Tips & Tricks
Most people are guilty of wearing their jewelry in the shower, to the gym, while cleaning the house, gardening or preparing dinner. Overtime, those activities, as well as, the residue from soaps, cleaning solutions, lotions, and dirt not only dim the shine of jewelry, but they can also damage the metal and gemstones.
Here are some hints to help maintain your jewelry's beauty and shine:
- Fine jewelry should be checked approximately every 6 months to ensure gemstones are safe and prongs are secure.
- Remove jewelry, especially rings, before showering, exercising, cleaning or cooking.
- Jewelry should be cleaned on a regular basis.
If you feel uncertain about cleaning your jewelry or you have tried and you still don't feel it's as clean as you would like it to be, you are welcome to bring your items into either of our locations, and a member of our jewelry staff will be happy to clean and polish your jewelry (charges may apply).
Also, feel free to stop into either of our locations and ask for a complimentary bottle of our jewelry cleaner. Radcliffe's jewelry cleaner is safe for: gold, platinum, silver, diamonds, rubies, sapphires, and other non-porous gemstones.
*Do not soak the following in jewelry cleaner: pearls, opals, emeralds, onyx, turquoise, or other porous gemstone jewelry or watches in the cleaning solution.
In between visits to Radcliffe Jewelers, here are some helpful hints for cleaning your jewelry at home. Keep in mind, not all jewelry and gemstones are alike and some items may require different cleaning methods. If you are uncertain, feel free to call us or ask us.
Hand lotions, styling products and simply wearing your diamond jewelry everyday can leave a film on the surface of diamonds, causing diamonds to reflect less light and appear dull.
The best way to clean your diamond jewelry and restore its sparkle is to:
- Spray a soft-bristled toothbrush with Windex and gently brush diamond jewelry thoroughly, removing any dirt on the surface of the diamond or dirt that has settled in and around the metal. Be sure to avoid brushes with hard or stiff bristles, as these can scratch the diamond's setting.
- Rinse the item(s) in warm water and dry with a lint-free soft cloth.
Unlike some other gemstones, pearls are softer and, therefore, more vulnerable to acids, alkaline and extreme humidity levels. Perspiration can also be harmful to pearls and can cause the pearls' luster to dull.
The best way to preserve and store your pearl jewelry is to:
- Avoid exposing the pearls to cosmetics, hairspray, or perfume.
- Avoid dipping pearls in water or wearing them while bathing, as water can weaken the silk thread.
- Wipe your pearls down with a damp (not wet), soft cloth after each wear.
- Keep pearls separate from diamonds and other hard stones to avoid tangles and scratches. If possible, fasten any clasps or pins, and then lay the item out in a separate compartment of a jewelry box or store the item in a pearl folder or pouch.
- Avoid leaving pearls in a security box for extended periods of time, as this can cause pearls to dehydrate.
Sterling silver is a soft, malleable metal and can be easily scratched or damaged. Therefore, when cleaning silver jewelry, use polishes that are specifically formulated to remove tarnish from silver jewelry. Some companies provide polishing cloths, silver storage pouches, or both with the purchase of their jewelry. Also, avoid exposing your silver jewelry to harsh chemicals, bleach and chlorine, as these can damage the silver.
Another great way to clean your sterling silver jewelry is with Windex. Yes…Windex. You can either spray the Windex directly on the item to be cleaned or on a soft-bristled toothbrush or soft cloth. Gently brush the item to clean and then rinse under luke warm water and dry the item with a soft cloth. Use a silver polishing cloth once the item is completely dry to help restore the luster and shine.
To prevent your silver jewelry from tarnishing and scratching store items in a jewelry pouch specifically designed for sterling silver jewelry or a separate compartment of your jewelry box.
The best way to clean your gold jewelry is by using a solution of warm water and detergent-free soap with a soft-bristled toothbrush or soft cloth. Gently, but thoroughly, brush your gold jewelry with the solution. Then, rinse the item(s) under luke warm water and dry with a soft cloth. Avoid using harsh chemicals or abrasives to clean your jewelry, as this can cause scratches and reduce the gold's luster.
When your gold jewelry is not being worn, store items in a soft pouch or separate compartment of your jewelry box.
Platinum is a popular choice for engagement rings and wedding bands because of its natural durability and strength. Platinum does not loose its color, such as with white gold, and the metal does not wear away over time. However, platinum can scratch, losing its natural shine and developing a patina over time.
Soaking platinum in a mild jewelry cleaner or a mild solution of soap and warm water and gently scrubbing it with a soft-bristled toothbrush is usually the only maintenance platinum requires.
If you miss the shine your platinum ring had when it was new one of our jewelers can polish it and restore its original shine.
One of the best features of tungsten is its strength and its resistance to dulling and scratching. While tungsten rings and jewelry are very strong avoid storing them with diamonds, as diamonds are the only things that can scratch tungsten. Also, despite being fairly maintenance free, tungsten bands and jewelry should be cleaned every couple of months, or so.
The best way to clean your tungsten jewelry is by using a solution of warm water, mild soap and a soft cloth. Avoid harsh and abrasive chemicals, such as chlorine and other cleaning products, and do not leave in an ultrasonic machine for longer than a minute, as a negative interaction between the solution and the tungsten may occur.