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HomeArticles & AdviceCare and Cleaning of Your Jewellery

Care and Cleaning of Your Jewellery

Fine jewellery is a precious possession that is designed and crafted to last a lifetime. The proper care will assure the lasting qualities of your jewellery.

Gerry & Co are pleased to offer the following simple guidelines and tips for the care of your fine jewellery.


Tips for general care –
Even though you may wear your diamond engagement ring 24 hours a day, you should still give a thought to its care.

Even though a diamond is durable, it can be chipped by a hard blow.

Don’t let your diamond come into contact with chlorine bleach when you’re doing household chores. It can pit and discolour the mounting.

Do call in to see us at least once a year and have us check your rings and other precious pieces for loose claws and wear of mountings. We can also give them a professional clean and polish too for a small fee.

Putting diamonds away

Don't jumble your diamond pieces in a drawer or jewellery case, because diamonds can scratch other jewellery - and can also scratch each other.

Keep your precious pieces in a fabric-lined jewel case, or a box with compartments or dividers.

When you're not wearing diamonds and precious jewellery, they still require attention.

If you prefer to use ordinary boxes, wrap each piece individually in tissue paper.

Traveling with diamonds

Pack a small plastic bottle of prepared jewellery cleaner with your cosmetics. Then you can give your jewellery a quick 'shine-up' at any time.

The packing of your diamonds and other precious pieces for travel should be given care.

There are many types of cases especially designed for jewellery travel, available in all price ranges. They come in all sizes, shapes and patterns. Most have velvet pads inside to attach pins and earrings, and special compartments for rings, bracelets and necklets.


With everyday wear, diamonds get soiled and dusty. Creams, powders, soaps and even natural skin oils put a film on diamonds and cut down their brilliance. Chemicals in the air can discolour the mounting of precious jewellery.

Clean diamonds sparkle because the maximum amount of light can then enter and return to the surface with a fiery brilliance. It takes just a little care to keep them that way. Here are four ways to clean diamonds. One of them is pretty sure to fit the time, place and the job.

Detergent Bath

Prepare a small bowl of warm suds with any of the mild liquid detergents used in the home. Brush the pieces with an eyebrow brush while they are in the suds. Then transfer them to a wire tea strainer and rinse them under running water. Pat dry with a soft lintless cloth.

Warm Water Soak

Make a solution of warm water and a few drops of household ammonia in a cup. Soak the pieces for 30 minutes. Lift out and tap gently around the back and front of the mounting with an old soft toothbrush. Swish in the solution once more and drain on tissue paper.

Quick dip method

Buy one of the brand name liquid jewellery cleaners, with its kit, choosing the kind most useful to you. Read the label and follow its instructions. Don't touch clean diamonds with your fingers, handle your jewellery by its edges.

Ultrasonic Cleaner

There are many types of ultrasonic machines on the market that will clean any piece of jewellery that can be immersed in a liquid in a matter of minutes. They consist of a metal cup which you fill with water and detergent. When the machine is turned on, a high-frequency turbulence creates the cleaning action. Since each machine is slightly different, read the instructions very carefully before use.

It would be wise to mention here that before using an ultrasonic machine it is important to be sure that the claws or other type of setting is holding the stone securely as the cleaning action of the machine can dislodge unsecured stones from their settings. Another very important point to note is that whilst diamonds are safe to place in an ultrasonic machine there are many gems that must not come into contact with them. Gemstones that should not be put into an ultrasonic machine include Opal, Turquoise, Pearls, Coral (these are all porous gems) Also Emeralds as they are a brittle gem and could break or suffer other damage if they have been previously treated to enhance their colour. This is not an exhaustive list of gems not to clean ultrasonically and if you are at all unsure if your gem would be safe then please consult a jeweller or gemmologist prior to subjecting them to this cleaning method.


There are so many different coloured gemstones some of which require specific care and cleaning procedures that you are best to check with us before attempting cleaning. It may be the case that we feel you would be better to have the item cleaned in our workshop if it is liable to be damaged by 'home cleaning'.


Always separate your gold jewellery in a jewellery box with compartments. This will lessen the chance of scratching.

Remove all jewellery before showering or cleaning. Soap can cause a film to form on gold jewellery which, can make it appear dull and lifeless. By preventing the formation of this film, you immediately reduce the frequency that the items need cleaning.

Cleaning Gold Jewellery

We sell both soft cleaning cloths, both those that are impregnated with a cleaner and also Selvyt cleaning cloths to polish the jewellery. We also stock liquid gold jewellery cleaner which is in a small tub, complete with a basket for the items and a small brush to clean with.

The ultrasonic machine is again useable for cleaning gold jewellery but do be careful to check if it has gemstones set in the piece.

Tarnish can be removed with a prepared jewellery cleaning liquid or by mixing a soap and water solution with a few drops of ammonia.

Old toothbrushes are perfect to use as a cleaning brush as they are soft and less likely to cause damage to the articles. After the jewellery has been cleaned with a soapy solution it should be rinsed in lukewarm water and allowed to dry.

Grease can be removed by dipping the jewellery into plain rubbing alcohol.

Useful Tips

Remove jewellery when applying make-up and face powder.

Wash hands after applying make-up and powder and before putting on jewellery.

Keep your jewellery in a dry place.


Put on pearls after applying make-up, hairsprays and perfumes. Allow time for sprays to have dried first.

Don't toss them into a purse or jewellery box where they can be scratched by hard metal edges or harder stones.

Place cultured pearls in a chamois bag or wrap them in tissue when putting them away.

Have your pearls restrung once a year - Cosmetics and everyday wear weaken and stretch the threads that the pearls are on.

Have the pearls strung with a knot between each pearl as this will prevent loss of pearls if the thread should break.

After wear, wipe with a soft, barely damp cloth (preferably a chamois leather).


Mechanical watches (manual wind and self-winding automatics) should be serviced regularly according to the manufacturers instructions. It is important to do this as small particles of dust can get into the movement which, in turn, can increase friction of moving parts.

If your watch needs winding, this should be done in a clockwise direction at about the same time each day. The watch should be taken off the wrist for this so that you do not place undue pressure on the winding stem.

Quartz watches should have the battery replaced as soon as possible after the watch stops to prevent damage to the movement by leaking batteries.

Broken or badly scratched crystals/glass should be replaced as even a hairline crack can allow dust or moisture to get into the movement.

All watch repairs should be carried out by a trained watchmaker, they are the experts who can be trusted to put your watch back in working condition if there is a problem.

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