How to Clean Your Gemstone or Jewellery at Home
- A soft toothbrush is ideal with water and toothpaste or soap or dish detergent for gold, silver and gemstones.
- Its best to do this task in a bowl rather than over sink – unless you’re absolutely sure you have the plug firmly in the basin.
- Scrub around the set gems and underneath the setting,. The toothbrush is good for reaching all around and underneath the gems (underside pavilion), clean along with water, clean amongst the prongs and across the metal, then a final rinse, air dry and you’ll be amazed at how bright and sparkling your gems in the settings will look afterwards.
- Sometimes just polishing the precious metal with a dry cloth, like an old cotton hanky will brighten the gleam.
- Don’t use a metal brush or wire wool as it may scratch the gold and silver
How to Care for Gemstones or Jewellery
- Pearls are quite sensitive to chemicals – avoid spraying them with hairspray or perfume if possible, take them off if you’re dying your hair. Also some harsh household cleaning agents are detrimental to the pearls luster. In fact pearls don’t like alcohol either.
- It is OK to do gardening while wearing sapphires and diamonds only as these gems are very hard and the facet edges will always remain crisp. If you are an avid gardener, other types of gems, will over time, smooth over on the edges and the stone will have to be eventually replaced as it has worn down.
- If you are going to remove your ring while doing a labour intensive job like concreting or heavy duty gardening, have only one designated little bowl especially for holding you ring. Choose a special little dish or china vessel, and that is the only place you keep your removed item – it will be there when you return to wear it again, safe and sound. Don’t just place it on the table as you head out the door. Strange unforeseeable things happen.
I once had a bower bird pick up a piece of opal and drop it into my neighbours garden, for her to find one day and show me her good luck at finding an opal. I couldn’t say, oh that’s mine, how would that sound? I took the loss with grace, the bird obviously wanted to give that jewel to someone else. But also your cat could find the ring fascinating and pat it round the room; it could fall in a gap in the verandah – so many possibilities.
Sometimes it is absolutely wise to remove your ring, like for a man working with heavy machinery, there is a danger of the ring being caught in a spoke and damaging the shape of the ring and or your finger by the pulling and fast wrenching of the ring as it departs with sometimes great force.
Sadly I saw a ring being cut off a finger with a pair of pliers as the lady was in her garden and was stung by a bee on her finger, the finger swelled so quick and so fast, that panic set in and the ring was abruptly cut off. I actually felt more for the ruined mutilated ring than I did for the swollen finger at the time.
So, as crazy as it sounds, if there is a chance you will be stung by a bee, in the garden, on your ring finger, if there are a few bees around, then yes, place your ring in your designated vase inside the house.
The best way to store gemstone Jewellery at home
- You can only store the same type of gemstone together, you can’t place sapphire with garnets say, as the sapphire is harder than garnets and will scratch the garnet. The same goes for many gem types so best rule of thumb is to only store the same type of gem together, say if you have a little bag of amethyst, the citrine and ametrine and smokey quarts is all in this family thus same hardness and wont scratch each other. But like tourmaline, you can’t store them the amethyst ( from quartz family) or aquamarine with topaz, that sort of thing. And by storing them in this case I mean all in the same bag.
- Don’t ever use discarded packets to store your gems – like a small bag left over from the store with logos or markings on the bag – so often, after a year, you may clean out your draw and think it is a discarded item and out it goes into the bin. Only use clear plastic bags, that has a seal like a squeeze seal or sliding seal, so that the gems are easily visible inside so this terrible mistake never occurs. I wouldn’t even encourage wrapping them in tissue, as the tissue could be discarded later, being mistaken for just that- an old tissue. Even plastic cling film/saran wrap glad wrap is safer for easy identity as it is see through.
- Only have a designated place for storing your gems, don’t late one night think of stashing them amongst your pillow cases in the linen cupboard – then another night in a coat pocket in the wardrobe, then an old shoebox, while it may seem a good idea at the time, they can be left their until you have a clean out and off they go with the other items. Yes this happens; I have heard many tale of woe where the loss of the little gems is hard to get over.
- Good old jewellery boxes that used to sit on your dressing table are slowly being replaced by special designer material folders that contain pockets and safe separate storage for each item, this is then often placed in a drawer in your dressing table for safe easy storage.