Have you ever needed one necklace but ended up pulling out five entangled ones? Finished washing the dishes without noticing that you had your rings on? If these situations sound familiar to you, it is probably because for most of us, taking proper care of our jewellery is not a conscious action or priority. Despite our lack of attention, however, the maintenance of any object, including our jewellery, requires dedicated care.
Jewellery is meant to be eternally beautiful and timeless. When forgotten, however, jewellery fades and dulls, leaving it old and worn out.. Like most anything in this world, beauty does not last forever and if left unattended, time eventually gives way to wear and tear.
So, how do you avoid damage and take good care of your jewellery? Here are a few simple steps that you can take to keep your jewellery nice and gleaming all year-round.
Steer Clear of Chemicals
Though this may seem simple enough, it is easy to forget just how many chemical substances we come in contact with on a regular basis. Exposure to these chemicals can cause discoloration in metals like silver, gold, platinum and may even damage certain colorful gems.
From soaps and detergents to that little spritz of perfume before leaving the house, a lot of these substances can cause damage to our jewellery. Soaps strip jewellery of their natural shine, making them appear dull and dirty much faster. Even simply washing your hand can cause significant damage.
Lotions and perfumes can also react in unfavorable ways with your jewellery if they aren’t a 100% natural. Make sure to take off all your jewellery before taking a dip in the pool or a trip to the spa. Chlorinated water and cleaning chemicals spell nothing but bad news for your jewellery.
Beware of Light and Heat
Light and heat are the worst enemies of jewellery. If exposed to either for a prolonged period of time, it can cause your jewellery to fade and can even damage certain gems like topaz and amethyst. Overexposure to light can also cause delicate materials like pearls and ivory to bleach.
Extreme heat and sudden changes in temperature, on the other hand, can fracture some gems. This kind of heat exposure strips the gems of their natural moisture, causing them to crack and discolor.
Sort and Store
Though it may seem tempting after a long day at work, never toss your jewellery haphazardly into an open drawer or any available box. This is the kind of laxity that causes scratches, damaged gems, tangled necklaces and general messiness.
An unbelievably simple way to take good care of your jewellery is to invest in a sturdy jewellery box. These boxes are perfect because they come with ready compartments for bracelets, padded slots for rings and posts for hanging necklaces. This will keep your precious jewellery safe and secure and will also keep you from losing that odd earring.
Put your organizational skills to the test and always sort through your jewellery. Arrange them based on style and material. Store your gold and silver jewellery separately. When dealing with silver, it is best to keep these pieces in a closed box, safe from light and air.
Exposure to air is what makes metals tarnish. So, put your jewellery in little air-tight bags to prevent oxidisation. You can also store your jewellery in the boxes or pouches that they come in and organize them into a spare shoe-box or container. Another easy trick is to place a piece of chalk or a packet of silica in your jewellery boxes to absorb any moisture and keep your pieces nice and dry.
A Quick Clean
An important step in maintaining your jewellery is to clean it regularly to remove the makeup, oils, dust and grime that collects on the surface. Different kinds of metals may require different kinds of treatment to enhance their shine. For a more general cleaning, however, all you need is some warm water, mild dish soap and a gentle brush or cloth to keep your jewellery squeaky clean. This helps to prevent your jewellery from getting tarnished. Make sure you pat-dry your jewellery before placing it back in the container.
Some Effective Habits
When it comes to using and wearing your jewellery, there are a few simple habits that you can put into practice to take better care of these accessories. For instance, jewellery should always be the last thing on and the first thing off. This way you won’t get your chains or earrings caught in your clothes while putting them on or taking them off.
Along similar lines, make sure to finish up your entire hair and makeup routine before putting on your jewellery. Contact with the chemicals in perfumes and hairsprays, as mentioned before is damaging and can easily be avoided.
When it comes to household chores, follow in Cinderella’s footsteps and save your pretty jewellery for the ball. Before getting your hands dirty with tasks like washing the dishes, gardening, cooking, always remember to take off your jewellery to prevent any physical damage.
Many jewellery stores also offer free servicing and cleaning at regular intervals. Getting a routine maintenance check for your jewellery every six months or so by a professionally trained jeweller is another good practice.
There is something inherently beautiful about jewellery. The way it uplifts the wearer and enhances the beauty of the world around it. The way it can hold decades worth of memories and sentiment, feelings of love and laughter in its delicate frame. That shiny, smooth finish, the gleaming jewels – it is exhilarating.
With these simple steps in place, you will be able to keep your jewels as good as new for a long time. Taking good care of your jewellery is easier than you’d think. All it requires is a little bit of care and some discipline.