Gold has always been a popular choice for jewelry. Fortunately, by taking proper care of your gold jewelry, you can ensure that it lasts a lifetime. Caring for your gold jewelry means not only cleaning it regularly but also storing it properly. Learn the steps you can take to take proper care of your gold jewelry.
How to Clean Gold Jewelry
When you wear gold regularly, you expose it to dust, perspiration, and oil on the surface of your skin. To keep it looking shiny and good as new, it's important to clean it regularly. You don't need an expensive cleaning solution, either. You can create your own solution of 10 parts warm water and two parts dish soap.
Soak Your Jewelry
In order to get the oils and other contaminants off the surface of the gold jewelry, it's important to soak the gold pieces for three hours. When the three hours have passed, use a very soft brush to scrub the pieces.
Scrub It Gently
If you don't have a soft brush, you can also rub it gently with your fingers or use a cotton swab. If the piece of jewelry is heavily ornamented and has lots of cracks and crevices, or if the jewelry is heavily tarnished, you can use a child's toothbrush, which has particularly soft bristles. When you're done scrubbing it, rinse it under warm water.
Dry Your Jewelry
You can either dry the pieces with a soft cloth or leave it out to air dry. Avoid using tissue or paper towel to dry the pieces, as these materials can actually scratch the surface of the gold jewelry.
Use a Jewelry Polishing Cloth
After the pieces are dry, use a jewelry polishing cloth to add additional shine. If you don't have one, use a chamois cloth or another extremely soft cloth and gently rub the surface of the piece.
Keep an Eye Out for Damage
As you're cleaning your jewelry, keep an eye out for any loose stones or damage, as cleaning a damaged piece could only cause further damage or could cause a loose stone to fall out altogether. If you do notice damage or a loose stone, take it to a professional who can repair it right away.
Clean and Polish Your Jewelry Regularly
In order to keep your gold jewelry looking beautiful, you should clean all of your pieces that do not have soft gemstones, crystals, or pearls once a month in warm water with mild detergent. Polishing your gold regularly not only helps it to maintain its beautiful glow but also can remove small scratches that can develop as a result of wearing the pieces regularly.
How to Store Your Gold Jewelry
Regularly cleaning your gold pieces is only one step for properly maintaining your jewelry. The other important step is to store it properly. The best solution for storing your jewelry is to place each piece in a fabric-lined jewelry box, one that has separate storage for each individual piece. Storing gold jewelry in a way that it doesn't touch other pieces is important since gold is a soft metal that can easily scratch or bend out of shape.
If you don't have a jewelry box or don't have one that allows you to properly store your gold pieces separately, try wrapping each piece individually in a soft cloth. A phone screen cloth is actually the perfect solution for individually wrapping your gold pieces.
Tips for Everyday Wear
Chances are that you have some gold pieces you wear regularly, even daily. However, if you treat your gold well, it should last for years, even the pieces you wear every day. Fortunately, there are some steps you can take to help these pieces last.
Minimize Exposure to Soap and Chemicals
Gold that is regularly exposed to soap, chlorine, and other chemicals can dull more quickly. To keep it bright and shiny, you will need to clean it more often. However, frequently cleaning on your own can break down or scratch the gold. To avoid this altogether, take your gold jewelry off before you get into a spa or pool. It's also best to take it off before bathing, as the exposure to soap can cause a film to build up on the surface of the gold.
Be Mindful of Your Gold While Wearing
Because gold is a soft metal, it can scratch or dent easily. Keep this in mind as you're wearing your gold jewelry. Make sure to remove them before engaging in any type of fitness activity to minimize exposure to perspiration and decrease the likelihood that you will scratch or dent the pieces during your workout.
Add Your Jewelry Last
Locations, perfume, makeup, and other products can damage gold and create buildup. Get in the habit of putting your gold jewelry on last as you're getting ready. While your gold jewelry will still be somewhat exposed to these products, adding your jewelry last will help you limit exposure.
Remove When Cleaning
Just like lotions and makeup can damage gold jewelry, so can cleaning products. It's best to remove your gold jewelry altogether while using any cleaning products. However, if you are unable or prefer not to remove your gold pieces, make sure you wear rubber gloves.
Schedule an Annual Cleaning
While cleaning and polishing your jewelry at home is a highly effective way to help it maintain its shine, it's also a good idea to take your gold jewelry to a professional who specializes in jewelry cleaning once or even twice a year for inspection, cleaning, and polishing. If the pieces are scratched, they can conduct more extensive polishing using abrasive papers to buff out the damage. They may also recommend cleaning with more advanced, professional equipment.
At Martin Busch Jewelers, we are experts in taking care of fine jewelry. We know what steps to take to make sure your gold pieces are sparkling and clean. We also know how to do so without the risk of damaging your previous, expensive pieces. We have the knowledge, tools, and materials to properly repair and restore your jewelry to its original beauty. Contact us today to learn more about our professional cleaning service.
Image via Flickr by verchmarco