December 18, 2020
🕐 8 Min Read
Cleaning your jewelry at home can be extremely nerve-wracking. That’s why we created this comprehensive guide that covers easy cleaning options for Silver, Gold, Gold Vermeil, Sterling Silver, and more. Dig in.
Different DIY Methods For How To Clean Silver, Gold, Gold Vermeil, Stainless Steel Jewelry & More
We all know that jewelry is personal. It’s hand-picked, intentional and represents your one-of-a-kind love or self-love. As you stare lovingly at those emblematic beauties, you notice the sparkle begins to dull slightly.
You know what that means—it’s time to clean your jewelry. To help make this process easier, we’re covering the different ways of how to clean jewelry at home. Whether you’re wearing silver, gold, rose gold, yellow gold or stainless steel, you’ll have the solution you need that’ll keep your favorite jewelry bright and sparkly.
How To Clean Sterling Silver Jewelry
When it comes to sterling silver jewelry, gentle cleaning is important. Silver is a soft metal so you want to ensure that you’re not further tarnishing or damaging the metal when cleaning.
The Most Effective Solution: Polishing Cloth
Polishing is the most effective solution when tarnishing is not too severe. Since silver has potential to easily scratch, it’s important that you polish with a special silver cloth. Other options are a lint-free flannel, microfiber or a soft, nonabrasive cloth. You should definitely stay away from paper towels or tissues because they contain fibers that scratch silver.
Use back-and-forth motions that mirror the pattern of the silver jewelry and switch to different sections of the cloth to avoid re-tarnishing the silver. For those hard-to-get areas, use Q-Tips.
Everyday Cleaning: Warm Water & Mild Dishwashing Soap
The easiest way to learn how to clean sterling silver jewelry is with simple ingredients at home. To start, add a few drops of liquid dish soap to warm water. Mix until bubbles form and then soak the jewelry for 5-10 minutes.
After soaking, use a soft-bristle brush to clean any crevices. Rinse the jewelry in the warm water and then dry with a microfiber towel or silver cloth. Note: this is also an excellent way to clean gold jewelry.
Removes Tarnish: Baking Soda & Water
Make a paste using baking soda and water. To apply, use a pea-sized amount of the paste on your silver and polish. If you’re cleaning sterling silver that has more detail, thin your paste out with more water and use a soft-bristled toothbrush for cracks and crevices.
Next, run the piece under warm water and dry with a clean cloth.
- Diane Von Furstenberg
Removes Heavy Tarnish: White Vinegar & Baking Soda
If you’re wondering how to clean your silver ring, this combination is an excellent gentle cleaner that removes heavy tarnish. Soak your tarnished jewelry in a ½ cup of white vinegar with 2 tablespoons of baking soda. Warning: this mixture fizzes. Keep your sterling silver in this solution for two to three hours, rinse and dry
Olive Oil & Lemon Juice
Mix ½ cup lemon juice with 1 tablespoon olive oil in a large bowl. Then, use a small microfiber cloth and dip it in the solution. Use this cloth to polish your sterling silver, rinse and dry.
If you want a deep-dive into all things 925 Sterling Silver, access our How To Clean Sterling Silver Guide.
How To Clean Gold Jewelry
Cleaning Gold Jewelry regularly ensures it stays timelessly classic. Ideally, gold should be cleaned every few weeks with repolishing once every few months. Unlike silver, gold does not tarnish—but it can dull over time.
Simple Solution: Warm Water & Washing Liquid
The simplest way of how to clean any gold jewelry is to wash with warm water and washing liquid. Leave the jewelry to soak in a bowl for approximately 10-15 minutes. Then, use a paintbrush or soft-bristle brush to loosen any stubborn dirt in the settings or details of the jewelry.
Once brushed, rinse under the water and gently pat dry with a kitchen towel.
Deep Cleaning: Ammonia
If it’s been awhile since you last cleaned your solid gold jewelry, ammonia may be a good option for deep cleaning. It’s important to not clean too often with this substance since it can be damaging to the metal. Also, ammonia is not recommended for use on platinum or pearls.
To deep clean, add one part ammonia to six parts water and stir gently. Next, soak the jewelry in the solution for a max of one minute. Remove with a kitchen strainer and then rinse thoroughly under running water. Dry your jewelry gently with a soft polishing cloth.
How To Clean Gold Vermeil Jewelry
When it comes to rose gold vermeil or yellow gold vermeil jewelry, simple cleaning is definitely the way to go. Here’s how to clean Gold Vermeil jewelry at home.
One of the biggest advantages of 14kt Yellow Gold and Rose Gold Vermeil is that it’s resistant to tarnish. As with most jewelry, you don’t want to apply lotion or perfume, exercise, go to the pool, or do housework while wearing vermeil.
Lukewarm Water & Soft Liquid Soap
With gold vermeil, make sure you don’t submerge the jewelry in liquid. Instead dip a lint-free, soft, non-abrasive cloth or jewellery cloth in a warm water and soap combination. Gently rub your piece and then rinse with another cloth dipped in plain water. Once washed, carefully dry and place it in a jewelry box wrapped in a soft cloth. Avoid using a silver cloth as it will remove the gold plating!
How To Clean Stainless Steel Jewelry
Hands down, stainless steel is one of the most affordable jewelry metals on the market. It’s also resistant to rust, oxidation and a great option for those allergic or sensitive to metals.
The Best Method: Water & Soap
This easy cleaning recipe requires two small bowls with warm water. Then, add 2-3 drops of mild dish soap in bowl 1. Dip the corner of the cloth into the mixture and rub it along the jewelry.
After, use a soft-bristle toothbrush and rub any excess dirt. Wash the jewelry in the second bowl and rinse. Use a dry cloth to wipe away any remaining water and then use a polishing cloth.
Water & Baking Soda
To learn how to clean stainless steel jewelry, you’ll need a large glass bowl, 1 tbsp baking soda, ½ tablespoon water, a soft bristle toothbrush, and a kitchen towel.
Combine the baking soda and water in the large bowl with a 2:1 ration. Then, dip the toothbrush into the mixture and scrub the jewelry. Rinse the jewelry with warm water and use a soft towel to dry. Let the stainless steel jewelry sit for a few minutes to completely dry before putting your jewelry away.
- Elizabeth Taylor
How To Clean Costume Jewelry
Costume Jewelry is beautiful, bright, and price-efficient—but it can also change color easily. This occurs when the jewelry gets wet, comes into contact with cleaning products, oxygen, and sweat.
Since Costume Jewelry is impacted by moisture, it’s important to keep the cleaning process to a minimum and avoid acidic materials.
Gentle Cleaning Solution: Baby Shampoo & Water
To learn how to clean costume jewelry, mix one drop of baby shampoo and water. Then, use a soft toothbrush or Q-Tip for those hard-to-reach areas.
Immediately rinse off this solution in cool water and dry with a clean microfiber cloth. Use a hairdryer (on cool) to ensure the piece is entirely dry.
Now that you know the ins-and-outs of cleaning different types of jewelry, shop our authentic Moon Magic jewelry collection.