It’s easy to become a jewelry-lover. It may have started in childhood with a beautiful gift from your grandmother, or the day your partner slipped a diamond on your finger. Jewelry’s beauty and emotional resonance makes many of us fall in love. And, when you become passionate about something, you want to know all the ins and outs.
Here are the top 7 things you need to know to preserve your love affair with jewelry.
You may have heard this tip from your mother or even some DIY spots on the internet, but it is not safe. The long handle puts too much pressure on prongs, and the bristles may scratch the metal. The small jewelry brush that is included in many professional jewelry cleaners is specially designed to safely clean jewelry.
To get your jewelry to really sparkle, you need to clean under the stones as well as on top. Gemstones are set in prongs to allow light to shine through the stone, so if you have a build-up of oils and gunk under there, your stone loses its shine. The best way to do this is to soak the piece in a professional jewelry cleaning formula from your jeweler, or use a specially designed jewelry touch-up brush.
Ultrasonic machines are popular for cleaning jewelry, but did you know that stones can fall out due to the vibration from the sound waves? Ultrasonic cleaners do require some extra caution and cannot be used on all jewelry. Be sure to follow the user instructions carefully and check with your jeweler to ensure the piece is safe for an ultrasonic. Cannot be used on all jewelry, especially pieces with pavé style settings.
Many people are leery of cleaning pearls, which are loved for their delicate luster. But you can (and should) clean your pearls, particularly rings and earrings which easily get dirty. Wipe them down after each wearing with a microfiber cleaning cloth or a chamois. For a more thorough cleaning, use a gentle jewelry cleaning formulation from your jeweler, but do not soak strung pearls in the liquid.
Your jewelry wardrobe likely includes some fun and fabulous fashion pieces. Because these pieces collect dirt and oils through regular wear, just like fine jewelry, they do need routine cleaning. Use a gentle jewelry cleaning formulation from your jeweler, but if the piece includes stones set with glue, do not soak it. A professional polishing cloth can be used to remove tarnish or discoloration from metals and to buff and polish all pieces.
When you store your jewelry, be sure to separate various pieces and store them individually. Harder metals like silver and platinum can scratch softer metals like gold. Harder stones like diamonds and rubies can also scratch gold pieces. Use a jewelry box or roll designed for this purpose or even simply wrap individual pieces in tissue and place them in a zip-lock bag.
This can save you from the heartache of losing stones, and the headache of an expensive repair or replacement. Plus – your jeweler will give your piece a fantastic professional cleaning. It’s like a spa day for your jewelry.
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