'What do you mean, the dog ate my engagement ring!?'
Besides insurance cover, there are many little ways in which you can help your jewellery, watches or other 'smalls' stay safe and undamaged. These things, over the years, become a treasured part of our lives and may one day be passed down to future generations.
Some general tips:
- Remove jewellery when doing housework/gardening (but don't leave it where a jewellery-loving puppy can get at it, either)
- Do not store your jewellery or heirlooms in one drawer; keep each item separate in a jewellery box, ideally wrapped in velvet or silk
- Check for loose stones on your rings frequently
- We recommend professional cleaning once a year - any damage or wear and tear can then be detected and repaired if necessary
- Clean your jewellery frequently to maintain sparkle and beauty. Nb. do not use toothpaste as its abrasives can damage softer gems and metals. Use NWJ jewellery cleaner (following the instructions on the box), or use mild soap and warm water, and gently wash and rinse in lukewarm water afterwards
Diamonds, silver and gold
While some jewellery metals are resistant to tarnishing, silver isn't. If you have a silver piece that you don't often wear, tarnish can build up on its surface. Regular polishing with a silver cleaner is the quick and easy solution, but it's important to clean tarnish early, or it can cause long-term damage to some jewellery. We recommend you use NWJ jewellery cleaner on your silver items, and rinse them in lukewarm running water after cleaning; then dry thoroughly. Any residue, cleaner or moisture left on jewellery can cause it to tarnish to a point that can't be restored to the original state.
All gemstones lose their lustre without the correct care and cleaning. Hand creams and perfumes can cause them to become dull but regular cleaning will restore them to their original beauty. While diamonds are practically invincible some stones, such as opals, are more prone to chipping than other gems. Make sure you find out upon purchase and wear/handle your items accordingly.
Quality pearls are very durable but all pearls, because of their natural origin, need a little TLC. To clean off oils and dirt, just wipe with a soft cloth. Pearls can scratch, so store them separate from other jewellery which may scratch the pearls' surface. Keep pearls in linen, soft cloth, or place in a soft pouch – but never in anything airtight as pearls need moisture. They can't be too dry either - if placing them in a safety deposit box or in a hot environment, leave a damp cloth nearby. Keep pearls away from chlorine bleach, vinegar, ammonia, hairspray, perfume, and cosmetics. If you're hitting the gym and are somehow still wearing your pearls, remove them – they don't like sweat. Take your pearls to a professional to be strung once a year, if worn often.