Jewellery is one of your most cherished accessories. Usually given as a token of love or purchased for yourself after many days or hours of pondering such a gift to yourself. Understanding how to care for and protect your treasures is vital in maintaining its beauty and keeping your heirlooms in good condition for generations to come.
BE CAREFUL WITH LIGHT AND HEAT
Heat and light, especially the damaging rays of sunlight, can damage and affect colour gemstone’s durability and its colour. Frequent exposure to sunlight and heat can fade gemstones such as kunzite, topaz, and shell cameos. The colour of pearls and other delicate organic materials can also fade under extreme exposure to light. Amber on the other hand will darken when exposed to too much light.
Extreme heat can cause fractures in some gems or simply dry out. Gemstones that have a higher water content, like pearls and opals are delicate. Some organic gems like pear, shell or opals suffer when exposed to heat. Their internal structure dries out leaving them cracked and lifeless. It is their internal water content that gives pearl its lustre and opal it’s magnificent play of colour.
Always keep your jewellery away from chemicals. Harsh chemicals like hairspray, perfume and cream can damage gems and discolour precious metals. Jewellery should be removed before swimming, showering and exercise. These chemicals and sweat can discolour gemstones, particular organic gems, like pearls and turquoise and the chemicals can pit some allows. Just remember that your jewellery should be the last thing to go on and the first thing to take off.
Most coloured gems can be cleaned with warm water, mild soapy water with a very soft brush. If cleaning your jewellery with soapy water, be sure to do so I a glass and not in the sink for fear it may go down the drain.
Softer organic gems, such as pearls, turquoise and opals can easily scratch. Use a soft wet cloth to wipe each pearl separately. Warm soapy water can be used when cleaning a stain of pearls. Allow the strand to completely dry on a soft towel before handling them as the string may stretch and the wet silk thread can attract dirt. It should be noted that Pearls that are worn often should be restrung once a year.