Unless it is a bespoke piece, KristinM jewellery is mostly made from solid sterling silver, gold plated sterling silver, oxydised stirling silver, semi precious stones and pearls.
Sterling Silver in the UK is 92.5% silver and 7.5% other metals, which is usually copper. The copper toughens the silver and makes it possible to use for jewellery. Silver is susceptible to damage by chlorine and salt, so avoid wearing silver jewellery when using chlorine or bleach or while swimming, either in the sea or pool (or relaxing in a hot tub).
If your silver has tarnished (turned dull or dark grey) you can remove this by either using a non-abrasive silver polishing cloth or a liquid silver dip. Both available from supermarkets (in the UK). It’s recommended to only use silver dip occasionally as over use can be detrimental to your jewellery. Always make sure you rinse the jewellery properly after you’ve cleaned/polished your pieces.
To keep tarnishing down do not store your jewellery next to heating vents, windowsills or in the bathroom. Damp and hot conditions will cause jewellery to tarnish badly.
GOLD PLATED STERLING SILVER
Gold plating is a process achieved by microns of gold being fused to the surface of the Silver. As gold plating is a surface finish, it can be susceptible to wear, but if looked after carefully, signs of wear should only occur over a very long period of time. It is advised to avoid wearing gold plated jewellery while swimming either in the sea or a pool or just bathing. Perfumes can also affect gold plating so allow your perfume to dry before you put any gold plated jewellery on. It is also recommended to remove any gold plated rings before applying hand cream as the acids in moisturisers can affect the longevity of the plating.
Although gold plated silver wont tarnish, it will get dirty with time so wash with lukewarm soapy water with a soft cloth or a toothbrush.
OXIDISED STERLING SILVER
Oxidised sterling silver is intentionally darkened silver made by tarnishing it in a controlled way to increase detail and the appearance of depth in a design. As oxidation is a surface finish, it can be susceptible to wear, and should be treated much like
gold plated jewellery to keep the finished look for longer.
When a piece of jewellery has a matt finish, you may find that with time the surface starts to become polished. Likewise jewellery with a polished finish will take on subtle marks with wear and the appearance will dull slightly. If you notice this and want your piece back to the original look KristinM will be able to help with this.
Clean opaque stones, such as opals, lapis lazuli, jade, turquoise and malachite, by wiping them with a moist cloth after each wearing. Avoid exposing these stones to soap and water; according to the International Coloured Gemstone Association, these gemstones are basically rock-and not crystals from a single mineral-and could absorb the water and soap.
To clean transparent semi-precious gemstones, leave them in a container with a small amount of mild liquid soap and luke warm, after they’ve soaked for a while, use a soft, non- metallic brush to brush the gemstone. Be careful not to brush vigorously as it could loosen settings. Rinse the jewellery thoroughly under running water and lay it on a soft cloth to dry.
Even cultured pearls with thicker coatings are more fragile than most other gemstones, so you must handle them carefully to keep them in the best condition. Your pearls will stay cleaner if you put them on after you’ve applied your makeup and
perfume. Be sure to take off your pearl rings before you apply hand and body creams. Dirty pearls can be cleaned with a mild soap and water solution. Never clean your pearls with solutions that contain ammonia or harsh detergents.
The better your jewellery gets treated the longer it will last.