How to Clean Jewelry: The Dos and Don'ts
As seasons change, so do fashion trends. And this means changing up your jewelry to match the latest and greatest outfits of the season. When you take out a few pieces of old jewelry before going to an event, you may find them dirty and grimy due to age or wear. So how do you get these precious stones spiffed up for the spotlight?
While we wish there was one cleaning procedure for all jewelry, unfortunately, there isn’t a single way to clean it all. Because there are different stones and materials involved, they each require specific care. The good news is, cleaning them involves simple tools and methods. Use this helpful guide to know how to clean your jewelry, so it looks its best when you want to wear it.
Cleaning Gold Jewelry
Though this might sound a bit daunting, how to clean gold jewelry involves two simple items: seltzer water and a toothbrush. The effervescence of the seltzer helps gently remove dirt. Simply pour a bit of seltzer water over your gold jewelry and let it sit for about five minutes. Then, using an old toothbrush, gently brush off the dirt and grime. Rinse your jewelry with cool water and buff it dry with a lint-free towel or soft cloth.
Cleaning Silver Jewelry
Fun fact about silver: it actually gets shinier the more you wear it. Storing it for a long period of time causes it to tarnish. There are anti-tarnish bags that you can use, but if it’s too late, all you need are dish soap, water, and a soft cloth.
Mix a few drops of dish soap (any standard household brand like Dawn will work) with warm water. Take a soft cloth, dip it in the solution, and use it to gently rub and clean your silver jewelry. Once you get all of the tarnish and grime off, rinse it with warm water and buff it dry with another soft cloth.
If you want to restore the sparkle in your rubies, diamonds, and sapphires, you can mix dish soap with warm water and use a soft toothbrush to remove debris from your gemstones. Rinse it with warm water and see it shine.
Though this solution can be used for most gemstones, it’s well worth checking in with a jewelry specialist to accurately identify your gems and any unique properties and physical quirks that may impact the type of care your gemstone may need.
Because pearls are porous, they can easily dull and require a bit more specialized cleaning tools. You’ll need a soft makeup or artist brush, mild shampoo, and lukewarm water.
Add a drop of mild shampoo in a bowl of lukewarm water, and dip your brush in the solution. Brush over the surface of your pearl, rinse it in cool water, and leave it out to air dry.
Cleaning Costume Jewelry
We all have those precious vintage items that we love to whip out during special occasions. So how do you clean costume jewelry and keep it in tip-top shape?
Add a small amount of toothpaste on your jewelry and smudge it with your finger. Once you have a nice thin layer of toothpaste, use an old toothbrush to brush your jewelry clean. Be sure to get all the crevices. Once you’re done brushing off all of the grime and dirt, rinse your item with cool water and buff it dry with a clean cloth.
Cleaning Engagement Rings
Your engagement ring is one of your most prized possessions. There are a lot of memories and significant meaning behind it. Since items you use every day like dish soap, lotion, and shampoo can deteriorate the quality of your ring, it’s essential to show it some love by taking care of it.
You can add dishwashing soap to a bowl of warm water and soak your ring in the solution for about half an hour. Then brush the stone gently with a soft toothbrush and rinse it under warm water. You’ll finally be able to show off your engagement ring to its best effect!
Take Care of Your Precious Jewelry
A vital part of understanding how to clean tarnished jewelry involves knowing what not to do. It’s important to avoid harsh chemicals (lemon juice, alcohol, acids, etc.) and hot water. These can damage your items and shorten their lifespan. You should also steer clear of showering with your jewelry, as frequent exposure to soap and water can create rust. Not to mention, with costume jewelry, this can loosen the glue that keeps the pieces together.
If you have any doubts or hesitations about handling a particular item, sometimes the best way to clean jewelry is to see a professional jewelry specialist. Just as you periodically go get your car serviced, you should do the same for your jewelry. It’s generally recommended that you see your jeweler for a professional cleaning once every six months. Not only can they make your item look good as new, but they can also look for any damage and wear. It’s important to stay cautious and preserve the beauty of your precious pieces.
Discover Quality Jewelry
Whether you’re looking for fine jewelry for yourself or a loved one, or need advice on taking care of your jewelry, Daniel’s Jewelers has you covered. We provide customized credit options and VIP awards for on-time payments. So be sure to learn more about our services and fill out our credit application for access to our amazing benefits.