Gold and Platinum
Gold jewelry pieces make up the majority of many fine jewelry collections. Gold comes in many different styles and colors, but the care and cleaning procedure remains the same. Platinum, while not as prevalent as gold, is cared for in the same way.
Remove all gold jewelry before showering or cleaning. Soap can cause a film to form on gold jewelry, making it appear dull and dingy. By preventing the formation of this film, you immediately reduce the frequency with which your pieces will need to be cleaned.
To clean your jewelry, you can get a jewelry-specific cleaner from your jeweler or a mild soap and water solution works fine. In addition, a soft chamois cloth is an inexpensive way to keep your pieces lustrous and shining.
Be careful to avoid chlorine. Chlorine, especially at high temperatures, can permanently damage or discolor your gold jewelry. Do not wear gold jewelry while using chlorine bleach or while in a pool or hot tub.
You can remove tarnish with jewelry cleaner or by using soap and water mixed with a few drops of ammonia. Carefully brush with a soft bristle brush. An old toothbrush can also be used. After the brushing, rinse with lukewarm water and allow it to dry.
Grease can be removed from gold jewelry by dipping the jewelry into plain rubbing alcohol (not gemstones!).
Sterling Silver Jewelry
Sterling silver jewelry, like other precious metals, can oxidize with time. But properly maintained, silver jewelry improves with age and develops a lush patina. Treat your silver well, care for it properly and it will reward you with a long life and lustrous look.
Clean your silver jewelry with a mild soap and water solution, allowing the water to bead up, and then pat dry with a soft cloth. For more stubborn dirt, use a jewelry cleaner designed for silver use.
Store your silver in a cool, dry place, preferably in a tarnish-preventive bag or wrapped in a soft piece of felt or cloth. Store pieces individually so that they don’t knock together and scratch.
Do not rub silver with anything other than a polishing cloth or a fine piece of felt. Tissue paper and paper towels can cause scratches because of the fibers in these products.
Make sure your silver is not exposed to air and light during storage, as this can cause the silver to tarnish. And don’t wear sterling silver in chlorinated water or when working with household chemicals.