Ring maintenance: day-to-day care of your ring

This posting series is all about caring for your gemstone ring (engagement ring or otherwise!) and will cover topics like day-to-day care and maintenance as well as repairs you might expect to make over the lifetime of the ring.

Let's get started!

Everyday care for your ring

Some ladies, understandably are superstitious about taking off their wedding rings. Ever. However, there are times when it is in the best interest of that precious piece to be taken off your finger:

* Sports
* Gardening
* Cleaning

Playing sports that require you to handle equipment, say a tennis racket or weights, can put your ring and especially your stone at risk. The same dangers apply while gardening. It is possible to chip your diamond or knock the setting loose while doing heavy work and exercise. Meanwhile, harsh chemicals and many cleaning products can damage your ring.

It's also a good idea not to wear your ring while washing the dishes.

When you take off your ring, make sure you have a specific place to put it -- not only somewhere safe but somewhere you will remember. You probably want to avoid keeping it near the sink (think drain! think garbage disposal!). Or where it will tempt a toddler or kitten with its sparkly stones. But you don't want to hide it so well that you can't remember where it is!

Diamonds should be stored in their own box, pouch, or jewelry box compartment because they can scratch other pieces.

Always apply your make-up, perfume, lotion, sunscreen, and hair products prior to putting on your jewelry. These products can gunk up your diamond, and even etch colored gemstones.

A note on skinny dipping: take off your ring too!

Remove your ring (and your jewelry) before swimming in a chlorine pool or using a hot tub. Almost all jewelry metals are impervious to most things except chlorine . Chlorine can weaken solder joints, particularly in white gold.

The other thing to think about is that cold water can temporarily shrink your fingers... just enough to loosen a ring from your finger. So plan ahead before you head to the beach to play in the waves, your ring could become sunken treasure.

Cleaning

At Grimball Jewelers, we will clean your ring free of charge using our ultrasonic cleaner and steam. Please take advantage of this courtesy.

When you don't have time to visit the jewelry store, you can safely clean your ring at home with the following home cleaning method:

  1. Soak your jewelry briefly in a cleaning solution made from warm water and mild dish detergent.
  2. Use a soft toothbrush to gently loosen any dirt and remove film.
  3. Rinse in warm water and buff dry with a soft, lint-free cloth.

Note: If you do this over an open drain, use a strainer!!

Stay tuned for the second part in the series where we'll cover typical ring repairs.