Jewellery has the ability to highlight the wearers personality, add the finishing touches to an outfit and and even bring out one’s best features.
But constant wear, exposure to lotion, soaps, and everyday grime can take its toll. Debris can get trapped in crevices, clasps, and settings and once lustrous pieces can look dull over time.
But getting your jewellery sparkling again does not require much effort or tools. Here are some easy to do, basic jewellery upkeep tips that you can do at home during lockdown:
Don’t Underestimate The Power Of Dish Soap
A few squirts of dish soap in warm, not hot, water will do the trick to keep most gold and silver jewellery clean. Let your pieces soak for about five minutes in the solution and rinse in lukewarm water. Then place them on an untreated microfiber cloth to buff dry.
Don’t Underestimate The Power Of A Good Scrub And Buff
For visible dirt and grime, after soaking it in warm sudsy water, gently scrub the areas with an unused baby-size, soft-bristled toothbrush, rinse with lukewarm water and buff dry with a microfiber cloth.
Avoid using a used toothbrush as residual toothpaste can cause scratches on more delicate pieces.
Keep Silver and Brass Pieces Dry
When it comes to silver jewellery, make sure the piece is buffed completely dry before storing. Any extra moisture will cause the metals to tarnish faster.
Don’t Be Tempted by Acidic Cleaners
It’s a huge no to acidic household cleaners like witch hazel and vinegar as they can damage certain metals and more porous stones. Baking soda can also be abrasive and scratch softer stones and metals, so skip it.
Be Gentle with The Delicates
Pieces with soft stones like opals, pearls, turquoise, coral, or natural materials like wood and bone need to be cleaned with more care as these materials are sensitive to moisture and temperature, and can shrink, expand, change colours or crack.
Instead of submerging the entire piece, clean it using a microfiber cloth dipped into a soap and water mixture. Buff and clean any metal parts, and gently wipe the stone or natural material with a dry microfiber cloth to remove any residue or grime.
Leave The Heirlooms To The Professionals
You should however skip the dish soap when it comes to family heirlooms, vintage pieces with unique settings, or anything with high monetary or sentimental value, leave those to the professionals.
A jeweller would be able to assess how your pieces need to be treated, and have the proper cleaning solutions and equipment to handle each cleaning situation.