Cremation Jewelry Care and Cleaning
Treating your cremation jewelry with care will protect its contents and preserve its beauty. Caring for and cleaning for cremation jewelry aren’t difficult, but there are some cautions you should take to avoid damage and ensure a long life for your memorial jewelry. The following tips are offered as a guideline; if you have questions, you may wish to consult with a local jeweler.
Daily Care of Your Cremation Jewelry
- Do not submerge your cremation jewelry in liquids, as they could damage the seal.
- Be sure to remove your cremation jewelry before showering or bathing. Any lingering soap film will attract dirt, dust and other contaminants.
- Remove your cremation jewelry before performing strenuous tasks or exercise.
- Store each piece of jewelry in its own protective bag to avoid tangling or scratching.
- Better yet, display your cremation jewelry in a keepsake dome when you’re not wearing it to create a beautiful, dignified memorial to your loved one while protecting your jewelry from damage.
- Each time you put on or remove your cremation jewelry, inspect it for signs of wear or damage. If you see a scratch or other problem, take the jewelry to a local jeweler for buffing or repairs.
- Avoid exposing your memorial jewelry to contaminants and harsh conditions, including
- extreme temperatures
- intense sunlight
- makeup and hairspray
Cleaning Your Cremation Jewelry
Cleaning your cremation jewelry after each wearing will help maintain its finish. Before you begin, inspect the jewelry to make sure there are no loose or damaged gemstones, cracked or broken links, or discolored or pitted metal. Catching these problems before you clean can help to prevent further damage. Then, in general…
- Gently wipe the jewelry using a jeweler’s cloth or other soft, 100% cotton cloth. NEVER use tissue or paper towels to clean your cremation jewelry, as they might scratch. Also, always use a fresh cloth, as grit remaining from a previous cleaning can also damage the jewelry’s surface.
- Never use bleach to clean your cremation jewelry; likewise, avoid swimming pools and hot tubs. Bleach is an oxidizing agent, which will harm the metal. The same goes for denatured alcohol, turpentine, acetone, and ammonia – any of these chemicals can dull or pit the surface of gemstones.
- You can use a commercial cleaner purchased from a jewelry store, but please remember to read the instructions carefully.
Keep in mind that some metals and gemstones require specialized care. For example:
- While appropriate polishing creams can be used to clean sterling silver, brass, pewter and 14k gold, they are NOT recommended for cleaning gold vermeil, as they might damage the finish. Instead, when cleaning gold vermeil, use a damp, soft cloth if necessary.
- Ultrasonic cleaners may be fine for the hardest gemstones, such as diamonds, rubies and sapphires, but they can harm other types of stones. Proceed only with caution.
- Amethysts and some other gems should not be exposed to sunlight for prolonged periods, as the sun can cause their color to pale.
- Organic gems like pearls, coral, and amber are soft and porous. Take special care to avoid exposing these gems to hairspray, cosmetics or perfume, and use only a moist cloth to wipe them clean.