Jewelry Care & Information
We get a lot of questions about cleaning your handmade jewelry. We've also seen some crazy myths out there, so we wanted to create a place for you to be able to learn more about cleaning your handmade jewelry.
Clean your handmade jewelry before it becomes badly tarnished or dirty.
It is much easier to remove tarnish and soil when it is minimal, so be sure to take regular care of your jewelry. The longer you go between cleanings the harder it is to restore your jewelry to its original luster.
Also, the more often you wear a piece, the less likely it is to tarnish.
Always remove your jewelry before using any product that contains bleach, ammonia, alcohol, citrus juice, salt, detergent or turpentine.
Avoid wearing your jewelry while swimming in chlorinated or salt water. Prolonged soaking in water can loosen stones in their settings and damage porous stones like turquoise. You should also remove your jewelry before bathing.
Ultrasonic cleaners can damage your stones.
Only the hardest stones like diamonds can be cleaned this way. Pearls, shells, coral, turquoise, opal, lapis and many other stones can be permanently changed and can even break into pieces with this type of jewelry cleaner.
Store your jewelry in the proper manner.
Avoid storing your sterling silver in the open air. It is much better to store it in a jewelry box or zip-lock bag to keep the air out. Protect your jewelry when traveling by wrapping your pieces in tissue to avoid scratches and breakage in your luggage.
Check for loose stones or parts and have them repaired right away so as not to lose any stones or parts.
With normal wear and tear, changes in humidity, the vibrations of travel, and bending the jewelry can cause the stones to loosen over time. If a stone rocks or wiggles in its setting you will need to tighten the bezel around the stone to prevent the loss of your precious gemstones. You can usually tighten these yourself, if you use special care. The back of a spoon works well to run along the bezel to press it down on the gemstone and tighten it again. Many bezel-set stones have a layer of padding or sawdust beneath the stone to cushion it. If this padding is missing, the stone will be too low in the setting. In this case, it is advisable to consult a local jeweler to tighten the bezel. If you notice a stone is missing, look for it immediately. If you can find it, the repair is simple and takes just a few minutes. If it cannot be found it is more difficult to find a perfect match for the lost one, but it can still be done.
Put your jewelry on last.
Hairspray, perfume, lotions, makeup, and water can all affect your jewelry. Put your jewelry on after dressing and grooming.
If you will be working or playing hard, remove your jewelry.
It’s not a good idea to sleep with your chains or earrings on. Chains can tangle or kink and earring posts can bend or break.
Read below for more specific jewelry cleaning information.
● Sterling Silver Jewelry Care Instructions
Caring for your silver jewelry.
Contrary to popular belief, sterling silver can also turn your skin green. The skin turns green because of a chemical reaction with moisture on your skin and the alloys in the metal and is nothing to be concerned about health-wise.
Sterling silver is an alloy, meaning it is a combination of metals (in this case, 92.5 percent silver and 7.5 percent copper).
While silver cannot rust, copper can, meaning sterling silver can rust as well. The copper in sterling silver also makes it susceptible to tarnishing.
Salt, in particular, is known to be a main cause of tarnishing in sterling silver, so be sure to take off your sterling silver jewelry if you know you will be sweating a lot. In general, it is a good idea to keep your sterling silver jewelry away from moisture as much as possible. If your jewelry gets wet, be sure to dry it as soon as possible. Use the included polishing pad to clean off any tarnish that appears and keep your handmade sterling silver jewelry shining bright!
● Copper Jewelry Care Instructions
Caring for your copper jewelry.
Copper is a beautiful natural material that is also affordable and has become increasingly popular in the jewelry world. It offers the trendy pink hue that people look for in rose gold without costing a fortune.
For some people, however, copper can leave a strange tint of green on your skin. This is actually normal and nothing to be concerned about health-wise. Copper reacts naturally with salty sweat and begins to develop a green patina — just look at what happened when the Statue of Liberty was exposed to all that salt water! The green stain on your wrist or finger isn’t an allergic reaction caused by copper reacting poorly with your skin, but from the patina simply staining your skin. That said, people’s reaction to copper cannot be predicted. Some people will have no problem wearing copper, and others will.
The green stains can be washed off with soap and water. Otherwise, you will notice that they are absorbed overnight by your body — again, there are no known health risks associated with this.
To maintain the pink color and shine of your copper jewelry, polish your copper pieces with the polishing pad that is included in your order. This will help to ensure the longevity of your piece by wiping away all the sweat and oils the copper jewelry has collected throughout the day.
● Pewter Jewelry Care Instructions
Caring for your pewter jewelry.
Pewter jewelry has a long and noble history, and became popular among the wealthy during the Middle Ages. Pewter is a soft metal and can bend easily. Adjust your pewter jewelry gently to prevent shape loss.
Pewter jewelry is extremely versatile. It can be polished and shiny, or brushed and antique-looking. However, this soft metal is susceptible to corrosion, so be sure to keep your pewter jewelry away from corrosive chemicals like household cleaners and nail polish remover.
To keep the dark areas on your hand stamped jewelry, be sure to take off any pewter pieces before swimming, showering, washing dishes, and the like. As with most metals, pewter does not like to get wet!
Our handmade jewelry store includes a polishing pad with all orders that you can use daily to keep your pewter looking picture-perfect!
● Aluminum Jewelry Care Instructions
Caring for your aluminum jewelry.
Aluminum is a lightweight metal that will not tarnish, rust, or turn your skin green like some other metals. But that doesn’t mean aluminum doesn’t require any care to stay shiny and bright. Keep reading to learn how to care for your handmade aluminum jewelry!
First, be sure to keep your aluminum jewelry away from corrosive chemicals to prevent your jewelry from oxidizing and losing luster. Take off your aluminum rings and bracelets while cleaning, staining wood, or doing other tasks that involve chemicals. Be aware that the darkened stamped areas can fade if your jewelry is worn while swimming, showering, washing dishes, etc. Like all jewelry, it tends to not like water.
ADJUSTING YOUR CUFF BRACELETS
Please read this entire section before making any adjustments to your aluminum bracelet cuffs.
Many cuff bracelets are adjustable thanks to the properties of metal in general. They can be opened or closed up to about a 1/4 inch larger or smaller. Do not put the aluminum bracelet on your wrist and squeeze it. Squeezing the cuff puts all of the stress on the center of the bracelet and can weaken it. The types that are NOT easily adjustable are those that are made from very thick, heavy metal or those with inlaid stones across the entire front and sides. Be very careful when you adjust it so you don’t make it an odd shape or damage it. If you bend an area of your bracelet where there is a stone or inlay, you might pop out the stones because while the metal may be bending, the stone is not, breaking the bonds that hold it in place.
It’s really quite simple. With the bracelet off of your wrist, encircle one hand firmly over the last stone on one end of the bracelet and make your adjustment by bending this portion of the bracelet. Bend gently and adjust a little each time. Do the same on the other side. Remember, some aluminum bracelets are not adjustable at all. Those that have stones or inlay all of the way to the ends are not considered adjustable. Those that are made of very heavy silver would be very difficult to bend and are also considered not adjustable.
● Brass Jewelry Care Instructions
Caring for your aluminum jewelry.
Like most metal jewelry, brass doesn't like getting wet. Get it even a little damp and you'll see a brown patina form before you know it. While this can be lovely and many people embrace the slightly worn, vintage look of brass with a little patina. However, if you'd like your brass to shine like gold, keep it dry!
No matter how hard you try to keep your brass jewelry dry, it will still patina over time due to oils sweat that are released from your skin. However, you can greatly delay the inevitable with a little care. To maintain the color and shine, polish your brass jewelry daily with the included polishing pad.