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How to Clean Incolay Stone

Incolay stone
Marie-Lan Nguyen, Tondo Susanto, Stephen Davies, Sanja Gjenero

An incolay bas-relief sculpted jewelry box or piece of decorative artwork can be a treasured heirloom. The fine detail of delicately sculptured layered stone is a testament to exquisite craftsmanship, but a buildup of dust and film can make the incolay piece look dull. Incolay material is made of natural minerals melded together and carved with cameo-making techniques. With gentle attention to its structure, you can restore beauty when you follow these steps to clean incolay stone.

Blow away loose dust

Blow any loose dust and debris off the incolay stone piece using a blow dryer set at no heat.

Use soft bristle toothbrush

Brush the smooth surfaces of incolay stone lightly with a soft bristled toothbrush. Apply light pressure to brush the raised sculpted areas of the piece. Start at the center of each sculpted design, moving the brush in circular motions toward its outer edges.

Mild detergent and a sponge

Mix one teaspoon of mild liquid detergent in one quart of warm water. Dip a clean soft bristled toothbrush into the water, then gently scrub the incolay, working in one-inch increments. Rinse the soapy water off of each inch of the scrubbed stone with a sponge dipped in clear warm water. Continue scrubbing inch by inch, followed by a rinse, until the entire surface has been cleaned.

Soft cotton towels

Dry the incolay stone completely by patting it with a clean fluffy cotton towel or dry microfiber cloth. Use a blow dryer set on low to evaporate any remaining moisture.

Things You'll Need:

  • Blow dryer
  • Soft bristle toothbrush
  • Mild detergent
  • Cotton towel


  • To avoid water stains, do not soak incolay stone decorative pieces in water.
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