Jewellery deserves regular maintenance and care to ensure it lasts a lifetime. After all, jewellery is so much more than just a necklace or a ring. Jewellery is a visual reminder of your life’s most defining moments, a tactile piece of your own story and history. As a general rule it is best to remove all jewellery before exercising, showering/bathing and sleeping.
Take off your jewellery before exercising, particularly pieces that are in direct contact with the skin such as bracelets, necklaces and rings. Earrings are less affected by sweat and exercise as due to their design they sit away from the body and minimal contact.
It is best to remove any jewellery before showering also, particularly any pieces that include gemstones as chemicals and water can damage jewellery over time, especially vermeil and soft gemstones such as pearls and opals. This is also advice to follow when swimming, wearing jewellery with gemstones in water when either showering or swimming, can dull the stone over time, so to increase the lifespan it’s best practise to remove beforehand.
Avoid misshapen hoops and tangled necklaces by removing jewellery before going to bed, Ensuring that your pieces don’t get damaged in the night through being slept on.
Some types of jewellery can withstand more exposure than others, for example solid gold is much more durable than gold vermeil. If you do wear jewellery when you exercise or shower be sure to properly dry pieces off afterwards.
How to store your jewellery
It’s important to consider how you store your jewellery so it receives the correct TLC even when not being worn. We recommend purchasing a fabric lined jewellery box to keep your jewellery in when it’s not being worn, the fabric will ensure that the jewellery rests softly and doesn’t scratch against any hard materials. Keeping your jewellery within a box will also limit the amount of direct sunlight it is exposed to. Sunlight can cause discolouration and dullness particularly in gemstones.
Ensuring your jewellery box is positioned in a cool and dry spot within your home is also a good idea. You shouldn’t get into the habit of keeping your jewellery in the bathroom as the humidity will cause jewellery to tarnish faster. Don’t position your jewellery box close to a window either, extreme temperatures can have an adverse effect on your jewellery too.
How to clean your jewellery
Before doing anything to your jewellery you need to decide whether it needs a polish or a clean. Jewellery needs to be polished often to maintain the metal and gemstone’s shine, whilst removing any tarnishing that has developed.
Here at Skomer for regular upkeep and polishing we use the Selvyt SR Universal Multi-Purpose Polishing Cloth. However if pieces need a much deeper polish to remove built up tarnish we recommend using a polishing cloth specifically for the type of metal you are polishing. For example we use the Town Talk’s silver cloth for any sterling silver pieces and Town Talk’s gold cloth for any 9kt gold or gold vermeil pieces. These cloths will not only remove tarnish, they will also provide a lasting shine due to being impregnated with special anti-tarnish agents.
If your piece of jewellery gets dirty, we recommend cleaning using a microfibre cloth and warm water with a little detergent mixed in. When cleaning your jewellery it’s best to stay clear of harsh chemicals or abrasive materials to make sure you don’t scratch or damage your jewellery further.
Care tips by material
18kt gold vermeil
Silk is one of the most resistant and durable types of fabric, however it’s also one of the most absorbent. To clean silk rope we recommend using lukewarm water and silk specific soap which will be gentle to the fabric. Only concentrate on cleaning the part of the necklace that needs to be cleaned, instead of the whole necklace.
To dry silk rope, use a soft towel to dab the excess moisture and leave the necklace to dry naturally away from direct sunlight - direct sunlight could damage the silk. Lay the necklace out on a clean surface, do not hang it as this could lead the necklace to lose its shape.