How do I Clean Inside Glass Balls?


Change the color of the glass ornaments on your tree without buying new balls. Clean the paint from inside glass balls and repaint them to create a designer tree that matches your home's decor. Clear glass balls can also be filled with tinsel, yarn or even popcorn. You can achieve the most sparkle by decorating your tree with twinkle lights inserted in plain clear glass balls. This is recycling at it best.

Things You'll Need

  • Bleach
  • Dish detergent
  • Pipe cleaner
  • Toothbrush
  • Cotton swab
  • Rubbing alcohol
  • Squeeze the wire loop at the top of the ornament and gently remove the whole metal top. Set metal tops aside.

  • Soak ornaments in bleach for several minutes. Rinse them well in warm soapy water to remove the sliver metallic paint inside the balls; it will also remove the plastic coating on the outside of some balls.

  • Bend a pipe cleaner 1 inch from the end. Use the bent end to gently loosen the paint on the inside of the balls if bleach does not work. Sometimes it is necessary to break the surface of the paint to allow the bleach to work. Use a toothbrush if balls have a large enough opening; this technique works even better.

  • Soak balls in bleach again and rinse them as described.

  • Remove any remaining paint with a cotton swab. Rinse the balls with alcohol, drain them well and allow them to dry completely. This may take several hours.

Tips & Warnings

  • To avoid scratching the balls, try soaking them in bleach before you use a pipe cleaner of toothbrush on them.

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  • Photo Credit Christmas Ball image by Stana from
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