Tips on cleaning Sterling Silver Jewelry with Gemstones

Tips on cleaning Sterling Silver Jewelry with Gemstones

Tips on cleaning Sterling Silver Jewelry with Gemstones


We have given an updated report on how to clean your plain Sterling Silver jewelry which is in another blog post right here on our site. But how the heck do you clean your silver piece that has gemstones in it. Very simply, get a mixture of about 3 cups of lukewarm water and a tablespoon of liquid dish soap. Believe it or not, I’ve had my best success with dawn soap.

You then want to take a very soft toothbrush and dip it in the water and gently scrub the gemstone and all around the prongs. This is an excellent time to check your prongs by the way. Make sure the prongs are straight and haven’t been bent in any way. Voila’. 



Two stones that have special instructions are the opal and mystic topaz.The method of cleaning opal jewelry depends on the form of the opal. Some opals are just a single piece, while others are two or three layers of opal glued together. 

You should be able to determine whether you have a single opal, a doublet opal, or a triplet opal just by looking at it. 

Opal Doublet as the name suggests is a thin layer of precious Opal cemented onto a backing, usually a piece of common Black Opal or Ironstone. They were originally created from Opal that was perhaps too thin to produce a solid stone.

 Triplets are doublets usually made from a lower grade opal with clear domed caps cemented to their faces. The hardness of the cap may vary from glass to quartz, depending on the quality of the opal. The cap not only protects the opal but magnifies the intensity of the color and pattern, greatly enhancing the overall appearance.


You can make the cleaning solution by mixing unscented detergent with ½ cup of lukewarm water.

 If you have a solid opal, you can swish it around in the water for a few seconds and then wipe it clean with a microfiber cleaning cloth.

 If you have a doublet opal or triplet opal, do not immerse it in the solution, or the water may loosen the glue and separate the pieces. Instead, put a small amount of solution on the microfiber cloth and gently clean the opal with it.

Mystic Topaz is a clear colorless topaz that has been treated with a thin layer of titanium resulting in an eye-catching variety of colors. Mystic Topaz is a natural stone enhanced by color treatment. Mystic Topaz must be delicately cared for to maintain its rainbow vibrant glow.  It is said that the stone should be given the same care as a precious pearl.

So for pearls and Mystic Topaz, gently wipe the stone or the pearl with a soft, damp, lint-free cloth. Pat dry with a fresh, lint-free cloth. One other tip on your pearls, wipe them down before storing, making sure no sweat or perspiration.

The biggest tip of all is to store your jewelry separately. This avoids scratches.

And as always, store your Sterling Silver OUT of the air, best in a closed container of some sort, dry as well.

Till Next Time,

 Mary Elizabeth

The Jewelry Lady


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1 comment

Wow that was very helpful. I’ve taken to buying vintage jewelry and a lot of it is very dirty. I try to clean the them very gently so as not to hurt the stones and your article is informative. Thanks

Alisa Bailey

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