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A Simple Guide to Properly Cleaning Watches - Watchdives

A Simple Guide to Properly Cleaning Watches - Watchdives

watchdives websiteWatches are not impervious to dirt. Dirt and dust accumulate on their faces and around the bands that secure them to your wrist over time. Furthermore, skin oil, sweat, and moisturizer can all leave a thin film of residue. While it's natural to want to give watches a quick wipe down after wearing them, this is insufficient. You need to go deeper and explore the hidden nooks and crannies. Only then will your watch remain spotless.

Why Should You Clean Your Watches?

You may believe that watches are insignificant in the grand scheme of things. You couldn't be more mistaken. Watches are more than just accessories; they are important pieces of machinery that must be maintained on a regular basis in order to function properly. Because they come into contact with your skin on a regular basis, it is critical that they be kept clean. Oil from your skin will mix with dust and moisture in the air over time, forming a sticky film that will accumulate inside your watch, causing it to malfunction or stop working entirely.

When Should You Clean Your Watch?

Every watch owner understands that admiring a watch's sleek, flawless aesthetic is an important part of wearing one. If that's the case, you'll need to give your watch a thorough cleaning at least once a week. Some people prefer to clean their watches after each use, as their watch-owning parents taught them. Whatever you prefer, the most important thing is to avoid cleaning them too frequently. Only deep clean your watch face and band once a month to avoid wearing down the protective coating. Whatever you prefer, as long as you don't overdo it, your watch should last a long time.

What Equipment Do You Require to Clean Your Watch?

As with many things, it's best to start by purchasing the necessary tools or equipment. That way, you won't ruin your watch while cleaning it, and you won't ruin whatever baguette you paid for. Here are some accessories that will restore your watch to its former glory:

Cleaning Solutions

It is preferable if you ALWAYS cleaned your watches with a special watch cleaning fluid. Using any other substance will damage and wear down your watch's protective coating. If you can't find a cleaning solution, make your own by combining equal parts distilled water and white vinegar.


Observe the Cleaning Cloth

Wiping away dirt and grease with your shirt or a microfiber cloth will not only leave lint all over, but will also scratch the glass on your watch. Instead, use a special watch cleaning cloth made of ultra-fine fibers that will not leave any dirt or scratches behind. Microfiber cloths are the best option, but if your shirt is made of natural fibers, you can use it.

Watch Brush or Small Toothbrush

You'll need something small enough to fit in the tiny crevices on your watch to clean them. A toothbrush is ideal for this task. You can also use a fine-tip paintbrush, but if the bristles are synthetic, make sure to use a new one. Natural-hair bristled brushes can be effective, but they can leave fibers and dust behind.

Detergent or Soap

To remove stubborn dirt, soap or detergent can be used, but use them sparingly. They can wear down the protective coating on your watch and make it look dull if used excessively. Before adding the vinegar or water solution, use a tiny drop of soap or dishwashing liquid mixed with water as a precaution.

Tools for Cleaning Areas

You Can't Reach With Your Hands
After you've gathered everything else, here are some small tools to assist you in getting into those difficult-to-reach places.


A good pair of tweezers can help you get into those tiny nooks and crannies that your hands can't reach. It's best to use non-metallic tweezers because they won't conduct electricity and may cause a minor electric shock.

Tweezers-like pin needles

Pin needles are thin steel rods with pointed ends that can be used to clean the inside of a watch. When in contact with the battery, use a non-metallic pin needle because it will not conduct electricity and will not cause a shock.


A magnification glass

A good magnifying glass can help you see all the dirt you've missed as well as get a good look at your watch's inner workings. The one I use has a large handle that allows me to hold it in one hand while cleaning with the other.

Getting Started: How to Clean Your Watch Properly

1. Take off your watch's strap or band.

Before beginning the cleaning process, remove the strap from your watch using a watch strap remover tool or tweezers. When working with a metal strap, it's best to wear leather gloves to protect your fingers. The same advice applies to leather bands or any other material that could be harmed if you slip with the tweezers and cut into it.


2. Clean it up

Wipe away any dirt or dust that has accumulated on your watch with a soft cloth. Don't use a paper towel because it can scratch the glass and leave a layer of lint behind that will quickly become dirty again. It is recommended to wear chamois or microfiber clothing. This is due to the fact that it is soft and very effective at removing grime from the surface of your watch.

3. Combine Vinegar or Water and Soap

If you don't have any special watch cleaning fluid on hand, combine a drop of soap or dishwashing liquid with warm water. The amount of soap required is determined by the size of your watch, so add a drop at a time until you have enough. You don't want to use too much of it because it will wear down the protective coating on your watch. Once you've got a few drops, add a few tablespoons of warm – not hot – water and stir to make a soapy solution. If you don't have any soap, just use plain water.

4. Soak your Toothbrush or Watch Brush in the Soapy Solution.

Dip the brush into the soapy solution, making sure it's completely saturated but not dripping. Then, squeeze out any excess water to keep your cleaning solution from becoming diluted. You can also use an old toothbrush if you don't have a special watch brush like I do.


5. Clean Your Watch's Dial and Hands

Gently clean all around the watch dial, including on top and underneath it, with the brush. The more you can get into those spaces, the easier it will be to remove any dirt that has become lodged in them while your watch was being used or stored.

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