How To Clean Your Gold-Plated Jewellery Like a Pro
Say goodbye to dull pieces and hello to blindingly bright bling.
Every piece of jewellery you own tells its own unique story. A ring from your travels. A necklace from your partner. A bracelet from your best friend. Over the years, your collection will gradually build and build. But when was the last time you actually cleaned your gold-plated jewellery? Hands up if it's never. Don't worry because you're not alone. Us too.
The good news is, you can clean your gold-plated jewellery from the comfort of your own home and it's way easier than you think. With the help of Bonito, we explain exactly how you can clean your gold-plated jewellery so it looks brand new.
Why Does Gold-Plated Jewellery Become Tarnished?
But before we get to the nitty-gritty, it's important to understand why your jewellery becomes less-than-sparkly over time.
Did you know that gold is naturally soft and unsuitable for daily wear? To make it stronger and more durable, gold is combined with other metals, known as alloys. The catch is that many metals (think copper, brass, bronze, and silver) will naturally darken and change colour if they're not cleaned on a regular basis. This means plated jewellery will eventually tarnish as well, as the oxidation of the base metal will seep through the gold plating.
How Often Should Gold-Plated Jewellery Be Cleaned?
It's a good idea to wipe down your jewellery with a soft cloth after each use to remove any sweat, residue from lotions, and smudges. And whenever your gold-plated jewellery shows signs of tarnish or after exposure to chlorine from swimming, you can give it a deep clean.
How To Clean Your Gold-Plated Jewellery At Home
What You’ll Need:
- Small bowl
- Tin foil
- Baking powder (bi-carb soda)
- Hot water (almost boiling)
- Cover a bowl with a sheet of tin foil. A small bowl and your kitchen tin foil are perfect!
- Add 1 tbsp of bi-carb soda + 1 tsp of salt. 1 tablespoon of your kitchen bi-carb soda and 1 teaspoon of salt. Mix them together.
- Add hot water & your pieces of jewellery. Very hot water is ideal (almost boiling). Submerge your pieces for two minutes.
- Rinse and dry. Voilà, new jewellery! Use a soft cloth to dry it and give it a little polish. Repeat this process anytime you need.
Add enough hot water to the bowl so that the powders dissolve and ensure that there is enough of the solution to fully submerge your jewellery. You’ll notice black and yellow flakes floating away from the jewellery.
If your piece is damaged from wear and tear, then this won’t recover the gold plating, but it will help give a better shine to your piece. If your jewellery has lots of black, purple, or red on the metal then that’s tarnished, which can usually be solved with this method. Don't use this method with jewellery that contains pearls and Gemstones!
Other Tips & Tricks for Looking After Your Jewellery
Put it on last – take it off first
Take off your jewellery before performing any sports or doing anything that would require heavy physical work, and also when swimming and showering.
Try not to expose your jewellery to everyday chemicals like hair products, cosmetics, perfumes, oil, nail polish remover, unabsorbed cream, etc. as they are likely to damage your favourite items. We recommend to apply all lotions and cosmetics before dressing in jewellery. On the opposite, when undressing, wipe each item with a soft cloth to remove oils or sweat.
Wipe your jewellery after every use
After every use, clean your jewellery with a cotton ball or a very soft cloth to remove any dust and oil that may have landed on the item. Also, gently rubbing the surface of your jewellery with a soft cloth helps restore its shine.
Keep it organised
Always store your jewellery in a jewellery case or box in which you separate gold from silver. We love the Bonito pouch bags, which help prevent scratches and tangling.
Particular care should be taken with gemstones to ensure that they do not knock against one another when stored. Avoid storing your jewellery in humid places, especially the bathroom. Humidity will speed up tarnishing, so it's best to pick cool, dark and dry spots.
Keep gold-plated jewellery out of water
This one's hard, we know! Especially when our beautiful country has so many stunning beaches on offer but when possible, don't swim or shower while wearing gold-plated jewellery, and remove rings and jewellery with stones when washing your hands.
Give it some space at night
Sleeping with your jewellery can damage it. Play it safe – give your jewellery some space when going to bed.
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