How to clean diamond jewelry
Diamonds are forever - and with a little bit of care, they sparkle forever too.
Your diamonds need an occasional shower. But why exactly? And how should you do it? Follow Laurence’s tips and your jewelry will last a lifetime.
Why do you need to clean your diamond ring?
Wearing your ring day in day out can dull its sparkle. Oils, sweat and dust all stick to the diamond’s surface, hiding its brilliance and beauty. The solution to keep that shimmer for a lifetime? Regular cleaning!
How often do you need to clean it?
Okay, so now you know why to clean it. But do you know how often you should?
Experts recommend a gentle clean once or twice a week, and an additional professional clean by a jeweler once or twice a year. Laurence’s pro tip to save your stones: during that professional clean, ask your jeweler to check if all the stones still sit properly and firmly in the setting. You wouldn’t want to lose them, now would you?
How do you clean it?
This is the part you’ve been waiting for! How exactly do you clean a diamond? Actually, there are several ways, depending on the amount of dirt, the metal used in the setting, the frailty of the setting and the other gemstones. Does this sound as a too delicate mission for you? Relax, ask your jeweler (or Laurence) for advice to help you out.
A very important note before you start! Close the drain! You wouldn’t be the first to see her precious ring slip down the drain. Ready? Now, let’s dive into the various cleaning methods.
- Gentle cleaning
This way of cleaning is suitable for all ring types. Are your diamonds really dirty? Then it probably won’t get rid of the stubborn dirt.
Soak your ring for about 20-40 minutes in a small bowl of warm water and mild dishwashing liquid. Then, use a soft, clean toothbrush to gently remove any remaining dirt. The toothbrush comes in handy for those hard-to-reach places like the back of the diamond, where dirt easily piles up. Be careful and use a toothbrush that’s exclusively for cleaning jewelry. Toothpaste is quite abrasive, so don’t use an old toothbrush. Also: don’t scrub too hard. Fragile settings, such as prongs in antique jewelry or tensile settings that keep the diamond in place with pressure) get easily damaged.
Rinse the ring under warm running water. Take a good look. Is it not clean yet? Then just repeat the process. When your diamond ring is clean, dry it with a soft, lint-free cloth (so no cotton pads for example). Avoid air drying: it can leave hard water spots on your diamonds, reducing their sparkle.
- Commercial cleaning solutions
There are several commercial cleaning solutions available on the market. Remember to carefully check the instructions and warnings. Make sure it doesn’t contain any chemicals or abrasive materials. They could discolor your ring or make it less durable and easier to damage. After the treatment, rinse your ring under running water and dry it with a lint-free cloth.
- Ultrasonic cleaner
An ultrasonic cleaner asks for caution: use it only if you’re sure that all the stones are firmly in place. Does your ring have other gemstones? Then it’s best not to use an ultrasonic cleaner. It causes stones, such as opal, to shatter.
This type of cleaning is used to remove encrusted dirt on your diamonds. It sends low frequency sound waves through a solution. The vibrating fluid loosens and removes the accumulated dirt and grime. But, as you’d probably guessed, the vibration can shake stones loose from their mountings or chip the girdles of diamonds set next to each other.
So, keep in mind: only use this method if you’re 100% sure the stones are all firmly set. Are you planning on giving it a try? Then don’t exceed the recommended time or use it too often. That would cause unnecessary wear on your ring and will loosen stones. Just as with the other methods, rinse your ring under running water afterwards and dry with a soft, lint-free cloth.
What are the don’ts?
Laurence told you what you should do when cleaning your rings. But this part is important too: what should you never do?
- Never use chlorine, bleach or acetone. They can break down some of the base metals in the ring.
- Never use abrasives, such as household cleaners or toothpaste. They can easily scratch metals.
- Never use ammonia or ammonia-based solutions if you’ve had your diamond treated in any way.
A sparkling diamond ring is a joy to see – and with a little care, you can enjoy it every day.