How To Clean Tarnished Gold Filled Jewelry(Super Easy Guide)

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Owning gold-filled jewelry means that you’ve bought jewelry that’s a little closer to the real thing. The gold filled jewelry costs more than the gold plated pieces, and they shine as beautifully as solid gold. Unfortunately, it doesn’t mean that the jewelry will last forever.

You could, however, make sure that your gold filled jewelry last a long while if you take good care of the piece. This is because your gold filled jewelry will tarnish, but how soon the tarnishing starts to show rests heavily on your lifestyle and how well it’s cared for.

If you own gold filled jewelry that’s already tarnished, you may be developing a sort of love-hate relationship towards the piece, and that’s understandable.

However, you shouldn’t give up on the piece just yet because you can get rid of the tarnishing by simply following these simple cleaning solutions.

But first, which are the common causes of tarnishing in the gold-filled jewelry?

  • Hot tubs, pools, and chlorine –wearing your gold-filled jewelry in any of these environments is one of the worst offenses against your gold-filled jewelry.
  • Body chemistry – sometimes, you just can’t help it, and as long as you wear the gold-filled pieces, they’ll just tarnish. This often happens because of hormones, which cause your body to react to the gold piece differently than others do.
  • Sweat – the salt and chemicals in your sweat will do no good to your gold filled jewelry.
  • Hair, skin, and general beauty products – these contain more than a handful of harmful chemicals that are harsh to jewelry. However, it doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t wear the gold-filled jewelry – you only need to wear the gold-filled piece of jewelry (and any other jewelry) for that matter after wearing makeup and hair/skin/ beauty products. And if you get into the shower with the jewelry, remove and dry it off completely after then store it properly.


So, how do you clean your tarnished gold filled jewelry?

Unlike gold plated jewelry, gold filled jewelry doesn’t tarnish easily. But once it starts tarnishing, be careful to clean it well.

You also need to know that the gold piece should be cleaned occasionally. Like solid gold, the real gold layer in gold filled jewelry is on the jewelry surface, meaning that unless the piece of jewelry is exposed to rather harsh chemicals, it will last a long time, and you will get your money’s worth.

Below are some of the simple tips and tricks to help you clean your tarnished gold filled jewelry.

1.Clean with mild, soapy water and a soft-bristled toothbrush

This is the most recommended, easiest, and safest way for you to clean tarnished jewelry. You’ll need a soft-bristled toothbrush like a child’s toothbrush along with a mild cleaning detergent.

These two are important because the detergent gets rid of any dirt residue on the jewelry, including fingerprints, leaving it shiny and bright once it’s cleaned, while the toothbrush helps in cleaning out the hard-to-reach areas.

When cleaning a heavily tarnished piece, you’d want to avoid soaking it in soapy water for too long. Leave it in for only 1 minute.


2.Cleaning using a soft cloth

You could also clean the jewelry using a piece of soft and clean microfiber cloth.

This is often an ideal option when the piece of jewelry is mildly tarnished. Besides cleaning the jewelry well, the soft cloth is also ideal because it won’t cause any scratching on the surface of the jewelry.

If you aren’t sure about the type of cloth to use, you could visit your nearest jeweler for a nice set of polishing cloths.

Just be sure to double-check the chemicals incorporated into the cloth to protect the jewelry.

At the same time, you should be careful not to leave any chemical residues on the gold-filled jewelry piece.

So, you should rinse and polish it with a clean, chemical-free cloth before storage.

3.Ultrasonic cleaning

This is not the most recommended cleaning solution, but if your piece of jewelry is heavily tarnished, it might be the ideal solution for you.

The good news is that it is a quick and effective cleaning option, and as the name suggests, cleaning is done using an ultrasonic machine.

If you opt to clean the piece of jewelry at home, you’d want to be careful not to leave in the piece of jewelry for too long; you should check the status of the cleaning every 2 or 3 minutes.

You also need to confirm that the cleaning solution used in the ultrasonic machine is safe on the gold-filled pieces of jewelry.

Once satisfied, rinse the jewelry using clean water and a piece of a dry, soft cloth.


Gold-Filled jewelry cleaning tips

While cleaning the piece of jewelry in the best ways possible, here are some of the things you should avoid (doing).

  • Stop letting people touch your gold filled jewelry all the time. Excessive touching could result in surface friction, resulting in reactions between the metal alloys and the skin. It could also result in discolored jewelry.
  • Never use tissue paper or any other kind of paper-based materials to clean your jewelry, and always pat-dry the pieces of jewelry.
  • Air-dry the pieces of jewelry overnight after cleaning, then put them away the next morning/ day. You need to avoid storing the jewelry with excessive moisture because this will only result in tarnishing and corrosion of the jewelry.
  • Don’t apply a matte finish to your gold filled jewelry as a way of preserving it. Though alluring, the matted coat is known to eat through the layer of gold, resulting in the loss of the gold’s natural sheen. This would leave you with an unsightly finish, which is something you don’t want to deal with.
  • Wear it selectively. While you may be tempted to wear it every day, that wouldn’t be the best idea as it would result in faster wear.
  • Never clean the gold-filled piece using baking soda or toothpaste because the chemicals in these substances are too harsh and abrasive on your gold filled jewelry.
  • Finally, avoid wearing jewelry in areas in contact with water, whether in the swimming pool, doing chores, or in the ocean.


If you weren’t sure about how to clean your gold filled jewelry, the article above shares important insights into the care of the jewelry. Just keep in mind that you need to be gentle when cleaning the gold-filled jewelry.

For more useful tips, please read this category for more or this page for more!

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