If you love your jewellery, you should make sure you take care of it. Here are some top tips to keep your jewellery safe and looking its best
1) Clean it regularly.
Just like everything else, jewellery needs to be cleaned regularly. Lots of mass produced silver jewellery is treated so it is less likely to tarnish but even it needs to be cleaned because germs can build up, particularly in small recesses or under gemstones. Not only will cleaning your jewellery regularly help keep it looking its best, it will be better for your health too.
2) Don't exercising with it on.
When you exercise, you are likely to sweat and you will be focused on the sport you are doing. That means you won’t be thinking about the fact that you are scratching your rings when lifting kettle bells and it's easy to catch and break a bracelet or necklace in a contact sport. Even swimming is bad for your jewellery. The force of moving your hands through the water builds muscle so imagine what that force is doing to your stone set rings when the water is forced through the tiny spaces at speed. Swimming pools are full of chemicals and these can damage some metals, increasing the chance of the metal cracking. It’s always best to remove all rings, chains and bracelets to keep them clean and safe when doing any sport. This goes for other activities such as cooking and gardening.
3) Don't store it in a jewellery box.
It’s tempting to keep your jewellery neatly stored in a jewellery box on display but it is not a good idea. The first thing thieves look for in a house robbery is a jewellery box. Placing a beautiful box on your dressing table makes it very easy for someone to take all of it very quickly. Keep all your valuable jewellery in a safe or a place that thieves are not likely to find in a short space of time.
4) Check the wording carefully on your household insurance.
Many people don’t realise that home insurance frequently only covers you for any loss of jewellery you have inside your house. Your home insurance policy won’t necessary cover you if you lose the item outside the house or if you are on holiday. There are insurers out there who provide a comprehensive cover for jewellery items which includes loss outside of the home and on holiday. The added benefit of insuring your jewellery with a specialist insurer, like TH March for example, is that they don’t force their customers to accept vouchers or gift cards for High Street jewellers and you can replace your jewellery with a jeweller of your choice. Many other home insurance policies force their customers to accept LMG vouchers for a limited number of shops selling mass produced items where they are unable to replace their treasured items with something similar. Don’t fall into this trap. Be organised so if the worst happens and you need to make a claim, you know you will have the correct cover and are able to replace the item from a jeweller of your choice.
5) Get your claws checked once a year.
Diamond rings with claws should be checked once a year by a jeweller. Through normal wear and tear, sometimes stones will loosen and if they are checked once a year, a goldsmith will be able to tighten any movement so that you will be less likely to ever have to replace a claw or a stone. People forget what their hands, and therefore their rings go through over the course of a year. Think of it as an MOT for your most valuable possessions.
6) Ensure you have an up to date valuation for your jewellery
Insurance companies rely on you to provide them with accurate information. If you have told them that your ring is worth a certain amount and don’t check the increase in the value of the item, then technically, you may not be covered. Insurers can claim that you misled them as to the true value of the piece and your premiums would have been higher had they known and this can invalidate your policy. Metal and diamonds increase in price over the course of a year and some gemstones can increase in a significant way over the course of a year. If you haven’t got an accurate valuation that details the size, quality and replacement cost of your diamonds you need to get that arranged. Choose a registered valuer and see if you can get them to update the value annually for free or for a lower charge once they have assessed the item.
8) Tighten your earring backs regular
Earring backs have two curls of metal that hold the earring on because of the tension between these two pieces of metal. Putting them on and off when you wear them causes them to loosen slightly each time. To tighten them and keep your earrings secure, hold the earring back between your thumb and index finger and gently squeeze the two curls together when they are not on the earring. Try to put them on your earrings before you put them in your ears and if they feel too tight, slide them on and off again a few times to make them secure but easy for you to remove when you do put them on.
9) Don't sleep with your jewellery on.
Ever woken up in a different position to when you went to sleep? We move around a lot in our sleep and it’s easy to damage a piece of jewellery if you sleep with it on. Take all your jewellery off before you go to sleep.
10) Spray perfume and hairspray before you put your jewellery on.
Perfume is full of nasty chemicals that can be bad for your jewellery. If you put perfume on after you put your jewellery on, you are spraying it directly onto the surface of the metal where it will sit until you clean it off. This can cause your jewellery to discolour and with some alloys it can cause metal to crack. It’s best to spray perfume and hairspray before putting your jewellery on. Make jewellery the last thing you put on when you are getting ready and it will keep your jewellery looking better for longer.
11) Store your chains with the clasps fastened.
Ever tried to put on a chain to find that it is tangled in knots that you can’t get out? A chain is much less likely to get tangled if you fasten the clasp. However, if it does get tangled, read my blog post on how to untangle it and how to store your chains to make sure they never get knotted again.
12) Don't put jewellery in your travel luggage.
Putting jewellery in a suitcase is a big no no. Only take jewellery on holiday that you plan to wear all the time and leave the rest in a safe at home. It’s only for a couple of weeks and I know it is nice to have your special pieces when you are away but it is better to have them forever. Nothing ruins a holiday like losing a special piece of jewellery.
These are a few common mistakes people make with their jewellery. Following this advice will make your jewellery last longer and look better.