Keeping Your Treasures Beautiful
It takes a little TLC to keep your jewelry looking as beautiful as the day you first put it on. And it’s important to know that different stones and metals require different care. Here are some simple tips for cleaning jewelry and keeping it in like-new condition.
Even though they’re the hardest substance on Earth, diamonds can be chipped. If possible, avoid wearing your diamond jewelry to the gym or to other locations where they may be subject to harsh physical conditions. And be sure to have a jeweler examine them each year for signs of damage.
Take special care with your diamond ring around water as it can become loose and slip off. Many engagement or wedding rings never make it back from the honeymoon because they were lost while swimming. Also, try not to wear your ring in chlorinated water, because chlorine can eventually damage the metal in the setting.
Clean your diamonds regularly by soaking them in an ammonia-based jewelry cleaner overnight, once or twice weekly. In the morning, remove the diamond from the cleaner and brush it with a soft, clean toothbrush to remove any leftover dirt. Take extra care to brush the back of the diamond as this will be the area that has collected the most oil and dirt. (If there are other stones with your diamonds, make sure it’s safe to clean them with an ammonia-based cleaner.)
Finally, don’t store your diamond jewelry next to other jewelry pieces because it can scratch other pieces. A fabric-lined jewelry case with separate compartments is ideal, but you can also keep them in separate pouches or wrapped in soft fabric or tissue paper.
Gold with Diamonds
Soak for 15 minutes in a solution of two cups warm water and a few drops of a mild dishwashing liquid. Gently scrub with a soft-bristle brush (a soft toothbrush works well). Rinse with warm water, and dry with a soft cloth.
Platinum or Palladium with Diamonds
Soak for 20 minutes in a solution of one cup warm water and 1/4 cup ammonia. Then gently scrub with a soft-bristle toothbrush. Rinse with warm water, and lay on a tissue to dry.
Gently rub each pearl with a soft, clean cotton cloth dampened with a solution of two cups warm water and a few drops of a mild dishwashing liquid. (Soaking strands of pearls can cause the string to stretch.) Let air-dry overnight.
Rinse in warm water and pat dry. If silver is tarnished, use a silver-polishing cloth or a jar of silver-cleaning fluid. Do not use toothpaste or other abrasive cleaners, which will scratch. Wipe with a clean, soft cloth.
- Let us inspect and repair your jewelry every year. Remember, prongs can wear thin and diamonds may fall out.
- Chains and pearl strands weaken with wear. Don’t wait until disaster strikes.
- Chlorine can weaken gold. Avoid wearing gold jewelry in swimming pools and hot tubs.
- Avoid wearing chains when sleeping. Always lay them out flat when not being worn.
- When dressing, put your pearls on last. Hair products, cosmetics, and perfume can eat away the nacre (outside coating) of pearls and damage their luster.