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How to Clean Your Cremation Ash Necklace

Choosing how to hold your loved one in eternal remembrance is a personal journey. Cremation jewelry pieces are a reflection of the sacred and unique bond you share with your departed loved one. Whether a necklace, bracelet, or pendant, a considerable amount of thought goes into designing, crafting, and displaying your moving tribute. Cremation jewelry can be customized in several different ways, such as engraving sentiments or including meaningful charms. From adding the ashes to safely securing them, cremation ash necklaces need extra special care to preserve the cremains with the utmost respect and dignity. When caring for and cleaning these one-of-a-kind memorials, it's extremely important to refrain from submerging the piece in water when attempting to clean it. With proper proactive care and cleaning, your cremation ash necklace can last for generations, allowing your departed loved one’s legacy to live on.

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Sterling Silver Cremation Necklaces

Sterling silver is among the most durable metals and one of the highest-quality silvers available today. As a silver alloy, sterling silver contains a mixture of other metals. 925 sterling silver is popular for crafting exquisite, long-lasting cremation jewelry. The 925 refers to the 92.5% pure silver that makes up sterling silver. The other 7.5% comprises metals, such as nickel or copper.

Preventative Care

One of the best ways to care for your sterling silver cremation necklace is to wear it! The oils in your skin can help prevent it from tarnishing, allowing the silver to continue shining brightly. One of the biggest reasons people prefer cremation jewelry necklaces is that they will enable them to carry their departed loved one anywhere they go. Knowing that their loved one is physically and spiritually close to the heart can bring great comfort and peace to the bereaved.

It’s also helpful to be mindful of exposing your cremation ash necklace to certain elements that can tarnish it, such as chlorinated water in swimming pools or harsh chemicals in household cleaning products. If you plan on exercising, sweat can have a tarnishing effect. Sulfer-containing elements such as mustard, eggs, latex, or wool can harm your unique piece. Prolonged exposure to direct sunlight can also tarnish sterling silver.

When you shower or bath, consider removing your piece to avoid water seeping into the secured chamber closure where the ashes are stored.

If you plan on displaying your cremation jewelry instead of wearing it, try to limit exposure to air. A ziplock bag can be useful, but consider using a glass dome for a more tasteful display.

How to Clean an Ash Necklace Made of Sterling Silver

If you prefer to clean your cremation ash necklace, you can make a homemade silver cleaning solution; however, always remember to avoid direct contact with the chamber seal for the ashes.

Soap and Water: Mixing a phosphate and ammonia-free mild dishwashing soap with water creates a safe solution for sterling silver cleaning. Simply dampen a microfiber cloth and gently rub the jewelry. Be sure to blot it dry with a cloth afterward.

Baking soda and water: Mix baking soda and water into a paste and gently rub the sterling silver. Remove the paste with a damp cloth and dry.

Lemon juice and Olive Oil: Mix one-half teaspoon of olive oil with one-quarter cup of lemon juice. Dip a clean, soft cloth into the mix. Make sure it is only damp, not dripping. Gently rub the jewelry with the cloth. Use a dry cloth afterward.

It’s always a good idea to spot-test any homemade silver cleaning solution in a hidden area before moving forward with the entire surface. You want to ensure the solution won’t remove the finish or scratch the surface.


When polishing sterling silver, it’s best to use a special flannel cloth. You can find one online or through a local jewelry store. Flannel jewelry cloths are a safe way to gently restore shine to sterling silver. If the tarnish is extreme, there are specially designed paste polishes available.

Stainless Steel Cremation Necklaces

Although stainless steel is not considered a precious metal, it looks very similar to sterling silver. Many people prefer stainless steel because it can withstand degradation from water and chemicals. As a metal alloy, stainless steel is made up of a mixture of iron, small amounts of carbon, and other several metals.

Preventative Care
Like sterling silver, keeping your stainless steel cremation necklace away from commercial jewelry cleaners or harsh chemicals, such as chlorine, bleach, and ammonia cleaners, is important. The chemicals can stain or corrode the surface. When you’re not wearing your memorial necklace, store it in a soft cloth pouch away from other items that can rub up against it.

How to Clean a Cremation Necklace Made of Stainless Steel

Cremation ash jewelry made of stainless steel is easy to clean; however, avoid submerging the piece in water or using harsh chemicals.

Soap and Water: Like sterling silver, mix a phosphate and ammonia-free mild dishwashing soap with water to create a safe solution for cleaning your stainless steel remembrance piece. Simply dampen a microfiber cloth and gently rub the jewelry. Be sure to blot it dry with a cloth afterward. Allow it to air dry to ensure all the moisture evaporates.

Some people prefer to use toothpaste and a toothbrush to clean stainless steel jewelry; however, the silica and whitening agents in toothpaste and the bristles in the toothbrush can be abrasive.


A non-abrasive microfiber cloth is a good choice for polishing stainless steel. Gently rub the necklace with the cloth to restore its luster. If you like, you can even add a drop or two of olive oil for a simple polish solution.

At The Living Urn, our skilled artisan jewelers handcraft high-quality cremation ash jewelry from the finest materials. We utilize 925 sterling silver and stainless steel for their exquisite look and durability. With cremation jewelry necklaces from The Living Urn, you can create a stunning memorial that can be passed down for generations. Visit our store to learn more about our superb line of cremation jewelry necklaces and keepsakes!

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