Try to protect any jewelry from scratches, sharp blows, harsh chemicals, extreme temperatures and sunlight. With the proper care, the jewelry you purchase today can become a part a treasured family heirloom.
Following are some tips on how to keep your jewelry in good condition:
- Store jewelry separately so it doesn’t scratch other jewelry. Wrap each piece in fine fabric, or use a jewelry box with individual storage compartments. A diamond can scratch gold or pearls.
- When doing household tasks such as gardening and cleaning, be certain to remove rings.
- Put your jewelry on after washing and applying any makeup, cosmetics or hair spray.
- Take off your jewelry before cleaning or participating in athletic activities, especially while swimming in a swimming pool. The chlorine can cause damage to various gemstones and gold. Gemstones may become loose in their settings (and possibly fall out).
- Avoid storing your jewelry next to a heating vent, window sill or on a car dashboard. Sunlight can cause many colored gemstones to fade.
- Always store bead necklaces (such as lapis, pearls, etc) flat as silk stretches over time. Also, this avoid kinks and knotting various chains together.
- Always be gentle with your jewelry. Never tug on gem settings or toss your pieces carelessly in a pile-you may loosen your gem settings, and your pieces may wind up nicked and scratched.
- Simple home cleaning methods can be just as effective as consumer cleaning products. Use a chamois cloth or pure white cotton to clean and polish gold pieces, and if your gold tarnishes, wash it with a bit of gentle soap mixed with lukewarm water and a small amount of ammonia
Hardness is based on a gem-trade standard called the Mohs scale. The higher the Mohs scale number, the harder the stone is. The highest Mohs scale rating is 10 (diamonds). Anything with a Mohs scale rating of less than 7 is easily scratched (such as coral, lapis lazuli, opal, pearl, and turquoise). Gold, silver, and platinum are only Mohs 2-1/2 to 4. Always carefully store any fine jewelry.
Periodically check the prongs that hold the diamonds or colored gemstones in place. Be certain that stones mounted in rings are not loose or rattle. The prongs of a ring can and do wear down. If the prongs wear down too much or break, you’ve lost the stone. Prongs are easily “re-tipped” by most jewelers to keep the stone secure.