Taking care of your jewellery

The hardness of your gem – rated out of 10 on the Moh scale – indicates how much extra care you need to take with it. Diamonds are the highest at 10, with rubies and sapphires rated nine. Emeralds and topaz are eight, and garnets, tourmalines and quartz are seven.

Gemstones below seven including opal, turquoise, lapis lazuli, coral, and pearl can be scratched. Gold, silver and platinum are only rated at between two and a half and four, which means they require special care, cleaning and storage.

Maintaining your jewellery’s beauty needs proper care, so here are some do’s and don’ts:

  • Get your jeweller to check your rings for wear and tear. Organise a clean and polish once a year.
  • Clean your diamonds with a mild liquid detergent and a soft brush, or one of the specially designed jewellery cleaners available.
  • Restring pearls once a year, as the strand could be stretched or affected by chemicals. Have it knotted between each pearl, in case the string breaks.
  • Wash your pearls with a softened cloth of mild soap and water after taking off to remove perfume, hairspray, and cosmetics.
  • Wrap your pearls in tissue paper or place in a cloth bag when storing or transporting to avoid scratching.  
  • Avoid wearing your diamonds while showering, cleaning or doing any manual work. Chemicals and soap can dull the appearance.
  • Never expose your gemstones to salt water and harsh chemicals. This will dull and erode your gems.
  • Don’t allow silver to come into contact with chlorine or anything other than a polishing cloth.
  • Take all jewellery off while playing sport to prevent kinking, snagging or breakage.