Beautify your bling: Tips and recipes for cleaning your jewelry

Posted: Updated:

Accessories are huge this fall in fashion. Since I'm on a limited budget and it seems that everything old is new again lately, I've been pulling out all my old jewelry, real and costume, to put together in bunches and in new ways as we move into cooler weather.

Linda Davis

Beautify your bling: Cleaning your jewelry - I've been pulling out all my old jewelry, real and costume, to put together in bunches and in new ways as we move into cooler weather. I thought the time was right to figure out the best ways to make it sparkle and shine again.

Related links:
Search Video:

So, I thought the time was right to figure out the best ways to make it sparkle and shine again. As I researched this, I learned that what you don't do can be as important as what you do. The most important thing is to pay attention to what your jewelry is made of. And here's the biggest thing I've learned - use the gentlest method possible to clean that bling. Chemicals can be really bad for soft stones, pearls or costume jewelry with a lot of glue. So be careful. Here are the guidelines I learned and I tested them thoroughly.

The one item I would really recommend you buy is a silver polishing cloth. I got one at Bed, Bath and Beyond for about $6. This works brilliantly on silver watches, silver with gem stores and that popular silver jewelry with the oxidation highlights. This will make your silver shine in no time.

Solid Silver

This is the recipe for that silver solution used in the segment to clean solid sterling silver. This really worked well for me. I suggest you don't soak silver with gem stones in it just to be careful

Homemade Silver Dip

Aluminum Foil placed around any glass pan 1 Tbsp. baking soda 1 Tbsp. salt Hot water

Diamonds in Gold

Soak for about 15 minutes in this solution and then using a clean, very soft toothbrush gently clean out the stones.

6 parts water to 1 part ammonia (or rubbing alcohol)

Air-dry then if you wish buff with a very soft cloth.

Solid Gold

Warm water and drops of gentle dishwashing detergent (Joy or Ivory are the gentlest)

Soak for about 15 minutes then dry and polish with a soft cloth.

Delicate Stones in any Setting and Costume Jewelry

And now for the real, delicate jewelry - or think of it as any real jewelry that have these stones:

Pearls Amber Coral Emeralds Mother of Pearl Opals Pearls Turquoise

These are all very porous and you don't want to soak them or get them too wet. Plus, you don't want to use anything with chemical - it can literally eat away at the stones. So caution is the key word here.

Simply use a very soft cloth dipped in warm water. The only thing to consider adding to the water is a few drops of that gentle soap (Joy or Ivory). Just wipe them clean.

This exact method is what you should use for your costume jewelry also because it's usually assemble with glue and you don't want to weaken that bond with too much water or a chemical.

A new product I recently found claims to be all-natural and a cleaner that you can spray on while you're wearing your jewelry. It's called Leave it On and I found I liked it. I found it at Silver Source, a small kiosk store inside the Colonnade Mall.

The bottom line for bling is to treat it with gentle care and yes, try to keep it clean.

Live and Learn