How to Clean Gold Jewellery?

In this Article


Gold does and must glitter, or at least have that special gleam that only gold can have. Most of us have pieces of gold jewellery, some of which stay in the safety locker, while others we keep nearby to wear as often as possible. Our daily wear gold jewellery gets a rinse more often, and they are also easier to keep an eye on for dirt or tarnish. You would think gold doesn’t tarnish, but while the tarnishing may not be the way silver or bronze does, even gold jewellery can show signs of dullness caused by regular use or time. In earlier times, we washed and cleaned our gold jewellery every few weeks, almost as a ritual. But, with not much time at hand, it has become a practice to take our gold jewellery to a gold cleaning expert. 

Still, not all of us are comfortable seeing our jewellery leave our hands and go elsewhere for any reason. Fortunately, there are ways to ensure that cleaning can be done just as professionally in our homes. Here, we will explore a few tips to keep our jewellery looking shiny and new. But, first, let’s understand what makes our gold jewellery look tarnished.

Why does gold jewellery become tarnished? 

Did you know that we would see them lose their natural sheen by using our gold jewellery regularly? That’s right. You would see that the pieces you wear every day or most often tend to appear a little dull over time. That’s also because of the pollution, cosmetics, and the various lotions and moisturisers that accumulate in our jewellery. We know that the purest form of gold is 24K and is considered very soft. Jewellery makers often add other metals to make gold sturdy enough to become a piece of jewellery. Metals, such as silver, palladium, nickel, and even zinc, are mixed with pure gold to make them sturdy and stand the test of time. The purity of gold jewellery varies from 24K to 14K, depending on the gold to the added metal ratio. By itself, gold is inert and doesn’t tarnish. The other metals used in our gold jewellery that cause a reaction when exposed to air and moisture lead to a dull or tarnished look. 

Can you clean your gold jewellery at home?

You most certainly can clean your jewellery at home. There is no need to take them to professionals every time you find your gold necklaces, like Perrin geometric gold necklaces, bangles, earrings, or any other gold jewellery that loses its sheen. 

Soap and water are all you need to clean your jewellery. Sounds simple enough, doesn’t it? You can do it quite quickly, as long as you are working with plain gold jewellery, be it your bangles, bracelets, pendant necklaces, or any other ornament. A soap and water solution can be most effective in removing the accumulated oils, dirt, and other elements that dulled the gold. You may need to use a soft brush to remove that little bit of grim stuck in the grooves or curves of the piece, as in the Romeo gold band. Soaking it in the solution for a few minutes will loosen the dirt more quickly. But, as mentioned above, this method is only for those gold pieces with no gemstones. Here’s a step-by-step approach to using soap and water to clean your gold jewellery at home. 

Step 1: Fill a shallow bowl with warm water. Add a few drops of mild soap to the water and give it a gentle mix to form a solution. Mild detergents or liquid dishwashing soap will do the trick.

Step 2: Place your gold jewellery in the bowl. Remember that these pieces must not have gemstones in them. Leave them in the soapy solution for around 20 minutes. You shouldn’t need to soak for longer than that.

Step 3: Once the dirt and grime have become loosened and fall into the water, you can take the jewellery out and rinse them with cold water till the soapiness leaves entirely. Place the newly rinsed pieces on a soft cloth or towel and let them dry naturally in the air.

Step 4: If you see that some of the grooves still look dull, you can use a soft-bristled brush to brush away the dirt gently – no extra strength is required. Some pieces may need a few extra minutes to soak in the warm soap solution. 

Step 5: Once your gold jewellery is completely dry, you can wear your favourite pieces again or place them back in your jewellery box.

You can use the above cleaning method on any piece of gold jewellery, yellow, rose, or white. You must avoid cold water or boiling water to soak your jewellery in; you can use club soda or sodium-free seltzer water. Carbonated water may loosen the dirt from jewellery more easily. You can also buy a jewellery cleaning solution readily available in the market. 

Do you want to clean gold jewellery with gemstones?

Who doesn’t love wearing gold jewellery with diamonds, precious, or semi-precious stones in them? The sheer glitter is a joy to wear daily or on special occasions. While you can use a soap water solution in plain gold jewellery, you cannot and must not soak gemstone-laden jewellery in the water. Soaking them can trap the soap solution in the setting to make the stones appear cloudy and dull. You can use a soft-bristled brush to remove the dirt in the gold and around the stone setting. But, before brushing the dirt away, ensure the stones are not loose, so they don’t fall out. The rest of the cleaning process is the same as for plain gold jewellery. 

Do you need to send your jewellery for machine cleaning?

You may need professional machine cleaning services if you have tried cleaning your jewellery at home and still find a few of them tarnished or the diamonds and gemstones are looking discoloured. Jewellers in CaratLane have automatic jewellery cleaning processes with ultrasonic, steam, or ionic cleaners. Moreover, they also have the expertise and experience to know what type of cleaning is needed for your particular piece of jewellery. 

Important factors to keep in mind

  • Do not use any solution that has bleach, as it will discolour the gold. 
  • Use a bowl to clean, and do NOT wash them directly under the tap as they could slip from your hands and go through the drain.
  • Always be gentle when you clean your jewellery – plain gold or otherwise – to retain its natural sheen. 

There you have it – a few simple and yet efficient ways to keep your jewellery clean and shiny, and forever looking new! 

Pin to board
Share on facebook
Next Articles