The Do’s and Don’ts of Taking Care of Your Engagement Ring

It’s the symbol of eternal commitment, and you usually only get one, so once you’ve got that beautiful piece of jewellery you’d better take care of it.

I spoke to Dan Robinson of The Diamond Shop about cleaning your diamonds and taking care of your engagement ring.

Diamonds are perfect for everyday wear as engagement and wedding rings – however they are not indestructible and should be worn with care and looked after.

Diamonds are highly durable and are resistant to scratching (except by another diamond), but they can still be chipped by an especially hard knock or could become loose in their setting and even fall out!

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Because diamonds have an affinity to grease and oils, they can become dirty when touched . To make sure your diamond keeps it sparkle we suggest the following:

• Professional Cleaning

Having a professional clean is the best option. A professional will ensure now only that your diamond or diamond jewellery is the most vibrant it can be, but also ensure that it is in immaculate condition, and not susceptible to having a stone fall out. All jewellery purchased from The Diamond Shop comes with free lifetime professional cleaning.

• Handle your Diamond sparingly

Diamonds are natural magnets for grease; they’re not easy to keep clean. Touching a diamond with your fingers provides enough oils from your skin (the type of “grease” that mostly affects diamonds) to affect the way your diamond looks. Less direct touching means your diamond remains clean and sparkling.

• Mild liquid detergent

Soak your jewellery in a small bowl of warm, soapy water made with any mild liquid detergent. Gently brush the diamond jewellery with a soft toothbrush while it is in the suds. Then, rinse each piece under warm running water. Pat it dry with a soft, lint-free cloth. Make sure to always keep the plug in your sink.

 • Household Ammonia

To keep your diamond jewellery looking beautiful soak the diamond in an ammonia-based household cleaner (such as window cleaner) overnight, once or twice weekly. In the morning, remove the diamond from the cleaner and brush it with a soft, clean toothbrush (one that has not previously been used in any way, and that you reserve exclusively for cleaning your diamond) to remove any leftover dirt. Take extra care to brush the back of the diamond as this will be the area that has collected the most oil and dirt. Swish in the solution a second time, rinse and drain on tissue paper.

• Jewellery Cleaner

Use any reputed brand name jewellery cleaner and use it according to the instructions given on the label.

• Avoid harmful solutions

Chlorine (as in household bleach) or abrasives (such as household cleansers or toothpaste) should never be used when cleaning diamonds, especially those which are set in jewellery. These erode some of the metals often used in diamond settings, and may loosen prongs, or even dissolve the metal completely.

• Ultrasonic Cleaner

By sending high frequency sound waves through a detergent solution, ultrasonic cleaners cause vibrating fluid to remove accumulated dirt and grime. However, they can also shake loose stones from their mounting, so this method shouldn’t be used on fragile settings (or estate jewellery), or with certain coloured gemstones like emeralds and Tanzanites and is best undertaken by a professional jeweller.

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Gold and Platinum Care

Most jewellery whether it be yellow gold, white gold or platinum can be maintained at home by cleaning your items with a soft toothbrush and hot water and a non abrasive soap. This will remove any hand cream, fingerprints, dust and dirt caught in the setting and will brighten up your metal. Be sure to check your jewellery regularly to make sure you don’t have any loose gemstones or missing or lifted claws. If you are unsure or have any concerns notify your local jeweller to check for you.

When you are not wearing your jewellery make sure you are storing them in a jewellery box where each item is protected and not getting scratched from another item.

Over time and general wear there will be small marks in the metal which are unavoidable. On a yearly basis we recommend you bring back your jewellery to be professionally cleaned;  particularly white gold which needs rhodium plating to look bright and white. This will bring your precious metal back to looking new again.

Titanium Care

To prolong the appearance of your Titanium jewellery we recommend removing your jewellery before using harsh chemicals or chlorine.

To clean your titanium jewellery, use a warm water and soap solution and dry and polish with a soft cloth. When not worn, store your titanium jewellery in the box supplied or a soft cloth bag.

Silver Care

To care for your silver we recommend a silver cloth or a silver cleaning solution, dry and polish with a soft cloth. To protect your silver from scratches when not being worn, we recommend storing in a soft cloth bag or in the box provided.

Palladium Care

To care for your palladium gently scrub your jewellery with a soft bristle brush and a mild solution of soap and warm water, dry and polish with a soft cloth.

General Care

You will find after a period of time your jewellery will not shine as bright as it once did whether it be the metal which needs polishing or gemstones which need cleaning.

The Diamond Shop recommends you keep a soft toothbrush at home to use to clean your jewellery. Use hot water and some non abrasive soap and brush lightly in and behind the settings to remove any hand cream, fingerprints, dust and dirt caught in the setting. This will brighten up your gemstones and also brighten up your gold and platinum.

We also recommend you bring your jewellery back every year perhaps around an anniversary so you remember to have your jewellery professionally cleaned and checked to make sure all claws are strong enough and your gemstones are safe and secure.

Finally check the fine print of your insurance policy.  They will sometimes state the time period required to have your jewellery checked.

To talk to Dan about the above or anything else, email [email protected] and once you’re engaged, have a look at the little white book wedding organiser and diary, and see the wedding planning index.

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