23 May 2023
Care guide: how to make your jewellery shine in summer?
The summer holidays are fast approaching and in order to fully enjoy the beach and the sun without damaging your jewellery, Hagerty would like to remind you how to take care of it during the summer.
In this article, you will find all the useful tips to prevent your precious objects from losing their shine and oxidising.
How to avoid oxidation of your jewellery?
No matter how well you care for your jewellery throughout the year, it will probably start to oxidise, become dull and lose its shine. Don't abandon or throw them away, you can certainly give them a second life.
How to identify the metal of the jewellery?
Start by determining what metal your jewellery is made of so you know how to care for it. Some pieces may be made of more than one metal, but the one that is most present will determine the care you should take.
A piece of jewellery that has cost you a certain amount of money will certainly be made of a noble metal (gold, silver, platinum, palladium). On the other hand, it will probably be made of a less expensive metal or an alloy of metals (gold-plated, copper, steel, brass).
If it is a quality metal, you can easily recognise it by the hallmark engraved on the jewel:
Alternatively, you can also visit the nearest jeweller to find out the exact composition of the jewellery.
Removing jewellery at the sea and the pool
People tend to leave their beatiful jewellery behind when they go sunbathing, which is not a bad idea.
The chlorine in the pool and the salt water can damage your gold bracelet or diamond rings, because the salt erodes the soldered parts and the precious metal can weaken and become damaged.
In addition, sand can scratch the metal of the piece or get into the diamond setting, which is rather annoying.
Sunscreen, self-tanning lotion and oil should also be kept away from your precious necklaces, bracelets or rings. These liquids contain formulas that can damage the surface of the metal.
In addition to the beach, we recommend that you remove your precious jewellery before any activity that could damage it: sport, cleaning, washing up, gardening, DIY, etc. perspiration, corrosive and chemical products or the wrong gestures could damage it.
Store your jewellery correctly
To preserve your jewellery over time and slow down their oxidation, we advise you to store them in a place where they will not be damaged. Indeed, dust, light or humidity can easily damage your precious pieces.
Ideally, your treasures should be stored in a jewellery box specifically for their care. This box is available in suede, leather or wood and should contain a velvet lining and dividers to prevent the different materials from mixing and scratching.
We would tend to choose a box based on its appearance and design, but sometimes the interior is not optimal. Otherwise, you can simply keep your jewellery in its original box.
If you are going on holiday, it is best to take a small, easily transportable but quality box and only take the pieces you need with you.
How to clean your jewellery?
Even if you pamper your jewellery, it is sometimes unavoidable to have to go through the "cleaning" stage. No matter how careful we are, we sometimes put them to the test and they can easily lose their shine.
To save money or to be more environmentally friendly, various grandmotherly recipes are suggested, but Hagerty strongly advises against following them. Indeed, cleaning precious objects with a toothbrush and white vinegar, bicarbonate or lemon juice is not recommended.
These are not specifically designed for the care of precious metals and rings with stones, so you risk damaging your jewellery.
That's why Hagerty has developed 12 products specifically for each type of metal and stone to be cleaned. The products clean, maintain and protect your accessories over time without damaging them.
You will find three different ways to take care of your jewellery:
1. Soaking baths (Clean): a jar containing a cleaning formula specially dedicated to the type of metal/stone to be cleaned and a basket, in which you can delicately place your precious objects to soak them in the liquid. Simply leave your jewellery in the bath for 2-3 minutes, rinse and dry thoroughly.
2. Impregnated Cloth: 100% cotton cloth, impregnated with a formula that allows you to gently polish the jewellery to remove oxidation and dirt. This option is the safest way to clean your jewellery if you have any doubts about how to clean it.
3. Precious Stones Pencil: a pencil containing a small brush and a gel especially dedicated to the care of precious stones. It helps you to reach and clean the smallest corner of your precious object (like under the claws of a diamond for example).
Gold and platinum jewellery cleaning
Pure gold does not oxidise and is known to be rust-free. However, your gold ring will probably tarnish and lose its shine over time.
Hagerty offers 2 cleaning products for yellow gold, white gold and rose gold:
- Gold Clean: Make your gold wedding rings shine again by soaking them for 2 minutes in the cleaning bath.
- Gold Cloth: Gently polish your gold pendant with the specially impregnated cloth to restore the shine of the metal.
Gold-plated jewellery cleaning
Start by checking whether the plating on the object is worn or not, and in good condition. In any case, for plated jewellery we recommend using a cloth, specially impregnated, rather than a cleaning bath, for better protection of your delicate jewellery.
If the object is not worn and the gold layer is in good condition, you can use the "Gold Cloth", the impregnated cloth for cleaning gold jewellery. Be sure to rub the surface gently, starting with an inconspicuous part of the object to check the result.
If the plating is worn, you should be able to see the base metal and determine what the metal is: Is it silver, brass, ...? In this case, you will have to choose the appropriate treatment for it.
For example :
- Gold layer and silver base: We advise you to use the "Silver Cloth", the impregnated cloth that will clean and remove the oxidation of the silver that comes out.
- Gold layer and brass base: We recommend the use of the "Copper, Brass & Bronze Duster", the impregnated cloth specifically for cleaning brass, copper and bronze.
If the gold layer is worn or damaged, we recommend that you visit a jeweller for professional repair.
Diamond jewellery cleaning
You may wear your diamond ring every day and it may be in good condition. However, it is important to take care of the stones set in it, in order to restore its brilliance.
Hagerty offers three easy-to-use products that will help you restore the brilliance of your engagement ring or other luxury jewellery:
- Jewel Clean: Restore the shine to diamond rings and earrings with the bath that deeply cares for oxidised and dull gemstones, as well as gold and platinum. The jar contains a small basket for placing precious objects inside for quick and easy cleaning.
- Jewel Cloth: Make your jewellery shine with the impregnated cotton cloth that protects, purifies, and maintains stones that have become dull, as well as gold and platinum.
- Precious Stones Pencil: Clean your diamonds, sapphires and rubies easily and wherever you are with the cleaning pencil. The gel contains special polishing agents and cleaners that restore the lustre of precious stones.
Silver and silver-plated jewellery cleaning
Chains, rings and other silver jewellery quickly tend to blacken and oxidise when worn daily and come into contact with perspiration, cosmetics or cleaning products.
To easily remedy this, Hagerty has developed 2 specific treatments for the cleaning of silver jewellery:
- Silver Clean: The bath offers a quick and thorough cleaning of silver and metal without damaging them. The treatment is effective and makes dull and oxidised jewellery shine again.
- Silver Cloth: The impregnated chamois cloth is used for the quick daily care of rings, bracelets and other blackened silver or silver-plated jewellery.
Jewellery with natural stones cleaning
If you have a pearl necklace or mother-of-pearl earrings, we advise you to choose this duo of products, especially dedicated to the care of fine and organic stones (pearls, amber, mother-of-pearl, coral, or emerald, agate, opal, lapis lazuli, turquoise, ...) :
- Fine Stones Clean: The gentle formula based on glycerine and solvents of vegetable origin cleans and cares for semi-precious stones without damaging them. The bath protects the jewellery and removes perspiration, make-up or perfume.
- Fine Stones Cloth: The impregnated cloth makes it possible to shine the stones easily and without causing scratches.
Stainless steel watch cleaning
Hagerty also offers the possibility to clean your steel watch or other metal accessories easily with the “Stainless Steel Cloth”. The impregnated cotton cloth allows for daily care of your stainless steel or white metal jewellery.
Cleaning is easy, gives instant results and does not cause marks. Your objects will be shiny again.
Costume jewellery cleaning
Finally, if you have jewellery made of zirconium, crystal or glass, so-called fashion jewellery, you can take care of it with two special products:
- Fashion Jewelry Clean: The bath will thoroughly clean dull jewellery and restore the shine to rings, brooches or necklaces.
- Fashion Jewelry Cloth: The impregnated cloth allows you to care for your costume jewellery quickly and daily without damaging it.
Now you know how to take care of your jewellery before, during and after your holiday. If you need any further advice, please do not hesitate to contact us: email@example.com
Hagerty wishes you a great summer.