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The Ultimate Jewellery Care Guide

Boost the look and longevity of your favourite pieces with these expert-approved tips and techniques
By: George Elliot

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The Ultimate Jewellery Care Guide

The Ultimate Jewellery Care Guide

Boost the look and longevity of your favourite pieces with these expert-approved tips and techniques

By: George Elliot

Whether you want to revive the shine of your engagement ring or improve the look of a tarnished chain, whatever your jewellery woe, consult Liberty’s definitive jewellery care guide to give your most precious pieces a new lease of life. From the benefits of storing silver items in airtight bags to why you should never wear jewellery in the pool, we’ve gathered the best practice and top advice from jewellery experts across our iconic Jewellery Hall. learn them and live by them – in conjunction with any specialist care labels – to keep your collection looking as good as new for years to come.

Wear It Wisely

Believe it or not, one of the best ways to preserve the condition of jewellery is to wear it. In fact, moisture from the skin can even enhance the lustre of a pearl. But beyond that, there are several fundamentals to follow when it comes to wearing your favourite pieces properly.

Best Practice

Make Jewellery a Finishing Touch
Perfumes, beauty products and lotions (including sun cream, oils, shampoos and hairspray) can all dull, tarnish and deteriorate metals and gemstones, so be sure to only put on your jewellery once you've completed your morning routine and your skin is dry.

Stay Clear of Anything Corrosive
Chlorine, bleach and even laundry detergents can both discolour and disintegrate metals and gemstones, so remove all your jewellery before swimming and undertaking any household cleaning.

Avoid Hands-On Activities
Your jewellery might be made of metal, but precious metals like gold and silver are relatively soft and susceptible to damage, so take off all your jewellery – especially rings – before cooking, gardening, working out and doing anything that might risk your jewellery to become scratched, knocked or broken.

Remove Before Bed
Because your mind will be elsewhere – dreamland to be exact – it’s all too easy to snag bracelets, tangle chains and bang watches (usually on the side table) while sleeping. Prevent any jewellery-related bumps in the night by removing each of your pieces as part of your night time routine.

Expert advice from Liberty

Jewellery, especially plated pieces and those encrusted with organic gemstones do not react well when wet, spritzed with perfume or put into contact with chemicals, so while it can be tempting to quickly pop in the shower with your favourite chain still clasped around your neck and easy to forget about your rings when you've got metres of surfaces to bleach, always make the effort to first remove all jewellery beforehand. If you do, expect your pieces to remain shiny, strong and have a longer lifespan.

Clean with Care

Chemicals, water and dirt build-up can often leave jewellery looking dull. A simple wipe before putting pieces away will go a long way in preserving their condition, but sometimes a deeper clean is what’s needed to restore that original sparkle.

Best Practice

For Gold
Use a soft, specifically developed gold polishing cloth to clean solid gold pieces but do not polish plated pieces as there is a risk of rubbing off the gold finish.

For Platinum
Treat as if gold.

For Silver
For silver and sterling silver pieces, use a specifically developed silver cleaning cloth. Again, if the piece is plated, do not polish.

For Diamonds
To keep diamonds in their best condition, make use of a technically formulated diamond polish. Available in store, Town Talk is a Liberty-approved brand to look to.

For Semi-Precious Stones
Clean with warm water, a couple of drops of washing-up liquid and a soft brush or toothbrush. Do not use steam or hot to boiling water as this will damage the structure and sparkling finish of the stones.

For Organic Gemstones
Organic stones like pearls, opals and turquoise are porous and have different chemical compositions to mineral gemstones like diamonds so can be damaged by moisture and many of the acids and chemicals found in cleaning products. For peace of mind, gently wipe them with a soft, dry cloth after each wear.

For Costume Jewellery
A dry cloth will clean and restore shine.

Expert advice from Kojis

It's important to clean jewellery only when it gets dirty as regular, unnecessary polishing can do more harm than good. It's crucial to note that some metals like silver tarnish and oxidise faster than others, too, so it's likely that jewellery made from these metals will need tending to on a more regular basis. Lastly, it's just as crucial to know what not to do when it comes to cleaning, so follow expert advice rather than any uninformed and potentially destructive hacks, including cleaning jewellery with baking soda, salt and vinegar.

Storage Matters

The way you choose to store your jewellery can have a surprising impact on its condition over time. Follow these simple steps to ensure your pieces stay looking their best for longer, even when they’re out of sight and out of mind.

Best Practice

Padding for Protection
Like covering a precious vase in bubble wrap, jewellery also benefits from a layer of protection when in storage, so keep each piece in an individual soft pouch or fabric-lined box to prevent tangling, scratching and chipping.

An Added Layer
Precious metals naturally oxidise and tarnish over time but to slow the process down, consider placing each piece of jewellery in an airtight bag.

Avoid Extreme Environments
From direct sunlight to high humidity, jewellery dislikes extreme conditions, so keep all unworn jewellery in a dark and dry location.

Expert advice from Atelier VM

If we were standing in the blazing sun or faced high humidity, we'd start to feel adverse effects and it's the same story for jewellery as pieces can warp if they get too hot and degrade if they're kept in damp conditions. That's why jewellery deserves the same amount of attention and care, whether it's being worn or stored away.

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