. You can have a look at our Buying Guide For Bed Bugs Mattress Encasements.