Taking Care of Your Gold Jewelry
Whether bought for yourself or as a gift, gold expresses love, permanence, individuality and style more eloquently than words could ever do. If treated carefully, the gold jewelry item you purchase today could last a lifetime and might even be handed down to future generations. So here are some tips that will help preserve the beauty of your gold jewelry.
First of all, gold is lasting and durable but can get scratched or dented if treated roughly. This is particularly true of items worn on the hands like rings and bracelets that are prone to a lot of knocks. So remove these pieces before any type of strenuous activity.
Second, beware of chemicals. Gold’s worst enemy is chlorine. Repeated exposure can weaken gold’s structure, eventually leading to breakage. So keep your gold jewelry away from chlorinated cleaning products and out of swimming pools and jacuzzis.
On a related note, acids, abrasives and other harsh chemicals found in some common household cleaning solutions can weaken your jewelry or damage its finish. So it’s best to cover up rings and bracelets with rubber gloves while doing heavy-duty cleaning. Or better yet, take them off altogether.
Gold can lose its luster over time if repeatedly exposed to dust, moisture, perspiration and makeup. So make sure to clean your jewelry regularly. You can use a cleaning solution of sudsy, lukewarm water, or bring it to your local jeweler and have it professionally steam-cleaned. After cleaning and rinsing, always dry and polish jewelry with a chamois or soft cloth to avoid scratches and bring out its shine. Proper storage is as important as cleaning. Protect your gold jewelry by storing it safely in a jewelry box or keeping it wrapped in a soft cloth when not being worn. Furthermore, keeping pieces stored separately will prevent them from getting tangled or scratching one another.
Finally, always inspect your gold jewelry for weakness or damage and bring it to a professional jeweler you trust for immediate repair. Pay particular attention to clasps (to ensure they catch easily but are still secure); prongs (to ensure they haven’t cracked, bent or loosened, which could cause the stone to fall out); bracelet and neckchain links (to ensure they don’t kink or bend); pin backs and earring posts (to see if they are bent or loose); and wedding bands, pendants and charms (dangling pieces and items worn every day for a long period of time) are subject to wear and can thin out and eventually break. Your jeweler will be able to handle these and many other repair jobs and ultimately restore your gold jewelry for you.