Fine jewelry pieces are heirlooms in the making. Some of the fine jewelry pieces you have in your jewelry box might already be. Being some of the most expensive things you’ll ever spend your money on, these jewelry pieces are built to last a lifetime. That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t take care of them. You want to be able to pass down your jewelry to future generations in your family. Here’s a list of tips to care for your jewelry.
Keep them out of the kitchen
If you’ve ever watched a recipe video on YouTube, then you’ve probably seen the cooks and bakers in these videos cook while wearing jewelry. Don’t follow their example. There are many ways you’ll be risking your rings and bracelets if you don’t take them off while you’re cooking. Take it from professional cooks – who are prohibited from wearing jewelry while at work, except for plain wedding bands.
First of all, it’s not sanitary. Even if you regularly clean your jewelry, they’re going to have bacteria on them that can get on the food. Sauces and bits of food can also get trapped in all the nooks and crannies of your jewelry. This is especially true if you’re preparing a dish that involves handling the food with bare hands, such as kneading bread or marinating. Remove your jewelry before making that adobong manok sa gata. While you’re going to wash your hands before and after cooking anyway, it’s best to keep jewelry out of the kitchen.
Apart from sanitary concerns, it’s not good for jewelry. Think of all the heat that your bling is going to be in close contact with, to say nothing of the humidity in the air while you’re cooking. It’ll be all the riskier when you’re working over the sink – you never want to lose a gemstone or an entire ring or bracelet to the drain.
Don’t wear them all the time
As much as we may cherish certain pieces in our collection, never taking them off won’t do you any good. Wearing jewelry in your sleep could hurt you or the jewelry – possibly both. Having your jewelry on for too long can irritate your skin because of bacteria, oil, and dirt buildup. Wearing them to sleep won’t do you or your pieces any favors either. Sleeping in jewelry can wear out prongs and cause gemstones to fall out.
Even though most fine jewelry will hold up even if you wear them to take a bath or shower, it’s still not a good idea to make a habit out of it. Make sure to at least take them off to clean afterward. Soap and water can get caught in small corners and cause an unpleasant reaction in your skin if left unaddressed.
Be aware of what other substances can harm your jewelry
Apart from food, other products that damage jewelry over time include lotion and hairspray. You can avoid harming your jewelry by putting them on last and taking them off first. Give your hairspray and hand lotion time to set in before you slip on your earrings, bracelets, and rings. At the end of the day, start your undressing ritual by taking off your jewelry. Pulling your shirt off overhead can cause an earring to fall off.
Store them properly
Most jewelry pieces come with a small cloth bag for a reason. Storing your precious pieces in a cloth-lined jewelry box isn’t enough sometimes. You also have to store them in such a way that they won’t clump or tangle together or scratch each other. Pearls, in particular, are softer than other gems. To protect them from getting scratched inside your jewelry case, store them first in the cloth case.
You can also get a jewelry box that has more space than you need to keep your pieces at a safe distance from each other. Make sure to keep them in a cool, dry place and away from extreme temperatures and sunlight.
As with makeup applicators, how often you clean jewelry depends on how often you wear them. You can use jewelry cleaners or a gentle cleanser with warm water and a toothbrush. When in doubt, take your pieces to the jeweler for a professional cleaning – which you should be doing once or twice a year.
Fine jewelry pieces are precious possessions and should be treated as such. Make sure to care for them so that you can pass them on to future generations in your family.