There is a simple formula for keeping your diamond jewelry forever as beautiful as the day you first saw it…..keep it clean. A clean and pretty ½ carat ring, for example, can look more dazzling than a dirty 1 carat version. Yet there might be more than a thousand dollars difference in their cost.
But it is hard to keep jewelry, especially rings, clean. They are natural dirt and grime collectors. They can become coated with a film when immersed in dishwater or even when washing your hands. And for sure, lotions, perfumes, even natural skin oils just add to the accumulation on the surface of any jewelry.
You may not notice it at first, but over time, all of these factors add up until your favorite piece one day looks dull and lifeless. But despair not, help is available.
Strange as it may seem, the same soap and water that can diminish jewelry appearance can also restore it. It is all in the doing. Simply soak and wash the piece in warm sudsy water using a mild liquid dish detergent (we do not recommend anti-bacterial soaps for chemical composition reasons).
After soaking and mild agitation, dry with a soft, lint-free cloth. A light buffing (SOFT cloth only) will help restore luster to metals and insure no watermarks on stones.
Used with care, ethyl alcohol can also be lightly used as it evaporates quickly and it does not leave waterspots. Household ammonia can also be carefully used to brighten gold and platinum settings and bands.
Never use household chlorine solutions to clean jewelry. Chlorine is very strong and can pit or even dissolve alloy metals.
TIP for the athletic types: long-term submersion in chlorine treated swimming pools can also damage your jewelry.
After a long interval between cleanings, it may be possible that simple washing as above will not remove the deep dirt or grime on a piece of jewelry.
This is most common with rings that see heavy daily wear and tear and exposure to many elements. In these cases, careful use of a common toothpick or un-waxed dental floss will get at and dislodge particles of grime or dirt.
This is also an innovative use for a dental water-pic type of device which will remove many particles with zero abrasion or danger of scratching.
Lastly, if your jewelry item looks like it spent the last week attached to the local contractor’s ditch digging machine or was buried in a coffee can these past 50 years, then you need to give it some professional help.
Consult a reputable local jeweler who has special cleaning equipment that can restore your piece to its original beauty.
Best advice: carefully clean your jewelry yourself once a week. It will reward you forever. For more information, visit: http://beyond4cs.com/care-and-maintenance/how-to-clean-your-diamond/