Taking Care of Your Jewelry
From the most precious to the most casual, jewelry is meant to be worn every day, not locked away. That said, here are some helpful tips that can ensure that you will enjoy your wearing your pieces, and with proper care, your jewelry can last a long time.
Remove your jewelry when doing any kind of contact sports, swimming, gardening, seriously messy cooking, or moving heavy objects. Not doing so may cause injury or harm to yourself or someone else. Occasionally falling asleep wearing jewelry is not the worst thing you can do, but you do not want to make a habit of doing that. Waking up with a necklace or chain broken, or a charm or stone missing is not a pleasant experience.
Put your jewelry on last. Chemicals from lotions, sprays, perfume, and makeup can damage your pieces. Think of your jewelry as the finishing touch to your outfit.
Store your pieces separately. Use a soft cloth to wipe your pieces after wearing them and store them in Ziploc bags. Consider using a jewelry tree for necklaces and earrings to keep them from getting tangled and marred. A jewelry box that has a section for rings is ideal, or one of those pretty jewelry bowls that you can put one or two rings in. Use individual jewelry cases for your most valuable items. If you travel, invest in a specially designed travel jewelry case or jewelry roll. Tossing your jewelry in your toiletry case or just in the suitcase can be damaging to your pieces.
Check your pieces regularly so that you can identify which pieces need cleaning or repairing. Ask yourself the following questions:
Is the clasp secure?
Are stones set solidly in the piece? Is there any wiggling?
Are there scratches or other areas of damage?
Is there tarnish or other finish issues?
Learn about your pieces before cleaning them. It is particularly important to know what materials were used to create your treasures. The procedures for cleaning diamonds and other precious stones, gold, and platinum, are quite different from cleaning pearls or other soft porous stones. Costume jewelry should never be submerged in water. Sterling silver can be cleaned with a mild polish that can restore the shine.
If you clean your jewelry, pat it dry with the chamois or some other soft cloth. Wait at least an hour after cleaning before you put your pieces away. This step will give the moisture time to evaporate.
Cleaning and minor repairs are something most people can accomplish at home. However, there are some repairs best left to the professional jewelers. If you encounter these issues, take your jewelry to someone who can help:
Loose gems in fine or vintage jewelry
Dust or dirt build-up you cannot reach
Broken clasps or chain links
These simple steps of proper care not only will extend the life of your jewelry, but your jewelry will always compliment you. For more care ideas and to see the latest designs, visit NizhoniDesigns.com.