4C's Handbook - Diamond Care
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Although diamonds are the hardest substance on earth and can't be scratched by any other material except by another diamond they can chip or break. A blunt blow or sharp strike against a hard surface can damage your diamond as well as your jewelry or diamond engagement ring. Many people think that diamonds are indestructible and this is not the case. Diamonds are durable and it's very unlikely that you'll damage them however you should minimize your risk by taking the following precautions.
Safety Precautions For Your Jewelry
- Physical Activity: There are a lot of hard objects and surfaces in the gym and your hands are moving in many quick directions that could cause you to strike or hit the diamond. Also, when lifting or squeezing the barbells or equipment you can quickly wear away the platinum or gold on your engagement setting. Remove your diamond and put it in a safe place before Working Out.
- Sleeping or In Bed: While at rest some people have a tendency to move in their sleep. The fabrics in the bed linens or your clothing can catch under the prongs and pry them from the diamond. Because you are not aware of your movements while asleep, you may damage your ring. Place your jewelry in your jewelry box or in a safe place while resting.
- Poking or Probing Diamonds: Many people become concerned about losing their precious diamonds and continuously check the stones in their jewelry or engagement rings by probing them or wiggling them. They use their fingernails, tweezers, needles, or writing instruments. This can be bad for the diamonds because the constant wear against the stone can chip or break the stone as well loosen the diamond from its setting. If you are concerned about the tightness of your diamond you should take it to your local jeweler for occasional cleaning and inspection. Do not poke or probe.
- Cosmetics: Many cosmetics such as lotions, makeup, foundation, hair dyes, blush, etc., have harsh ingredients that can stain or damage the diamond in your ring as well as the platinum or gold. Take your jewelry off before applying makeup, lotions, hair products, and nail polish. These products are very harmful to your diamond jewelry and can prematurely wear away the precious metal.
- Pools & Jacuzzis: Maintenance of pools and Jacuzzis require the use of common bleach and chlorine products. Long term exposure to chlorine can cause your diamond to change colors, permanently stain gemstones and ruin precious metals such as platinum, gold, and white gold. The chlorine will also corrode the weld joints or solder joints used to attach parts to your jewelry like the prongs, clasps, and earring backings. Once the solder joints corrode they can weaken and break off causing you to lose your diamonds or gemstones or even the entire jewelry item
- Frequent Sizing: When a ring is sized, it must be filed and polished in order to bring back the original shine that is lost during the sizing process. Every time a ring is filed and polished it loses significant amounts of platinum, white gold, or yellow gold. When you have a ring sized too many times the prongs and shank can become thin and weak causing them to break. Choose one size that you are happy with and stick with it even if your finger size fluctuates from time to time.
Cleaning Your Diamonds & Jewelry
The best cleaning method to use is a visit to your local jeweler or jewelry store for a professional cleaning and inspection. However, if you are between visits and would like to clean it at home, a long soak in Windex is a great method. Take a small bowl and fill it with the glass cleaner and let the ring or jewelry soak in the bowl for about an hour. Afterwards, use an old worn out toothbrush (a new one is too stiff and could damage the prongs) and gently scrub the diamonds. Finally rinse the ring under cold clean water, don't rinse in the sink as you could lose a loose diamond or entire ring down the drain, pat the jewelry dry with a paper towel.
Storing Your Diamonds
Andrews Jewelers suggests that you store all diamonds and diamond jewelry in soft pouches to prevent the jewelry items from rubbing or scratching against one another. Constant rubbing can cause abnormal wear of the platinum, white gold, or yellow gold. If the diamonds are rubbing against one another it can cause the diamonds to dull or lose their brilliance. For security purposes we recommend that you invest in a small home safe. When not at home you can store your jewelry there protecting it against would be thieves. In addition, we recommend that you attain some form of jewelry insurance to protect you against, stone loss, damage, or theft. For more information visit our Andrews Jewelers Jewelry Insurance Page. Now that you have read the Teach Yourself The 4C's Handbook, you are ready to search for diamonds.