Home Remedies for Cleaning Gold

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From heirloom brooches to wedding bands, gold is a popular material used to fashion a great deal of jewelry in the world. Over time, the shine and luster of these pieces can dull when they come in contact with the elements, body oils and everyday use. To bring jewelry back to life, you may want to get familiar with home remedies for cleaning gold.

What is Gold?

Gold is a soft, yellow element that is resistant to corrosion, as well as one of the most malleable and ductile metals in the world of jewelry [1]. Gold is used for decorative purposes, but mostly made into jewelry. Gold is expressed in terms of carat, which refers to the amount of gold that is present in an object. 24 carats is pure gold.

Gold Cleaning Home Remedies

Gold is susceptible to tarnish and discoloration – especially 9 to 14 carat jewelry pieces. 18 carat gold and higher typically does not tarnish or discolor. The value of gold continues to rise and many people are rushing to cash in. Whether you want your fine jewelry to sparkle or you’re looking to get the most for your money, the following home remedies for cleaning gold can help enhance the appearance of this coveted metal:

a) Hydrogen Peroxide and Baking Soda:

You can remove the dirt, grime and body oils that can take away the shine from gold and silver jewelry by rubbing with a paste made out of baking soda and hydrogen peroxide.

b) Toothpaste:

A small amount of toothpaste gently scrubbed onto your gold pieces can remove the film that forms on your favorite jewelry. Opt for toothpaste that does not have a lot of abrasive qualities – you do not want to leave scratches on your gold. Use a soft-bristled toothbrush for the cleaning.

c) Dishwashing Detergent:

Add a couple of drops of mild dishwashing detergent to a small bowl filled with warm water. Use a soft toothbrush to scrub away the tarnish on your 10K and 14K gold jewelry. Treat all surfaces to a good scrub – even the crevices. Rinse the gold in warm water until the water runs clear. Next, use a soft, lint-free cloth to buff the jewelry dry until it starts to shine.

d) Isopropyl Alcohol:

Rubbing alcohol can remove the tarnish that oils from your skin causes to build up on rings and necklaces. Over time, dead skin cells and grease attach to the oils and over time, a thin layer forms over the gold that makes it look dirty and tarnished. Soak your jewelry in rubbing alcohol to dissolve the oils and loosen the grime.

e) Baking Soda:

A cleaning paste for gold jewelry can be made out of one part water and three parts baking soda. Use an old toothbrush with a soft bristle to clean your pieces.

f) Vinegar and Baking Soda:

Add a light coating of baking soda over your gold jewelry, and then pour a small amount of vinegar over it. This remedy will help add shine to your piece. You should
also know the finish of pearls and gemstones can suffer damage, as well as loosen from their setting if you use this remedy to clean.

g) Ammonia:

To treat stained or especially grimy gold jewelry, soak the piece in one part ammonia and six parts water for 30 minutes before wiping it clean. The delicate surface of pearls is damaged when it comes in contact so do not use this remedy for those kinds of pieces.

h) Soft Cotton Cloth:

To add an attractive shine to gold jewelry, rinse it thoroughly and then dry the piece – using a soft cloth to buff.

i) Beer [2]:

A small amount of beer can be used to polish your gold jewelry. Do not select dark ale for this remedy. Use a soft cloth to gently rub in the beer over the piece. With a clean cloth, dry the piece before wearing or storing. Skip this remedy if you are cleaning jewelry with gemstones.


[2] Extraordinary Uses for Ordinary Things by Reader’s Digest; pg. 83