|Cleaning Jewelry with Dish Soap|
Put a few drops of liquid dish detergent in a bowl of warm (not hot) water. Mix gently. Though ordinary tap water will work fine, for even better results, you can use sodium-free seltzer water or club soda. The carbonation in these liquids can help loosen accumulated dirt and debris. Don't use hot or boiling water, especially if your jewelry contains fragile precious stones. Some precious stones, like opals, can crack if subjected to rapid and drastic temperature changes.
- Soak the gold jewelry in the solution. Allow the jewelry to sit in the water for about 15 minutes. As it soaks, warm soapy water will work its way into the cracks and crevices, loosening hard-to-reach buildups of dirt.
- Gently scrub the jewelry with a soft-bristle toothbrush. Scrub each piece of jewelry individually, paying special attention to nooks and crannies where dirt may be hidden. Use a very soft brush - the softer the better. Stiff bristles can scratch the surface of your jewelry. If your jewelry is gold-plated (as opposed to solid gold), especially stiff bristles can even remove the gold layer entirely! Special brushes designed for this purpose are best, but most small, soft brushes (like, for instance, eyebrow brushes) will also work.
- Rinse each piece in warm running water. A good rinsing will help remove lingering dirt that's been loosened by the action of your brush. Again, make sure the water isn't hot , especially if your jewelry contains fragile stones. If you're rinsing your jewelry in a sink, plug or cover the drain so that you don't accidentally lose your jewelry if it slips out of your hands. Alternatively, rinse your jewelry in a pasta strainer or metal coffee filter.
- Blot dry with a soft cloth. Then, let the jewelry sit out on a towel to air dry completely before wearing it again. If your jewelry is still wet, wearing it can trap moisture against your skin, leading to minor skin irritation.