Delicate jewelry is extremely fragile. Made with precious metals and gemstones, some pieces can also be extremely expensive. Jewelry that is worn on a daily basis, like wedding rings, mother’s rings and favorite necklaces, should be cleaned regularly and inspected for any damage that may be caused by daily wear and tear.
Things You Can Do
It is not difficult to clean your own jewelry if you know have the necessary items you need to complete the task. Certain pieces of jewelry are rather basic and take little effort. Simple rings, for example, can be thoroughly cleaned just by dipping them in the appropriate solution. Necklaces and bracelets that do not have a multitude of small parts can also generally be cleaned by allowing them to soak in the right solution for a specific period of time.
One of the first things you should do when attempting to clean your own jewelry is to know what kind of solution will work best. Never use abrasives of any kind as they can mar the finish of the metal and actually scuff up the surface of certain types of semi-precious stones. When cleaning jewelry that has settings for stones, take extra care not to bend or break off the small prongs that holds the stones in place. Instead, of trying to open the prongs and remove the stone, use a small brush to gently move away bits and debris. Allow the jewelry to soak for a few minutes to break up any pieces that may be lodged within the piece.
When cleaning your own jewelry, there are several precautions you should take to prevent damage. Necklaces, watches and bracelets often contain small parts that can be lost when you are taking the piece apart. Always make sure you have the tools you need before starting to take apart and clean any piece of jewelry. A few tools you may need include:
Small screwdriver set
Pointed needle-noise pliers
Strong overhead light
A small, soft brush
There are certain pieces of jewelry that should only be cleaned by a professional jeweler. Fine, precision watches and elaborately detailed pieces should always be professionally. A precision watch for example, can be irreversibly damaged if someone tries to take it apart and clean it without having the proper tools or a sufficient working knowledge of how its components interact with one another. A professional jewelry or watch maker can take the piece apart, repair any damage and replace any parts that are worn. As they do this, they can also recalibrate the piece so that it keeps perfect time under almost any type of condition.
When it comes to fine, delicate jewelry, having a professional clean each piece prevents any type of scratching or damage by the owner. Certain solutions can cause the metal to discolor or look streaked. They can also affect the overall, general appearance of the gem stones. A jewelry knows how to protect the patina of the precious metal as well as the surface of the semi-precious stones.