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Cleaning Costume Jewellery

Costume jewellery is often delicate and requires more careful attention when cleaning. Often times, pieces are made of several different materials, it’s important to check your cleaner to make sure it’s safe for all parts of the piece. If your piece contains several different components (gemstones, metals, etc.) use this rule of thumb: Use only cleaners that are safe for the weakest component of your jewellery.
If you wear your jewellery daily or very often you will want to clean it weekly. If you wear it only for special occasions, you will want to clean it either after each wearing or before putting it back into storage. When cleaning costume jewellery, the driest method is the safest method so use as little liquids as necessary to remove the dirt and build-up.

• Avoid using alcohols or acids such as ammonia or vinegar.
• Do not use soap and water to clean costume jewellery as it leaves a residue on the metal.
• Windolene can damage stones and finishes and should be avoided.
• Vinegar can be harmful to gemstones and should also be avoided.
• A jewellery cleaner is your best choice. Choose a cleaner that is safe for the type of metal used in your piece. If there are several, choose the cleaner that is safe for the weakest one.
• Tooth Paste

Costume jewellery Cleaning

If you wear your jewellery daily or very often you will want to clean it weekly. If you wear it only for special occasions, you will want to clean it either after each wearing or before putting it back into storage. When cleaning costume jewellery, the driest method is the safest method so use as little liquids as necessary to remove the dirt and build-up.
You Will Need:

• Cleaning solution
• Small dish
• jewellery brush or baby toothbrush 
• Toothpick
• Soft cloth
• Hairdryer

The Cleaning Process:

1. Begin by finding a well-lit area to work in and gather all your supplies.
2. Pour a small amount of cleaning solution into a small dish.
3. Dip the soft bristled brush in to the cleaning solution and carefully scrub away any dirt from the jewellery. Do not soak the piece in the solution as it can weaken the adhesives and bonds.

Carefully scrub the folds and bends in the pieces as dirt often gets trapped there.

4. Use a wooden toothpick to remove any residue that cannot be reached with the brush.
5. Rinse carefully with clean water.
6. Dry quickly and thoroughly. You may want to lay the piece on a soft cloth and dry it with the hairdryer on a cool air setting.
7. Return your piece to its storage in a dry place separate from other jewellery.

Additional Tips and Advice

• If you don’t have a jewellery brush, an eyebrow brush will work as long as the bristles are soft. Using any brush with stiff bristles can scratch the jewellery surface.


• If you have a gemstone that is Pave Set (the stones are glued into the setting), do not immerse the piece in liquid during cleaning.


• Store costume jewellery away from other metal jewellery to avoid scratches. Using small pouches or separate compartments in a jewellery box works well.


• Do not expose costume jewellery to excessive heat as it can break down the bonds and adhesives.


• If your piece is a family heirloom or a valuable, delicate piece, you may want to have a professional jeweler clean it.

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