Cleaning your Jewelry

Cleaning your Jewelry

From your everyday jewelry to those stately pieces you only wear on special occasions, there’s a good chance all of your jewelry could use a good polish. Some people clean their jewelry excessively while others rarely clean their jewelry at all. Since baubles are wearable items and can be fragile, it’s best to take a moderate approach when cleaning your jewelry. Rinsing and rubbing it too much can cause unnecessary damage and premature wear and cleaning it too little can cause your beloved pieces to degrade over time. There are a few factors to consider depending on the type of jewelry.

Maintaining Jewelry

Assess the type of jewelry you want to clean. All fine jewelry should be cleaned with care, but some gemstones require a more gentle approach so that they don’t crack or chip. Fragile materials—like pearls and cameos made from shells, emeralds, opals, or turquoise—should be handled with extreme care. The frequency of cleaning jewelry matters, too. Most fine jewelry should only be cleaned everyone other month or so to prevent unnecessary exposure to liquids. If you find yourself needing or wanting to clean your jewelry more often, be sure to use a gentle method and avoid ultrasonic cleaners or steamers. Excessive use of at-home ultrasonic machines can eventually loosen stones, wear down the metal, and cause even more significant damage. Have your jewelry checked by a trusted professional jeweler twice a year to ensure they are secure and properly cleaned.

Cleaning Fine Jewelry

The most gentle way to clean fine jewelry is to do so at home using this DIY solution: a dish, lukewarm water, a soft-bristle toothbrush, and some mild dish detergent. The milder the soap, the better. To make the DIY jewelry cleaner, Mix a drop of dish soap in a bowl with some lukewarm water. For extremely soiled fine jewelry that does not have fragile gemstones, soak the jewelry in the mixture for a few minutes. (Always remember that delicate gemstones should never be saturated for more than a few seconds.) Next, use the toothbrush to buff away any dirt and residue gently. For dirt in hard-to-reach spots, carefully use a toothpick to dislodge it. As you’re cleaning the jewelry, take note of any loose stones or damage that needs to be repaired. If gemstones are loose, stop wearing the jewelry until it can be fixed. Finally, pat the jewelry dry and allow it to air dry completely before putting it back into storage.