Care and Cleaning
CARE GUIDE FOR LUXE DESIGN JEWELLERY
All the jewellery on our site is either Sterling Silver or 14 Karat Gold, unless otherwise noted. We often oxidize or blacken our pieces then matte finish them to bring out the details. Sterling silver and Gold can both tarnish under certain circumstances.
WHAT IS TARNISH?
Tarnish is the product of a chemical reaction that can occur when sterling silver or gold (and other metals) are exposed to air, moisture, and sulfur dioxide or other chemicals. Tarnish appears as a dark layer on the surface of the metal.
Tarnish does not appear on all sterling silver or gold. It can worsen when the weather is hot and humid, and with rare cases the PH balance or acidity of a person’s skin can cause silver to darken. Perfumes and deodorants, chlorine and other chemicals can also trigger tarnish. Some manufactured chains and precious metal jewellery come coated with a tarnish resist, but is not available for hand-made, one of a kind or custom gold or silver.
It is difficult to know why jewellery tarnishes with one person and not another. Fortunately, tarnish is not an indication of a problem with the metal, and it can easily be prevented and removed as it is only on the surface and does not damage the jewellery. With proper care, your gold and sterling silver jewellery can last you a lifetime and beyond.
TO PREVENT TARNISH:
• Store your jewellery in airtight plastic bags. It won’t tarnish if it isn't exposed to air. The worst place to leave your jewellery is in a steamy bathroom.
• 3M and Hagerty make tarnish resistant papers that you can find at most jewellery supply stores. Keep these in your jewellery boxes.
IF YOUR JEWELLERY IS ALREADY TARNISHED:
MATTE or SATIN FINISH JEWELLERY
Most of our jewelry has a matte finish which brings out the fine details and has a modern look. This finish needs special care but can easily be restored. There are several ways to freshen up the appearance of your matte finish jewelry:
• 3M makes a microfine polishing pad. We love this for polishing up the surface of fingerprinted or lightly tarnished pieces. It restores the soft matte finish without removing any of the antique black details, and you can cut it into smaller pieces for easier use. This can be purchased on Amazon or at jewellery supply stores.
• Superfine steel wool is a great thing to use for cleaning tarnished surfaces and chains. BULLDOG is our favorite brand; you can find this at hardware stores and Amazon.
• Some padded nail buffs with a very fine abrasive pad can be used to restore a satin finish.
HIGH GLOSS SHINY FINISH JEWELLERY
• Rouge cloths are also available at jewelry supply stores and online. Rub the piece with the red side of the cloth containing the polishing compound “rouge”, then buff the piece with the other side.
Luxe Design Jewellery www.luxe-design.com firstname.lastname@example.org 604-602-1921
• Sunshine polishing pads are available at specialty jewellery supply stores. These can turn a matte finish into a shiny finish by just rubbing on the piece.
These methods can be used with either our Matte Finish or Shiny Finish Jewellery
• For lightly tarnished jewelry try moistening a soft cloth with warm water and a little soap, and pat dry.
• For deep cleaning, like the tiny surfaces of a chain, our favorite product is TWINKLE silver polish. Use a soft toothbrush to really get the paste into every crevice and it will come out tarnish free. You should be able to find it in most drug or department stores and on Amazon.
• For sturdy pieces you can use this next method, but we do not recommend this for any of the urns or lockets that may hold precious contents, or with pieces that have pearls or gemstones. In a large pot lined with aluminum foil, bring one liter of water and one tablespoon of baking soda to a boil. Put your silver in the hot water for 10 seconds and remove with tongs. If tarnish persists, make a baking soda paste with 1/3 cup of baking soda and 2-3 tablespoons of water. Apply to the problem areas with a cloth then rinse and dry.
• Professional refinishing at a jewellery store. Most jewellery businesses can easily refresh the look of your piece with a professional polishing machine. We are happy to refresh your pieces anytime for no charge, and other stores may provide this service for a small fee. Make sure though that they have experience doing a professional matte finish or you may be better off doing it by hand using one of the previously recommended methods.
• We don't recommend the dip style of polish; it tends to tarnish faster than ever after cleaning with it.
You can find all of these resources online, however, we have put together a cleaning kit that includes everything you need to care for your Luxe Design jewellery. It includes travel size cleaning tools for both matte finish and shiny finish jewellery, with some items that can only be found a jewellery wholesalers:
• Superfine Steel Wool
• Matte Finish Stick
• 3M Polishing Pad
• Sunshine Polishing Cloth
• White Polishing Pad
• CKIT21 $18 Click here to purchase the kit!