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Caring for Your Fine Jewelry and Gemstones

Your piece of fine jewelry is a precious possession to be treasured for a lifetime. Understanding how to care for your treasured jewelry can make a world of difference in maintaining its beauty and keeping its heirloom quality sparkling for generations to come.

Most fine jewelry can be safely cleaned by simply soaking them for 10 minutes in water with a touch of mild dish washing soap.

The following tips will help you clean and care for your piece of fine jewelry so that its beauty will remain intact for years to come.

Yellow and White Gold Jewelry Care

Caring for gold

Most of the jewelry is made of gold. Although it comes in various karats, but the procedure to clean it remains the same.

Care of Your Platinum Jewelry

Jewelry cleaner

Platinum is one of the strongest of precious metals, never tarnishes and with its intense luster wears beautifully. Scratches and other metallic blemish spots polish completely off. Platinum is also hypoallergenic, extremely dense and remarkably heavy - much more so than silver or gold. Platinum enhances the quality of jewelry and the stones that are set into it.

Platinum jewelry is very easy to care for. Here are a few special tips to keep your platinum jewelry looking like new:

Diamond Jewelry Care

A diamond is the hardest substance known to man. Although your diamond is incredibly durable, it is not indestructible and can be chipped by a strong blow to an edge. Don’t wear your diamond while doing rough work.

While chlorine and bleach won't harm your diamond, they may damage or discolor a gold or white gold mounting. Have your ring checked and cleaned at least once a year preferably every six months.

These additional tips will help you clean and care for your diamond jewelry so that its beauty will remain intact for years to come.

Color Gemstone Care

There are some general care and cleaning rules that apply to all colored gemstone jewelry.

Stones such as lapis, turquoise, coral, onyx and malachite are sometimes treated to enhance natural color or luster. Although this treatment is generally colorfast, it may run upon contact with hair spray, perfume, or dry cleaning solution. Never wear these stones while bathing, swimming, or while working with chemicals or detergents, as they may ruin the finish of the stones. Avoid exposure of these stones to any chemicals or detergents. Shell cameos, as well as those carved from blue, green or brown agate, require simple cleaning with a damp cloth. No chemical dips, ultrasonic or steam cleaning.

Pearl Jewelry Care

The surface coating, or "nacre" of cultured pearls is a soft organic material which requires special care to prevent chipping, cracking or discoloration. If your cultured pearls become heavily soiled, it's time for a professional cleaning and restringing. Your pearls should be professionally cleaned and restrung every four to six years (more frequently if you wear them often). Ordinary wear and air pollution will weaken the silk threads on which they are strung.

To preserve your pearls radiance follow these simple tips:

Do's and Don'ts

DO let your jeweler check for loose stones frequently.
DO get pearls restrung when the cord begins to fray.
DO clean fine jewelry often to maintain its sparkle and beauty.
DO store fine jewelry carefully.
DO store jewelry in a dry place and avoid extremes of temperature and humidity.
DO keep gemstone-studded jewelry, pearls, and gold and silver pieces separated from each other to prevent scratching. Store fine jewelry pieces in soft pouches, soft cloth wraps or plastic "zip-lock" bags to help protect them.
DON'T wear fine jewelry when doing housework or gardening.
DON'T heap your jewelry into one drawer. Remember a diamond ring can scratch that pearl necklace. Keep them separate and ideally wrapped in velvet, paper, silk or plastic zip-lock bag.
DON'T use toothpaste as its abrasives can damage softer gems and metals. Use a soft brush on harder gems to loosen any dirt around the prongs. To reduce greasy build-up on diamond jewelry, dip it in plain alcohol before soaking.
DON'T overcrowd your jewelry box. Crowding can result in misplaced or lost jewelry if a small piece falls unnoticed from the case. Occasionally, forcing too much jewelry into the box may even bend a fragile piece or chip a delicate stone.