COVID-19 Important Policyholder Message Click to learn more.

Caring for Your Colored Gemstones

Written by: Samantha Silverman | | Insuring Your Jewelry

Caring for Colored Gemstones

Even though the beautiful gemstones in your jewelry collection may be made from the hardest minerals on earth, they can require gentle care to stay shiny and full of luster for years to come. When you clean and care for them properly, you ensure decades of wear. You may even be able to pass your fine jewelry down to future generations.

Always ask your jeweler about at-home cleaning and care for your specific pieces. Visit your jeweler at least twice a year to have your jewelry professionally cleaned, a service that most jewelers offer at no charge. 

Tips for At-Home Cleaning

  1. Use a soft chamois cloth to clean your gems and jewelry.
  2. Avoid harsh solvents like household cleaners.
  3. Use a homemade solution of warm water and mild, detergent-free soap, along with a soft toothbrush. However, do not use a toothbrush on softer gems that can easily be scratched. If you use a commercial cleaner, remember to read all labels and be sure it is safe to use on your specific gemstone. Some gems should never be subjected to these cleaners, including opal, emerald, amber and pearl.
  4. Steam cleaning formulated specifically for gems can be effective for hard stones and allow them to shine like new. Do not use on easily-damaged, heat-sensitive stones, such as aquamarine, tanzanite, emerald, opal, pearls, amber and coral.
  5. If you decide to try ultrasonic cleaning for eliminating stubborn dirt, be sure to check with your jeweler first. It may be safe for some diamonds, rubies, and sapphires, however there are conflicting thoughts on the safety of this method, as the shaking can cause stones to become loose from their settings. This cleaning method should not be used for fracture-filled stones.

DOs and DON’Ts for Proper Care

  • Do put your jewelry on last after getting dressed and applying cosmetics/perfume.
  • Do not wear jewelry when gardening or playing sports. The settings can become damaged, plus perspiration can dull its luster.
  • Do not wear to the beach as direct sunlight can damage the color in heat-treated stones like amethyst and citrine.
  • Do not wear in a pool or hot tub. The chlorine can damage the gemstones in your jewelry piece, as well as the precious metal.
  • Do keep your gemstone jewelry stored safely where the gems will not touch each other. That prevents stones with a higher Mohs hardness rating from damaging softer stones.
  • Do cover your sink drain when cleaning your jewelry. The last thing you want is to lose it when trying to keep your treasured pieces polished and beautiful.

The Best Care of All

The beauty of your gems can last a lifetime and beyond with the right attention. Don’t forget the most important way to protect your pieces: personalized jewelry insurance. Insurance assures your peace of mind. Call Lavalier today for your own insurance quote.


  1. Caring for Your Gemstones. (Accessed March 11 2020).
  2. How to Care for Your Precious Colored Stones. (Accessed March 11 2020).

Share this Post:

Lavalier is pleased to share this material with its customers. Please note, however, that nothing in this blog should be construed as legal advice or the provision of professional consulting services. This material is for general informational purposes only, and while reasonable care has been utilized in compiling this information, no warranty or representation is made as to accuracy or completeness.