A Jewelers Guide to CleaningYour Engagement Ring
Exhibitor M. Khordipour ( www.mkhordipour.com )of New York City gives a detailed guide to cleaning your engagement ring. Learn to take care of your most sentimental stones in their step-by-step process below or visit them at the Miami Beach Jewelry & Antiques Show this February 2-5, 2017.
How to Clean Your Engagement Ring
Perfume, cosmetics, grease, food and drink, oil from even clean fingers and countless other substances are deposited on your jewelry every day. Eventually all this detritus takes its toll, and your once sparkling engagement ring starts to look a little dull and listless. But all is not lost.
Cleaning any engagement ring isn’t actually all that difficult, as long as you follow a couple of simple rules and do some basic preparation.
Fail To Prepare – Prepare To Fail
Okay, it’s a cliché that you’ll hear in company training sessions all over the world but, when it comes to cleaning your precious engagement ring, it’s definitely advice worth heeding. Especially when the only real preparation is ensuring your ring (or any part of it) doesn’t go down the drain.
Before you do anything else, make sure the drain is closed or, even better, do everything in a separate bowl on a non-slip surface. If necessary, put a cloth on your worktop to keep the bowl in place. You’ll be glad you did.
One last tip, you should only really be cleaning your ring if it contains diamonds. Any other precious stone could easily be damaged due to being porous, or prone to micro-scratching which will dull the stone quickly and leave it looking milky.
Cleaning Your Ring
No expensive tools to buy, no new cleaning products that you’ll never use again, and not even the slightest bit of real elbow grease is needed to bring your diamond engagement ring back to life.
Simply use warm water and a few drops of mild dish soap. Don’t use any kind of abrasive cleaner, bleach or other chemical detergent because, although the diamond may be the hardest substance on earth, the gold, silver or platinum holding everything together certainly isn’t, and all can be affected by strong solvents and even hard brushes.
Soak the ring in the warm solution for about 30 minutes, in order to soften and loosen any hardened dirt and grease. This will make the whole process much easier than trying to clean the ring in a “dry” state.
Using a soft toothbrush, simply work your soapy solution around the various parts of the ring, paying attention to the stone, the mount, and anywhere else where dirt, grease and grime is liable to have collected and settled. Don’t be tempted to use too much force, especially if the ring is particularly dirty, as you will risk loosening the stone. It’s better to remove the worst of the dirt, rinse the ring in clean warm, running water and start again. If necessary, you can leave the ring submerged again for a while to get to the layers of dirt not exposed to the first soaking.
Obviously, the older and potentially more fragile the ring, the greater care you should take. Professional jewelers usually offer cleaning services if you have any fears, and most will guarantee against damage during the cleaning process. If in any doubt, do consult the experts.
What Not To Do
We’ve already mentioned not to use chemical detergents and bleach products, but we’ve seen more than one online resource mention using toothpaste. Our advice is don’t, under any circumstances. Toothpaste is abrasive by nature, and will almost certainly damage the metals used in the ring, even though the diamond is likely to be unaffected.
Although cleaners using ultrasound are now available for home use, we’d recommend against using one with jewelry, as the process involves high-frequency sound waves that cause micro-vibrations in the item being cleaned. Of course, mount-set stones and vibrations don’t make good bedfellows, and there is a real risk of loosening or damaging the stones or metals used.
Finally, don’t be tempted to scrub at the ring like you’re cleaning the aluminum rims on your car. If the dirt can’t be removed with a gentle touch, then stop touching it altogether and let an expert take a look at it. Don’t ruin a $5,000 engagement ring by being overly enthusiastic with a $2 toothbrush.
Follow these simple rules on a regular basis, and your engagement ring will stay bright and full of the sparkle it had when it was first put on your finger.
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