Today's post is a guest piece written by the lovely Melissa Pedersen! Make sure to check out her unique, metalsmithed pieces that come handmade from the heart <3
The basics when it comes to jewelry care:
You have some incredible pieces of unique jewelry in your collection and it doesn’t matter if they are family heirlooms or custom made just for you; learning about how to wear and take care of your jewelry is important.
I’ve rounded up some of my most practical jewelry care tips and tricks when it comes to keeping your jewelry looking great!
Wear Your Jewelry Regularly
When you wear your jewelry, you are actually doing it a favor. We all know that sterling silver tarnishes and turns black over time. The surface begins to oxidize with the environment and a thin grey or black layer appears on the surface. When you regularly wear your sterling silver, the high points that contact your skin or clothing stay bright and white. It is as if they are buffed and polished throughout your day while the recessed areas become darker. This beautiful natural contrast is what sterling silver is famous for!
Know When to Not Wear Your Jewelry
Wearing your jewelry regularly is great, but there are certain circumstances when removing your jewelry is a good idea. Swimming pools, hot tubs and hot springs are some of the worst offenders. The chlorine in pools and hot tubs can etch away at the surface of gold, silver and gemstones, matting the surface and taking away polish and shine. Natural hot springs contain sulfur and will tarnish sterling silver in a matter of minutes. Sensitive gemstones such opals can become damaged quickly with extreme temperature changes, and something as innocent as wearing them in the shower or doing dishes can ruin them. It is recommended that you remove your jewelry when doing these activities.
How to Store Your Jewelry
The best way to store your jewelry is to have a specific place for it. It needs to be stored out of the bathroom and away from moisture and direct sunlight. Keep costume jewelry and fine jewelry in different areas, using little compartments in a jewelry box, or separate containers or boxes for each piece. You want to prevent the surfaces from scratching each other!
Unless your jewelry has been Rhodium plated, it will tarnish when not worn and left out. This is especially true with silver, but gold tarnishes too. Airtight containers or plastic baggies are a great way to store silver jewelry.
When it comes to chains, make sure to do the clasps up! You won’t risk losing the pendant and your chain will not tangle as easily. Hanging chains is fine but do not hang your string of pearls: if they are traditionally knotted on silk cord this will prematurely stretch the cord out.
Regularly Inspect Your Jewelry
This is a great tip to prevent damage and loss before it occurs. Prongs and chains wear out over time, and regularly inspecting your own jewelry can help you from losing a stone in a ring, or from having a chain break and losing the pendant. Look for bent, thin or damaged prongs on settings and worn or thin links on chains. If you are ever in doubt, bring it to your jeweler to have inspected; we know what to look for and have an eye for detail!
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