l o c a l b u s i n e s s
Jewelry Care on the Coast b y C a r o l y n B r i g m a n , Vi c e P r e s i d e n t o f M c C a s k i l l & C o m p a n y
So, what to do about all the abrasiveness on your jewels during your beach getaway? Clean them asap! • For a quick clean when you’re in a rush, you can give it a basic wipe-down. With a soft damp cleaning cloth, gently wipe the surfaces of your jewelry making sure to get in all the crevasses. This will help make sure any salt, sand, sunscreen or other chemical leftover from your fun day with not stay on your jewelry and continue to corrode, tarnish or cause wear on your beautiful piece. • Now, for a heavier cleaning. For most stones and metals, it is safe to use a mild soap and warm wa-
ter treatment. Make a bowl of warm water with a mild soap addi- tion, (or ammonia for precious metals and stones) and let your jewelry soak for a few minutes to loosen un- derlying debris and lift oils. Then, with a soft toothbrush, gently work the bristles on the back side first (in- side prongs, joints, and all over) and finish with the top. Most de- bris is stuck on the un- derside in open spaces.
A s you’re planning your beach trip and thinking about what jewelry you want to take, it’s important to think of what’s best for your jewels. Depending on the components that make up the metal in your jewelry, it can have adverse and long-term reactions to saltwater and chlorine. Some gemstones can even be lightened by long term sun exposure. Therefore, if you’re going to wear your beloved jewelry for your fun summertime activities, it’s imperative to give your pieces a little extra TLC to keep them sparkling. Here’s some tips.
Jewelry designs by Erica Courtney
First things first. Keep in mind that once your hands hit cold water from a pool or the beach, your hands will shrink. We frequently have distraught guest come in, because they have lost their ring in the water. Any rings should come off before you go in, unless they are really tight, and you never take them off. Do not throw them in beach bags. It is always best to keep them in a safe place. Some metals hold up better than others against the strain of a beach day. When exposed to the high content of salt in saltwater, or harsh chemicals in chlorine, many jewelry types can be affected. Pewter, copper, and sterling silver are the most likely to tarnish. A better choice would be gold or platinum, since they resist tarnish more effectively. Salt, even in your sweat, can be corrosive over time, so it’s always best to clean your jewelry from time to time to remove life’s elements. Chlorine, with its harsh chemicals, can affect almost all metal types. Not only can it have adverse reactions to some components in your sterling silver and other metals, causing tarnish and dark spots, but it can also break down soldering spots and make the metal brittle
Rinse thoroughly with warm water and then dry with a soft cloth. Your jewelry will now be back to sparkling and shining! If your jewelry is not safe to be soaked, use the same warm water and soap solution in a soft cloth and give it a thorough rub down and risk. Family owned and operated, McCaskill & Company is known as a premier jewelry of the Southeast, providing many of the world’s finest jewelry designers and watches. We are honored to be the family jeweler for not only our beloved locals, but also for the many customers and friends living throughout the Southeast that discovered us on a visit to the Emerald Coast and became their family jeweler for a lifetime to come. Hours are Mon – Sat 10:00-5:30
McCaskill & Company Showroom
and weak. The higher the carat of gold the better. Lower carat gold contains alloys like copper, silver, nickel, and zinc that can be affected. Rose gold is the exception because it contains copper, which could be susceptible to damage from chemicals. Continuous exposure to chlorine can weaken clasp, prongs, etc., fade your metal, and slowly erode the finish and polish of gemstones. Also be cautious of knowing which gemstones absolutely cannot go in chlorine due to fading and drying out— turquoise, opal, pearl, lapis, etc. Due to the harshness of chemicals in chlorine, best to not wear your jewelry in the pool.
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