For most people, fine jewelry is their most cherished accessory, often holding a special meaning or intimate memories for the wearer. To maintain the brilliance that made you fall in love with them, you need to protect, clean and store your precious pieces properly.
Knowing exactly how to give your jewelry the best treatment makes a huge difference in maintaining their beauty in the long run. To ensure your treasured items stay beautiful for years to come, here are five essential tips on how to take care of your jewelry and gemstones at home.
How to Take Care of Your Jewelry & Gemstones at Home
1. Know Your Gemstones
To take good care of your jewelry, you need to know your collection first. Your gemstones may have different physical properties and react differently to light, heat, acids, and even scratching. For instance, hard gemstones like diamonds and rubies can resist scratching. However, they might have a bad reaction to heat or mechanical cleaning due to certain qualities like inclusions. On the other hand, moonstone is a soft stone, so you should avoid ultrasonic and steam cleaners to keep your moonstone jewelry damage-free. This mesmerizing gem is known for its deeper meaning, as Moon Magic explains.
Gems treated to enhance their appearance can be easily damaged by certain cleaning processes such as ultrasonic cleaning. Gemologists can help you identify the gems in your collection and choose the best cleaning method.
2. Light & Heat Can Affect Your Jewelry
Be careful with light and heat as they can impact your colored gemstone’s color and durability. Pearls and other sensitive materials can be affected too. Amethyst, topaz, and kunzite can fade and get damaged over time when exposed to light and heat. Excess heat and abrupt temperature changes can lead to fractures in some gems. Pearls can dry out when exposed to excessive heat, resulting in cracks and discoloration. Opals, too, can change their color and develop tiny cracks.
3. Keep Your Bling Away From Chemicals
Avoid exposure to chemicals as it can lead to damage or discoloration in precious metals and harm colored gems. Even everyday cosmetics like perfume and lotion can permanently damage delicate gems like turquoise and pearls.
The best advice is to put your jewelry last after your skin has fully absorbed the cosmetic products, and take it off first. When swimming in a chlorinated swimming pool or saltwater, take off fine jewelry. Also, never leave it on while using household cleaners. Many of them contain ammonia, the substance that is too harsh for delicate pieces.
4. Safe Cleaning Methods
These simple cleaning methods will help your precious pieces sparkle and showcase their unique beauty. Mild dish soap and water are the perfect cleaning combo for mild stains and tarnish. Mix them and let your jewelry soak in the mixture for a few seconds before removing grime and spots with a gentle cloth.
For major spots and buildup, you can implement another simple cleaning method. Mix baking soda with water and allow your pieces to sit in this mixture for a few minutes. Finally, wipe them with a cleaning cloth.
A soft toothbrush is perfect to gently remove any dirt from nooks and crannies, and bring the sparkle back to your bling.
5. Store Your Jewelry Properly
To ensure your jewelry lasts longer, you need to store it properly. Never leave your jewelry on top of a dresser, or just toss it into a drawer as it can result in scratches and damage to your cherished pieces. A box or pouch from the store is the perfect place to store them. It will protect your precious items from air and light that causes the metal to oxidize and tarnish over
time. Alternatively, you can place your bling in a box with multiple compartments to keep them separate.
Make sure to keep your sterling silver jewelry in an anti-tarnish bag or cloth.
Check your jewelry every six months and clean it frequently. There are jewelry stores that offer free inspection and professional cleaning, so research your local jewelers. Look for professionally trained experts.