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How To Care For Your Jewelry
We take pride in our work and set high standards in the craftsmanship of our hand crafted jewelry. As with every product its longevity will depend on the care you give it. These are some helpful hints on how to look after your DanglesNBangles pieces. Always read instructions on the side of Jewelry Cleaners and Jewelry Cleaner Machines prior to putting your jewelry in it. Although all of DanglesNBangles pieces are made to the highest quality, do not wear your jewelry to bed, swimming, in the shower or washing dishes. It is best to put your jewelry on at the last moment, after you have put on make-up, used hairspray, body spray or deodorant. This will cut down the tarnish process.
Glass or Crystal Beads
Glass beads need only a wipe over with a soft cloth from time to time, to ensure that they are free from dust and exterior grime. Dirt and grime reduce the appearance of the beads. They prevent the refraction of light through the bead, which is how these types of beads create their beautiful optical effects. If more than a wipe over is needed to keep your jewelry clean, then be careful not to overdo it. Do not immerse your beads in water, use only a damp cloth with a small amount of dish soap if desired. Full strength, commercial jewelry cleaner is not needed for cleaning these beads. Like any other glass object, they are best preserved by regular polishing and maintenance.
All Sterling Silver jewelry will tarnish with time, as soon as Sterling Silver makes contact with Oxygen, tarnishing will begin. Please note, your Sterling Silver jewelry will not discolor immediately, usually pieces that are cared for will not tarnish for a year or so. Tarnish can easily be taken off your jewelry with a Sterling Silver Polishing Cloth. As mentioned above, to maintain the original condition of your silver jewelry, polish your pieces regularly using a non-abrasive cleaning cloth. Purchase a Silver Polishing Cloth from DanglesNBangles. The center of these cloths can be used to clean the jewelry, the outside of the cloth can be used to buff up the silver and remove any tarnish residue. Soap and water will also help keep your silver looking good, although will not replace the tarnish removing properties of a silver cloth. Remember do not dry silver off with paper towels or tissues, always use a soft cloth. When you are not wearing your silver jewelry, store it in a cool, dry place. A Zip-lock bag is ideal for this and will help prevent both tarnishing or scratching by other pieces. Every piece I send out comes in its own zip-lock bag, and a cardboard box, it is best to store your jewelry when not wearing it in an air-tight plastic bag. Never immerse your silver jewelry in chlorine, salt water, mineral springs, and try to not make contact with suntan lotion. Also, some household cleaners contain chlorine bleach, these will cause discoloration and also loosen gemstones. Always remove your jewelry before doing household chores, especially when washing dishes. Avoid abrasive cleaners, detergents and commercial jewelry cleaners "dips" especially if the pieces have an oxidized finish. An oxidized finish is often found coating White Gold, Sterling Silver and Platinum Jewelry to give it a more shiny finish. If your White Gold jewelry has lost its luster even after cleaning, you may need to take the jewelry to a local jeweler to have it re-oxidized, this is usually a quick and cheap process to do. Using harsh polishing cleaners, and over-cleaning your jewelry will alter the look of your jewelry.
Never use an ultrasonic cleaner, ammonia or any chemical solution to clean opaque gemstones, such as turquoise, malachite, onyx, lapis lazuli and opals. They are a porous stone and may absorb chemicals, which build up inside the stone and cause discoloration. Simply wipe them gently with a moist cloth until clean. If your jewelry contains gemstones or pearls, do not immerse in water, as this can loosen some settings. This is a general rule for set jewelry, not wire wrapped jewelry. Never use dips or abrasives cleaners on gemstones.
The pearls most of us wear today are cultured pearls, their existence initiated by humans who insert a bead or other object into an oyster or clam. The clam coats the foreigner with nacre, the patina that gives pearls their unique appearance. The depth of the nacre coating depends on the type of creature involved, the water it lives in, and how long the intruder is left in place before it is removed. As nacre thickness increases, so does the quality and durability of the pearl.
Caring for Your Pearls
Even cultured pearls with thicker coatings are more fragile than most other gemstones, so you must handle them carefully to keep them in the best condition. Your pearls will stay cleaner if you put them on after you've applied your makeup and perfume. Be sure to take off your pearl rings before you apply hand and body creams. Wipe your pearls with a soft, lint-free cloth as soon as you take them off. The cloth can be dampened with water or it can be dry. If damp, allow the pearls to air dry before putting them away. Dirty pearls can be cleaned with a mild soap and water solution (try Ivory flakes). Never clean your pearls with solutions that contain ammonia or harsh detergents. Don't put pearl jewelry in an ultrasonic cleaner. Don't use abrasive cleaners or rub pearls with abrasive cloth. Both can wear away the nacre coating, leaving you with a plain looking bead.
Don't store your pearls with other jewelry, because they can be scratched easily when metal or gemstones rub against them. Find a special slot in your jewelry box for the pearls or keep them in a soft bag made from chamois or another non-abrasive material. Your fine pearl necklaces should be restrung periodically so that you're sure the silk or nylon cord holding them is in good shape. Did You Know: Natural pearls are sold by carat weight, but cultured pearls are sold by their size in millimeters.
Pearls are an organic gem, called that because they are created by living creatures. Each pearl begins its existence as a piece of grit or other particle that makes its way into the shell of a marine or freshwater mollusk — some types of oysters and clams. A defense mechanism kicks-in and coats the particle with layer after layer of a substance called nacre, or mother-of-pearl, which eventually becomes thick enough to form a pearl. Pearls are classified by their origins and their shapes.
Pearl Origin Classifications:
Natural Pearls are formed when an accidental intruder enters a mollusk's shell and continuous layers of nacre grow like onion skins around the particle. Natural pearls vary in shape depending on the shape of the piece being coated. Natural pearls have always been considered rare and are quite expensive. They are usually sold by carat weight. Most natural pearls on today's market are vintage pearls.
Cultured Pearls like natural pearls, grow inside of a mollusk, but with human intervention. A shell is carefully opened and an object is inserted. Shapes of objects vary, depending on the final shape of pearl that's desired. Over time the object becomes coated with layers of nacre. The depth of the nacre coating depends on the type of mollusk involved, the water it lives in, and how long the intruder is left in place before being harvested. As nacre thickness increases, so does the quality and durability of the cultured pearl. Cultured pearls are sold by their size in millimeters.
Saltwater Pearls originate within a saltwater mollusk. Saltwater pearls can be either natural or cultured.
Freshwater Pearls grow inside of a freshwater mollusk — one that lives in a river or a lake. Spherical pearls are round, which is traditionally the most desirable shape. The rounder the pearl, the more expensive its price tag. Symmetrical pearls include pear shaped pearls and other shapes that have symmetry from one side to another, but are not round. Baroque pearls are irregularly shaped pearls. They are often the least expensive category of pearls, but are unique and quite beautiful.
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