Whether it’s an heirloom piece handed to you or something that you bought yourself as a reward, jewelry always has sentimental value behind it. While we wish we can wear them forever, it’s not always the case as time and different elements can affect the piece. But there are some tips to make them last longer.
Stay Away from Chemicals
Exposing gold, silver, or titanium jewelry to chemicals may risk discoloring or damaging them. Even personal care products like body lotion, skincare, and perfume can contain chemicals that may permanently damage the surface of precious stones or pearls. Household cleaning chemicals may contain ammonia which may be too harsh for jewelry.
When you have to be in contact with these chemicals, remember to take them off if you’re wearing them. And remember the “last on, first off” rule: after applying your personal care products and spritzing on perfume, put your jewelry last to minimize tarnishing. After using them, remember to remove them first.
Moisture is a jewelry piece’s enemy. It degrades the metals and may cause them to tarnish quicker. Ensure that your pieces are stored in a dry place. If you’re wearing the jewelry, follow the last on, first off rule mentioned above to minimize contact with moisture.
Gentle is Better
Choose gentle cleaning products, especially when it comes to cleaning jewelry. Different ingredients may cause damage to your jewelry, so it’s best to skip abrasive products such as baking soda or vinegar.
Create your own gentle mixture when you clean jewelry at home. Start by mixing warm water and gentle soap that has no detergents. Then soak your jewelry into this mixture. Use a soft brush, such as a baby toothbrush or a makeup brush to gently remove grime and build-up. Afterward, rinse off the solution with clean water, and pat pieces to dry using a soft cloth.
Put Jewelry Somewhere Safe
Proper storage is often overlooked. Don’t leave the jewelry out on the dresser as this could result in damaged surfaces.
Most pieces come in a box or pouch from a store. Use these to store your jewelry properly. Sterling silver jewelry must be kept in an anti-tarnish bag or cloth. Invest in jewelry boxes that have padded slots for rings, and posts for hanging necklaces and bracelets. If you have plenty of jewelry, have the pieces placed apart to prevent the pieces from scratching on each other.
When traveling, protect your pieces from damage by placing them in a separate padded box or case.
While you love a necklace to pieces or even adore wearing a set of earrings, these pieces aren’t meant to be worn all day. Consider rotating your jewelry. This way, you get used out of your other pieces, and this may also help prolong their pristine condition.
Say No to Toothpaste
Remember this old home remedy? While many people still recommend using toothpaste to clean jewelry, this method has been proven to be damaging. Toothpaste contains chemicals that may be abrasive and corrosive for your jewelry. Gold and silver are actually softer than toothpaste, so mixing toothpaste may actually damage your pieces.
Go to A Jewelry Repair Store
Accidents happen, items age with time, jewelry may get damaged. When things go wrong, consider retouching jewelry at an authorized jewelry repair stores. These stores have professional-grade tools and materials that can help bring back to life your precious pieces.
When we love and care for our jewelry, these pieces can last a long time and help create precious memories for us.