How to Clean Depression Glass


Although the Great Depression began in 1929 and essentially ended with the beginning of World War II on September 1, 1939, depression glass was actually made for a much longer time – from the early – to mid-1920s through the end of the war in 1945.

You may think that depression glass refers only to the colored glass made during this period, but it also includes clear, crystal glass with some patterns manufactured into the 1950s.


Depression Glass Cleaning

Clean depression glass in a plastic rectangular dish washing bucket to prevent chips or breakage. Handle the glass with care and never use household bleach to clean glassware. Instead, use mild soap when cleaning it.

Mild soaps should not contain abrasives and be alkaline or vegetable-based, such as a liquid castile soap. Use soft, lint-free cloths when cleaning old glassware, one at a time.

Depression Glass Cleaning


Before cleaning depression or any other type of collectible glass, allow it to reach room temperature first to avoid cracking it. Do not use hot, hot water; instead, opt for lukewarm water to keep the glass from breaking.


Step 1

Fill the plastic dish washing bucket or pan with lukewarm water. Add enough dish washing detergent to create light suds.


Step 2

Wash one glassware item at a time to avoid knocking them together and breaking them. Use a soft cloth to clean the glass inside and out. On cut glass with crannies and grooves, use a soft toothbrush to clean these areas thoroughly.


Step 3

Rinse the depression glass in lukewarm water, and set it on a towel to dry, or dry it by hand.


– Do not wash antique, depression or vintage glassware in a dishwasher.
– Keep glassware out of extreme weather and sunlight, as drastic changes in the temperature of the glass can cause it to break.


RELATED : How to Remove Sediment from a Antique Kettle


Cleaning Cloudy Glassware

Step 1

Fill the glassware item with a 2-to-1 ratio of water to ammonia. Let the ammonia and water sit in the glassware for up to four hours.


Step 2

Rinse and wash the glassware after removing cloudiness, following the steps in the previous section.


Step 3

Let the glassware air dry.


Other methods for removing the cloudy appearance of antique, depression or vintage glassware includes:

  • Dropping a denture tablet in water in the glass and let it sit for four to six hours;
  • Rub petroleum jelly on the glassware and let it stay on it between four to five days;
  • Clean the glass with a toothbrush and toothpaste; or
  • Use a glass-safe bathroom product to remove lime and calcium buildup.


Check out the video version of this article on YouTube : How to Clean Depression Glass


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