While it’s important to keep all your jewelry clean so it stays looking like new, it’s especially important for items used in conjunction with piercings, such as earrings. To avoid an infection or irritation it’s important to know how to disinfect earrings effectively, and how often to carry out this task. The best way to sterilize earrings depends on the material they are made from, and while most jewelry and department stores may offer jewelry cleaning as a service, you can use these tips from Molly Maid to clean your earrings at home.
Why is it Necessary to Sterilize Your Earrings?
Your skin provides a natural barrier to most bacteria and disease, but once the outer layer has been broken (as is the case with pierced ears) an infection can occur unless the area is kept clean and sterile. An infected piercing can be unsightly, painful, and potentially dangerous, and is the No. 1 reason to maintain the cleanliness of your earrings. Additional reasons include:
- Beauty – Over time, jewelry can lose its shine and luster as oil, grease, dirt and dust coat the surface. Cleaning can leave earrings looking like new.
- Longevity – Natural oils and beauty products may damage your jewelry and shorten the lifespan of certain materials.
- Healing – In the case of newly pierced ears, it’s imperative to keep the piercing and the earrings clean to promote fast, safe healing.
How to Disinfect Earrings Inside the Ear
It takes an average of four to six weeks for a new piercing to heal, during which time you need to leave the earrings in place. The best way to sterilize earrings inside the ear is as follows:
- Wash hands thoroughly.
- Dip a cotton ball or cotton swab into a capful of rubbing alcohol or specialized piercing solution, and apply to the front and back of the earlobes and the earring.
- Gently rotate the earring in the ear for several turns.
- Repeat this process once or twice each day until the holes have healed.
How to Disinfect Earrings Outside of the Ear
The method you use to clean and disinfect your earrings depends on the materials they are made of.
General Cleaning – This method can be used for most earrings.
- Wash hands thoroughly.
- Find a small glass or plastic container and place the earrings inside.
- Fill the container halfway with hydrogen peroxide and let sit for twenty minutes, or overnight if they are heavily soiled.
- Remove the earrings from the solution and use a small jewelry brush to remove any leftover grime.
- Rinse earrings carefully under warm water and place them on a clean cloth to dry.
- If the unthinkable should happen and you drop one or more of your earrings down the drain, call your local Mr. Rooter for fast, reliable plumbing services to retrieve it.
Gemstone Earrings – Diamonds, sapphires, and other expensive gemstones require special care:
- Make a solution of one-quarter cup of ammonia and one cup of water.
- Place the earrings in the solution and let sit for 20 minutes.
- While they soak, prepare another bowl with warm water and a half-teaspoon of liquid dish soap.
- Wear rubber gloves to protect hands, and remove the earrings from the ammonia solution, placing them into the soapy mixture.
- Swirl earrings gently to rinse and remove.
- Use a jewelry brush to remove leftover grime.
- Rinse thoroughly in a bowl of clean water and place on a clean cloth to dry.
Contact your local Molly Maid or call us at (800) 654-9647 today to request professional, house cleaning services you can count on.