A diamond is forever… except when you look down one day and find yourself staring at empty prongs! This is a scary experience, but can be avoided with proper jewelry care.
An often overlooked aspect of owning fine jewelry is the care that goes into keeping that jewelry in tip top shape! With basic care and maintenance, your jewelry will last longer. Sometimes, it is better to preserve the integrity of your jewelry, than to wear it in certain places. Keep reading to see some of our favorite tips from the Gemological Society of America‘s website on keeping your jewelry in tip top shape!
LIGHT AND HEAT
Avoid leaving your jewelry in excessive light. Harsh light can fade certain gems, and some are more prone to color loss – especially gems such as Amethyst, Topaz and pearls. On the other hand, excessive heat can actually fracture gemstones! This is because the heat will cause the gem’s natural moisture to dry out, leaving the gemstone dry and fragile.
Chemicals can wreak havoc on your jewelry! Did you know that gold, silver and even platinum can become discolored when exposed to chemicals? Everyday products such as hair spray, lotion and perfumes can contain chemicals that will damage your jewelry so it is always safest to put your jewelry on last. Remember to take extra precautions with delicate gemstones such as pearls, opals and turquoise. A great rule of thumb is to take off your jewelry for cleaning, swimming or any activity where they may come in contact with chemicals!
AT HOME CLEANING
The safest way to clean your colored gemstones or diamonds at home is with warm water, a small amount of dish soap (not detergent) and a soft brush. Be careful to brush and rinse your jewelry over a bowl or cup in case a stone is loose! Did you know that the most beautiful diamonds are clean diamonds? Cleaning your diamonds regularly (or bringing them to us to clean) is going to keep your diamond oh-so-sparkly. For softer gemstones, such as pearls, you must be careful that you will not scratch them. Gently clean them and then lay them flat to dry. By laying them flat, the silk thread has time to dry without losing it’s shape. Although many websites suggest toothpaste, this is too abrasive and may scratch your jewelry. Stick to the basics!
COLONIAL JEWELERS FREE CLEANING
Did you know that we offer free jewelry inspections and cleaning? Bring your jewelry in anytime and we can check it out while you wait. One of our trained jewelry specialists will examine your pieces to make sure that everything is safe, and then we will clean it right up while you wait. If there is anything that they find concerning, they will show you and make the proper recommendation for repairing your jewelry. We have a team of highly skilled in house jewelers. Your jewelry will never leave our shop!
PROTECT YOUR MOUNTINGS
So far, we have discussed the care and cleaning of your gemstones. But… your gemstones are only as secure as the mountings that hold them. The mounting will take the beating. For this reason, we recommend that you (again) take off your jewelry for certain events. Do not wear your rings, earrings, necklaces or bracelets to the gym! A hard knock against the metal workout equipment can bend or break your prongs. In some cases, your gemstones (think engagement diamond) could even chip if they take a knock that is hard enough. Protect your mountings by not wearing them outside while doing yard work or gardening. Do not wear your jewelry on the beach. The sand is abrasive and will scratch your metal. Plus, we have heard too many horror stories of engagement rings falling off in the ocean. One last tip that may seem odd: take your jewelry off before you go to bed. Although your 1,000 thread count Egyptian cotton sheets feel so soft to you, they are actually going to act as an abrasive to the metal on your jewelry.
If you are ever worried that your mounting is bent, your prongs are wearing or something just feels off, please bring them in for a free checkup and cleaning! We hope that these jewelry care tips have been helpful!