How to clean your watch at home

Well-loved watches can easily lose their shine with every day wear and tear. Dirt and oils transferred from the skin combined with residue left from products can cause an unpleasant build-up on the band of your trusty wrist watch. Keeping your watch clean is good not only for the aesthetic appeal but to keep it in good working order- after all, don’t you think your favourite watch requires some TLC?

How you clean your watch depends on the make and model, but all watches benefit from regular attention.

Here’s what Michel Herbelin’s expert watch maker recommends.

MH auto


Don’t Forget Your Toothbrush

The best thing for general cleaning of a watch bracelet is a weak solution of soapy water applied gently with an old toothbrush.  There are mild jewellery cleaning products available to buy, but soapy water is just as effective.

Care for the Case

Cleaning cloth

If the case is also dirty, soapy water can be used here too. Great care must be taken especially around the crown if the watch is only water resistant to 3ATM or splash proof- so don’t allow water to seep in. For this reason it is best not to fully immerse the watch in the water.  Allow the watch to air dry or place it in an airing cupboard for a few hours to ensure it is completely dry.  A jewellers polishing cloth can be used to give a final polish before wearing.

Look After a Leather Strap

To prevent a leather strap watch from deteriorating, it is best to avoid contact with moisture. If this does happen due to something happening out of your control, remove from the wrist and allow to dry slowly. This can either be done naturally or to speed things up, an airing cupboard or warm, dry place should remove moisture.

Avoid Contact with Chemicals

As leather is a natural product, it is best to avoid any chemical product reaching it to prevent staining.  This is why using every day cleaning products is not recommended. For ladies, this means trying to avoid perfume transferring to the watch wearing wrist and not using anything other than soapy water to wipe off marks.  Don’t forget that leather is a living material, so its colour will naturally fade over time.

Store Securely

17001-BT59 in gift box

The safest place for a watch is on your wrist, so most accidents happen when a watch has been removed and put in an unusual place.  This provides the perfect opportunity for things to be spilt on your watch or falls to happen from tables or dressers.  When a watch is not being worn, consider keeping it in a box (perhaps the original presentation box) or a jewellery box, but beware it is not stored next to anything that might scratch or contaminate it.

Make the most of your investment with these simple tips and keep your watch looking its best.

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