Keeping your jewelry clean and beautiful
Posted on 25 April 2013
Keep your jewelry clean! Rings in particular tend to collect dirt behind the stone, especially if you wear them on a regular basis.
Remove any dust from both the jewelry and cleaning cloth. The dust may cause light scratching during the cleaning process. If you don’t own a jewelry cloth, use a cotton or flannel cloth and shake it well to remove loose dust before polishing.
You can clean transparent gemstones by simply soaking them in water with a touch of soap. Use a extra soft toothbrush to gently scrub the stone. Check the setting of your jewelry to ensure it is secure and well fastened. If you begin scrubbing a loose stone you may damage or even lose a piece.
Don't put gemstones in an ultrasonic cleaner without some consideration. Diamonds, rubies and sapphires will be fine but many other gems may not be: when in doubt, leave it out. Diamonds, rubies and sapphires, and other single-crystal gems can be cleaned with a touch of ammonia in water to remove all films and add extra sparkle.
Never use an ultrasonic cleaner or ammonia for cleaning such opaque gemstones like lapis, turquoise, malachite or onyx. They should be wiped clean gently with a moist cloth. These gemstones can be porous and may absorb chemicals, and soaps, which may build up inside the stone and discolor it.
Opals also require special care. Never use an ultrasonic cleaner or ammonia, and avoid heat and strong light which can dry out the water in opals.
Organic gems like pearls, coral, and amber should only be wiped clean with a moist cloth. Due to their organic nature, these gems are both soft and porous. Be careful about chemicals in hairspray, cosmetics, or perfume: they can, over time, damage pearls in particular.
Gently brush your inlay jewelry with a soft toothbrush using specialized jewelry cleaning solutions available at your local jewelry retailer. Do not use any cleaners with abrasives. However, you can use commercially available cleaning cloths that have mild abrasive compounds. These polishing cloths will both clean and polish your jewelry. Do not wear inlay jewelry in showers, doing dishes etc as the long exposure to moisture will loosen the stones.
Store each piece of gemstone jewelry separately so that harder stones don't scratch softer ones. Almost every gemstone is much harder than the metal it is set in. Gems can scratch the finish on your gold, silver or platinum if you put your jewelry in s