Cubic Zirconia Jewelry and Rings: Cleaning and Care
Did you know that even though diamonds are the hardest minerals, they can still be scratched? What could possibly scratch a diamond? Another diamond! The same goes for Cubic Zirconia: only an object harder than a CZ can scratch a CZ. To prevent such scratches, we’d like to educate you about different objects that you may come into contact with and how they will affect your jewelry (including CZ, gemstones and the metals used in your jewelry).
The Moh’s Scale of Hardness ranks minerals, materials, metals and Gemstones on a scale of 1-10 (10 being the best and the most durable). Cubic Zirconia ranks at an 8.5 hardness on the Moh’s scale and only objects that have the same or higher number can scratch it.
2.5 Silver, 24K Pure Gold, Zinc, Aluminum
2.75 18K Yellow Gold
3 Copper, Brass, Bronze
3 to 4 14K Yellow Gold
4 Flurite, Nickel
4.5 Platinum, Palladium, Variscite, Steel
5 Iron, Turquoise
6.5 Garnet, Peridot, Tanzanite, Stainless Steel
7 Glass, Quartz
7.5 Emerald, Beryl, Morganite, Aquamarine, Tungsten
8 Topaz, Hardened Steel, Sandpaper
8.5 Cubic Zirconia
9 Emery Cloth/Emery Board, Corundum, Ruby, Sapphire, scratch proof glass on watches, Tungsten Carbide,
9.5 Diamond coated drill pieces and files
We recommend that when you put your CZ jewelry in your jewelry box, you separate it from other Cubic Zirconia, Ruby, Sapphire, and diamond jewelry. Don't jumble your jewelry pieces in a drawer or jewelry case where they can easily scratch one another.
Hard Knocks: Try not to wear your Cubic Zirconia when it will be struck sharply. Even though CZ are very hard, they still have thin edges and points that can fracture if they are hit hard enough. And if the CZ can take the hit, your precious metal likely won't come out without a ding or two.
Harsh Chemicals / Ammonia / Bleach / Household Cleaners: Both cause a chemical reaction that disintegrates the alloys in the jewelry over time. Remove your rings when disinfecting your house.
Chlorine: Whether it is found in bleach used for cleaning or in the swimming pool, chlorine can degrade gold jewelry to the point of disintegration (stress corrosion cracking). So, keep your gold jewelry out of the pool and hot tub.
Saltwater: Exposure to salt water can erode soldered joints on gold and Platinum jewelry, such as the connection between the prongs and the band of your ring. It is recommended to remove any precious metal jewelry prior to swimming in a saltwater pool or the ocean.
Cosmetics: Hairspray, perfumes and lotion can contain chemicals that can often damage jewelry, especially white gold and Platinum. Even gentle bar soaps can leave a residue on your jewelry, blocking the light from entering your CZ and diminishing their brilliance. Putting jewelry on after applying these materials will limit exposure to jewelry and any potential damage.
Any jewelry can easily acquire a buildup of dirt, makeup and other materials that diminish its brightness, especially if it's worn every day.
Simple cleaning with a soft bristle brush (like a tooth brush), 2/3 warm water (not hot!), and 1/3 a very mild detergent (like dish soap) will keep jewelry well maintained and in excellent wearable condition.
Take special care to not pull or damage any of the prongs holding the gems while you're using the brush.
Even for the most careful of us, from time to time it may be necessary have a repair performed on your jewelry. Here are our guidelines for shipping your jewelry to CubicZirconia.com for repair:
- Use two boxes to secure your jewelry: a smaller inner box to hold the jewelry securely, and a larger outer shipping box to take the brunt of the travel. The inner box might be the box your jewelry came in, like the padded ring box.
- Pack the shipping box with packing material to protect the inner box during shipping; seal the outer box completely with tape. The United States Postal Service provides free shipping boxes, or you can use your own box with any shipping carrier.
- Eliminate all information on the shipping box that refers to jewelry, jeweler, or Cubic Zirconia. You don’t want to attract unwanted attention to your shipment for any reason during its journey.
- Insure the shipment for the full value of your jewelry. We recommend using USPS Priority Mail Express (insured values up to $25,000) or USPS Registered Mail (insured values up to $50,000); both services allow you to choose the package value and add insurance in increments of your choice for a nominal fee.
- Use a shipping method that provides tracking information and require a signature on delivery. Not only will this will give you peace of mind, but protect you against loss or theft.
- Don't use a drop box, it’s worth the few extra minutes to take your package inside to the counter. Some carriers won’t guarantee your shipment, or worse, won’t honor the insurance value of your shipment if they do not scan the package directly from your hands.
When using a toothbrush take special care to not pull or damage any of the prongs holding the gems. - See more at: http://www.dandrhouseofdiamonds.com/2014/08/25/5-things-consider-cleaning-jewelry/#sthash.dMqQIDPA.dpuf