How to Care for and Clean Your Jewelry

How to Care for and Clean Your Jewelry

Caring for and cleaning your jewelry can be a daunting task. Do you want to know how to properly care for and clean your jewelry? This article will provide you with the steps and advice you need to care for and clean your jewelry effectively. From how to store your jewelry to the best cleaning methods, you’ll find everything you need to keep your jewelry shining.

1. Identify the Type of Jewelry

Before you can begin to care for and clean your jewelry, you need to identify the type of jewelry you have. Different types of jewelry require different cleaning techniques and materials.

Jewelry can be made from a variety of materials, including precious metals such as gold and silver, and gemstones such as diamonds and pearls. It is important to identify what type of jewelry you have so that you can select the correct cleaning and care techniques.

Firstly, inspect the piece to determine if it is made from precious metals or gemstones. Precious metals are labeled with a stamp that will identify the metal type and purity. For example, gold jewelry is stamped with a karat number that will indicate how much gold is present in the piece, such as 14K or 18K.

Gemstones can be identified using a gemstone testing kit, available from most jewelry stores. This kit will help you to identify the type of gemstone, its quality, and its carat weight.

If you are unsure about the type of jewelry you have, it is best to take it to a professional jeweler for identification and cleaning. They will be able to advise you on the correct cleaning techniques and materials to use for your jewelry.


2. Gather Appropriate Cleaning Supplies

Before you start to clean your jewelry, it is important to gather the appropriate cleaning supplies. Generally you will need a soft, lint-free cloth, a soft-bristled brush, and a cleaning solution. The cleaning solution can be a commercial jewelry cleaner, a gentle soap, or even a mixture of warm water and a few drops of ammonia. It is important to use a mild cleaning solution as harsher chemicals can cause damage to the metal or stones.

It is also recommended to use a soft-bristled brush for jewelry with intricate details or hard-to-reach areas. This will help to remove dirt and dust that has accumulated in these areas. Always remember to use a light touch when cleaning your jewelry.

When cleaning your jewelry, it is important to take caution to not use too much pressure or an abrasive motion. This can cause damage to the metal and stones, as well as cause scratches and discoloration. If you are unsure about how to clean a particular piece of jewelry, it is best to take it to a professional jewelry cleaner.

In addition, it is important to take care when storing your jewelry. Use a soft cloth to buff your jewelry before storing it to prevent tarnishing and scratches. It is also important to store your jewelry in a soft pouch or box away from other pieces of jewelry as they can scratch each other.

3. Learn Jewelry Specific Cleaning Methods

Most jewelry is delicate and requires special care to ensure it looks its best and lasts for years. In addition to regular dusting and storing jewelry properly, it’s important to learn jewelry specific cleaning methods.

It’s best to clean jewelry regularly, as dirt, makeup, and oils can accumulate over time. Here are some tips for cleaning different types of jewelry:

  1. Gold and silver jewelry: To clean gold and silver jewelry, mix one teaspoon of dishwashing detergent with two cups of warm water. Soak the jewelry for 15 minutes, then rinse and dry with a soft cloth.
  2. Pearls: Pearls should not be soaked in water. Instead, wipe them with a soft cloth dampened with warm water, then dry with a soft cloth. Never use detergents or abrasives on pearls.
  3. Gemstones: Gemstone jewelry should be wiped with a soft cloth dampened with warm water, then dried with a soft cloth. Never use detergents or abrasives on gemstones.

To remove tarnish from silver jewelry, use a silver polish or a silver cleaning cloth. Never use abrasives or chemical cleaners on silver jewelry.

It’s also important to take your jewelry to a professional for regular cleaning and maintenance. A professional jeweler will be able to identify any signs of damage or wear and can recommend the best course of action. For more detailed information about jewelry cleaning and maintenance,


4. Understand Jewelry Storing Tips

Jewelry is an important investment that requires proper storage and care. Here are some tips for storing your jewelry:

  1. Store jewelry separately in a dry, cool place. Use individual compartments or boxes, or use anti-tarnish bags to protect each piece.
  2. Avoid storing jewelry in the bathroom, as the humid environment can cause tarnishing.
  3. If you’re storing jewelry in boxes or drawers, use a soft cloth between each piece of jewelry to avoid scratching.
  4. Keep pieces with chains separate from those with stones; chains can get tangled and stones can be damaged if they rub against each other.
  5. For pieces that are particularly delicate, you may want to consider using a jewelry roll or pouch to protect them.

It’s important to keep an eye on the condition of your jewelry, and to check your storage regularly. Storing your jewelry properly will help to keep it looking its best for longer.

leather jewelry box

5. Know When to Seek Professional Cleaning

Jewelry is a precious item that requires special care and attention. It is important to know when to seek professional cleaning and maintenance. Here are five signs that it is time to see a professional:

  1. Your jewelry is tarnished or discolored.
  2. Your jewelry is scratched or damaged.
  3. Your jewelry has loose stones or settings.
  4. Your jewelry has been in contact with chemicals.
  5. Your jewelry is a family heirloom.

Tarnished or discolored jewelry can be a sign that it needs to be cleaned or polished. Professional jewelers can clean and polish your jewelry to restore its original shine and luster. If your jewelry is scratched or damaged, a professional can repair it. Additionally, if the settings and stones are loose, a professional can tighten the stones and reset them. If your jewelry has been in contact with chemicals, such as cleaning products or chlorine, a professional can clean and restore it.

Family heirlooms should also be taken to a professional. Heirlooms are often older pieces that require special attention. Professional jewelers can inspect and clean heirloom jewelry to ensure it is safe and in good condition.

For more information about caring for your jewelry, visit the Consumer

6. Utilize Professional Jewelry Repair Services

It is important to take proper care of your jewelry to ensure its longevity. Regular maintenance includes proper cleaning and occasional repair. Professional jewelry repair services are available and are often the best option for complex repairs.

Jewelry repair can involve a variety of services, such as:

  1. Resizing rings
  2. Replacing missing stones
  3. Repairing broken clasps
  4. Restoring antique jewelry
  5. Polishing and refinishing

It is important to use a reputable jewelry repair service to ensure that your jewelry is handled properly. A professional jeweler will be experienced in working with a variety of materials, such as gold, silver, and gemstones. Additionally, they will have the right tools and techniques to do the job correctly and safely.

If you are unsure of a particular repair service, you can research their background and read customer reviews. You can also contact the Better Business Bureau (BBB) for information on the company.

repairing ring


Proper care and cleaning of jewelry are vital to maintain its luster and prolong its lifespan. It’s crucial to store jewelry correctly, avoid exposing it to harmful chemicals, and clean it using appropriate methods. Regular maintenance, combined with professional cleanings, ensures that jewelry remains in pristine condition and retains its value.

By Christin Hill

A literature and sociology major with a Master's in Music, Christine Marie Hill is a marketer and product comparison expert.