Every woman wears fake jewelry, let’s be honest. There’s no shame in it, really! In fact, mixing in costume jewelry with your finer, more expensive pieces is a great way to stay on trend and express your personal style without going broke on diamonds. When you want to try out a new jewelry trend but aren’t sure how you’re going to like it (or how long it will be in style), fake jewelry is the way to go.
Unfortunately, cheap jewelry is easily ruined after just a few wears. The thin silver or gold plating on fake rings and fake necklaces wear off fairly quickly, revealing the brass or nickel underneath, or discoloration or tarnishing occurs. We’ve all had rings that have turned our skin green by the end of the day, or “silver” jewelry that looks like a penny after wearing it just a few times. It’s a major bummer–and super annoying.
Luckily, not all is lost! Most people don’t know this, but you can clean off tarnish and re-plate cheap jewelry to make it look brand new again. All you need to do is follow this amazing DIY recipe we found online (the internet is an amazing thing, isn’t it?). Where has this jewelry trick been all our lives?!
Follow the simple 8 steps below and you’ll be able to fix all of that “ruined” fake jewelry you own and get it back into your wardrobe mix ASAP! This jewelry hack will change your life. You’re welcome.
What you’ll need:
–an aluminum plate or aluminum foil
–access to a microwave
–a clean rag
–your discolored cheap jewelry
1) First, you’ll want to collect all of your fake jewelry that needs to be fixed or cleaned. Take note if the jewelry contains any gemstones. If it does, you’ll want to be careful about getting that area too wet. Water can dissolve the glue under gemstones, causing them to fall off later on.
2) You’ll need a deep aluminum plate or bowl, like a pie plate. If you don’t have access to one, you can use a regular plate or bowl wrapped in aluminum foil. If you go with the latter, make sure the aluminum foil doesn’t tear.
3) Pour 1 tablespoon of salt and 1 tablespoon of baking soda on the plate.
4) Heat 1 cup of water in a microwave for less than 2 minutes. You want it to be hot but not boiling. Then, pour the hot water on to the salt and baking soda mixture.
5) Stir the jewelry cleaning mixture completely so the ingredients combine and there are no clumps. Wait about 1 minute for the mixture to completely liquefy after stirring it.
6) Place your jewelry in the mixture. In this step, the salt, baking soda, and water mixture should oxidize the tarnish off the jewelry. The silver from the foil or aluminum plate should re-plate the worn spots on your fake silver jewelry.
7) When the tarnish is nearly all gone, remove the jewelry from the mixture. This may take a few seconds to up to two minutes. Just be patient. You should start to see your fake gold jewelry becoming shinier and your fake silver jewelry regaining its hue.
8) Using a clean, dry, soft rag, remove the remaining tarnish from your jewelry by wiping it gently. Sometimes verdigris builds up on costume jewelry. This is the green gunk that often collects on cheap rings and other jewelry. Wiping it with a clean rag should remove it, after the salt and baking soda soak it just had.
Voila–Your cheap jewelry should look good as new! That wasn’t too hard, was it? This life hack will help save your favorite cheap rings and bracelets from needing to be thrown out–not to mention so much money on buying new costume jewelry all of the time! So go ahead and wear that fake jewelry as much as your little heart desires–you can always go back and fix it later.
For more DIY jewelry hacks, check out how to clean fine jewelry, fix tarnished sliver, scratched peals, and make dull diamonds shine on SHEfinds.