Jewellery by Michael King ltd.
Jewellery by Michael King - jewellery aftercare

Jewellery Aftercare

Keeping your jewellery in pristine condition.

How to look after and store your jewellery

  • Protect all jewellery from scratches, sharp blows, chemicals, extreme temperatures, and sunlight.
  • After each wearing, gently wipe each piece of jewellery clean of make up and skin oils with a 100% cotton cloth.
  • Store jewellery separately so it doesn't scratch other jewellery.
  • Remove jewellery when doing household tasks such as gardening, cleaning, household repairs or other strenuous activities.
  • Apply make-up and hair spray before putting on your jewellery. Make-up and hair spray contain chemicals that may affect your jewellery.
  • Do not store jewellery next to heating vents, window sills, or in the car.
  • Store jewellery away from sunlight. The sun may fade some gemstones.
  • Do not wear jewellery while in a pool, hot tub or bathing. The chlorine in the water can damage various gemstones and metals.
  • Always store pearl or bead necklaces flat because thread stretches over time.
  • Frequent cleaning is recommended to maintain its true beauty.
  • Salt water, chlorine in swimming pools, soap, perfumes, personal products and perspiration take their toll on all fine jewellery.
  • Wipe your jewellery carefully with a soft cloth to keep it clean and enjoy!

How to clean your jewellery

Commercial Silver/Gold Cleaners

Read the label, and if in doubt, do not use a chemical cleaner. Some gemstones that cannot be placed in commercial cleaners are: pearls, lapis lazuli, malachite, opals, coral and turquoise.

Jewellery Polishing Cloths

Use lightly to restore lustre. Do not press hard when polishing gold-filled or plated jewellery or you will damage the polished surface.

Easy Homemade Solutions

The best way to clean in places where a polishing cloth can't reach is simple. To keep your jewellery in top condition, clean using lukewarm water and a small amount of mild washing up liquid.

Tarnish

Can be prevented by storing your jewellery in a resealable plastic bag with anti-tarnish paper. Pearls and opals, however, should be stored in fabric instead of plastic because they need to "breathe".

How to clean and care for silver jewellery

Sterling silver is an alloy of silver containing 92.5% pure silver and 7.5% other metals, usually copper. The first thing to understand is sterling silver tarnishes typically by things that we do or not do and/or wear. Perfume, colognes, lotions, sweaty skin and hair products can all be contributing factors to tarnishing your jewellery. If any residue isn’t wiped off the chemicals will contribute to the tarnishing process. Harsh chemicals from dishwater detergents, chlorine and the like will tarnish sterling silver jewellery. If sterling silver is exposed to the air and left unprotected when not being worn, tarnish becomes inevitable.

A few easy steps will ensure your jewellery will stay as brilliant as the day it was purchased. Before you put jewellery on, be sure any lotions and/or perfumes are absorbed into your skin. Apply all hair products, especially hair spray, before you put on jewellery. Remove silver jewellery before swimming, doing an invigorating workout or prior to bedtime. When you remove your jewellery at the end of your day, take a couple of minutes to wipe it off with a jewellery cloth or soft cotton fabric like an old t-shirt. Never use tissues or paper towels for cleaning silver. These products will scratch the jewellery, which will detract from their beauty. After jewellery is wiped clean, store it in an airtight container, such as a resealable plastic bag, a cloth bag and/or an airtight jewellery box. Please be aware that many display units and boxes may contain sulphur, which interacts and tarnishes sterling silver. The less air and light your silver is exposed to when you aren't wearing it, the less tarnish will occur, making it easy to have shiny jewellery each and every time you're ready to wear it. Taking the time to keep your jewellery clean after wearing it and storing it away from light and air is all that's needed to cut down on tarnish significantly.

How to clean and care for gold jewellery

Pure gold is very soft which makes it unsuitable for most jewellery. To make it stronger, it is mixed with other metals - this is called alloying. The carat (ct) tells you how many parts of gold and how many parts of other metal are in the gold alloy.

Gold-Plating is a method of depositing a layer of gold onto the surface of metal through an electrochemical process. Care should be taken when cleaning gold plated jewellery to protect the layer of gold from being worn away or nicked. Do not use abrasive compounds to clean gold jewellery.

Although jewellery made of gold will not tarnish, it will get dirty. The oils from your skin transfer to the metal surface and need to be washed off periodically. The easiest way to care for it is to scrub it with an old soft toothbrush and a mild dish-washing liquid. Rinse it well and lay on a towel to dry. Be sure it is completely dry before storing.

Another cause of damage can be due to actual corrosion of the metal. Gold itself does not corrode, but its primary alloys of silver or copper will do so (forming very dark chemical compounds) under moist or wet conditions. When we perspire, it can cause corrosion of the gold, especially when also exposed to warmth and air. This problem can be worse in sea-coast and semi-tropical environments, where chlorides combine with perspiration to form a corrosive element that discolours skin. Smog fumes gradually attack jewellery and are evident as a tarnish that rubs off onto the skin. We suggest that you remove gold jewellery often and use an absorbent powder, free of abrasives, on skin that comes into contact with your jewellery.