How to Clean Jewelry and Other Jewelry Tips

by Susan A. Katz March 29, 2016

I think it’s true that a piece of jewelry says something about how you feel, who you are, and what you would like others to see in you and, know about you. I confess that I am just as likely to select a piece of jewelry to wear that matches my mood, as one that matches my outfit.

Jewelry, even when using substantial stones, is both delicate and, in need of careful and attentive handling and storing. The following few suggestions will help you keep your jewelry looking lovely and free from the need for repair. Here are some jewelry tips


  • Do try limiting your jewelry to exposure to humidity as moisture will tarnish precious metals.
  • Do store your jewelry flat against a soft surface such as velvet, flannel, or cotton.
  • Do, whenever possible, store your jewelry in a covered environment to keep it free of dust and dirt, which can often be difficult to remove if the materials (such as pearls) can not be cleaned with a solution of water and ammonia or, in a commercial jewelry solvent.
  • Do, when cleaning stones always use a soft, clean, absorbent cloth and always rub gently – even “tough” looking stones can be scratched or nicked with rough handling.
  • Do wear your pearls as often as possible as pearls become more lustrous when coming in contact directly with your skin but, at the same time, try to limit exposure to the sun as that may dull them.
  • Do make sure your jewelry is not tangled or twisted when being worn or stored. This will cause undo strain on stringing materials. Whenever possible it is best to store your jewelry in individual cloth bags. (These can usually be found, inexpensively, in most fabric or craft stores.)

Do Not:

  • Do not, contrary to popular opinion, hang your necklaces, always store them lying flat. Hanging may stretch out stringing material and put undo strain on closures – causing them to pull apart or break.
  • Do not store pieces on top of one another or in large groupings. It is best to separate the individual pieces by using cloth, this ensures that they will not become scratched or nicked.
  • Do not store your necklaces and bracelets with the clasps closed, as this causes undo stress.
  • Do not expose gold or silver (pearls, emeralds and most other stones) to chlorine, (swimming pools) salt water, or household cleaners.
  • Do not expose jewelry to extreme temperatures (I knew a woman who used to “hide” her jewelry in the freezer.) Not a good idea!
  • Do not (whenever possible) wear your jewelry when bathing or washing dishes, as soap scum will build up and make cleaning more difficult.
  • We thank you for “strolling” our EarthWhorls site and hope, as you view our selection of “nature’s bounty into fashion” you will think of the words of John Keats who said: “ A thing of beauty is a joy forever: It’s loveliness increases…”

Susan A. Katz
Susan A. Katz


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