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How to care for different types of engagement rings

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For most who say, ‘I do’, the engagement ring is the crowning piece of jewellery in their collection. As a symbol and celebration of everlasting love, engagement rings have enormous sentimental value – and their daily use soon leaves us feeling incomplete without them. An engagement ring also tends to be worth considerably more than the rest of our bling which makes it all the more precious.

The emotional and physical significance of an engagement ring leaves many newlyweds intimidated by the idea of including it in their day-to-day life, concerned about causing unintentional damage. However, following advice on how to care for different types of engagement rings will ensure that this treasured possession stands the test of time.

How to care for your engagement ring

Remove the ring when necessary

While you will likely want to wear your engagement ring every day, this does not mean that it needs to be on your finger permanently. You should remove your engagement ring in certain situations where there is a chance that the band will be damaged.

Most importantly, this includes any activities where the hands are submerged in water such as swimming, washing up, and personal hygiene tasks. You should also take steps to avoid the ring coming into contact with other liquids such as hand sanitiser, perfume, and make-up, and cleaning products that often contain harsh chemicals. All of these can cause dullness and tarnish over time. Engagement rings tend to be more delicate and more prone to scratches and chemicals compared to men’s wedding bands which are made from harder materials like tungsten carbide and titanium. Sometimes the women will purchase a durable wedding band from a supplier like because of the lifetime warranties that these companies offer.

You should also be cautious regarding activities that are hard on the hands. For example, using heavy equipment in the gym or playing contact sports can easily lead to scratches on the ring band. This rule also applies to messy arts and craft activities such as pottery and painting.

It is recommended that you also take off your ring when you sleep to avoid any accidental damage. Make sure you store the ring in a safe environment overnight such as your jewellery box. Be sure to use an otherwise empty container so that the ring cannot be scratched on other objects.

Understand how to clean your ring

If you notice that your ring is losing its initial lustre, you can take steps to return it to its former glory. However, it’s vital that you understand how to care for different types of jewellery before you begin.

First and foremost, research how to clean different types of precious metal: there is a special method for each metal that will ensure no further damage is caused. Plain gold and platinum bands can be soaked in a soapy solution of mild detergent and lukewarm water, whereas silver is best treated using a special cleaner for just a few seconds followed by thorough rinsing in clean water.

If your engagement ring has a gemstone, it is important to bear in mind that this may have different care requirements to the metal of your engagement ring. Often a microfibre cloth is all you need to polish your gemstones, although special cleaning wipes are available too. Pearls in particular should not be submerged in cleaning solutions, but instead should be wiped with a slightly damp cloth.

Sometimes you need to consider more than cleaning to restore sparkle to your engagement ring. For example, white gold is coated in rhodium to give it a bright white lustre and this may need to be renewed over time. Diamonds that are starting to dull should be approached with extra care and attention – it is often best to entrust your jeweller with the cleaning of a diamond engagement ring.

Melissa Jane Lee

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