THE BEST WAY TO CLEAN THE JEWELS
Many things in our daily lives can make jewelry lose their luster, including lotions, polluted air, perfumes and cosmetics. Although you can buy special equipment for cleaning and maintaining sparkling precious stones and metals, can get the same results with mild products you may already have at home. What you will use depends on the type of jewelry you want to clean.
Many gems can be safely cleaned with soapy water and an old toothbrush with soft bristles. Shake a bar of mild soap in several cups of warm water until foamy, dip the stone for a few seconds, rub gently with the toothbrush, rinse and allow to rest in a clean towel to dry.
This method works very well with most of the jewels, but there are a few exceptions. The softness and porosity ranging from precious stones and affect the way they should be cleaned.
To determine the hardness, look for the classification of the Mohs scale, a standard measure developed in the nineteenth century. Diamonds are the hardest, with a rating of 10, and talc the softest, with a rating of 1.
(The book Gem Care, Fred Ward, is a good reference for this type of information, your jeweler may also advise).
The harder the gem, the more you can withstand washing and chemicals. Gems hard, nonporous crystal can be cleaned with ammonia for extra brightness, just add a spoonful to the solution of soap and water, but softer gems such as opal and amber, could be ruined with the chemical.
Gems that fall into the lowest ranking of the Mohs scale will scratch easily and should be cleaned with a polishing cloth, not a toothbrush. There are a couple of caveats. Diamonds attract grease and are overshadowed by the soap residue. Should be soaked in a solution of one part warm water and a portion of ammonia-based cleaner.
Another method to get a diamond is particularly bright for a few minutes soaking in a glass of vodka, rubbing with a brush and rinse.
The pearls, which are soft and porous, should never be placed in water. Clean with a soft, damp cloth. Remember that many jewels are stronger than the metals that are embedded, usually gold, silver or platinum and the metals have to be handled with special care.
Some parts should be provided to the jeweler to clean them: a very soft gemstone like tanzanite (a deep purple-blue gem) can be damaged with any kind of home treatment. Also take a professional antique jewelry, even if the gems are hard, the seam may be weak and the accumulation of stains and dirt will be difficult to remove safely.