Soft gemstones possess a unique allure, with their vibrant colors and delicate beauty. However, due to their delicate nature, they require special attention and care to maintain their brilliance and durability over time. They are one of the easiest to damage and cleaning them is pivotal for their longevity and glow.
In this comprehensive guide, we will share expert tips and techniques to help you properly care for soft gemstones, ensuring their longevity and beauty. Whether you own a stunning opal, a mesmerizing pearl, or a captivating moonstone, following these jewelry cleaning and care guidelines will help you preserve the splendor of your precious gems.
1. UNDERSTANDING SOFT GEMSTONES
Soft gemstones, also known as organic or porous gemstones, encompass a wide range of delicate minerals such as opal, pearl, amber, coral, moonstone, and turquoise. These gems are more susceptible to damage from chemicals, scratches, heat, and sudden temperature changes and humidity, compared to harder gemstones like diamonds or sapphires. Recognizing the unique properties of soft gemstones is crucial for proper cleaning, care, and maintenance.
Storing soft gemstones properly is vital to prevent scratches and other forms of damage. Here are some essential storage guidelines:
- Individual Wrapping: Wrap each gemstone separately in a soft, lint-free cloth or a jewelry pouch to prevent contact with other gemstones or hard surfaces that could cause abrasions.
- Controlled Environment: Store soft gemstones in a cool, dry place away from direct sunlight or extreme temperature changes and humidity. Exposure to excessive heat or moisture can lead to discoloration, cracking, or loss of luster. Especially those beautiful pearls!
- Avoid Chemical Exposure: Keep soft gemstones away from chemicals such as perfume, hairspray, cosmetics, and household cleaning agents. These substances can damage or alter the appearance of the gems. Never store your jewelry in your restroom.
Regular cleaning helps maintain the natural radiance of soft gemstones. However, it is essential to use gentle methods to avoid any potential damage. The Clean + Care Jewelry Care Essentials Kit fits perfectly alongside most any jewelry collection. Follow these cleaning recommendations:
- Soft Cloth: Gently wipe the gemstone's surface with a soft, microfiber cloth or a cotton swab to remove dust and dirt. Avoid using abrasive materials that may scratch or abrade the gem's surface.
- Gentle Jewelry Cleaner: A quick soak in an ammonia-free cleaner can be used safely on porous stones, soft stones, enamel, and treated gemstones to keep jewelry sparkling like new. Always use only as directed and if you are unsure, consult with a professional jeweler. Rinse thoroughly with lukewarm water and pat dry with a soft cloth. Clean + Care’s Gentle Jewelry Cleaner has been lab tested and trusted throughout the jeweler community for over 65 years.
- Avoid Ultrasonic Cleaners: Soft gemstones should never be cleaned using ultrasonic jewelry cleaners. The vibrations generated by these machines can cause the gemstone to crack or chip. Some gemstones not recommended for an Ultrasonic Machine are Amber, Doublet, Emeralds, Opal, Pearl’s, Rubies, Turquoise, antiqued silver, and Tungsten. To find the right product for your gemstones use our product quiz.
4. PROTECTION FROM PHYSICAL IMPACT
Soft gemstones are prone to chipping or cracking upon impact. Take the following precautions to protect them:
- Avoid Rough Activities: Remove soft gemstone jewelry before engaging in physically demanding tasks, sports activities, or household chores that may expose the gemstones to potential impact or abrasions.
- Jewelry Separation: Store soft gemstone jewelry separately from harder gemstones or metals to prevent scratching or damage. We recommend storing them separately.
5. PROFESSIONAL INSPECTIONS:
Periodically have your soft gemstone jewelry inspected by a professional jeweler. Experts can assess the gem's condition, detect any potential issues, and provide necessary maintenance, such as restringing pearls or replacing damaged settings. Regular inspections ensure early detection of problems, preventing further damage.
Soft gemstones exude a captivating charm that requires diligent care to preserve their beauty for years to come. By following the guidelines outlined in this comprehensive guide, you can ensure that your soft gemstone jewelry retains its radiance and durability. Remember, proper storage, Gentle Jewelry Cleaner and gentle cleaning techniques, protection from physical impact, and periodic professional inspections are the keys to maintaining the splendor of your soft gemstone jewelry.