Tips for Taking Care of Your Jewelry and Other Valuables

Jewelry is important to people for many different reasons. It offers stylistic benefits and can have significant monetary and sentimental value. To protect this value and ensure your ability to continue enjoying your jewelry, it’s essential to take the right steps in order to prevent it from getting lost, damaged, or stolen.

Losing or accidentally damaging your jewelry or other valuables can be an upsetting and costly experience. Fortunately, practicing responsible ownership can help you avoid this stress and preserve the condition of each item in your collection. There are several major things to consider when taking care of your jewelry.

A jewelry box with many compartments open to display gold watches, rings, pearls, and gemstones.

Keep a Ring Dish by Your Sink

Small pieces of jewelry like rings and charm bracelets can easily slip off your wrists or fingers and find their way into your sink’s drain if you wear them when doing dishes or washing your hands. Once this happens, these items can be difficult or even impossible to retrieve. Additionally, taking this jewelry off every time you use the sink can increase your chances of misplacing it somewhere in your home.

Keeping dedicated ring dishes next to the busiest sinks in your home, and placing your jewelry in them whenever you clean dishes or wash your hands, can be an effective way to solve this problem without sacrificing personal hygiene. This will help you avoid losing items down the drain and ensure that you always know where your jewelry is when you’re ready to put it back on.

Designate a Place To Keep Jewelry at Night

Bedtime is another opportunity to lose valuables like watches and jewelry if you’re not careful. Establishing a dedicated storage area for jewelry and similar valuables in your bedroom, such as a box or bag pouch, can help you keep these items secured in one place while you sleep. This will make it more difficult to misplace individual pieces and allow you to easily find all the items you want when you wake up in the morning.

Get a Backup Wedding Ring

If you’re married or engaged, then you likely wear a ring everywhere you go to denote your status. Unfortunately, wearing expensive jewelry made of precious metals is simply not prudent in certain situations, such as during travel or strenuous activity. Additionally, wearing a ring 24/7 can noticeably accelerate wear and tear, especially if it’s made of a softer metal like gold.

Purchasing a backup ring to wear in situations where your jewelry is more likely to be lost, damaged, or stolen can help you avoid misunderstandings and demonstrate your commitment 24/7 without increasing your risk of serious financial and emotional loss. Tungsten rings are ideal for this purpose because of their durability and low cost.

Getting a tungsten wedding band to wear in high-risk situations can help you protect your original ring from loss or theft and preserve its condition over time. There is a wide variety of these available to consumers, including rugged-yet-sleek tungsten rings for men and elegant tungsten rings for women that come in a range of styles designed to complement different aesthetics.

Be Careful With Lotion and Perfume

While they can be fun and beneficial for self-care, cosmetic products like lotion and perfume can also cause damage to your jewelry. Many perfumes contain chemicals, like ethyl alcohol and color dyes, that can react with the alloy in gold to cause discoloration over time. Moisturizing lotion leaves a residue on jewelry that can tarnish precious metals, like gold and silver, as well as stones, like diamonds, opals, and pearls.

To prevent this type of damage, it’s important to avoid overexposing your jewelry to these products. Best practices for doing this include removing all jewelry before applying hand or body lotion, and applying perfume conservatively before you put any jewelry on. Following these guidelines will help you keep your jewelry shining bright without compromising your normal self-care or beauty routine.

Make Sure Your Rings Fit Correctly

Sometimes, you may have a ring that’s important to you but doesn’t fit correctly. This could be because it never fit or because your ring size changed over time. No matter the reason, a ring that’s too big is far more likely to fall off your finger and get lost, especially during rigorous activity. To avoid this, it’s critical to make sure that your rings are fitted properly before you wear them regularly.

In many cases, jewelers will offer complementary fitting and resizing for all the rings they sell. Older or antique rings can usually also be resized for a relatively low cost. To get a more accurate measurement, you should try to get fitted during mid-day, as sleeping in certain positions can cause your fingers to swell in the morning. This will help you ensure that the ring stays securely on your finger during daily activities.

Don’t Take Your Jewelry off in Public

Removing jewelry in public is another potential way to lose or damage it. You should always keep your jewelry on your person while in public places like bars, restaurants, and movie theaters.

Removing it in these places can significantly increase the chances of damage, loss, or theft, especially if the area is crowded and/or loud. If you do need to remove your jewelry in public, it should always be placed in a secure container like a purse or satchel.

Store It Properly

Even when jewelry isn’t being worn, its condition can still deteriorate over time if it isn’t stored properly. To preserve its appearance and value, jewelry should always be stored in a dry location, and different pieces should be kept in separate compartments to avoid tangling and damage.

The cloth bags or padded boxes that jewelry comes in are often ideal for storing individual pieces. However, you can also use multi-compartment jewelry boxes and organizers to safely store many items in one place. When planning for long-term storage, jewelry should be sealed in vacuum pouches to keep out moisture.

Know When To Leave It at Home

In some cases, it is simply too risky to wear jewelry to a particular event or activity. Jewelry can be fun and you may be tempted to wear it all the time, but knowing when to leave it at home can help you significantly reduce the chances of damage, loss, or theft. While it can be difficult to be sure, there are several situations in which wearing jewelry is generally not advisable:

  • Swimming;
  • Camping;
  • Competitive sports;
  • Going to the gym or spa;
  • Outdoor activities such as hiking, biking, or gardening;
  • Long-distance travel;
  • Medical appointments, especially for procedures like X-rays or MRIs;
  • Spa appointments.

This list is not exhaustive, and you should always leave your jewelry at home if you don’t feel comfortable wearing it to a particular location or event. Practicing caution with your jewelry is an essential element of a proper care routine and an important measure that can help you protect its value for years to come.