The Surprising Trick to Clean Alex and Ani Jewelry

My mind is simply blown by the surprising trick to clean Alex and Ani jewelry that I’m sharing with you today. Never in a million years did I actually think this Pinterest hack would work, but here I am eating my words.

First, a little backstory.

Unless you pay close attention to my wrists in photos, you’ve probably never noticed that I always have my Alex and Ani bracelets on. One – my very first one – is from my mom, and the other two are from Ryan that he bought me for my birthday earlier this year. I’m not kidding when I say I never take them off, the only exception when I shower. I run, clean, sleep, etc. with these bracelets on my wrist at all times, so they’re bound to show some wear.

It wasn’t until recently that I really noticed just how tarnished they were – particularly my rose gold bangle. Just as I was about to order some jewelry cleaner, I came across the “official” cleaning instructions for Alex and Ani jewelry that clearly stated not to use traditional cleaning polishes. Only mild dish soap and water. Well, I tried that paired with my soft cleaning cloth and while some tarnish came off, it was hardly noticeable. So, I did a little searching on Google and Pinterest and I found the funniest solution.


The Surprising Trick to Clean Alex and Ani Jewelry
Yeah, the key to cleaning my Alex and Ani bracelets is sitting right in my refrigerator! Honestly, I thought this was a load of crap, but it’s so out there that I just had to give it a go. What’s the worst that could happen? It doesn’t work, and I’m left with my bracelets coated in a condiment. Eh, seems pretty low risk to me.

How to clean Alex and Ani bracelets with ketchup.

Here’s a before shot of my rose gold bangle. Pretty tarnished and beat up as you can see. I quickly shot these photos with my iPhone, so #sorrynotsorry for the lack of pretty. If anything, these photos show the true nature of before and after!

tarnished alex and ani bangle
On a small plate, I coated my bangle in a layer of ketchup and let it sit for five minutes or so.

ketchup to clean tarnished braceletketchup jewelry cleaner during
And, here’s the bangle immediately after rinsing the ketchup off with cold water. I’m not sure if a picture does it justice, but the difference is crazy! The charm disks are the easiest way to spot how much tarnish came off.

alex and ani bracelet after ketchup cleaner
For good measure, I further cleaned the bangle in a small bowl of warm soapy water (I used mild dish soap, as suggested). And, the process was finished up with a good wipe down using the Alex and Ani polishing cloth.

alex and ani bracelet in warm water and mild soapalex and ani polishing cloth
Ladies and gents, I present to you my like-new, non-tarnished bangle! All the shine is back just like the day that it was purchased. I’m in love. Because I wear my bracelets nonstop, there’s of course certain areas that are so worn down that there’s no coming back from. But all surface-level tarnish is outta here!

Alex and Ani bracelet ketchup cleaner final result
Kind of a surprising trick to clean Alex and Ani jewelry, right?! Ketchup really does do the trick! Both my mom and sister said it probably has to do with the acidity of tomatoes. I don’t really care much about the science behind it as long as it continues to work. 😉

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Leave a Comment


  1. 1.28.19
    Emily Dunham said:

    That is SO interesting – I cannot believe it worked! That’s really neat. And I love your bracelets – I haven’t seen any like that and they are so pretty with the beads!

    • 1.28.19

      Isn’t it so funny? Literally could not believe that it actually worked. And, thank you! Some of their bracelets with the charms are a little too big for me, so I love that these still have the beads!

  2. 1.28.19
    Amanda Peterson said:

    Ketchup – how funny! I dont have any Alex & Ani bracelets, but I wonder if it works for other jewelry as well? Also — Where did you get that Fitbit band?!

  3. 1.28.19
    Biana Perez said:

    Definitely going to be trying this – my stack is looking a little lackluster right now! xo, Biana – BlovedBoston

    • 1.28.19

      Let me know if it works for you – I seriously can’t get over the fact that this actually works!

  4. 1.28.19
    Debra Stachelski said:

    Who would have thought ketchup could clean jewelry?! Great tip!

  5. 1.28.19

    I would have never guessed ketchup! How neat!

    Amy Ann
    Straight A Style