How to Clean Gold Jewelry With Stones

Professional jewelry cleaners often use ultrasonic machines.
... Photodisc/Photodisc/Getty Images

From your wedding ring, to your great-grandmother's vintage necklace, precious gold jewelry often features gemstones. While you can take your jewelry to a professional for a cleaning, and should do so if the stones are loose and need resetting, you can also keep your gold jewelry clean at home. Whether you buy commercial cleaner from a jewelry store or make your own at home, clean your jewelry regularly to keep the gold and gemstones sparkling.

Tear off a sheet of aluminum foil large enough to line a small cereal bowl. Lay the foil in the bowl shiny-side up and fold it over the edges, covering the entire inside surface of the bowl. The aluminum foil stimulates a process called ion exchange which helps get a squeaky, shiny clean aspect to your jewlery.

Fill the bowl with hot tap water. Mix in 1 tablespoon of dishwashing liquid or liquid laundry detergent without bleach.

Drop the jewelry into the soapy water and let it soak for at least one minute. If your jewelry is very dirty, it may need to soak longer.

Scrub the jewelry gently with a soft toothbrush. Rinse it under warm running water and lay it on a towel to dry.

  • If the stones in your jewelry are pearls, do not soak it. Instead, dip the toothbrush into the soapy water mixture, scrub the jewelry and wipe it dry with a soft cloth.
  • Remove your jewelry before showering or applying hair products to prevent dulling buildup.

S.R. Becker is a certified yoga teacher based in Queens, N.Y. She has a Master of Fine Arts in creative writing and has worked as a writer and editor for more than 15 years. Becker often writes for "Yoga in Astoria," a newsletter about studios throughout New York City.