How To Clean Black Onyx Jewelry In 4 Simple Steps

Black onyx has been used in jewelry throughout history. It is a black gemstone that is said to repel negative energy. However, like any jewelry piece, it can get dirty. If you're wondering how to clean black onyx jewelry, you've come to the right place! We've researched the best method to clean this type of jewelry and have an answer for you.

Follow the steps below to clean your black onyx jewelry:

  1. Use a cotton cloth to wipe down the jewelry.
  2. Dampen the cloth slightly for tougher grime.
  3. Dry the stone with another cotton cloth.
  4. Polish with a small amount of olive oil if needed.

We've given you the basic steps to cleaning your black onyx jewelry but keep reading as we go into detail about the process. We'll also talk about why you shouldn't clean black onyx the way you might other jewelry. Additionally, we'll answer some more questions you might have about onyx.

A gorgeous shining black onyx stone with glowing light particles on its surface, How To Clean Black Onyx Jewelry In 4 Simple Steps

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Cleaning Your Black Onyx Jewelry

A black and a silver onyx bracelet on a white background

1. Wipe using a clean, cotton cloth

Black onyx jewelry should be cleaned carefully with a dry or slightly damp cloth. It is best to use a 100% cotton cloth when wiping your onyx jewelry down. Begin by wiping your jewelry down with a dry cloth. This should help remove any loose dirt or dust.

Click here to see 100% cotton cloth rags on Amazon.

2. Dampen the cloth for tough grime removal

If there are still visible marks on your jewelry, you can dampen the cloth. Make sure your cloth is only slightly damp by squeezing out any excess water.

Gently wipe the stone with the dampened cloth. Onyx is a relatively soft stone, so be careful not to apply too much pressure. If you choose to dampen your cloth, make sure to wipe your jewelry down with a dry cloth immediately after removing any excess moisture.

3. Dry using a clean, cotton cloth

Once the jewelry is dry, you should store it alone in a jewelry pouch. Do not store it with other jewelry pieces because they may knock into each other in the bag and scratch the onyx.

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4. Polish with a small amount of olive oil

Try to clean your jewelry often, so a deeper cleaning isn't needed. This will help reduce the risk of damaging your onyx gemstone. If you want to restore the shine to your onyx finish, you can gently polish the clean stone with a small amount of olive oil as part of your routine jewelry maintenance.

Things To Avoid

Chemicals (Including Other Jewelry Cleaners)

Do not use any chemicals on your black onyx jewelry. Most cleaning methods used on other types of jewelry will be too harsh for black onyx. Onyx will absorb chemicals, and this could cause damage or change the color of the stone.

Lotions, Soaps, and Fragrances

Because of its sensitivity to water and chemicals, you should also remove any onyx jewelry when using lotion, fragrances, or cleaning products. While most other jewelry can be cleaned with a mild detergent, you should not use any kind of soap on onyx jewelry.

Abrasive Cleaning Supplies

It would be best if you only used a cloth to clean your jewelry as a brush will be too abrasive and may scratch the stone. If you need to clean the metal your onyx is set in, you can use water and a soft-bristle brush like an old toothbrush. Just be careful to avoid brushing the onyx stone so you don't damage it.

You can use a silver polishing cloth on your setting, but make sure you don't use it on the onyx stone. Try to avoid using any jewelry cleaners, even on your jewelry setting, because you don't want to risk getting them on your onyx stone.

Click here to see silver polishing cloth on Amazon.

Is Black Onyx Safe In Water?

You may be wondering if you can let your jewelry soak in water to help get it clean. However, this is not a good idea because black onyx is very porous. This means that it will absorb liquids easily and could become damaged. This is also why we mentioned only using a damp cloth to clean your jewelry.

You should remove black onyx jewelry before showering, swimming, bathing, washing dishes, or any activity that might expose your jewelry to water for an extended amount of time.

Can You Use Vinegar On Onyx?

Everyone knows white vinegar is a great staple to have when it comes to cleaning. It can be used in the kitchen, bathroom, and even in the laundry, so you might be wondering if you can use vinegar on onyx. First, it's important to note that onyx isn't just used for jewelry, and what the onyx is used for will determine whether vinegar is safe for it.

Onyx is also used for countertops, sinks, and bathroom features; vinegar can be used to clean these surfaces. A 50:50 water to vinegar solution is recommended.

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However, you should not use vinegar on your onyx jewelry. As we mentioned earlier, onyx gemstones are pretty sensitive. Therefore, you shouldn't risk your stone becoming damaged from absorbing water or a chemical.

While vinegar can't be used on onyx jewelry, you can use it on gold. Check out our other blog post for tips on how: "How To Clean Gold Jewelry With Vinegar."

Can You Wear Onyx Every Day?

Onyx is actually a great gemstone to wear every day. Onyx jewelry is relatively durable. Not only that, it's a very versatile gemstone, and it can be paired with almost any other jewelry.

Black goes with almost everything, and black onyx is no exception. Black onyx will pair with most outfits making it a great jewelry item to have as an everyday piece. It's a stunning gemstone, so you can even wear it for more formal events.

If we haven't given you enough reasons to wear onyx every day, did you know that onyx is actually considered a powerful gemstone for repelling and absorbing negative energy!  It's said to help those that wear it overcome negative emotions associated with fear and anxiety.

Does Onyx Scratch Easily?

So, we've told you that you can wear onyx jewelry every day, but that doesn't mean it's invincible from the bumps and scrapes that might come from everyday wear.

While we mentioned onyx jewelry is generally durable, the stone itself is actually quite fragile. Unfortunately, this does mean that onyx will scratch easily. It can also chip and crack, so you should try to avoid bumping into anything while wearing your onyx jewelry.

If you are pretty rough on your jewelry, whether it be from your job or hobbies, you should consider only wearing your onyx jewelry for special occasions. Remember to store your onyx jewelry alone in a fabric pouch when you are not wearing it.

How Do You Tell Real Onyx?

An up close photo of a black onyx stone on a pale gray background

While it is not as common to imitate onyx because there's a relatively high supply of it, you still might want to make sure your onyx gems or beads are real.

Some stones are sold as onyx but are actually other types of stones that have been dyed to look like onyx. Unfortunately, there aren't many ways to tell if an onyx stone is real. You could try a heat test, but you run the risk of destroying the stone if it isn't real. If you like the piece of jewelry you have, finding out whether it is real or not might not be worth it.

Onyx is resistant to heat, so if you apply heat and the stone is damaged, the onyx isn't real. You could also try taking your onyx to a professional jeweler. They will be more trained to know whether a gemstone is the real thing.

Final Thoughts

Onyx is pretty sensitive, so there's really only one method when it comes to cleaning. If you wipe it down regularly with a cotton cloth, you can avoid having to do a deeper cleaning that might hurt the gemstone. Hopefully, you've learned how to keep your black onyx clean and in great shape!

Birthstone rings are also quite popular, so if you need to know how to clean yours, check out our other blog post: "How To Clean Birthstone Ring [4 Steps]."

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