Anodized knives run the entire luxury gamut. On one end you can find “anodized” stainless steel knives (for sale at gas stations everywhere) and on the other end, you get anodized titanium.
The thing they all have in common is that they absolutely love fingerprints and grease. If you’ve ever held an anodized knife you probably didn’t feel great about yourself when you noticed how smudged up it was when you put it down.
Well, never fear. Cleaning anodized titanium is not a special trick. It doesn’t even require any special prep or materials.
So whether you’re cleaning an anodized titanium knife, wedding ring, or other doo-dads, here’s how we’re going to get it done. For the purpose of this article, I cleaned a knife with titanium scales. However, if you’re trying to clean anodized titanium jewelry, just swap “jewelry” in every time I mention my knife. The process is the same.
3 Ways To Clean Anodized Titanium
In a sense, the title of this article is misleading. There is really only one way to clean anything anodized. With a rag or paper towel. The real trick is knowing what mild cleaner to use, and there are three of those that I can recommend.
Acetone or acetone-based cleaners are a great option for cleaning anodized titanium. You may have to reoil your knife afterward if you’re heavy-handed but the colors will definitely pop!
Most glass cleaners (Windex included) are acetone-based. However, even those that aren’t can be effective at removing grime from your knife scales.
The best method is to spray the rag you’re using rather than the knife and then wipe down the handle. If your knife is absolutely filthy, spray the rag and then set your knife on top of it.
If your knife has streaks on it when you’re done it’s likely that you used a bit too much Windex. Just use a dry rag and buff it out.
3. Rubbing Alcohol
Most bare or anodized surfaces can be effective with household rubbing alcohol. Just be sure that you pick up the 91% version and not the diluted 70% (which is usually green).
You can employ the same method here as with the other cleaners, dab, and wipe.
If you’re trying to clean anodized aluminum jewelry or a knife, start with a gentle cleanser and work your way up. It’s very difficult to damage the anodizing but it can be done if you use too harsh of a cleaner or too abrasive of a rag.
Does Anodized Titanium Lose Its Color or Fade?
Most anodized surfaces will gradually fade over time with normal wear and tear. The titanium oxide layer that is formed via electrolysis and pigment is very tough but can be affected by friction and scratches.
Anodized titanium tends to be a bit tougher than anodized aluminum and should last for years. Unfortunately, regular cleaning seems to keep anodized titanium brighter and better looking but doesn’t contribute much to its lifespan.
At the end of the day, cleaning titanium isn’t much of a trick. Get a gentle cleanser and a rag and wipe it down. Unless you are using harsh chemicals or an abrasive cleaning device you don’t have to worry about damaging the anodized layer.