Don't just dump your jewellery in a box after taking it off. Keep them properly in fabric lined compartments, clean those expensive pieces with warm water and dishwashing soap and get them re-polished once in a while, suggest experts.
Radhika Jain, designer at MiRA, and Aanya Singhvi, founder at Avza jewellery care, have listed a few tips and tricks to care for your jewellery:
* Keep the jewellery clean: For hard, compact layers of dirt or oil, it is best to get your jewellery cleaned professionally. The best way to clean your jewellery at home is to make a solution with warm water (almost hot) and dishwashing soap.
Soak it for 20 to 40 minutes and gently brush with a very soft toothbrush, then rinse off under warm running water. Regular dish soap works great to cut the grease, and some people add a teaspoon of ammonia to their cleaning solution for harder to remove grime.
* Store your jewellery properly: Protective cases like a jewellery box with fabric lined compartments are great to keep your jewellery not only organized, but separated. Throwing jewellery into a drawer or on a table can cause fractures, chips or scratches and tangle chains.
* Remove all jewellery before entering in water: Take off all costume jewellery before entering water, including showers, tubs, swimming spools, spas and saunas, and before washing dishes. Do not wear costume jewellery when swimming in lakes or the ocean.
Moisture on costume jewellery often leaves dark water spots that are difficult to remove without damaging the finish of the jewellery.
* Don't clean your ring with abrasive products: Toothpaste, baking soda, or any powdered cleaners can cause scratches on metals, such as artificial jewellery and even gold.
* Don't wear jewellery before applying any spray: Put on jewellery after applying perfume and hairspray, as these substances can build up on jewellery and cause discoloration. In addition to dulling the shine of jewellery, the ingredients in perfume and hairspray build up in the crevices of jewellery, trapping dirt and dust. This creates a dark appearance difficult to remove if not cleaned regularly.
* Avoid wearing jewellery while exercising: Avoid wearing jewellery while exercising or during other activities that cause sweating. Sweat discolours some jewellery, especially artificial pearls. The discoloration occurs when the sodium from perspiration dries on the jewellery. Over time, this sodium buildup causes an overall dullness to metal surfaces.
* Don't load up on lotion: Avoid wearing heavy lotion on your neck, hands and wrists, as this can ruin the finish on your necklaces, bracelets, and rings. The oils can dull and discolour the metals and dramatically shorten the life of your favourite pieces.
* Use clear nail polish: To prevent discolouration and chipping on fashion or contemporary jewellery you can apply a thin coat of clear nail polish as protection. This will keep your less expensive jewellery in good shape.
* Have your jeweller check for worn out mountings, loose prongs and its overall condition at least once a year. Get your gold pieces re-plated, re-polished and prongs re-tipped in order to maintain good condition at least every two years.
Have your regularly worn pearls restrung when you feel necessary to avoid string breaks.