I have pillow issues. If I take off a pillowcase and see any discoloration I get a little queasy. Pillows are just stuffed germ carriers. I can get over this as long as the pillow doesn't look icky. Maybe we drool more than average people, but our pillows get yellow spots of wierdness on them and then I have to buy new pillows. Occasionally I'll wash them, but mostly I just throw them away and buy new ones because the sack o' lumpiness that comes out of the wash is not even recognizable as the pillow that went in.
I had a pillow that needed to be dealt with. Wash it or throw it away? The pillow was fairly new and still had plenty of use left, so I decided that a trip to the washer would be okay. I read the tag. "Machine Wash warm on gentle cycle. Dry on low heat. For best results, wash two or three pillows simultaneously for balance." Okay, I can do that. I found another pillow and threw that one in too. Anticipating nice clean smelling and maybe slightly lumpy pillows, I opened the washer. Apparently there was a mixup at the pillow making factory. The tag should have read "Warning: Contents May Explode. Wash at Your Own Risk." Stuffing everywhere. The pillow that didn't fully explode looked as if it had been used as a shield in an acid fight.
Moral of the story: Don't believe everything you read. Oh, and don't wash pillows.