Jewellery Care and L.B.D Jewellery Information
Here is some information to give an understanding of the jewellery provided at L.B.D and our advice on caring for your sterling silver, gold plated and gemstone jewellery.
All of our sterling silver is 100% solid sterling silver 925...
You might be wondering what is sterling silver? Sterling silver is an alloy made from 92.5 percent silver and 7.5 percent alloy. An alloy is essentially the mixture of two (or more) elements .
Our sterling silver is Nickel Free so very hypoallergenic for those with sensitive skin.
That’s right, cheap metals can irritate the skin and result in allergic reactions, making sterling silver a great option for sensitive skin. Inexpensive metals like nickel or brass can cause infections, especially with earrings.
Bottom line: Sterling silver, aka 925 silver is hypoallergenic, high quality, stylish and safe.
The only downside to sterling silver is that the added copper will cause it to tarnish, with the metal’s surface turning dark brown, black or even some copper coloured staining, especially in humid or hot conditions, or if stored near something toxic in the environment in which it is stored. However, it's easy to clean and beneath the tarnish your sterling silver will still be in great condition. Sterling silver won't rust, turn green or perish like cheap metals. Tarnish is only on the surface of real sterling silver, and can be removed with a good clean.
Sterling Silver discolours because of hydrogen sulfide (sulfur), a substance that occurs in the air. When silver comes into contact with it, a chemical reaction takes place and a tarnish like layer is formed.
Tarnishing can take place even faster if sterling silver comes in contact with high humidity, high heat, detergents or cosmetics. The good news is that with sterling silver, regular care can really slow down the tarnishing, unlike silver-plated jewelry which will deteriorate no matter what. And even if your silver jewelry has already been spotted with tarnish, a good clean or polishing will easily make it look like new.
STORING YOUR STERLING SILVER
STORE STERLING SILVER WITH STERLING SILVER, AND GOLD WITH GOLD.
Gold jewellery will cause sterling silver to tarnish if they are stored together.
A good air tight container or zip lock bag will help prevent nature’s elements taking hold, as it’s when jewellery isn’t being worn that it is exposed to elements such as varnish on a set of wooden drawers that you like to store your jewellery in, or direct heat if you store your jewellery in a place that may come in contact with direct sunlight or humid conditions.
Your sterling silver should not be kept in any chemically treated surfaces, particularly surfaces made of wood if it has been stained or treated which may speed up the tarnishing process.
Moisture also adds to tarnishing and discoloration on sterling silver jewellery. To avoid this problem, store your silver pieces with silica gel pouches in an air tight bag/box or jewellery pouch to help absorb moisture. These will help to absorb the gases that cause tarnishing.
I find that with regular wear your silver will stay fairly clean and only need a slight polish here and there.
The hardest time to keep sterling silver clean is when it isn’t being worn and when nature’s elements take hold. If you come back to your jewellery after some time and find it be be tarnished heavily, don’t stress, here is a great way to clean it quickly at home.
CLEANING AT HOME -TIPS
DO NOT USE ON GOLD PLATED JEWELLERY
Most of the time your sterling silver will just need a little polish but if it is badly tarnished here is way to clean it it home..
-Wrap a bowl with Aluminium Foil
-Add tarnished sterling silver and a tablespoon of baking soda to the bowl
- Pour in boiling water
- watch the water bubble and remove the tarnish. You will smell the tarnish attaching to the foil..
- when the silver looks clean (this won’t take long) remove with tongs or similar
- rinse will cool water and dry
- polish with a jewellery cloth or similar
CARING FOR YOUR JEWELLERY WHEN YOU WEAR IT EVERY DAY
Remember, with proper care and knowledge of your jewelry, your piece can last a lifetime and beyond.
Most jewellery suppliers tell you not to shower with your jewellery on, but water alone is not going to do any lasting damage to our sterling silver. Just make sure to dry it after.
If you plan to use any chemically treated soaps or shampoos while you shower, you may notice this will make your jewellery go dull or even start to spec with some tarnish. If this does happens just give it a clean. But to care for your jewellery it is advised that if you plan to use harsh products as you shower, for example hair toner, use a purple shampoo, use a chemical hair removal lotion (just to give a few examples) remove your jewellery while you use these as your jewellery most probably won’t like it..
Chlorine is a pretty harsh chemical, and one of the main things sterling silver does not like. If decide to swim with your jewellery on, or you forget to remove your silver jewelry before hopping in A Chlorine pool, just give it a rinse with fresh water and clean it afterwards.
A spa is 10 times worse than a pool, so even I remove my jewellery before entering a spa or similar.
If you don’t know what the water conditions are, it’s best to remove your jewellery just in case it has crazy high chlorine levels.
Swimming in Fresh Water is fine, just remember to dry it off when you dry yourself.
If you are like me, then you never like to take your jewellery off, and the beach is no exception, Just understand the risks. The Salty Sea can leave a residue on your jewellery that can cause it to go dull and discolour, so it’s fairly important that when you get home from your day at the beach, and you shower yourself, you give your sterling silver the same treatment. Give it a clean in some soapy water and give it a dry. I like to use a gentle washing up liquid.
The biggest risk however, of wearing your jewellery at the beach is it slipping of your finger and floating away, or being damaged when you get dumped by that massive wave you didn’t see coming. Currents can also whisk an anklet straight off your ankle. Ultimately it’s your decision but just have a little think about what could happen before you decide.
Chemicals in lotions, perfumes, hairspray or hair products can be quite harsh, and can cause your jewelry to tarnish. Apply them first, let them dry, and then put your jewelry on. If using hair products, just be super careful to protect your earrings from a coating. This alone can make a HUGE difference in your silver's luster and shine.
Hand Sanitizer is now used more than ever. Remove your rings while you apply. Let it dry and then it’s fine to put them straight back on..
CARING FOR GEMSTONES
Generally the same rules apply when caring for your gemstone jewellery as for sterling silver jewellery. You just need to be a tad more cautious as chemicals can cause glue settings to deteriorate rapidly, resulting in gems falling out of jewellery. Please take special care of your gemstone jewellery and avoid exposing them to any chemicals I described earlier.
Clean gemstone jewellery gently with a lint-free cloth or soft-bristle toothbrush, along with a solution of warm soapy water. Afterwards, dry gently with a lint-free cloth.
Gemstones can vary in terms of physical properties, so to clean porous stones such as natural turquoise, use a damp soft cloth only – try to avoid the use of detergents and liquids. This just may cause premature fading and loss of vibrancy.
GOLD PLATED JEWELLERY
Do *not* use an impregnated silver polishing cloth on gold plated jewellery, as this may strip away the plating as they are treated.
Our Gold Plating/ Vermeil is over a base of solid sterling silver, so will not rust or react like other gold plated metals. This means that a little water here and there will not cause damage to your jewellery or cause bad skin reactions.
Gold Plated Jewellery needs a little extra love. The more love you give, the longer it will last. It can last for years and years with the right care..
-Wait until your lotions or sanitizers are 100% dry or has been absorbed by your skin before you wear your gold plated ring, bracelet or necklace.
Hair Products, perfumes, chlorine, and so on will make your gold plating wear away faster so be careful to protect your gold from these elements and it’s advised to remove when swimming to help your gold jewellery last that extra mile. If you forget though, the same rules apply, gently rinse and dry it gently right away.
If you really want the longest life for your gold plated jewellery here are some more tips.
After every use, clean your plated jewelry with a cotton ball or a very soft cloth to remove any dust and dirt. Gently rub the surface of your gold plated jewelry using a clean soft cloth, helps restore shine.
If your jewelry needs more cleaning you may clean it with warm, soapy water. Soak it for a few minutes and you may clean it with a soft cloth. Stay away from jewelry cleaners and antibacterial soaps which may have certain components that will make your gold plated jewelry wear more quickly.
After cleaning your gold jewellery, keep it in a jewelry box separate from other types of jewelry you have. Small zip-locks work great.
Store like items together. Do not store gold plating and silver together. The different metals will cause each other to tarnish, fade and/or turn colors. Have different storage places for different colors of metals like gold and silver. Store in a dry area.
Do *not* use a jewellery polishing cloth as these are impregnated with anti tarnish properties designed to clean and polish and this will wear away the gold plating.
RHODIUM PLATED STERLING SILVER
Some of our prestige jewellery has been Rhodium Plated..
Rhodium plating enhances the inherent value and durability of sterling silver. Rhodium will make your jewellery more durabable. Rhodium is scratch resistant meaning that you won’t have to worry about scratching for a very long time.
The durability of a rhodium-plated piece is further enhanced by its corrosion-free state, so will not tarnish over time like sterling silver. You won’t have to worry about tarnishing or discolouration from exposure to toxic gases, water and hard surfaces or worry about any skin reactions if you are sensitive to sterling silver.
Please note though that Rhodium plating, although more glossy, luxurious and durable than sterling silver, has a slightly darker colour than polished sterling silver. You will notice this in the related images displayed.