Your Guide To Cleaning and Caring for Your Jewelry

Jeweller cleaning jewelry diamond ring with fabric cloth

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We often don’t realize just how dirty our jewelry is until it’s cleaned up and sparkles from a mile away. While a professional deep clean is great, it isn’t necessary for next-level shimmer—though it is recommended at regular intervals.

Some folks say, ‘I never take my ring off.’ Can you imagine the bacteria that builds up on something you NEVER take off, especially considering that the COVID-19 infection can survive on metal for 5 days? It is highly recommended to clean jewelry you wear regularly as often as possible and have it professionally cleaned and inspected every six months. Keep in mind that jewelry also includes your watches. You don’t need anything fancy to clean your jewelry; you will have what you need at home.

Use mild, gentle cleansers like dish soap; its formula cuts through grease but is still very mild. Use a soft baby toothbrush and warm water.

Blend a solution of dishwashing detergent (one or two drops) and water. You can add ammonia or Windex or 409 or a similar cleaner to break down heavy buildup.

To clean your watch, use the toothbrush to remove accumulation and rinse using a moist cloth. Be careful not to immerse the watch in water unless it is waterproof. If in doubt, don’t immerse. It’s okay to immerse metal watch bands.

Keep your fine jewelry away from bleach and household cleaners, which can damage precious metal alloys. Also, be careful of ultrasonic cleaners if you’ve got small diamonds set in your jewelry—ultrasonics vibrate, which can cause loose or lost diamonds. Better to use your warm water and dish soap mixture with a soft toothbrush.

Don’t use toothpaste or baking soda as they are abrasive and can scratch metal and gems, and do not use anything besides soap and water on costume jewelry (plastic, beads, crystals) or pearls. Lastly, despite what your grandma might have recommended, do not use Coke as it will leave a sticky residue and add to future buildup.

How often should jewelry be cleaned?

As long as you’re using mild cleansers, you can clean as often as you like. Our rings get dirty at different rates, largely depending on skin oils, lotions, soaps, and other products we use.

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