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How to clean bronze jewelry?: Tips and advice for the care of delicate jewels

on November 20, 2023

Bronze is a gold-colored alloy of copper and tin, which attracts a lot of attention and is used in different ways in jewelry. Over time, bronze is exposed to the action of elements that tarnish it and interfere with its natural shine, creating a green layer on its surface.

How to clean bronze jewelry

(photo by: Ahsen Sunay)

Although in Albert Hern we do not work with this material for our fine jewelry, we do have a lot of experience taking care of delicate pieces, and today we want to share some useful information to maintain clean bronze.

There are several techniques of how to clean bronze jewelry and how to keep bronze from tarnishing, simple and easy to apply to maintain the shine of the jewelry.


Bronze cleaning: home techniques

The easiest cleaning is to use water and neutral soap.  

The bronze pieces can be washed with a little warm water and soap, with the help of a soft cloth to rub the dirty parts and get the dirt off. 

It is important to rinse the jewelry very well so that no soap residue remains.

The use of the cloth is very important to minimize the loss of brightness of the garments, because it protects them from the accumulated dirt.

If you are wondering how to clean a bronze necklace or a bronze ring, which have lost their shine, you can apply a deeper cleaning for tarnish with homemade ingredients such as vinegar. The acidic components help the pieces to regain their shine and look like new, although it is not recommended to abuse this technique.

You can combine lemon juice with a little vinegar in a container, and let the bronze pieces soak for several minutes. Then with a cloth or a soft bristle brush, rub the dirt, and rinse with water to dry completely.

Isopropyl alcohol is also an excellent choice for removing accumulated dirt and debris.  But if you want a slightly deeper cleaning, you can create a homemade paste with baking soda.

In any case, it is best to wash the jewelry with soap and water and then dry it.


How do you shine bronze?

To prevent bronze garments from losing their shine and discoloration on the skin due to constant use, some simple techniques can be applied, such as special transparent enamels to cover the jewelry, which prevents the material from coming into direct contact with the skin. This technique is very useful for rings, earrings and necklaces.

Now, if a more permanent effect is desired, the jewelry can be sprayed with clear acrylic lacquer, which will create a protective layer against moisture, tarnish and the sun's rays. There are many special lacquers for cleaning bronze pieces.


How to polish bronze metal, is it necessary to use commercial cleaners?

There are some commercial brands that offer bronze cleaner options designed specifically to eradicate tarnish from parts, but they often contain very abrasive ingredients that can damage the outer surface of the parts. 

For those in the know, these products are no more effective than household cleaners and are an unnecessary expense.


Basic care for bronze garments

Bronze pieces must have special care to ensure their durability over time. 

The main care is to seal each garment with a clear gloss enamel. Sealed pieces are much easier to clean and maintain with their original luster and are prevented to some degree from developing green patina.

It is highly recommended to polish the garments with a special jewelry cleaning cloth, as is done with high karat gold or silver jewelry to maintain their particular luster. 

It should be noted that Albert Hern jewelry, even the most delicate, does not have this problem, as it is handmade with high jewelry materials such as gold and platinum:

The place where the garments are stored is also very important. 

When storing them, it is essential to keep them away from humidity, and to keep them in a space with adequate temperature, as is the case with finer and more delicate pieces of gold or silver.

Each piece should be cleaned and stored in a dry place with an airtight seal, where there are no sudden changes in temperature. This applies to all jewelry, whether they are pieces with precious stones or metals such as bronze.

Contact with chemical products that may damage the composition of the pieces should be avoided at all costs. To avoid scratches, it is advisable to store them in special jewelry boxes that have compartments with separators for each piece. Bags with airtight closures to separate them are also a good option.

Each material has its own particularity and must be cared for in a special way. In Albert Hern, you can find fine jewelry with a variety of models and options for you to choose according to your needs. Gold, diamonds, silver, precious stones, everything you need, with pieces like:


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