Jewelry Tips

Here are some tips that you may find helpful in wearing and taking care of your jewelry.

To remove a ring stuck on your finger, spray Windex on it; the silicone in it will help the ring slide off.

The ocean likes to gobble up earrings and rings—either take them off before playing in the waves or make sure these pieces fit very tightly. Don’t wear jewelry in swimming pools (at least not regularly) as the chlorine and other chemicals eat away at gold and other components of your jewelry. If you have a favorite pair of earrings, invest in better earring backs or check the backs for a tight fit regularly. Water can forcibly push those backs right off the posts.

Opals and emeralds are fragile and should not be cleaned in an ultrasonic machine.

Wear your pearls! Pearls stored in an airtight box, plastic bag or other container will dry out, look dull and become yellow or even chip and flake. They need air circulation and the oil from your skin to retain their luster and brightness. This goes for pearl earrings, rings and bracelets as well. Be gentle with pearls, especially rings. Pearls are similar in composition to our teeth and can scratch and chip readily.

To clean a strand of pearls, take a soft cloth and soak it in a solution of mild dish soap and warm but not hot water, wring out and carefully wipe down the strand. Then wipe it down with another cloth that has been soaked and rung out with water. Do not immerse the pearl strand as this will weaken its silk thread. Don’t hang the pearls to dry or store, lay them flat. Pearls should be the last thing you put on and the first thing you remove, always with clean hands. Keep in a soft pouch or lined box, but leave out occasionally. Keep the clasp closed so that the tongue part of the clasp does not scratch the pearls in your container. Look online for ideas of current, on-trend ways to wear a string of pearls.

Don’t store your jewelry in your bedroom; security reports show that this is the first place thieves look.

For jewelry appraisals, visit Larry Azose of Gemological Consulting Services in Seattle.

If you want additional insurance coverage for your jewelry, Jewelers Mutual is the industry’s oldest and largest insurer. Contact them at They specialize in what homeowner’s or rental insurance may not cover.