Cleaning Gold Jewelry

Cleaning Gold Jewelry

I’ve had a couple of people ask me on Twitter and Facebook about cleaning gold jewelry. Which got me thinking about how long it’s been since I cleaned mine! Let’s just say….a long time. :-)
So I gave my rings a close-up look and, to quote my Mom when we were little and she was cleaning our ears, “You could grow potatoes in there!”  lol. Or, in other words, there was plenty of dirt and gunk there.
Lotion, soaps, and just plain everyday dirt can get caught in the prongs, and this makes the stones appear facetless and flat.  That just won’t do!  We want SPARKLY stones!

After some research I feel pretty confident that this is the most SAFE and EFFECTIVE way to clean your gold jewelry. Almost every source I went to said pretty much the same thing.

This particular advice comes from Good Housekeeping…and they seem to usually know what they’re talking about. ;-)

Give gold a bubble bath by pouring a few drops of mild dish soap into a small bowl of sodium-free seltzer water or club soda (the carbonation loosens soil and removes debris). Put the jewelry in the bowl to soak for about five minutes. Swish it around, fishing out each piece to go over settings and crevices with a SOFT toothbrush. Rinse under running water; dry with a soft cloth.

For costume jewelry, especially if stones are glued rather than set, dab a cloth into the bubbly solution and gently wipe any smudges or grime, then “rinse” with a cloth dampened in plain water. Pat dry and lay the pieces upside down so moisture won’t soak into the setting.

Now, to KEEP them clean…..

Remove rings when washing your hands or applying lotions, and after wearing, wipe body oils and perfume off pearls with a soft cloth.

And that’s it. Simple, but effective.


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  1. Lisa says

    I worked in a jewelry store…we used half Mr clean & half water…..put in a bowl with your jewelry and microwave……that’s it! Your diamonds will sparkle like new!

  2. Alison C says

    Can it be used on sterling silver? I used it on my gold rings and it work amazingly! I barely even had to brush them. I’ve been looking at them lately thinking I was either going to have to buy jewelry cleaner or take them to the jewelers. Thanks a ton!

    • says

      This should be perfectly fine to use on white gold Katy. However, if your white gold jewelry is beginning to “yellow”, you may have to have it re-dipped by a jeweler.

  3. Danielle says

    I am so happy to find this. I actually work at a jewelry store and it is amazing how many people clean their jewelry with TOOTHPASTE which is REALLY bad for your jewelry. Toothpaste leaves a film, which may be hard to see but attracts dead skin cells and dust. When your jewelry gets really dirty, you run the risk of actually knocking a stone loose (from dirt… I know)… The dirt cakes up around the stones and actually displaces it. Not to mention all those nasty germs and bacteria growing in there and possibly breaking your skin out! Most of the larger chain Jewelry stores do free cleanings as well… Just know that cleanings only take a few minutes so they should be able to clean it while you are standing there. Most stores have a cleaning station on the sales floor, so you wont have to worry about someone switching your diamond! (plus switching a diamond takes some time!)

  4. Christi says

    I am so glad I found your site through Pinterest. Love all the homemade solutions! I’ve always clean my good jewelry with mild dish soap with a soft toothbrush. It was recommend by my mom’s friend who used to work at Tiffany’s.

  5. says

    Hi Jill!!! I have been spending the evening with you ;-) I decided to read your back posts and found this one. I just wanted to let you know that club soda does have sodium in it, where seltzer doesn’t. I have Meniere’s and need to watch my sodium intake so that was how I discovered it. Just that I would fyi since you said a sodium free seltzer or club soda.


  6. Anonymous says

    I always use toothpaste on all my jewelry, it works like magic. Just use an old toothbrush and clean it in all the nooks and crannies. And if you want to make it even more heavy duty, add some cigarette ash to the toothpaste. It looks icky but cleans and polishes in the same time.

  7. Anonymous says

    I clean my rings in 50/50 peroxide and white vinegar. let them soak for about 10 mins and then scrub with soft brush. Rinse thoroughly.

  8. mysweetie924 says

    This may sound ridiculous but have you ever been to a Target or other store bathroom where they have the super high powered hand dryers? They work really well at giving your ring a nice sparkle after washing your hands!