We love our Jewellery. Many of us like to wear it all the time and even never take it off. But Jewellery is like many things. The more it is used – the more it is subjected to wear and tear. Some Jewellery is delicate and not suitable for constant wear while other pieces are extremely durable. One reason diamonds are the gemstone of choice for engagement rings is because they are the hardest known natural mineral.
There are a few things to keep in mind with the care of your Jewellery that will help reduce wear and the risk of damage. It is recommended that Jewellery is the first item taken off when arriving home and the last to put on before going out. The advantage of this is to:
- minimize wear and tear such as doing housework
- reduce exposure to chemicals such as perfumes and cleaning products
- lessen build-up of oils and dirt
It is best to store each Jewellery item in separate compartments or individually wrapped. This is for several reasons:
- to prevent one metal from rubbing against another or against a gemstone
- to avoid tangling and
- to preserve the finish and condition
Jewellery and Exercise
They really don’t go together but we just can’t resist. High profile athletes have also popularized fashion in sport despite the potential for distraction.
In 1987 at the US Open, tennis star Chris Evert wore a diamond bracelet while playing a professional tennis match. During the game she realized her bracelet had become unclasped and she had lost it on the court. Ms. Evert had officials stop play so she could search for it. This could have been a very expensive loss. Since that time, this style of bracelet has been referred to as a “tennis bracelet”. Although many athletes wear jewellery while practicing and playing sports, doing so does have its risks. Here are some tips to keep in mind when exercising:
- Chains bracelets and other Jewellery can get caught, pulled and lost during sports and exercise.
- A heavy pendant or chain can flip up and hit your face during exercise.
- If you are a swimmer be aware that chlorine is a strong chemical that will discolour and can damage jewellery.
- If you wear rings at the gym - grabbing, pushing and pulling bars can easily scratch and damage gold and other metals. It can also cause rings to flatten or become misshapen from pressure.
- Contact with hard surfaces will wear down the metal.
- Callouses can develop on the finger
- A ring can get hooked or caught on something and then pulling away can damage the ring and/or the finger.
No-Nos of Cleaning Jewellery
- Do not boil Jewellery on the stove to clean it
- Do not use toothpaste to clean Jewellery – toothpaste is an abrasive and will scratch metals and many gemstones
- Do not use harsh chemicals to clean Jewellery
- Do not wash silver or gold Jewellery cleaning cloths – these cloths have a special coating and is why they are effective. Washing them removes the coating and their effectiveness.
How to Clean Your Jewellery at Home
Get yourself a good cleaning product provided by a professional Jeweller for the type of Jewellery you have and follow the instructions carefully. Basic cleaning on a regular basis will help keep your gemstones and metal sparkling and also reduce abrasion.
Professional Care and Maintenance
A professional Jeweller is equipped with specialized machinery and tools, fine quality polishing material and experience to carefully – not only clean Jewellery – but check the condition, identify repair that may be needed and polish worn and dull Jewellery to a like-new shine.
Jewellery develops a build-up of dirt that finds tiny places to live. Between claws, under settings, in grooves – in the most hard to get at places. This dirt builds up and hardens, gets coated with new dirt that tightly packs in place, layer after fine layer. Dirt particles are abrasive and scratch away at nice finishes. It can act like glue, holding in place gemstones that have been knocked loose in their settings or held by claws that are thin, worn and broken. Professional cleaning removes stubborn dirt and identifies if repair is required. Ideally, jewellery should be examined and professionally cleaned once to twice a year and a little more often if you love that ‘brand-new’ look.
Underwood Jewellers provides a lifetime clean and polish on Jewellery purchases and also offers a check, clean and polish service for your other Jewellery.
Make your appointment with Chris Underwood – Master Jeweller, Registered Valuer, Designer, Antique and Estate Specialist – to discuss your precious jewellery.