There’s really something wonderful about wearing your fine jewelry every day. Instead of storing the pieces away for special occasions, you get to enjoy your favorite jewels. It may be a sentimental heirloom that ignites floods of happy memories when you glance at it. Or, it could be a piece gifted to you to mark a special occasion.
Some people choose not to wear their diamond engagement ring, or eternity rings every day because they’re worried, they may get damaged. Diamonds are actually the hardiest of gems, which is why they're the go-to stone for investment pieces and jewelry that’s designed to last a lifetime.
Other gemstones are susceptible to damage, but they can be worn every day too if you follow a few strategies to keep them safe. Let's look at some of the questions that you may have about wearing fine jewelry every day.
It's a problem every woman runs into at some stage. What do I do with your jewelry when you exercise? If you're a regular at the gym, this little issue could even prompt you to put your most beautiful pieces in storage and only rock the treadmill with your wedding band.
There are a couple of safety issues that come into play. If you dabble in boxing classes or lift heavy weights, avoid wearing bulky rings. You could knock the stone out of its settings, crack a gemstone or damage your hand if your ring gets caught on any apparatus. If your sweat session is limited to the pool, cardio, yoga, or the treadmill, you've got options.
Neither sweat nor chlorine will damage your diamond or gemstone jewelry. You do have to watch out for metals, however. Silver and some types of gold metals can become pitted if they’re exposed to pool chemicals. Platinum rings can contain traces of gold, so unless your wedding ring is pure platinum, avoid swimming with it regularly. Sweat and chlorine will lead to dullness, but a regular cleanse using mild soap in lukewarm water will return your fine jewelry to its glorious shine.
One last thing - avoid a post-workout sauna if you’re wearing gemstones. Direct sunlight will cause silver to tarnish, and heat can lead to color changes in certain gems.
Yes, it's true that you need to take care when you’re conducting your daily beauty regimen. Fragrances, hairspray, and creams can lead to gemstones becoming dull. Even diamonds can attract oils, which stick to their facets and leave them looking cloudy. The most vulnerable jewelry is pearls. They’re porous so they absorb the chemicals easily, which can dry them out and cause them to crack.
The best strategy to protect your jewelry is to put it on once you’ve finished with your hair and make-up steps. At night, remove your jewelry before you apply your night cream and other lotions.
Diamonds are hardy, which means they’re unlikely to get damaged or scratched. However, this does mean they can scratch other gems – including your other diamonds - and metals pretty easily. Avoid storing them along with other jewelry. If they’re on a pendant, remove them from the chain and store separately too.
For much more you can read our full Guide to Storing Fine Jewelry.
The answer to this all depends on the nature of your work. Diamonds are the hardest known minerals, but they can still crack if they drop on a hard surface or fall out of their settings. If your work requires you to move boxes, furniture, or other active endeavors, it’s best to avoid wearing jewelry, in particular rubies, sapphires, and other precious stones. They can chip or crack.
If you work with your hands a lot, you may need to remove your jewelry. Ensure you keep it in a safe place where it can’t get knocked or dropped. Another option is to wear your engagement or wedding ring on a necklace when you’re at work. This will keep it close to your heart, but safe from damage.
Cleaning products are full of chemicals that should be kept well away from your jewelry. Bleach, for example, will discolor metals including gold and platinum and can erode the finish and polish of gemstones. Ammonia is present in most household cleaners and will turn your silver jewelry black. Don't be fooled into thinking that if your cleaning products state they are ‘natural' or ‘organic' that they're safe to expose your jewelry to either. So, the rule of thumb is to remove your jewelry before you tackle any household cleaning.
If you’re going to be spending any time in the sun, you’ll be covering up with sun protection creams. While these won’t damage your engagement ring in any way, the oils will more than likely collect in the ring and leave it looking dull. This isn’t a biggie. Why not enjoy your holiday with your favorite pieces in tow, and book them in for a professional clean at your jeweler when you get home? Or do it yourself at home, following our full Guide to Cleaning Your Fine Jewelry.
One thing to be careful of is if you're wearing any necklaces that are strung. If you're spending a lot of time hanging out in the water, the string can become moist and could even begin to rot. Also, avoid wearing silver jewelry. Chlorine in pools and hot tubs will lead to tarnishing.
If you don't suffer from any metal allergies, and your skin isn't sensitive, it's fine to sleep with your earrings and rings on. However, it's a good idea to remove them at least once a week to clean them. Earrings, in particular, can gather dirt, bacteria, and oil.
The one issue with sleeping with your jewelry on is wear and tear. Remove your precious pieces before you hit the sack if you’re concerned about the prongs of your gem rings wearing out.
Diamond jewelry for women is having a moment right now. There’s a look we’re loving at the moment, which has been coined as ‘self-love’ rings. These are diamond engagement rings worn by women on their pinkie fingers. The most wonderful thing about this look is that it has nothing to do with your relationship status. It’s all about making a statement to yourself and the world that you value your life and contribution - you’re proud of yourself and your accomplishments.
Another jewelry trend that's growing is layering or stacking rings. This could be eternity bands worn on either side of your engagement ring, or rings with a mix of gemstones worn on multiple fingers. There are no rules. It's all about having fun with your fine jewelry and dressing it up and down to suit your mood or the occasion.
For more on the Latest Jewelry Trends, read our blog post.
The best environment for jewelry storage is a space that is cool, dry, out of direct sunlight, and in a place, you know they won't come into contact with chemicals. If you've been able to hold onto the original box the item came in, it's likely that this is ideal for storing the jewelry piece in.
Alternatively, you can wrap each piece with acid-free tissue paper, raw silk, or untreated cotton. You can also hold onto the little pouches of silica that you get when you buy shoes or other items. Place them near your jewelry that’s being stored as these help balance humidity levels.
As mentioned before, we have much more information you can read our full Guide to Storing your Fine Jewelry.
Shimansky consultants in our showrooms will be able to advise you on the best way to care for, and store, your fine jewelry so it lasts a lifetime. If you wear your jewelry every day, you can book it in with us every couple of months for a professional clean. This will keep your pieces sparkling and allow us to check the settings are still secure. If you're unsure of the metal or gems that make up your jewelry, check with us and we'll be able to give advice on whether or not it's advisable to wear them every day.