How Should You Care for Jewelry During Summer?
Chances are, if you live in the Gilbert area you’re going to find yourself (and your jewelry) in a swimming pool at some point during these hot summer months! For folks that make their summer vacations somewhere by a lake or ocean we are sure those cool swims help to forget the triple digit temps but as refreshing as it is, your jewelry may not fare quite as well. So we wanted to share our top three tips for summer jewelry care to help keep your jewelry shiny and strong no matter where you are.
1. Should You Swim with Your Jewelry On?
Unless it’s an inexpensive, replaceable piece of jewelry then we suggest taking off all your good jewelry before jumping in the pool, lake or ocean. Not only will this help prevent loss, it also keeps up the integrity of the settings and the luster of the gemstones. Saltwater and chemicals from swimming pools can actually eat away at the metal in your jewelry over time. This can lead to brittle jewelry and give off an unwanted, tarnished look. Suntan lotions also have chemicals that can build-up and dull the fire of your diamond or gemstone so be sure to leave all jewelry off until after applying sunscreen or lotions to avoid this lackluster effect. The last major reason to leave jewelry off near lakes and oceans is the sand! Gemstones and softer metals can be easily scratched by sand and often times that leaves permanent damage to the piece.
2. What Are Some DIY Jewelry Cleaning Steps?
The best thing you can do to clean your jewelry during summertime is to remove it every night before bed and wipe each piece with a soft cloth. Some gemstones and metals require different cleaning methods so be sure to know which metal and gems you are cleaning. Most items, like diamonds and gold can be soaked for about half an hour in a mixture of hot soapy water. Then, lightly brush each piece using a jewelry brush or very soft toothbrush. Be sure not to scratch the metal with the brush and rinse the jewelry in warm water. Depending on time, the jewelry can lay out to dry or you can use a soft cloth to dry off each item. As for some gems, like emeralds or pearls that are softer in nature, just rinsing them with warm water and drying with a soft cloth will help keep them clean. Of course sterling silver requires a bit different care. We suggest buying a silver polishing cloth and wiping the jewelry down before and after each time you wear it. If you’re ever unsure what type of metal or gemstone is in your jewelry feel free to bring it in so we can discuss the proper care for that piece!
3. Have Your Jewelry Inspected and Professionally Cleaned
Even if you are good about cleaning your jewelry during the summer, the pieces you wear most often will still inevitably end up with some tarnish and weathering from sweat, soaps, lotions and the outside elements. After a vacation or once summer comes to an end it would be a good idea to play it safe and bring your jewelry to a trusted, Gilbert jeweler. This way a professional can inspect your jewelry for any scratches or lifted prongs on your rings and can also provide a professional cleaning to remove any built up grime that takes away from the sparkle of your gems. Once cleaned and shining like new, learn how to properly store your rings to keep them looking brighter for longer.
Hopefully these tips will help keep your favorite jewelry clean and sparkling during your summer adventures. If you have any questions or need to bring in jewelry for cleaning, please don’t hesitate to call us and have a safe, happy summer!