How to Care for Jewelry to Maintain Its Look and Character

Did you know that you should clean your jewelry at least once a month? Jewelry that's not cleaned will start to erode, change in color, and become less hygienic. However, how do you clean and care for jewelry? 

Don't worry, with this guide you can find out! From taking care of your gold jewelry to protecting your diamonds, you can learn the ins and outs of jewelry maintenance today.

Now, are you ready to get started? Here's an in-depth look at caring for jewelry: 

How to Care for Gold 

  1. Treat gold carefully: Gold is a soft metal, so it can easily get scratched, dinged, or even dented. Be mindful of your jewelry and what you do while wearing it. For example, remove your gold jewelry during any sporting activities or labor-intensive events. 
  2. Chlorine is gold's worst enemy: Chlorine is notorious for corroding jewelry; however, with gold is more of a pain. Chlorine weakens the structure, eroding the setting, and eventually, the chemicals break the jewelry. So take this as an early warning: don't wear your gold jewelry in the pool. 
  3. Take gold jewelry off before showering: Showering with your jewelry doesn't seem like a big deal. However, over time it can cause a buildup of soap to leave a film on your gold jewelry. To prevent it from happening, all you have to do is take off your jewelry. 

Cleaning Tricks for Gold Jewelry

  1. Look for damage: Before you start cleaning, look for any sufficient damage, whether it be dents, dings, or a lost stone. You want to clean an undamaged piece. If you clean jewelry that's damaged, you may make the problem worse. 
  2. Soaking is crucial: Before you try any other cleaning method, try soaking your gold jewelry pieces in 9 parts water and 2 parts dish soap. Let your jewelry soak for about 3 hours, then scrub them with a toothbrush to remove any leftover dirt. Once done, rinse under warm water and blot dry.  
  3. Paper towels are not for polishing jewelry: Now, don't use paper towels to dry your jewelry. Paper towels can scratch your jewelry pieces, instead use a soft jewelry cloth. Not only will it be softer for your jewelry, but it will help your jewelry shine. 

How to Look After Sterling Silver Jewelry 

  1. Wear it: Unlike other jewelry, sterling silver uses your skin's natural oils to keep it shiny and prevent tarnish. One of the easiest ways to keep your silver jewelry looking fabulous is to wear it. So don't let it sit in your jewelry box unworn instead, wear it anywhere you go.
  2. Keep it out of direct sunlight: A good tip to keep in mind is to keep all silver jewelry out of direct sunlight. So if you're going out for a day at the beach or a swim in the pool, remove your silver jewelry. Sunlight can easily tarnish your silver pieces, especially if the jewelry is exposed for large periods at a time. 
  3. Remove silver jewelry during chores: If you're cleaning, cooking, or doing laundry, make sure you take off your silver jewelry. Chemicals like cleaning bleach, detergents, and other substances can corrode the silver. 

Cleaning Tips for Silver Jewelry

  1. Soap and water: Soap and warm water is the ultimate cleaning trick. Just get a cloth, dip it in a combination of dish soap and water, then clean away. It's the easiest method that exists! 
  2. Baking soda and water: Sometimes, the easiest method doesn't always work. For those times, try combining baking soda with water to make a paste. Then apply a small amount of paste to a cloth, and start polishing your jewelry. You can also use a toothbrush to reach hard-to-see places to ensure each part of your jewelry is clean! 

How to Protect Diamonds 

  1. Avoid thick lotions or creams: If you've already put your diamond on, don't apply thick lotions. It will only result in a buildup of oils and residue. It can even cause discoloration in platinum or white gold jewelry.  
  2. Remove diamonds during labor-intensive work: Most of the time, labor-intensive activities involve chemicals that can be abrasive to your jewelry. For example, cleaning detergents and bleach are known to corrode diamonds and fade its natural look. So make sure you remove your jewelry before starting any labor-intensive activity.  
  3. Pick up the band, not the stone: When removing jewelry, always pick up the band or the necklace strand. Never pick up the stone. If you do, you could risk loosening the setting and damaging the diamond.  
  4. Store diamonds separately: After taking off your diamond jewelry, you should store it separately away from gemstones, metals, or other jewelry pieces. Due to their strength, diamonds can scratch other jewelry pieces. So make sure you store them properly, so all of your other jewelry stays in good condition. 
  5. Store diamonds in a soft pouch: The best way to store diamond jewelry is to put them in a soft cloth pouch. That way, the diamond doesn't get scratched, and it doesn't scratch other jewelry pieces. It'll also prevent any other damage from occurring. 

Cleaning Tricks For Diamonds

  1. Use a gentle degreasing solution: One of the easiest ways to clean your diamonds is to dip them in a gentle mixture of diluted dish soap and water. Then dry them with a soft cloth once they're cleaned. It's best to do this once or twice a week. 
  2. Use a soft toothbrush to remove dirt: Scrub your jewelry with a toothbrush to remove leftover or hard-to-remove dirt. Make sure you clean hard-to-reach places like the prongs and the back of the diamond. 
  3. Store-bought jewelry cleaners are a good alternative to brushing: Instead of cleaning with a toothbrush, you can always buy a jewelry cleaner from the store. Just check the ingredients to make sure it's non-abrasive. After all, store-bought cleaners usually last longer than traditional cleaning methods.

How to Care for Your Pearls

  1. Put them on last and take them off first: Pearls should add the final touch to your look. Avoid spraying hairspray, perfume, or putting on lotion or makeup once your pearls are on. It will only add unnecessary oil and dirt to your pearls. 
  2. Keep them flat: Most necklaces are hung on a pretty jewelry rack, but your pearls shouldn't be. Store pearls flat to prevent the strands from stretching. After all, you don't want to end up with a broken strand, do you? 
  3. Store pearls separately: Soft pearls are often susceptible to scratches. So make sure you store them separately, away from your other jewelry. They do best in a soft fabric-lined box or jewelry compartment. 

Cleaning Hacks for Pearls 

  1. Wipe pearls with a soft cloth: Clean your pearls after each use with only a soft cloth. It will help prevent oils and other substances that have come in contact with your jewelry from building up. 
  2. Clean with a damp cloth when needed: Use this method only if your pearls are visibly stained. Start by mixing warm water and dish soap together then dip a soft cloth into the mixture. Do not dip the pearls into the water, if you do, it can ruin the silk strand. Instead, wipe the cloth on the pearls until they're clean.  
  3. Let pearls dry before storing: Now, we all can be a little hasty when it comes to letting things dry. However, let your pearls dry completely before storing them. It will help protect the elasticity of the strand. 
  4. Take them to the jewelers: Make sure you have a jeweler check the integrity of your pearls once a year. They'll also give your pearls a safe and thorough cleaning to make them sparkly and pretty!

How to Care for Jewelry: Final Thoughts

For your jewelry to hold up to the test of time, it should be cleaned routinely and maintained well. If you forget what cleaning products to use, the safest choice is always dish soap and warm water.

To maintain your jewelry's look, be mindful of what you do when wearing it. For example, don't keep jewelry on while cleaning, in the pool, or in direct sunlight for long periods of time. Rather remove your jewelry and store it separate from other pieces either in a soft pouch or a fabric jewelry compartment. That way, your jewelry remains safe, protected, and ultimately cared for. 

Now, if you're interested in joining a jewelry club or want more information about jewelry care, contact us today. We look forward to helping you find the right jewelry piece for you!

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