How To Clean Pearl Earrings? | Awesome Tips to Preserve Luster

Have you ever wondered how to clean pearl earrings? Pearl earrings are one of the most precious types of jewelry. They are beautiful and feminine, but they require special care.

If you don’t take the right steps when cleaning your pearls, they can get damaged or lose their luster. By following these simple steps, you can keep your pearls looking great for years to come. But let’s first look at the reasons why pearls need cleaning.

Key Takeaways

  • Pearls need regular care and cleaning to maintain their beauty. Just like other gems, pearls need cleaning to remove dirt, sweat, cosmetics, and oil from your skin
  • You can clean your pearl earrings at home with household items or take them to a jeweler for professional cleaning
  • Use a soft cloth dampened with mild soapy water to gently wipe away the dirt on the pearls.
  • You do not clean your pearl earrings with harsh chemicals or abrasive cleaners.

Why Do Pearls Need Cleaning?

two ladies with pearl earrings

There are many reasons why you should clean and sterilize your earrings regularly:

To Remove Dirt

To remove dirt or dust that may have accumulated during regular wear. If you’ve been wearing your pearls while gardening or doing yard work, they’ll likely be covered in dirt and dust.

Remove any substances that may be clinging to the surface of your pearls (like body oils).

To Restore Shine of Natural Pearls

Restore the luster and shine of your pearls by removing oils that may have dulled their appearance over time.

To Remove Cosmetics

Cosmetics such as lipstick, blush, and mascara can also cause damage to your pearls if not removed before wearing them again. These types of products can slowly oxidize (darken) the surface of your pearls over time if left on their surface for too long.

Pearls Need Special Care

Pearl earrings need special care because they are made of natural materials.

Pearls are made of layers of nacre, or mother-of-pearl, which is secreted by oysters over a period of years. When the pearl is harvested from the oyster, they have a shine or luster that needs to be maintained.

Because pearls are delicate gemstones, they require special care during cleaning. Never use an ultrasonic jewelry cleaner on your pearl jewelry as this can damage its surface.

a person holding a pair of earrings

Step 1: Gather Cleaning Materials

The best way to clean your pearls is with soapy water. You can also use a jewelry cleaning solution specifically designed for pearl or gem earrings. These solutions will not damage or dull the pearl’s surface like other cleaners may do.

  • Mild dishwashing liquid soap
  • A bowl of lukewarm water
  • A very soft cloth
a person preparing soap for jewelry cleaning

Step 2:  Cleaning Pearls

Pour a few drops of liquid dishwashing liquid soap into your bowl of lukewarm water. Dip the cloth in this soapy water and gently wipe off dirt, grime, or stains on the pearl and the metal part of the earrings.

Pour the soapy water after cleaning your pearl earrings and replace it with clean water to rinse them.

It is also important that you rinse them thoroughly with clean water so as not to leave any soap residue behind on the surface of the pearl.

Step 3: Dry Your Pearls

Dry off your pearl earrings thoroughly after rinsing them if possible so that no water remains on their surfaces when you store them away.

pearls in natural shades

Natural and Cultured Pearls

It is worth noting that there are natural and cultured pearls.

Natural Pearls

Natural pearls are formed in the wild through the irritation of a grain of sand etc., inside an oyster shell. The oyster will produce a nacre to surround the irritant, forming a pearl.

Natural pearls are rare and expensive, plus they are beautiful and unique. They can be any shape or size, with colors ranging from white to black.

Cultured Pearls

Cultured pearls are created when human intervention is used to enhance the growth process. The nucleus is inserted into an oyster with its shell pierced with a fine needle, causing it to secrete nacre around the object so that it becomes encased in layers of new shell material. This process takes several years before it can be harvested as a pearl.

a woman with pearl earring

How to Maintain Your Pearl Earrings?

If you wear pearl jewelry such as a pearl necklace and pearl studs, you should know how to maintain them properly. Here are some tips on how to maintain your pearl earrings:

The best way to maintain your pearl earrings is to follow the instructions on the box or bag that they came in. Most pearl earrings will come with cleaning and care instructions, which you should follow closely.

You should also take off your pearl earrings before sleeping, bathing, or swimming because these activities can damage them over time.

Do Not Use Soap, Baking Soda, or Detergent

Soap, bleach, and detergents are not good for pearls because they contain harsh chemicals that can damage the surface of the pearls over time.

 If you want to clean this type of earrings, then use mild dishwashing liquid soap so you do not damage them further.

Do not Submerge Pearl Jewelry in Water

One of the most important things to remember is that you should never submerge your pearl jewelry in water as a silk strand that joins them can be damaged by water.

This strand of silk holds your pearls together. If it becomes weak and breaks apart, it will cause your pearls to fall off their threading and possibly get lost forever.

a pair of pearl earrings on the soft fabric

Wear Pearl Earrings After Putting Lotions or Moisturizers

Do not use lotions or moisturizers on your ears when wearing pearls. These products can stain your pearl studs and make them look cloudy or dull over time.

Storing your Pearl Jewelry

When storing your pearls, wrap each stud in soft tissue paper or put them into a box lined with cotton or tissue paper so they don’t damage one another.

FAQS Related to How to Clean Pearls

How Do You Clean Pearl Earring Studs?

If you wear pearl earring studs on a regular basis, it’s important to know how to clean them properly.

If your earrings are not cleaned regularly, the dirt will build up and make them look dull and unattractive.

Follow the steps that I have given above to clean all your pearl necklaces and pearl earrings such as studs.

How Do You Clean Pearls Without Damaging Them?

When you clean pearl jewelry, it is important that you do not use harsh chemicals or abrasives that could damage the surface or color of the pearls.

You should also not use a steam cleaner as this may cause cracks or breaks in the pearl’s surface. Instead use gentle cleansers such as mild soap and warm water to clean your pearl earrings at home.

a woman wearing a pearl earring

Can You Get Pearl Earrings Wet?

It depends on the pearls though the majority do not get wet. However, it’s best to avoid wearing pearl earrings in the shower or pool.

Wearing Pearl Earrings in the Shower

You may think that showering with your pearl earrings on is fine, but this is not recommended for several reasons. First of all, showering with these delicate pieces of jewelry can cause them to break or fall off into the shower drain or tub.

Secondly, hot water can damage your earrings over time by causing them to become discolored or brittle.

Do Real Pearls Turn Yellow?

Yes, natural pearls turn yellow over time. Real pearls are very durable and can last a lifetime. However, they do have one weakness: they turn yellow over time.

a shell with a pearl

This is caused by chemicals or drying out. The natural color of pearls comes from the presence of calcium carbonate in their nacreous layers. When these layers are exposed to chemicals or there is no circulation of air, the calcium carbonate breaks down, causing the pearl to lose its luster and become yellow or brownish in hue.

Store the Pearls Properly to avoid Yellowing

You can avoid this problem by storing your pearls in jewelry racks or a jewelry box that allows circulation of air and away from heat. You should also avoid using cleaners with strong chemicals on your jewelry because they may damage it as well

How to Clean Pearls That Have Yellowed

This is how to clean pearls that have yellowed or to reverse the process of yellowing.

a woman wearing pearl jewelry

Use Nail Polish Remover to Whiten Yellowed Pearls

You can use nail polish remover (acetone) to remove the yellowing from your pearl necklace, and stud earrings and make them look brighter again.

However, be careful not to soak your pearls in acetone because this may damage them permanently. Instead, use a cotton swab dipped in acetone to gently rub before rinsing away any excess acetone with soap and water; allow your pearls to air dry before using them again.

Take Them to A Jeweler

If you don’t want to use nail polish remover at home (or if it doesn’t work), then you can always take your pearl necklace or earrings to a jeweler who can clean them for you using special equipment to remove yellowing.

How Often Should You Clean Pearl Earrings?

You should clean your pearl earrings after every time you wear them so they can look their best for years to come. Pearls require regular care because they have layers of nacre (mother-of-pearl) that protect them outside.

These layers need to be protected and maintained with proper cleaning and storage. If you do not clean your pearls, they will eventually become dull and lose their luster.

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