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How to Clean Jewelry at Home

Wondering how to clean jewelry at home? You’re in the right place! From gold and silver to precious gems, there are a few at-home methods that can help put the shine back in your jewelry box. With just a few items, you can learn how to clean jewelry and keep things sparkling in-between trips to the jeweler for a professional clean.

 The experts at Dondero Jewelry share these tips on how to clean jewelry below.

 How to Clean Jewelry at Home

Sterling Silver

Over time, silver will inevitably tarnish, says Dondero Jewelry. As the metal is exposed to high humidity and sulfur-containing gases in the air, it slowly corrodes and develops a layer of what appears to be a dull gray or black coating.

While a professional polish is recommended, you can achieve results at home with just a few items. You’ll need a polishing cloth, ammonia, warm water, and a mild dish detergent like Dawn.

Mix together six parts lukewarm water to one-part ammonia. Add in a few drops of dish detergent. Submerge your jewelry in the solution for at least ten minutes, then remove your jewelry and gently buff the metal with your polishing cloth.


Like most metals, gold jewelry can lose its luster over time. Following a similar method for cleaning sterling silver, you’ll need these items: a soft-bristled toothbrush, ammonia, warm water, and mild dish soap.

Again, mix six parts lukewarm water to one-part ammonia, adding in a few drops of dish detergent just like before. For rings with gemstones and other intricate pieces with nooks and crannies where dirt and grime may be hiding, Dondero Jewelry suggests using a sodium-free seltzer water or club soda. The carbonation can help loosen the dirt in hard to reach spots.

Let jewelry soak for 15 minutes and gently scrub the surface of the piece with a soft-bristled toothbrush. If your jewelry is gold-plated and not solid gold, be very careful, as stiff bristles could potentially ruin the gold plating. Finally, rinse the piece in warm water and blot dry with a soft, lint-free cloth.



Unlike metal jewelry, pearls require a slightly different approach to cleaning. If you notice a buildup or lack of luster on your pearl jewelry, your best solution for at-home cleaning is wipe them down with a damp cloth. You may use warm water and a trace amount of mild dish detergent, however, you should never submerge your strand of pearls in water, according to Dondero Jewelry. The water can weaken the silk thread and the piece could more easily break.

Allow them to completely air dry before storing in your jewelry box.

Diamonds and Gemstones

When it comes to diamonds and gemstones, nothing less than a sparkling shine will do. An effecting method for cleaning gemstones is to use a dry polishing cloth to buff out any smudges or films that are dulling the shine of the stone.

Alternatively, a mixture of warm water and mild dish soap can help dislodge any dirt or grime trapped corners of your setting or around the rim of the stone. Always rinse thoroughly, so no soapy residue builds up on the gem. Allow to dry fully before storing away.

Is your jewelry collecting dust in your jewelry box or in need of a professional clean? Dondero Jewelry in Vineland, NJ, offers a variety of services for your favorite pieces. From watch and jewelry repairs to professional polishing, Dondero is your jewelry destination. Contact them today to learn how they can be of service: 856.691.1164.