How to lacquer jewelry

Updated April 17, 2017

There are many reasons you may want to lacquer a piece of jewellery. Lacquering your jewellery can be an effective way to protect delicate components, prevent tarnishing and create a beautiful surface shine. Whether your purpose is protecting your jewellery or finding the right surface treatment for your handcrafted design, lacquering jewellery is a simple procedure almost anyone can master at minimal expense.

Purchase a good lacquering agent for your piece of jewellery. While jewellery supply stores offer a variety of lacquers made specifically for jewellery, these lacquers are often more expensive and less effective than other agents. Use a high-quality acrylic floor polish for a lacquered surface that is both flexible and durable. Check at your hardware store for the best selection of floor polishes.

Prepare the piece of jewellery you want to lacquer. Clean the jewellery thoroughly to prevent dirt, dust or hair from ruining the smooth surface by becoming encased in the polish. Clean any existing tarnish from metal jewellery and avoid touching the piece with your skin before lacquering by wearing gloves. Allow your jewellery to dry completely before starting to lacquer.

Pour a small portion of the acrylic floor polish into a disposable, completely clean bowl. Place the piece of jewellery you want to lacquer on a smooth surface like a ceramic plate. Use rubber gloves to keep the acrylic polish away from your skin. Dip a clean cosmetic sponge into the polish and shake off the excess polish. Brush the polish over your piece with the sponge, coating thoroughly. If you are lacquering a pendant, hang it on a piece of wire and dip the entire piece in the lacquer. Shake excess lacquer off gently until the piece is almost dry to prevent drips.

Let the piece of jewellery sit for several hours to dry completely. Reapply layers of lacquer after allowing each layer to dry until your piece has several coats. Add coats of polish until you are happy with the surface effect. Buff the jewellery with a piece of cotton denim to polish the lacquered surface once it is fully dried.


Speed the drying process by placing the lacquered piece of jewellery in a 300 degree F oven for a few minutes.


Do not pour the excess used polish back into the bottle or you may contaminate the entire supply.

Things You'll Need

  • Acrylic floor polish
  • Rubber gloves
  • Piece of cotton denim
  • Clean cosmetic sponge
  • Disposable bowl
  • Disposable ceramic plate
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About the Author

Melissa Hopkins began writing for the Southern Illinois University newspaper in 2000, where she won several awards. After completing her Bachelor of Arts in English from Southern Illinois University in Edwardsville, Hopkins moved to San Diego, where she worked as a stringer for various publications with the Pomerado Newspaper Group.