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How to Clean Jewelry at Home?

how to clean jewelry at home

Has your jewelry lost its shine over time? We'll show you how to make your jewelry shine again with these DIY jewelry cleaning tips.

Why Do We Need to Clean Jewelry?

When you want to wear a piece of jewelry only to discover that it has become discolored, it can seem a little annoying. Unfortunately, discoloration is a completely normal part of the aging process, regardless of the type of material your jewelry is made of.

  • In the case of silver, reaction with the air leads to the formation of silver sulfide on the surface. This causes a change of color and creates the unsightly black areas that need to be cleaned. 
  • Gold jewelry can become tarnished by dirt, food, soap residue, makeup and sweat, which can cause it to lose its shine.
  • Most costume jewelry consists of less expensive materials and, therefore, tends to tarnish even more rapidly. Before you start cleaning the jewelry, check whether any stains are purely superficial or if it has actually discolored due to tarnishing.

Should a professional always clean the jewelry?

Jewelers usually provide a cleaning service for jewelry. But that can be quite expensive—and, luckily, it’s usually not necessary. You can easily clean jewelry yourself.

Cleaning jewelry—it’s quick and easy

Have your chains, rings or bracelets become discolored or are showing stains? It doesn't take much to restore the metallic sheen of jewelry. All you need is a splash of dish soap, warm water and a little time.

Here’s how to clean jewelry using homemade jewelry cleaner:

  1. Mix a splash of dish detergent with warm water in a glass.
  2. Start stirring with either a spoon or your finger.
  3. Lower the jewelry into the detergent-water mixture.
  4. Set aside to ensure no mix up with your drinking glass. Let the jewelry sit for about an hour.
  5. Rinse your jewelry under clean water.
  6. Wipe it and you're done!

If the deposits haven’t come off after an hour and your jewelry shows some stubborn discolorations and soiling, you can always extend the soaking time. Just a little longer and your jewelry will shine in new splendor, and you can enjoy it once again!

Not all jewelry is created equal: the material and shape are crucial

Pieces of jewelry differ significantly depending on the material. Want to give your jewelry an individual treatment? Then check out our articles on cleaning gold or silver jewelry, or cleaning costume jewelry.

But it's not only the material that matters. The shape determines how easy it will be to clean your jewelry. Find out more with our tips on cleaning rings, necklaces or earrings.