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How to Care for Your Jewelry

August 04, 2016

Basic Jewelry Care GuideLearning how to properly care for your jewelry is a smart thing to do if you want to protect and keep it in peak condition for years to come. I've already shared with you jewelry mistakes you want to avoid, but here's some more information to help you preserve your cherished jewelry and investment. This easy-to-use jewelry care guide will walk you through the basics you need to know.

Basic Jewelry Care Guide

Oftentimes when you think of taking care of jewelry, cleaning comes to mind. Cleaning is definitely a part of it, but there's more to it than that. You also need to think about when to wear or not wear your jewelry, and how to store it.

Let's get started!

How to Properly Clean Your Jewelry

Keeping your jewelry clean will help it maintain its beauty and shine as well as keep it in good shape and condition. It's a win-win! 

Be Gentle!

Use a gentle hand and gentle products for cleaning your jewelry.  Either buy a specialty cleaner from a jeweler or use warm water and a mild soap. Avoid harsh chemicals and products at all costs as this can scratch metals and damage precious gemstones. A jewelry polishing cloth is a good idea for silver and gold.

Inspect it!

And while your cleaning your jewelry, take time to inspect it and look for signs of wear and tear, e.g. broken clasps, loose gemstones, and weakened prongs. If you see a problem, take it to a professional to get it repaired. And don't continue cleaning it if you see any damage, as this can worsen the problem!

When NOT to Wear Your Jewelry

There's a time and place for jewelry. Here a few times you DON'T want to wear your jewelry...

During Manual Labor!

Be sure to take your jewelry off when you're doing physical labor like gardening, cleaning the house, or washing the car. It's easy to get necklaces, rings, or bracelets caught on things leading to breakage and or damage. You're also exposing them to cleaning agents increasing the potential for problems! 

During Your Beauty Routine!

Make-up, hair products, perfumes, and lotions may contain chemicals and ingredients that can coat and damage jewelry. Putting your jewelry on after using these items is the way to go!

During Sports/Exercise!

I think this is a pretty obvious one, but it's worth sharing. Leave your jewelry at home when heading out on the playing field. Hard and repeated contact can break or damage jewelry. Sweating isn't good for it either! Save your jewelry for the after game party when you're hopefully celebrating your win!

During a Shower!

Don't forget to remove all your jewelry before taking a shower or a bath. Soap residue will coat your jewelry and cause it to lose its shine and luster as well as weaken prongs over time. The same goes for swimming—don't wear your jewelry in the pool or hot tub. Chlorine is enemy #1 for jewelry!


Take your jewelry off before you go to bed or take a nap. Sleeping in it can weaken chains or clasps on necklaces and bracelets. It can also get tangled in your hair or bedding.

How to Store Your Jewelry

Proper jewelry storage is often forgotten when it comes to proper jewelry care—jewelry should never be tossed into a drawer or on top of a dresser − that’s asking for scratches, tangles, and problems! And keeping your jewelry organized and orderly just makes life easier. You won't spend precious minutes in the morning searching for the matching earring or that perfect necklace!

Keep it In a Special Spot

Most jewelry comes in a box or pouch, which is a great spot to keep it when not wearing it .Jewelry boxes with special padded holders for rings and hanging areas for necklaces are a good choice, too. And try keeping your sterling silver in an anti-tarnish bag and place anti-tarnish strips in your jewelry box to fight tarnish and discoloration from oxidation.

Know What You Have

Unfortunately, jewelry can get lost or stolen. Be sure to keep an inventory of your collection by taking a picture of your collection along with a written description of each piece. This will be very helpful if you ever need to make an insurance claim.

Use a Travel Bag

Traveling with jewelry can be tricky. It can get tangled, lost, or stolen. That's why it's best to use a specially-designed jewelry travel bag to store it in and place it in a safe in your hotel room or an out-of-the-way area that keeps it out of sight. There are  many options to choose from. Just find one that works for you and use it!

Keep Away from Heat and Light

Light and heat can be an enemy to your precious gems. These can, in excess, fade or damage certain gemstones, such as amethyst or topaz. Pearls, which are incredibly delicate, will bleach under too much light. Amber, on the other hand, will darken when exposed to too much light.

With a little care and common sense, your jewelry can last a lifetime!

We're honored that Mullen Bros. Jewelers ranks #1 in overall customer ratings among all jewelry stores in Southeastern Massachusetts and we will continue to take care of our neighbors and friends, one jewel at a time.


Basic Jewelry Care Guide

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