Crystal glasses are rather delicate and need to be handled with care, especially when you clean them. The high temperatures in a dishwasher may cause them to break, as can using too much pressure when hand washing. Wash crystal ware gently by hand and use a soft dishcloth for drying, as crystal glass is fragile and scratches easily. Never pour a liquid that is very hot into a crystal glass, as this can easily shatter it.
Fine glass should be cleaned by hand washing. It’s really best for all glassware because the dishwasher will cause etching and discoloration of clear and coloured glassware.
Fold a dish towel and put it inside your sink. The towel prevents the glasses from sliding around and it prevents them from being chipped on the sink.
Add water and mild dishwashing liquid and warm water. Rinse in water the same temperature. Fine glass can develop tiny cracks inside the glass which ruin its appearance. Never put a glass cold from ice into a hot sink to wash.
Hold the glasses as you wash them by the bowl only and never by the stem. Twisting a glass around while you hold it by the stem can cause the stem to break.
Glasses that have food or liquid stuck inside them should be soaked in water with dish liquid and fabric softener in it. Put one tiny squirt of dish soap and add about 1/2 teaspoon of the softener. By the next morning, glasses should come clean with no rubbing.
Avoid streaking by using a tub filled with water and 1 tablespoon of vinegar or isopropyl (rubbing) alcohol. Use this as a rinse after you’ve cleaned the glasses. The alcohol or vinegar will act as a drying agent to prevent any streaks. You can air dry them with this method. Put them upside down on a towel if they’re stemware. Other glasses can be dried right side up.
If you need your glasses to dry right away, dry them carefully–holding by the bowl only again. Pat rather than rub them dry.
With proper care, your glasses should stay in great shape for many years to come.
Tips & Warnings:
Do not set crystal stemware upside down to dry or for storing. This may cause stress fractures as the lip is a very fragile area and will eventually break under the weight of the bowl and stem. Store crystal stemware in a clean, dust free cabinet. Rinse crystal stemware as soon as it is used to avoid the buildup of food or beverage that will be difficult to clean later.
Wear gloves and use caution when holding the stemware over steam to avoid getting burned. Do not wash crystal stemware in the dishwasher as this will shatter them.