New jewelry naturally has a flawless sparkle. In this blog post, we’ll bring you a few tips on how to care, clean and preserve your accessories, to keep them in pristine condition for years to come.
Treat Your Jewelry Right
Always apply on lotions, skincare, perfume, hairspray, makeup, etc. before putting on jewelry. Before going to bed, gently wipe the pieces with a soft cloth, to remove oils and perspiration, before placing them in fabric-lined boxes to store.
Store your jewelry separately or individually wrapped, to prevent tangling and scratches.
Avoid wearing your jewelry when doing physical work, exercising, gardening, swimming or showering. Also avoid contact with household cleaning products, especially ones containing chlorine bleach, which will discolor jewelry and loosen gemstones.
How to Clean & Store Different Types of Jewelry
Disclaimer: this list is not all-inclusive. Always check the care instructions of your jewelry first, before using any of the below tips.
To keep your jewelry clean and ready to wear, wipe it gently with a soft 100% cotton cloth. Be very careful especially with soft materials like sterling silver, that are easily damaged by even a fingernail or hard fold of cloth.
How to Clean & Care for Sterling Silver Jewelry
Sterling silver is a very soft material, which can tarnish over time. To help prevent tarnishing, wrap the piece in jeweler’s tissue paper and store it in a sealed plastic zip lock bag. When cleaning, always use a soft cloth and gently wipe, using only the soft balls of your fingers.
To clean away fingerprints, light grease or dirt, use some warm water, add a little mild liquid soap and soak the jewelry for a few minutes, before rinsing with clear water. Make sure the jewelry is absolutely dry before storing. Don’t use a paper towel or tissue for drying, but opt for a soft cloth instead.
To remove tarnishing, polish with a 100% cotton cloth using a nonabrasive metal cleaner. Rinse thoroughly with clean water, and make sure to remove all cleaner from gemstones. Do NOT use toothpaste!
How to Clean Gemstones & Pearls
Extra care needs to be taken with jewelry congaing soft stones such as amber, turquoise or lapis lazuli. Soaking in cleaning solutions may harm the polish of the stone. Never use ultrasonic cleaner, ammonia or any chemical solution to clean opaque gemstones, as their structure is porous, and the chemicals are easily absorbed, resulting in discoloration. Instead, wipe gently with a moist cloth.
Pearl and gemstone jewelry should not be immersed in water, as this might loosen the setting. Also avoid using abrasive cleaners and chemicals.
The Bottom Line
Never use harsh chemicals or force when cleaning your jewelry! Avoid products containing chlorine bleach, denatured alcohol, turpentine, acetone, petroleum or ammonia, as these can harm, discolor, dull, pit or even “melt” some stones, especially amber and pearls. Whatever you do, always be very gentle, and clean with a soft cloth.
Always apply any skincare or makeup before accessorizing, and remove jewelry before exercising or doing physical work.