A lot of people buy jewellery to wear every day, a lot of my jewellery is designed to be worn every day, but the big question is how to enjoy always wearing your jewellery and care for it correctly in order to still have it always looking its best. If your jewellery is made from quality materials, which all Julia Paris Designs are, then you are on the right path as you just need to then know how to best care for it to keep it at its best for as long as possible.
I have a jewellery care page that has some information about this subject but the truth of it is that we are not all perfect and don't always remember to take our jewels off before bed, or showering or swimming, or when your running around getting ready in the morning and you remember you need to moisturise but you are already wearing your rings!! Well, take a breath now cause the good news is, it is not all doom and gloom, you just need to make sure that you take care of your jewellery and give it a good clean every now and then. Especially if you have worn it in the ocean or know that heavy handed application of hairspray so got all over your rings this morning.
Let’s start out with some good old schooling. Up first, one of the most popular metals used in jewellery, sterling silver. Sterling silver is an alloy of silver containing 92.5% silver and 7.5% other metals, usually copper. Fine silver, for example 99.9% pure silver, is relatively soft, so silver is usually alloyed with copper to increase its hardness and strength. This is why I mainly work with sterling silver as it has more strength than fine silver which is very soft and scratches and dents very easily.
So why does sterling silver actually tarnish? You know what I am talking about here. You pull that stunning sterling silver ring out of your jewellery box thinking it will look great with my outfit today, only to find it looking dull and dark. This is caused by a chemical reaction of the other metal mixed with the silver combining with the air. This process is going to happen faster when the humidity is higher and there is more air pollution. Chemicals such as hairspray, deodorant, perfume and skincare can also contribute further.
So how do we prevent this from happening? The easiest way is to wear the jewellery as the oils in the skin will help to stop the tarnishing from happening. When jewellery is not being worn it is best to store in a dry place away from air such as in a snap lock bag. When you do experience some tarnishing, don’t fret as this is super easy to remove. Simply use a gentle jewellery polishing cloth such as Sunshine Cloth to give it a good rub down. Remember to be gentle with chains and delicate pieces.
If the tarnish is a little more stubborn then using a little bath is the best method. Gentle liquid soap and warm water and you can use a soft toothbrush to get into those nooks and crannies. Be sure to rinse and dry well.
Gold jewellery of any karat can be cleaned in a similar way to silver. You shouldn’t see the same tarnish issues, but you will still want to clean off any oils and chemicals that are on the surface. In this case simply give the piece a little bath and you can let it soak a little before giving a brush with the soft tooth brush again. A jewellery polishing cloth will always do a great job on gold to bring it back to life.
The thing to remember when you are cleaning your jewellery is that some gemstones are much softer than others so you should always take care and if in doubt send me a message and I would be happy to advise. Try to avoid exposing your jewellery to any chemicals, including the ones in cosmetics and be careful when it comes to jewellery cleaning solutions also as we are not always sure what chemicals are in there. Most of the time a simple clean with a polishing cloth will surprise you and have your jewellery looking great. If you have a piece that is in need of a deep clean, then let me know as I offer cleaning and polishing services.