Ring Cleaning: Avoid the Ring Finger Rash

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Almost a year ago I developed an itchy rash on my finger under my wedding ring. I had no idea what caused it but figured it had to be moisture being trapped under my ring, hence, causing irritation. I would take my ring off for a few days and the rash (small red bumps that itched like crazy) would go away. I would put my ring back on and the rash would return immediately. I cleaned my ring with normal jewelry cleaner waited a few days and put the ring back on… and the rash would come back. I changed my soap. Didn’t wear it in the shower or while I slept. It didn’t matter; any time I put my ring on, the rash would come back. This continued for a few weeks. It was so frustrating! I began to think I had developed allergies to my wedding ring!

I was desperate for a solution. And a little embarrassed since I thought I was a freak. Turns out… every girl I talked to about this (ok, so maybe I only talked to 3-5 girls. Statistics aren’t important right now.) has had a similar issue with their wedding ring.  Maybe I wasn’t a weirdo. So I was on a quest to find a solution. Where did I turn? Yes, the trusty Internet. Evidently a gazillion other women were having this problem as there were a gazillion forums with people seeking answers. There was one solution in particular that seemed to be tried and true for so many people as “the cure” for their ring finger rash. At this point, I was willing to try anything! And I did. And it worked! Here is the miracle solution:

Hydrogen Peroxide and White Vinegar + Boiling your ring = No rash.

Yes, I was skeptical at first… downright scared even.  But I am so glad I gave it a shot.

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Step 1:

Fill a bowl with 1/2 cup white vinegar and 1/4 hydrogen peroxide.

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Step 2:

Soak ring for approximately 30-45 minutes. Soaking longer won’t hurt it… some women said they soaked it overnight.

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You can immediately see bubbles coming out of the ring. Bubbles = killing cells. You don’t get the bubble reaction from non-living objects like dirt or oil. But that explanation is a whole other blog topic… and would be best suited for someone who knows a thing or two about chemistry.

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Step 3:

Brush ring with a jewelry brush. Or, like me, use ghetto-fied jewelry brush also known as a toothbrush.

5Scrub-a-dub-dub.

Step 4:

Boil ring in water for 20 minutes.

I tied a piece of string (or jute) around my ring and then tied it to a skewer. I’m one of those wacky people that was paranoid to boil my ring. I knew the temperature wasn’t going to hurt it… but the bouncing around against the pan was more than I could bare. haha So I came up with this solution:

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Put ring in boiling water. Take that any bacteria that could have survived the hydrogen peroxide!

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When done, dry on a paper towel. Enjoy your ring again! It won’t be giving you a rash anymore!

You are supposed to do this process every other month as a precautionary measure… however, I never did it again. It took about 10 months for the rash to come back. When I saw the first signs of a rash… I did this process again and it immediately cleared up. Not too shabby for a simple home remedy that actually works!

Just thought I would pass along this information. You might need it one day… ;)

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  • Damaris

    Thank you sooo much. I am about to try this as I am very desperate! I’ve had this rash on my finger for several months and have not been able to use my engagement ring at all! Which is very frustrating. Im gonna cross my fingers….hope it works for me. TY!

  • Damaris

    Thank you sooo much. I am about to try this as I am very desperate! I’ve had this rash on my finger for several months and have not been able to use my engagement ring at all! Which is very frustrating. Im gonna cross my fingers….hope it works for me. TY!

  • http://www.jensplacetovisit.blogspot.com Jen S.

    I LOVE this idea!! I too have had the same problem from time to time. My ring finger would itch and drive me nuts! I just thought maybe I’d gotten liquid soap not completely rinsed off, but wasn’t really quite sure. Now you’ve solved the problem! Melissa, you’re the best! Thanks for sharing this fabulous idea!
    ~Jen

  • http://www.jensplacetovisit.blogspot.com Jen S.

    I LOVE this idea!! I too have had the same problem from time to time. My ring finger would itch and drive me nuts! I just thought maybe I’d gotten liquid soap not completely rinsed off, but wasn’t really quite sure. Now you’ve solved the problem! Melissa, you’re the best! Thanks for sharing this fabulous idea!
    ~Jen

  • http://www.jensplacetovisit.blogspot.com Jen S.

    P.S. Your nails look nice…LOVE that color :)

  • http://www.jensplacetovisit.blogspot.com Jen S.

    P.S. Your nails look nice…LOVE that color :)

  • http://keepnthesunnyside.blogspot.com/ Amy

    I have had a rash under my ring for the last 2 weeks..trying all the things you listed. I am amazed that so many other women are experiencing this.. I thought it was just my crazy weird skin. I am DEFINITELY trying this..thanks so much.

  • http://keepnthesunnyside.blogspot.com/ Amy

    I have had a rash under my ring for the last 2 weeks..trying all the things you listed. I am amazed that so many other women are experiencing this.. I thought it was just my crazy weird skin. I am DEFINITELY trying this..thanks so much.

  • http://www.j-gala.co.jp/index.html 結婚指輪

    Thank you very much for sharing. Your information always proves to be useful. I think your post is suitable for everyne, who is interested in valuable resources . I will keep following your posts.

  • http://www.j-gala.co.jp/index.html 結婚指輪

    Thank you very much for sharing. Your information always proves to be useful. I think your post is suitable for everyne, who is interested in valuable resources . I will keep following your posts.

  • http://www.mymagicme.artfire.com Jen from England

    Thank you so much for this remedy I was having the same issues and started thinking I needed new rigs (yay for me, nah for the hubs) Im sooo happy that I found your blog/post. I will try this out immediately!
    Cheers and much love from the Uk,
    Jen

  • http://www.mymagicme.artfire.com Jen from England

    Thank you so much for this remedy I was having the same issues and started thinking I needed new rigs (yay for me, nah for the hubs) Im sooo happy that I found your blog/post. I will try this out immediately!
    Cheers and much love from the Uk,
    Jen

  • Shenika

    OMG Thank you!

  • SBlack

    Thank you !!!!! I was so worried that I wouldn’t be able to wear my ring again, and I know that sounds overdramatic but it’s true. I couldn’t figure out what in the world was going on. I had taken it to the jewelry store to be cleaned and that’s when this all started. I was told to bring it back to the jeweler, but I was afraid that wouldn’t do any good. Like you, I thought I had become allergic to my ring. I am so grateful for this post. I’m trying this tonight :)

  • Amyue_tiggertoo2002

    Thank you so much, I am going to do it right away. I have been going crazy for 2 months trying to doctor this finger. The blisters just won’t quit. Can’t wait to see if this works

  • Theorr6

    IT WORKS!!!! I have done it twice now!!!!! I love you, almost replaced my beloved ring with platinum because I thought it was an allergy to gold. Why dont DRS know about this. my doc told me it was dry and needed lotion. That just made it worse. Thank you Thank you!

  • Kkyles605

    Sure wish I had discovered this remedy before we bought me another wedding set!  Ouch!!!  thanks, my rings are soaking now!

  • Jennifer

    Thanks, is there certain amount of time you had the ring sit in boiling water?  Did you put any medicine on your finger to treat the rash?

  • Laura

    You are the best! Thanks!!!!!

  • Dawn

    I am soaking rings now.  What cleared up the rash for me was CeraVe Cream you can get it any drug store or Walmart, Target, etc.

  • klm

    You may have saved my life! I am doing this TONIGHT.

  • Natashawilde

    I have this skin rash problem on my left hand index finger and i don’t wear rings on that finger? Any guesses??

  • Eriggs27

    Thank you so much! I thought this was from my body chemistry changing from having my daughter. She id now one and I still can’t wear any kind of ring for very long without this painful blistery rash. I have tryed many different types of gold, silver and even sugical steal without success. So my rings are soaking now!! Can’t wait to wear my real wedding ring again. Thank u!!!!

    • Sheri

      That’s strange because mine started after I had my daughter too! That’s what I thought it was from also. Glad to find this post and something to try. Tired of having to explain why I am not wearing my rings.

  • Jon

    Of all the ‘home remedy’ posts detailing this same process, this post was the most helpful.  It really gave me the feel good feeling I was looking for from other sites.  My wife has been dealing with this for a couple weeks now and I plan to surprise her with the fix.  Thank you for sharing your experience.
    -Jon-

  • mary

    this is hilarious! I have the same exact issue and Im so glad i cam across this post. Im a little scared to soak my ring in all of these solutions tho :/ hope its safe for it
    great post tho thanks!!

  • BJ

    I am also trying this. And your ring looks very similar to my ring, thanks for sharing!

  • El

    It worked!!! I had tried everything before- new jewelry cleaner, professional jewelry steam, rings dipped in rhodium, changed soaps, changed lotions, you name it. You’re solution actually worked!! Rash is gone, and has been gone for 3 weeks now. I did the ring cleaning process and then left my rings off so my rash could heal before I put them back on. Rings were probably off for 4 to 5 days and I used CeraVe cream suggested by someone that replied to this post. That worked too. Thank you ladies!!!!

  • kdholmes

    PRAISE GOD!!! I am definitely trying this remedy tonight!!! I got engaged almost 2 1/2 years ago – married 10 months ago. I never had a problem with my engagement ring by itself or with my wedding bands until about a month ago when the weather got really bad. I thought it was from my fingers swelling with the heat and that I had developed a heat rash….or the soap….or the ring cleaner had gotten contaminated. I stopped wearing my rings for a week, it cleared up and then, yep, it came right back after 1 day of wearing them again. I was able to wear my engagement ring by itself and it didn’t get as bad, so I wore my wedding bands on my right ring finger. That worked fine for about a week and now I’ve got the ring rash on that hand too!!! I’m so excited to get home and try this!!! You’re a God-send…Thank you so much!!!

  • Issy

    OMG! Thank you sooooo much, I’ve just developed same reaction to my Palladium wedding ring (we’ve only been married 7 months but I waited 13 years for him to say yes!). I am devastated and have started to look for a new ring, but I’m going to buy vinegar and hydrogen peroxide tomorrow and give this a try. Sending you kisses and hugs and hoping it works! x

  • Patrick

    To be honest, I think most of you are reacting to nickel in white gold or from palladium (which is occasionally used for white gold). You may want to switch to a platinum or yellow gold ring. To test of nickel allergy, you can literally tape a quarter to your skin, and wait 24-48 hours. If it turns red or is very itchy, you are allergic to nickel. Nickel allergies typically develop after long term contact with nickel, usually from nickel containing jewelry.

    • User

      My rings are sterling silver/platinum not white gold and I still get a rash.

  • Ang

    Just got in Engaged on Easter and the ring my Fiance’ gave Was giving me a Rash.. So i took it off for 2 days or so and put it back on same rash.. Im going to try what i found on here. I have been reading your ladies post and its seems to work so i will try it tomorrow.. Thanks again

  • http://www.facebook.com/princess.rosebud.14 Princess Rosebud

    Great tip with vinegar/peroxide but I’m not sure about boiling, a hot water rinse off is all I do.

  • brittany

    I just did this to my favorite ring because it was irritating my skin and leaving a terrible rash. It is a beautiful druzy stone in a nice setting that my grandmother gave me years ago. IT RUINED MY RING!!!! :( It was shiny and silver and now it is completely ruined! I am sooooooo upset. Don’t even try this because you will ruin your ring! :(

    • Will Wiegman

      the vinegar (mild acid which is why it cleans tile grout like nothing else) etched the non-silver/gold finish on your Grandma’s ring. If it was real gold or silver it would have been ok.

      Next time leave out the vinegar, it’s acidic.

  • Mari

    It’s all the germs that thrive in a moist dark and yes dirty area that build up over time and eventually cause us this skin reaction. All those little nooks and crannies on the underside of our rings trap moisture and who knows what else (bad little pathogens that cause skin irritation). I’ve found that brushing my ring with my regular liquid dish detergent and a toothbrush gets rid of all the build up and it’s quick and easy so I do it often. You need the brush to make sure you get into all the small little crevices. If you look closely you will see there is a build up on the inner side of your ring if you have not cleaned it in a while.

  • Emily

    I cannot wait to try this! I have been desperately trying to find a fix! I was already using CeraVe, which is awesome, inexpensive stuff – body, face, etc. It always helped my finger when my ring was off, but as soon as I put it back on I was back to square one! Thank you for blogging about this so the rest of us could get some relief! It is so mysterious that I can pop out of no where – I had no trouble for 5 years, then the last 6 months have been a battle!

  • Emily

    I cannot wait to try this! I have been desperately trying to find a fix! I was already using CeraVe, which is awesome, inexpensive stuff – body, face, etc. It always helped my finger when my ring was off, but as soon as I put it back on I was back to square one! Thank you for blogging about this so the rest of us could get some relief! It is so mysterious that I can pop out of no where – I had no trouble for 5 years, then the last 6 months have been a battle!

  • Sarah Butler

    I just wanted to say thank you so much for this post! I was dealing with it off and on for months trying different things and nothing worked. But I cleaned my rings the day I found this (the stuff coming out of the ring’s crevices blew my mind), let the rash heal, put the rings on (going on 4 days now, the rash would come back after just one before) and so far so good. I’m so glad that I found this :)

  • Oztin

    My rings are platinum and I have also been suffering from this rash-reoccurring, painful, itchy bumps; take the rings off until the rash heals which is about a week for me, back on and rash again in a day or two. Soaking my rings now :) Hope it works!!

  • Anahi

    Omg I have to try this it’s happening to me and it hurts so much I got like red bumps which the next day turned white and then peeled off and now it’s all red and burns

  • Mike

    Does anybody know if this cleaning method would affect pewter rings?

  • lasfca

    Thanks, Melissa! Now how do I get rid of the rash on my finger?

  • sherri

    It works! It works! I thank you and my ring finger thanks you!

  • Natalie

    This has worked for me! I’m happy to report I have had my wedding and engagement rings on all afternoon and there has been no swelling or rash. For the past couple of months I haven’t been able to wear them (and only just got married 3 months ago). Even putting them on to go out to dinner would have my finger swollen and very itchy! Crazy how much dirt and grime must get caught in them…

  • Libra NiNi

    I know it’s been awhile since you posted this but I wanted to say thank you so much for saving my ring and finger! My rash was so horrible that it would make my finger swell to the point that I could hardly take my ring off. No cream or anything could make it go away. I was so upset that I could not wear my ring but now I can again. I did my cure in the summer and now it’s winter time and I’m noticing a few little bumps. Now that I know what to do I’m no longer worried. Thank you so much again!!!

  • Michelle

    This ruiend my ring! It took the finishing off it what should I do

  • Robbyn

    I’m a chemist, and I especially appreciate this post. In my lab, we use a similar but much stronger recipe to clean gold-coated silicon or glass for micro devices. In this post, the weak acid in the vinegar plus the hydrogen peroxide combine to form a highly oxidizing environment. When you oxidize organic materials (like skin cells and bacteria) the products are similar to what you get when you burn something (burning is rapid oxidation). The majority products are carbon dioxide gas (the bubbles!!) and water.

  • Sarah

    Doing this now and am soooo grossed out by the crazy bubbles coming out of my rings! Thanks for the tip!

  • Michele

    I WILL be trying this! Thank u kindly!

  • Jessi S,

    Thank you for this!! I had this problem starting July 2013 and thought I had an allergy. I watered plants all day as a job and I think that caused the bacteria buildup. I only boiled my ring for 15 minutes back then and I made it EXACTLY a year until itchy blisters came back! I re-visited this post so I could do the boiling process again! Cant wait to wear my ring soon!!

  • Alana

    My rings are platinum and I’ve had the same problem for years. I do this about 3x a year and it works great. Thank you so much!