Jewelry Care Instructions
How to Care for Your New Jewelry
Any time we purchase a special piece of jewelry we want it to remain looking new forever and then are surprised when all of a sudden we notice that it has turned a darker color or there is something dulling the brilliance of the stone. Whether you wear your piece every day and it gets dirty from constantly washing your hands or going through daily life with you, or you only wear a piece on a special occasion, you can keep your jewelry looking new and shiny, ready to wear whenever you choose. We take a shower daily, but seldom does our jewelry get even a yearly bath. If you care for your jewelry on a regular basis, the cleaning will never get out of hand.
On this page you will find helpful instructions and tips to care for the most delicate of stones and clean even the most blackened tarnished silver. In my many years of making and wearing jewelry, I have dealt with all the hard problems with cleaning jewelry and share my secrets below.
Simple Care for Most Jewelry
The simplest way I care for my jewelry on a regular basis is to wipe it down with a polishing cloth as soon as it starts looking dull or needs some shine, this only takes a few seconds to wipe them down before putting them on. I often also use a non-toxic pink liquid jewelry cleaner (Jewel Brite) that is safe for opals and soft stones.
Removing Tarnish from Sterling Silver
Sterling Silver will naturally have tarnish develop over time when it is exposed to air, oils and acids in our skin, hairsprays, perfumes, and other products we might wear. I am one of the people that seem to tarnish my jewelry quickly, I tend to eat more acidic foods and have a body chemistry that reacts with metals quickly so I have found some ways to help prevent tarnish from forming as quickly. If you can store your silver in air tight plastic bags it helps keep it shiny and tarnish free much longer. It is also really helpful to avoid showering or bathing while wearing your silver, and to put it on last, after any hair products, body lotions, or perfumes are applied. Let your products soak in before putting on your silver and it will help it stay new and shiny.
My favorite method to remove tarnish from sterling silver and any other precious metal is with Jewel Brite biodegradable tarnish remover paste. All you need is this paste, a little water, an old toothbrush and a soft cloth you don't care about. It only takes about 5 minutes to do. Just mix a little of the paste with some water and spread it all over the piece you wish to clean. Use the tooth brush to gently brush inside any nooks or crannies and let the mixture sit for a couple minutes. Rinse with some warm water and wipe clean with the cloth. I have used this on even the blackest tarnished silver pieces. It was fast an easy.
Be careful about using commercially sold harsh chemical silver cleaners on delicate stones. Never use them on pearls, drusy, opals, or turquoise.
Care of Drusy Jewelry
All Drusy jewelry needs a little extra care to insure it stays beautiful for many years.
Most of this care is protecting the Drusy itself from damage. First off, when you are getting ready in the morning put your Drusy jewelry on last. You don't want hair spray or hair products to get on your Drusy and cloud it up or even damage it. Some hairspray will ruin plated Drusy because the plating is a very thin coating on the surface. (I don't sell plated Drusy). Don't clean, do dishes, etc. or use any harsh chemicals wearing your Drusy.
When wearing try your best not to bump or hit your stone against anything because repeated bumping it can cause the tiny individual crystals to shatter or break off.
Your Drusy can get wet, in water... although the more you keep it out of soap and water the brighter and cleaner it will stay. Avoid immersing Drusy in water for long periods of time. Absolutely no salt should be used on drusy.
TO CLEAN DRUSY:
Think of drusy like you would a pearl or and opal. Just like these stones you don't want to clean them in regular jewelry cleaner because it contains harsh chemicals that could damage it and take the shine away or worse. The best way to clean your Drusy is to fill a small bowl with water, add just a very little bit of plain liquid dish soap. (preferably old fashion plain green liquid soap with no added lotions or scented oils). You don't need much. Stir it up well. I then use the softest fingernail brush or similar you can find. Any small nice soft brush will do, but the softer the better " VERY GENTLY " brush over the surface of your Drusy a couple of times. "Rinse well" with cool water. To make it sparkle great every-time, rinse a second time with distilled or filtered water. I then shake off the excess water, and take a blow-dryer, put on low warm or a cool setting drying it " immediately" after cleaning. Not letting it air dry keeps it from having a film or spots from calcium or other minerals. It's surprising how well this method works.
Caring for Treated Quartz Crystals and Quartz Clusters
The Pink Jewel Brite Cleaner is safe to use on treated quartz crystals and delicate clusters, I tend to dip these in the solution rather than immerse them. You can use the tarnish remover paste as well, but be sure to make the mixture sudsier so it doesn't get into all the nooks and crannies of clusters because it will be harder to get out.
Quartz Crystals and clusters are natural and somewhat delicate formations from the Earth and can be broken if hit on things, dropped or not handled with care. Take care when putting on and taking off crystals and keep them in a safe location rather than just tossed on a table or in a drawer.
Caring for Delicate Gemstones and Pearls
Pearls, Opals and very soft stones can be cleaned with the pink cleaner. DO NOT use the cheap cleaner you get at your big box store on opals, pearls or really soft stones as it can leave a film behind and in some cases cause discoloration.
Caution with These Stones
Selenite cannot be immersed in water or it will dissolve. To clean Selenite, use a damp cloth at most if you need to use water.
Making Your Own Jewelry Cleaner in Your Kitchen
I often use Natural organic apple cider vinegar to shine and clean some of my pieces. Caution using this on soft stones or opals. Do not use on pearls.
I have tried the method with the tinfoil and baking soda that can be found online, but I honestly don't recommend it because it can discolor some soft and delicate stones and leaves a nasty film behind that is hard to get off some stones, especially the little crevices of clusters and drusy. If you have a heavily tarnished piece of silver, it just doesn't work as well or as quickly and mess-free as a good tarnish remover. I tried this a long time ago and only did it once.
Using an Ultrasonic Cleaning Machine
I do not recommend using an ultrasonic cleaning device on soft gemstones, treated quartz, pearls, opals, druzy, quartz clusters or silver. Ultrasonic cleaners are fantastic for gold, brass, diamonds, emeralds, rubies, sapphires and any hard durable gemstones.
Copyright Dreaming Eagle Designs
Disclaimer: I'm providing this information for free as a service to my customers. These methods are what I personally use for my personal pieces and are meant for informational purposes only. Dreaming Eagle Designs is not responsible for individual results that may occur due to use of this information and individual results may vary. No part of this information may be copied or used without permission.