Cleaning fine jewelry is easier now than it’s ever been. Expensive professional cleanings are no longer the norm now that there are products on the market that make it quick and easy to clean fine jewelry at home.
Ultrasonic Jewelry Cleaners
An ultrasonic cleaner uses sound waves and liquid to safely and effectively clean delicate items such as jewelry, eyeglasses and even DVDs. Some types of ultrasonic cleaners use chemicals, others use regular tap water. It’s the sound wave technology that actually instigates the cleaning. Sound waves cause disturbances in the liquid, causing bubbles to form and cling to the jewelry. The bubbles penetrate small cracks and crevices and dislodge any particles of dirt. This type of jewelry cleaner is safe for gold, silver, platinum and hard gemstones such as diamonds. Soft, porous stones — pearls and opals can suffer damage from an ultrasonic cleaning.
Steam Jewelry Cleaners
Steam cleaners are another option — and one of the more expensive home methods of cleaning jewelry. These small machines run your jewelry through a gentle chemical soak, followed by a hot rinse cycle and steam bath. Steam cleaners are recommended for use on metals and hard gemstones.
Jewelry Cleaning Solutions
Those jars of jewelry cleaner that you find on the shelf in the jewelry department at your local department store probably contain surfactants. Surfactants loosen the dirt and grime that cling to jewelry, allowing them to be gently washed away with water. Usually, the jar contains a dip tray where you place your jewelry to be cleaned as you submerge it in the solution. A gentle soak and brushing is all that’s needed to safely clean gold, silver, metals and hard gemstones. Again, pearls should not be cleaned with traditional surfactants unless the label specifies.
There are also a variety of kitchen products you can use to clean jewelry, such as:
- white vinegar,
- baking soda, and even
Most homemade cleaning agents are safe for metal and hard gemstones.