Jewelries are a girl’s best friend. They’re part of your early morning routine, accompany you throughout the day and leave you before you get to bed (some even get in bed with you!). They’re not just there with you the whole time but they’re that extra element that adds to your personality and that complement who you are. It’s no surprise that we want them to last!
For centuries, jewellery and body ornaments have been made from metal. From more accessible metals such as copper and brass to more precious ones like silver and gold. Either way, when we pick a piece of jewellery, we want those pieces to last. Although, I am personally trying to shift my jewellery collection to more precious and durable metals (such as silver), I still have a ton of favourite pieces that are made of brass or copper. Here are a few jewellery care tips I’ve learnt to make all my pieces last longer (whether made from precious metals or not):
Copper is a versatile, durable metal that has many practical used. Today, it is still commonly used and many ‘fashion’ jewelries are made from copper. That being said, it is a highly reactive metal and can be easily tarnished – especially when not cared for. Once a copper piece starts to tarnish, it turns into a light-green to blue-green colour – signs that is has started to damage. So how can you prevent, or slow down this process?
By cleaning it, and storing it well.
It’s simpler than you think! And you’d be surprised as what you need to do so – you probably already have everything at home: lemon and salt or baking soda.
- Salt & lemon: squeeze lemon on the piece, sprinkle salt and rub the piece gently using a cloth
- Baking soda & lemon: create a paste using equal amounts of each, put onto the piece and gently rub. Wipe off with a cloth.
Brass has very similar properties to copper. It is actually a mixture of zinc alloy and copper.
Like copper, it also needs careful care, all you need is: gentle soap, lemon, salt, lukewarm water
- Soap & lukewarm water: mix both together and use a cloth to wipe it on your jewellery, wipe down the mixture and like is air dry.
- Lemon slice & salt: slice a lemon and add salt sprinkles on it. Gently rub the lemon again your jewellery piece (or your piece onto the lemon with salt if it is little). You can also use a brush for this. Then wipe the mixture off.
Silver is known to be a precious metal, meaning is won’t tarnish as copper and brass do – it is less reactive and therefore known to be more durable as jewellery. But everything wears out eventually, so silver also needs some careful care despite it being a more durable metal.
I would also recommend keeping it simple with silver, sometimes a gently cloth wipe is enough but you can also use: apple cider vinegar
- Apple cider vinegar & water: mix 1 part vinegar and 3 parts water in a small glass. Dip a cloth and use it to gently rub your silver piece.
Cleaning is done! What next?
We all know how easy it is to simply get a box and throw all our pieces in there (yes, we know it also looks nice to have this ‘treasure chest like’ box of goodie!) but not only does it entangle all your pieces and mixes them up, it also speeds up the tarnishing process. We recommend giving your pieces a pouch, box or dedicated space and now having too many pieces mixed in the same space to avoid tangling and loosing them among others. So give your pieces that extra care and extra space is deserves – after all, they’re the cherry on the cake of your outfit and are what adds to your sparkle!
Looking to read more about the origins and history of jewellery? We talk all about it here.