When your favorite gold ring appears dingy and dull, you can skip the pricey jewelry cleaning, and polish this precious metal at home. White gold and yellow gold differ in color due to the concentration of metal alloys such as copper or nickel. Mixing a high concentration of nickel with yellow gold creates a whitish gold metal that is more scratch resistant and lightweight than yellow gold. Using a simple cleaning process, you can add sparkle to your white gold ring without damaging its shiny, silver-hued finish.
Mix two cups of warm water and three to four drops of mild dishwashing liquid soap in a small bowl. Swirl with your fingers to create a soapy mixture.
Soak plain white gold bands in the solution for 15 to 20 minutes, then gently scrub with a very soft toothbrush. However, if the ring is set with diamonds, pearls or other gemstones, do not immerse your ring in the soapy solution, to avoid damage -- simply dip the toothbrush in the soapy solution before cleaning.
Rinse your ring under a stream of warm water to remove any soap residue. Dry your ring completely with a soft cotton or microfiber cloth, then add shine with a jewelry polishing cloth.
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You can buy a jewelry polishing cloth at most jewelry stores.
When rinsing your jewelry under a stream of warm water, plug the sink first to prevent dropping your ring accidentally down the drain.
Alcohol, ammonia and chlorine bleach should not be used to clean jewelry. While ammonia and alcohol may not destroy diamonds or certain other gemstones, these chemical solutions may harm the setting of your white gold rings, or damage your pearl and emeralds stones beyond repair.
Do not use ultrasonic jewelry cleaning methods to polish rings set with gemstones. The vibrations of the ultrasonic machine may crack or shatter the stones.
Toothpaste can wear away the metal finish on your gold rings, so don't use this personal care product to clean your jewelry.
- Diamonds.com: Gold
- Real Simple: How to Clean Jewelry
- Woman’s Day: How to Clean Your Jewelry at Home
- Home Comforts: The Art and Science of Keeping House; Cheryl Mendelson
- Jewelry Handbook: How to Select, Wear and Care for Jewelry; Renée Newman
Mimi Abney is a lifestyle writer specializing in online content for women. Her work has appeared in NewsOK.com and "Keepsake Magazine," among other publications. With over 15 years of writing and editing experience for the web and print, Abney is also a contributor to online health, beauty and fashion publications. She holds a Bachelor of Science in biology from Spelman College.