How to Clean a Diamond Ring
Treating a piece of diamond jewellery with the utmost care will ensure that your precious gems will maintain their beauty and sparkle to last a lifetime. It is even more important that if this piece of jewellery is a diamond ring that you take suitable care of this precious stone. The reason for this is that whilst diamonds are famed for being one of the most durable of stones, diamond rings can soon attract dirt due to factors such as the oils on our hands, the dirt on surfaces and items that we touch, and the hand creams and lotions that we use whilst wearing the ring. Allowing dirt to collect on your diamond ring can make this virtually indestructible gemstone very quickly lose its natural beauty and sparkle.
You should always treat your diamond ring with great care. For instance always remove it when you are washing dishes or undertaking other household cleaning jobs. Always store your diamond ring in a jewellery box to avoid it being damaged or chipped which will not lonely spoil its appearance but will affect its value. Looking after your diamond ring will not only reduce its exposure to dirt but will help to limit the possibility that the stone could become loose which can lead to dirt getting in to the setting, and increase the risk of the diamond coming away from the setting completely.
Understanding how to correctly care for and clean your diamond ring can prolong the sparkling appearance of your precious jewellery and protect your investment. The professional team at Rêve Diamonds strongly advise that if your diamond ring is of a particularly high value, or if you suspect that the diamond is at all loose or coming loose, or if you are simply not confident about cleaning your diamond ring then professional cleaning by a reputable jeweller is the best option.
A professional jeweller will power steam your diamond ring removing the build-up of dirt, oils and grime that will have occurred during wear so restoring your ring to its natural sparkling once more. A jeweller will also check the ring to see if any repairs are required or if the stone is loose. Rêve Diamonds recommend that your diamond ring is cleaned at least every six months, and checked annually for wear or damage. This will help to keep your diamond ring in the very best condition and always looking its best.
However if you do wish to clean diamond ring yourself in between visits to your jeweller to maintain its beauty, here are some expert tips from Rêve Diamonds on how to clean a diamond ring:
BEFORE YOU START CLEANING:
Take a close look at your diamondring. Check that the claws are all in place and that the diamond is not chipped or moving in its setting. If you do notice any damage to the diamond, the setting, or the claws look thin, it is vital that you take your diamond ring straight to a reputable jeweller and under any circumstances DO NOT attempt to clean your diamond ring just in case the stone is dislodged, or worse still lost, during the cleaning process.
BE VERY GENTLE WHEN CLEANING YOUR DIAMOND RING
Before attempting to clean your diamond ring please remember that you need to have a very gentle touch. Some settings are by their nature fragile. For example, antique diamond rings with older claws or a ring where the diamond is held in place by pressure from the shank can be very delicate. Diamond rings should NEVER be vigorously scrubbed only cleaned with a soft toothbrush bought new for this purpose, or a sable paint-brush. After rinsing your diamond ring with water, dry with a soft, lint-free cloth.
DO NOT USE HARMFUL OR ABRASIVE SOLUTIONS FOR CLEANING
You should never use abrasive cleaning solutions such as household cleaners or toothpaste or chlorine bleach for cleaning your diamond ring. Abrasives will scratch gold and other metals and chemicals can damage the metals used to alloy gold for diamond settings.
CLEANING YOUR DIAMOND
The best way to clean your diamond ring is to soak it in a bowl containing a gentle degreasing solution, such as warm water with a few drops of mild dish soap or washing up liquid. Remove your diamond ring from the cleaning solution and using your soft, clean brush VERY GENTLY remove any dirt that remains. If possible ensure that you gently clean the hard-to-reach places like the back of the diamond, which will tend to collect the most oil and dirt being in contact direct with the skin. Rinse in warm water and repeat until you are happy you have removed all the dirt from your diamond ring. It is vital that you DO NOT apply too much pressure when brushing so that you do not damage the gem settings, dislodge the diamond, or scratch the metal. Once clean dry the diamond ring with a lint free cloth, ideally one designed for polishing gold or platinum, then rub the metal over with the same metal cleaning cloth to produce a dazzling shine.
ULTRASONIC CLEANERS – PROCEED WITH CAUTION
Ultrasonic cleaners are available that will clean diamonds by sending low frequency sound waves vibrating through a solution to remove dirt and grime. These machines are relatively inexpensive BUT they should be used with caution. As many diamonds naturally have flaws or inclusions the sound waves passed from the ultrasonic cleaner can cause damage to these flaws emphasising them, or worst case scenario, causing the gemstone to crack. A diamond with a high level of flaws is more at risk of damage when using an ultrasonic cleaner. Ultrasonic cleaners can also cause stones to shake loose from their settings or chip the girdles of diamonds that are set next to each other. Coloured diamonds should NEVER be cleaned in this way as it may cause the hue to change or diminish. Also avoid ultrasonic cleaning if the diamond has been treated by fracture filling.
NEVER LET YOUR SPARKLE BE DULLED
You may notice when cleaning your diamond ring that if it is made from white gold that the back may over time begin to appear dull or show tinges of yellowing on the surface. Do not worry, this is a natural process that occurs when the rhodium on the surface of white gold begins to wear off and the original yellow gold will then start to emerge on the surface. The shine and brightness of your white gold diamond ring can be restored to its original glory by the process termed ‘rhodium plating’ or ‘dipping’.
Rhodium plating will not only enhance the reflectivity and lustre of white gold, but also enhance the sparkle of the diamonds in your ring so that they appear clearer and more brilliant. In addition, rhodium plating will enhance the life and durability of white gold jewellery and make it less susceptible to corrosion and damage. Rhodium plating is an electroplating procedure whereby a microscopic layer of rhodium is plated over the original 14k or 18k white gold. This process can only be undertaken by an experienced jeweller such as the professional team at Rêve Diamonds who offer this service.
If you are not wearing your diamond ring daily, rhodium plating may not be required for years. However, for engagement rings and wedding bands that are used on a daily basis, Rêve Diamonds advise that you have your diamond ring inspected and cleaned regularly and that rhodium plating may be recommended as often as every six months to maintain a bright and characteristic white finish.