Here’s a list of the best ways to remove glue from jewelry.
There are times when you need to use adhesive in your beading projects e.g. securing knots or adding glue-in findings. Whatever the reason, using glue can lead to problems:
- Excess glue can spill out onto parts of your jewelry where you didn’t want it
- You may accidentally glue your jewelry to the working surface
- Or worse yet, you might stick your fingers together. Yikes!
If you find yourself facing any of these situations, it’s good to know how to get yourself out of them.
Here’s how you can remove jewelry glue.
How To Remove Glue From Jewelry
1. Wipe Or Scrape It Off
If you’re applying jewelry adhesive to a project, carefully wipe away any excess before it dries completely. This is the simplest way to remove glue from areas where it’s not needed.
If you notice excess glue after it has dried, you can carefully scrape it off using a beading awl, wooden manicure stick or some other tool.
If your pieces are made with soft semi-precious stones e.g. Azurite or pearls, be aware that you could damage your jewelry doing this. Use this hardness chart to determine if this method is safe for your particular gemstone.
Download this free pattern!
Boost your Right-Angle Weave skills with this easy-to-follow pattern.
Simply sign up for weekly beading tips to have the bracelet tutorial sent straight to your email inbox.
2. Use a Polishing Cloth
Using a polishing cloth is a great way to take care of your handcrafted jewelry. It can also help you remove residue left behind by a jewelry adhesive.
Sunshine polishing cloths are quite popular. Try using one of these and see if it helps to remove dullness and restore the luster of your jewelry.
3. Use Soapy Water
Sometimes, stickers and price tags may have been applied directly to stones or jewelry components. If you’re having a hard time removing these, soaking the component in warm soapy water could help.
4. Rubbing Alcohol
Isopropyl alcohol, otherwise known as rubbing alcohol, can be used to clean jewelry. But, before you do, it’s important to know if you can safely use it on the materials in your jewelry.
Metals e.g. genuine silver and gold, silver-plated, stainless steel and more will not be damaged by alcohol. It’s also a safe and effective cleaner for most gemstones, with the exception of softer stones e.g. opals and pearls. Test it in a small area first to be sure.
Soak the piece of jewelry in a bowl filled with rubbing alcohol and leave it for a few hours or overnight. Then, remove the glue with a soft cloth or cotton swab.
5. Use Acetone
The fifth way to remove glue from jewelry or your skin is to apply acetone. If you have a nail polish remover at home that contains acetone, try that.
Apply the acetone to a cotton swab and use it to remove the glue from jewelry or your skin. This should dissolve the bonds in the glue and allow you to remove it.
Be aware of the following:
- Never pry your fingers apart when you glue them together. Use the acetone first.
- Check that it’s safe to use the acetone on your jewelry. Test in a small inconspicuous area first.
Knowing what material your jewelry is made up of allows you to choose the best method for removing glue.