How to remove tarnish on 10k & 14k gold jewelry

Updated April 17, 2017

Tarnish occurs on gold jewellery when the gold is exposed to air and oxidises. Tarnish is a natural occurrence on all gold that is not pure. Some folks like the look of aged, tarnished 10K and 14K gold (called a patina). Others want to remove the tarnish from their 10K and 14k gold jewellery and keep the jewellery looking new and shiny. Removing tarnish from 10K and 14K gold jewellery is easy and inexpensive.

Prepare a mixture of tap water and dish washing detergent or a non-abrasive, commercial jewellery cleaner.

Scrub the tarnish off of 10K and 14K gold jewellery with soapy water and a soft toothbrush. Scrub all surfaces, including crevices.

Rinse the 10K or 14K gold piece in warm water until the water runs clear.

Buff the 10K or 14K jewellery dry with a soft, lint-free cloth until the jewellery shines.


Check to make sure cleaners are safe on gemstones if your 10K or 14K gold jewellery contains gemstones.

Things You'll Need

  • Soap
  • Water
  • Bowl
  • Old toothbrush
  • Cloth
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About the Author

Rebecca Suzanne Delaney began publishing in 1980. She is a university-trained artist and the author of dozens of books and articles on a variety of topics, including arts and crafts, law, business and public policy. Delaney earned degrees in liberal arts, psychology and law.