Wearing and Storing Jewels
All jewellery benefits from being handled and worn with care, and being kept clean. When not wearing jewellery, always keep it in a soft pouch or jewellery box and out of direct sunlight. When in transit protect in a box or pouch, don’t take the risk of your jewelry pieces scratching one another. Check that fastenings are secure on necklaces and bracelets and that butterflies are tight on earrings, especially when changing clothing.
Wearing jewellery in bed, while swimming, showering or at the gym should be avoided, and jewellery should be removed when using potentially damaging equipment. Apply hair products and toiletries before putting on your jewellery. Take care not to knock your rings or bangles on hard surfaces such as door handles or glass tables, as the metal may dent and gemstones can crack or chip, or a setting may loosen. Even diamonds as the hardest stone are not infallible.
Cleaning Fine Jewellery and Gemstones
Almost all jewels can be kept sparkling using washing up liquid, warm water and either a sponge or an old toothbrush. For gemstone jewellery (except those listed below), use an old toothbrush and warm soapy water to gently clean the gemstone, including behind the stone. After cleaning and rinsing, dry and polish with a soft cloth. Please always remember to close your drain if you are cleaning near a sink.
Diamonds and sapphires are both very refractive and strong gemstones but all benefit from being kept clean. Aquamarine, emerald, tourmaline, amethyst, citrine and other coloured gemstones should always be worn with care and are softer than diamonds, sapphires and rubies, cleaning regularly keeps them at their most beautiful. Certain stones are porous such as pearls, opal, coral, turquoise, and these must not be immersed in cleaning products.
Clean pearls and those porous stones using a clean soft cloth, the cloth can be slightly damp. Strung pearls should not be immersed in water at all. Pearls love to be worn as moisture from the skin enhances the lustre but always apply perfumes and creams before putting on your pearl jewellery not directly on the stones.
18 Karat White and Yellow Gold
18k yellow gold is marked 750 it consists of 75% gold, the rest of the alloy is silver and copper. 18k white gold is 75% fine gold but the rest of the alloy is made up of platinum or palladium. 18k rose gold contains 75% fine gold but has a little more copper in the rest of the alloy. 22k yellow gold is marked 916. It is 91.67% gold, the rest of the alloy is made up of silver, copper and zinc. Platinum is marked 950, it consists of 95% fine platinum and 5% other alloys. It is virtually the same colour as 18k white gold.
Both 18k yellow and rose gold need little polishing and although care should always be taken, they need little maintenance. While lasting and durable, gold can become scratched or dented, particularly if handled roughly. Regularly check your gold jewelry for loose prongs or any damage. Some fine gold chain is very delicate, so please take care not to tug or catch the chain and check catches are securely fastened.
Both 18k white gold and platinum rings may need re-polishing depending on the level of wear and tear; the larger the surface area of the ring the more scuffing or scratching may occur. 18k white gold is plated in rhodium (in the platinum family, a hard, durable, silvery-white metal that can be polished to a high shine). On earrings it can last a lifetime. On rings the rhodium will start wearing off where there is a lot of friction. Brushed finishes on rings will not last forever as the metal will gradually appear more polished with general wear and tear.