We all buy jewellery for different reasons. For some it’s simply an accessory for particular occasions and for others it’s an extension of their personality. Whatever the reason, you’ll want it to last so that you can wear it forever. Here are some quick and easy tips to take care of your jewellery to prevent tarnishing, scratches and dullness, to keep it looking fresh for years to come!
Firstly, it should be understood that Sterling Silver does tarnish over time. This is ordinary wear and tear, however, this can be rectified by having your ring polished when needed, by a jeweller. There are ways to slow down the tarnishing process, which we will explain below. Likewise, gold and rhodium plating is not permanent and can wear off during normal wear and tear. A jeweller will be required to re-plate your items after some time, all dependent on usage. However, it should be noted that plated jewellery CANNOT be polished. This will remove the plating from the jewellery.
- Put Your Pieces on Rotation
Jewellery isn’t meant to be worn 24/7, give it a break and show some love to other pieces of jewellery. Only wear your jewellery when you want to accessorise and show it off. Take it off before going to sleep. The less you unnecessarily wear your pieces, the less possibility there is of you scratching it or the items tarnishing or losing their plating from general wear and tear.
- Keep Your Sterling Silver Jewellery Dry and Away from Skincare
Yes, silver does not rust, but it does tarnish. Tarnish is a thin film of corrosion forming on the outermost layer of silver, which occurs as a result of reacting with air and moisture. Therefore, water and moisturising products should be avoided. Don’t wear your jewellery while applying lotions, perfume or hairspray. Never wear silver jewellery when you wash dishes, in the shower, when you go swimming, or at the sauna. Gold and rhodium plated jewellery are more resistant to this, however point 1. above still applies; do not wear the items unnecessarily and they will last longer.
- Store Silver in a Ziplock Bag
Your silver jewellery will come into frequent contact with moisture and air which causes it to eventually tarnish. The idea here is to give your jewellery a break from this. Put it in a ziplock bag and squeeze out all the air before sealing. Perhaps invest in some silica pads as well and keep these with the jewellery in the ziplock bag or the jewellery box. Silica pads absorb moisture.
- Keep Your Gold Plated Jewellery Separate from Silver Jewellery
Gold and gold plated jewellery scratch more easily, so keep them in individual soft cloth bags or the original boxes they came in, to avoid contact.
- Give it a Wipe
At the end of the day, wipe your jewellery with an anti-tarnish cloth before storing it away. This will make sure any lingering moisture, oils or dust is wiped off.
Use Dishwashing Soap and Warm Water
But how do you clean your jewellery, you ask? Simple! For pieces that are dull, filmy, or starting to discolour, mix a few drops of mild dish soap with warm water and rub the jewellery with a soft cloth. Rinse in cool water and buff with another dry cloth until dry. A toothbrush may be used as well if you feel this is necessary. However, DO NOT use toothpaste! This is a common home remedy, however what is obviously not clear to some, toothpaste is abrasive and will damage your jewellery in the long run. It will cause fine scratches in silver and take off the plating on gold plated jewellery.