How to Clean Costume Jewelry

Jewelry is a precious asset that we always use to accessorize our look. They come in different styles, colors, and shapes.

You may like your engagement ring, wedding necklace, gold earrings, and platinum bracelets, but forget those expensive ones for a second. We all have that one or two pieces of costume jewelry that we treasure.

They are shiny and beautiful, yet the easiest way to amp your look without spending millions. I wouldn’t say I like it when it develops a grime, cloudy-look, and dirty look. Well, we are here to show you how you can clean them.

What is costume jewelry?

Costume jewelry is also referred to as fashion jewelry.

The costume jewelry is mostly made using inexpensive gemstone, plastic, and sometimes glass. These pieces are often set in nickel pewter or brass sometimes.

Costume Jewelry

In other instances, you will have the base materials plated with gold or silver, and this then makes it a little pricier. You almost won’t tell the difference between solid gold jewels and costume jewels to the ordinary eyes.

Costume jewelry color change

Over time the costume jewelry changes its color. Well, that’s expected because it’s one of the cheapest choices. A good example is when they get wet as those will leave the hard to remove the dark spots. Such will even easily rust.

When you don’t remove the costume jewelry when washing up, it will still change it. Cleaning detergents are harsh on your jewels and will lead to color change or damage.

Other damaging products to the costume jewels include perfume hair spray.

When you’re exposing the jewels to oxygen, then you are causing discoloration and more damaging effects. Unfortunately, it’s hard to prevent this, which is why the products will change the color a lot more. So when the air elements react with the jewelry, then they will change the color.

Some people will even go with their jewels to the gym, and such will cause even more damage. It will then cause the color change.

Sometimes the allergic reaction will also damage the jewels. The safest thing to do though is that you should stay away from the gemstones when you discover that you are allergic.

Can you prevent the jewelry change?

When it starts to wear off, you can be sure it won’t be comfortable wearing off. If your jewels are already peeling off, then you should know there won’t be much to do.

The best way to therefore go about it is to re-plate it. You can use the home kits for re-plating or take it to a jeweler. Notice, though, that you will need to re-plate it from time to time because the plating wears out.

With that said, you can do the following things to make sure the jewels keep looking neat.

Don’t go into the shower, swimming pool, or clean while wearing the jewels. Just remember to remove them. This will prevent the water spots that will often hasten the rusting and corrosion process. You will therefore need to dry it well with a soft microfiber cloth.

You should give it a softer touch if you want it to last longer and be as gentle as you wish to. No rule shows the number of times you should clean the jewels.

However, remember to wipe out the dirt as frequently as you wear them.

You can even clean it in the bathroom amidst your showering. Follow the process below when you want to clean the jewels on a regular.

  • Take a drop of baby shampoo and drop it into the water.
  • Also, use a soft brush to clean the hard to reach parts of the jewels.
  • Rinse off the jewels to make sure all the parts are perfectly cleaned.
  • Dry it using the microfiber towel to make sure you get rid of all the water spot marks.

To further dry, it uses the dryer on the cool air settings to ensure all the water spots are off. The essence is to make sure it never rusts.

Although we suggested that you can use baking soda or vinegar, use them in select scenarios. You don’t want to use harsh chemicals with the jewels to deteriorate the jewel pieces.

Make sure you get rid of the gunk to ensure it looks as good as new.

Other Cleaning Methods

Choose the gentle soap

Notice that costume jewels are mostly made using imitation metals, which means it will look great, but they can also get damaged sooner. It’s mainly susceptible to peeling, fading, and chipping.

Here you have the mild soaps, and you can use them to deliver a powerful cleanse. Use the soap together with some water.

Therefore, the secret is to choose a simple cleaning solution that won’t lead to jewelry damage. This is why we encourage you only to use mild soap. Sometimes you can even use the simplest yet mildest liquid hand soap.

Using lemon juice

The best and the easiest method to use in cleaning the jewels is when you use lemon juice. It will not only clean your jewels; instead, it will also disinfect it.

  • Take out a bowl and then set 1/3 bowl of water.
  • Add two drops of lemon oil essential and stiller it.
  • Go on to let the jewel for about 5 minutes. This time is perfect for allowing the grime and dirt loosen.
  • Never mind, though, even if you forgot to remove it after the time elapses, it won’t peel off.

Once it’s nicely soaked, get your old brush out to brush out the dirt gently. Use a towel as well to give it a final cleanse.

Using lemon juice

So then rinse out the dirt and then wipe it out to help in the drying process. Of course, when this happens, then you can be sure you will see it being nicely shiny.

Use this method as one of the very last options because it’s a harsh method of cleaning.

Cleaning the jewels with toothpaste

Traditionally people used toothpaste for cleaning our jewels. It was the best and the safest method to use in cleaning the jewels. Therefore, you can use this solution to clean but be gentle since the soft metal plating is easily scratched.

Nonetheless, since you are using the costume jewels, the toothpaste method is the safest option. This is the easiest and quickest method to finish the tarnish and the dirt that will form over time.

Costume Jewelry Bracelet

So add a dab of toothpaste on the toothbrush.

Start to brush the surfaces of the jewels, gently concentrating on the nooks and crevices.

When you don’t want to use the toothbrush on your jewels, then you can use the clothing. This then means you can apply the toothpaste on the surfaces using your fingertips.

Now start to rinse the pieces using water and take the time to deliver a power rinse. Nonetheless, before applying it to all parts of the jewel, start by applying it to just parts of the jewels.

Check out the video to know more.

How to Clean Tarnished Costume Jewels

If you often use chemicals on the jewels, you can be sure most likely they will damage the costume jewel. But when you have the perfect gold, silver, or platinum, you can be sure it won’t damage it.

Use of Acetone

Check out to buy the nail polish that’s free of acetone.

They work as though you are cleaning the jewels with the chemical. So you will need to dip the jewelry in a bowl and let it rest for 30 seconds. However, if you leave the jewel for a longer time, you’ll damage the jewels.

Rub the jewel using a soft piece of cloth and then go on to rinse it with warm water. Finish off by polishing the gemstones to give it a power shine.

The aluminum foil cleaner method

This is by far the best choice when you want to clean the tarnished jewels but especially the costume jewels. It’s a mixture that will work well to clean the different kinds of jewels. It doesn’t matter if you are using the costume jewels, gold or silver.

You will further need the aluminum foil, baking soda,

Warm water


First of all, line the bowl with a sheet of aluminum foil. But also choose the large container that will fit all your jewels.

Place your jewels in the container and then sprinkle the jewels with the baking soda. Make sure it covers all the parts of the jewel.

Now pour the water over the jewels and add about two tablespoons of salt. Give it some five minutes to rest; then, you can remove the jewels and rinse them again with warm water.

However, if you notice that it has some stuck dirt, you can use a soft brush to get the dirt out completely.

Homemade jewelry cleaner

1 cup of white vinegar

½ cup of baking soda

Two tablespoon salt


This is one of the easiest to use a method. You can mix the ingredients to form a paste.

Go on to use a microfiber towel to clean the jewels.

Dab the jewel into the solution and then wipe it gently, making sure you clean even the crevices.

Allow it time to sit on the jewel for some time to deliver a powerful cleanse.

If you notice that it has more stains, you can use the soft brush to deliver an even powerful cleanse.

Use the dry lint-free cloth to dry the jewels finally.


Can I clean the costume jewel with an embellishment?

Yes, you can clean the jewel that has an embellishment. Just make sure you secure the adornment or precious metals first. You can decide to use the homemade cleaning method above that we said you could use baking soda, salt, and vinegar.

Notice, though, it’s not a good idea to use the vinegar to clean the costume jewels and embellishments. If you notice that the gem is very dirty, you can use the vinegar on the silver or gold metal.

Is it okay for me to use the same ingredients for my costume jewels as I do my silver jewel?

Notice that you will need to use solid and harsh chemicals when you are cleaning either the gold or silver jewels. If you used the same on your costume jewels, though, you could make them deteriorate.

So the type of chemical that will comfortably clean your silver and gold will cause tarnish to the base metal of any cheap metal. For costume jewel, it’s better to use milder detergents.

If you have to use the vinegar; therefore, you should opt for the white vinegar. If possible, don’t use too much water with the jewels either as that will cause even more damage.

Employ the above-discussed methods are for tarnished jewels. But always be as gentle as you can with the process.

Use these tips for the cleaning process

You need a soft brush

You should make sure that if you scrub the jewel, you only focus on the specific parts with gunk. Choose the very soft brush to use of the same.

Use the simplest solution.

For the process of cleaning, you ought to use the simplest solution. Make sure you don’t use the harsher chemicals as they will cause too much damage eventually. Nonetheless, remember to rinse the jewels in the process.

Seek the service of a professional

If you use the costume jewels, you will need to give it a thorough leaning sometimes. This is when you seek the service of your professional jeweler. They always know how you can clean them without really damaging them.

Remember to get the jewel pieces checked at least once in six months. They will know what to do to get it looking stylish again.

Clean them right

If you have the jewel serve you longer, you will need to clean them right. But wipe out the dirt every time you wear it and then store it in a zip lock bag for its security.

Keep the jewel in such a way that you have one piece per bag. That will make sure you never scratch any piece. You will keep it looking nicely shiny and new.

There you have it

It’s effortless to clean the jewel if you know the steps to follow like the ones we have above. You will have the jewels looking new, but the process won’t cost you much either.

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