5 Easy Jewelry Care Tips for GLDN Jewelry
Caring For 14k Gold-Filled, Rose Gold-Filled, Solid 14k Gold or Sterling Silver Jewelry
We get it – nobody wants to spend a lot of time on jewelry care, but we all want our jewelry to look shiny and new for the rest of our lives.
Luckily, all our GLDN jewelry just needs some simple care to keep it looking gorgeous. Follow these easy tips, and you’ll be GLDN. (Or sterling. You get the idea.)
2. Bathe In It
Go ahead and shower with your pieces. Clean water is great for giving jewelry a gentle wash. (Just avoid harsh soaps.)
3. Don't Sweat It
Sweat – or water augmented with chemicals like chlorine – can really take a toll on your pieces. Take off your jewelry for pools, hot tubs and heavy exercise sessions.
4. Periodic Deep Clean
We could all use a serious cleaning session every once in a while. Using a gentle soap or baking soda, soak your piece for a few minutes. A toothbrush can gently remove dirt in tight spaces. Dry thoroughly. For extra shine, buff with your polish cloth.
5. Store it Safely
Clean and dry your piece well before storing in an airtight container. Storing pieces in little ziplock baggies or small sealed containers not only reduce oxidation and tarnish, but can reduce those pesky tangles.
Now that we have general guidelines, let’s dive in a little deeper on how to care for your specific metals.
Gold-filled Jewelry Care
What Causes Gold-Filled Tarnish
Our 14k gold-filled pieces are the perfect combination of durability and quality. But that doesn’t mean that gold-filled isn’t capable of tarnishing.
With gold-filled jewelry, you’re going to find that what touches it, how you clean it and how you store it is going to be the big factors for tarnish. So let’s talk about what SHOULD NOT be touching your gold-filled pieces.
Like we talked about above, what’s really going to harm your gold-filled jewelry is the usual culprits: chlorine, sunscreen and sweat.
Of course, lots of beauty products contain other ingredients that aren’t great for gold-filled jewelry. Medicated face washes, toning shampoos, and even your run-of-the-mill lotions and hair products can have ingredients that really shouldn’t touch that thick layer of gold.
Minimize or Prevent Gold-Filled Tarnish
So let’s talk about the easiest ways to prevent that pesky darkening:
- Take your pieces off, apply and dry. When in doubt, take off your pieces to do things like applying makeup, lotions, sunscreens, skincare and even hair products. Let them sink in or dry before putting your pieces back on.
- Get out of the chlorine. No two ways about it: Don’t wear your pieces in the hot tub or the pool. It’s (literally) a chemical recipe for tarnish.
- Stay out of the sauna and never exercise. Okay, maybe let’s just say “take your pieces off to go in the sauna and exercise” but you get the idea.
- Unlike sterling silver, which loves the oils from your skin (more on that below!), gold-filled jewelry can be more sensitive depending on your unique body chemistry. That means that taking off gold-filled jewelry to sleep and wiping it gently after use can make a big difference to keeping it bright.
Removing Tarnish And Cleaning Gold-Filled Jewelry
Don’t panic if that pretty piece got a bit of not-so-pretty tarnish. Let’s talk some basic cleaning.
- Use that polish cloth, but sparingly: Remember that gold-filled is plated with a layer of 14k gold. That means that polishing it too hard or often is going to risk buffing off that layer, even if it is very thick. So proceed gently!
- When you do need to give it a little clean, just let it soak in some water with a touch of mild dish soap or cleanser. Gently pat it dry, before polishing it up with cloth.
What About Solid Gold Care?
Solid gold is not just beautiful, but very durable. However, that doesn’t mean it doesn’t require some care. For a gentle, regular clean, solid gold pieces are great to regularly shower in or bathe in. Just watch out for anything too chemically abrasive, like toning shampoos or other coarse exfoliants.
Sterling Silver Jewelry Care
What Causes Silver Tarnishing
All of GLDN’s silver pieces are solid sterling silver. This solid precious metal can last forever. However, sterling silver can tarnish in certain conditions and will need to be polished to bring it back to a shine.
It may seem strange, but even the air works to tarnish your sterling silver. The moisture in the air that makes a summer hot and humid also works to tarnish that silver, packing it away in an airtight container is going to go a long way to keep the air dry and the piece tarnish-free.
The air around us also contains elements like sulfur – all culprits in accelerating tarnish on silver. Digging in sulfur-rich dirt or mud, using care products with sulfur (shampoos, cleansers, etc.) or even exposing your jewelry to foods with sulfur (watch out chopping onions!) can lead to that darkening you dread.
And here’s another thing: The acidity on your own skin can make a difference about tarnish. Some people find sterling silver tarnishes faster on them than it might on someone else.
So the bad news? Sterling silver can tarnish . . . by literally existing in our air, or on our bodies. But the much better news? We’ve got lots of ways to minimize or prevent tarnish before it starts, and polish it up even if it’s already there.
Minimize or Prevent Silver Tarnish
Here are some ways that sterling silver needs to be cared for to minimize the likelihood of tarnish and oxidation.
- Oils from your skin help prevent silver from tarnishing, so the more you wear it, the more the oils can help keep it shiny new.
- Don’t let sterling silver hang out with anything acidic. Sure, most of us aren’t storing our sterling silver in abrasive chemicals – but that also might mean something as simple as not wrapping it in certain tissues or papers that are acidic.
- Store sterling silver in an air-tight container when you’re not wearing it to keep it away from the unpredictability of the elements.
Removing Tarnish And Cleaning Sterling Silver Jewelry
If the oxidized look is not for you, sterling silver can be brought back to its original shine in a few ways.
- Use that polishing cloth GLDN provided you in your order! It’s perfect for buffing out that everyday tarnish you see. (And check out more notes below about it.)
- If your piece is heavily tarnished, try lining a pan with aluminum foil, and soaking the piece in a bath of 1 tsp salt and 2 tsp baking soda. Wait up to five minutes. The aluminum, salt and soda work together to make the piece tarnish-free.
- Note: Polishing a chain with a cloth won’t get into all the little crevices and you’ll need to use one of the other methods.
Polishing Cloths For Gold and Silver Jewelry
Each of our pieces come with a polishing cloth to help bring back the shine. But don’t get too aggressive with it on gold-filled or vermeil pieces; there are special polishing compounds in the cloth that if used too often can start to take off some of the 14k gold layer, even though it’s quite thick. Have a sterling silver or solid gold piece? Polish away!
Polishing Cloth Note: If you’re looking in horror at the black that’s coming off your piece as you buff it with your cloth, don’t panic. That black isn’t dirt; it’s just the polishing agent in the cloth reacting with the metal.
When the cloth is covered in black, it’s just an indication it’s been hard at work polishing :)