If we were all being totally truthful, most of our gold jewellery has either never left our fingers, wrists and ears, or, is buried under a pile of other precious metals in a jewellery box or safe somewhere.
This of course isn’t ideal, so in an effort to treat our belongings with a little more love and respect, here are some ways to look after your gold.
The weight of your gold /or carat/ will usually determine how soft or hard it is, with higher carat weights such as 18kt gold being softer than lower weights like 14kt gold as a rule of thumb. Keeping the carat weight in mind really only matters when it comes to wearing multiple gold pieces at once. To avoid your jewellery essentially attacking each other, it is widely advised to wear rings, bangles and necklaces of the same carat together, particularly for everyday pieces. It you’re lucky enough not to be forgetful, it is also recommended to remove jewellery before spraying perfume, swimming and exercising.
The good news is that GOLD /solid, not vermeil/will not tarnish or corrode, due to it containing no oxides. So there is no need for any sort of constant polishing or faff. The bad news is, gold is still quite soft, so can still be scratched and scuffed, particularly by other jewellery. Almost all white gold jewellery nowadays is plated with rhodium which is harder than gold, but may need replating eventually. Top tips for keeping rhodium plated jewellery intact include storing in a pocket or pouch and removing before you go the gym. While travelling, it is also worth fastening the clasps of all jewellery, gold or otherwise, to avoid tangling and scratching within your luggage.
Many jewellers will happily allow you to bring your gold in to them for a quick polish. Gold has been adorned for millennia precisely for its lustrous quality that doesn’t diminish over time. It will continue to be a material that is cherished and holds its value. To clean it, brush the jewellery delicately with a very small brush or toothbrush in lukewarm soapy water and carefully rinse. If it does need wiping down, always use a clean soft cloth. If your jewels don’t feature any gemstones it is also generally fine to clean 14kt white and yellow gold with silver dip.