Summer is one of the most popular seasons for people to wear their jewelry. This doesn’t come as a surprise since we don’t have to wear layers of clothing, it’s much easier to make our jewelery seen by other people, which is its purpose. During cold winter months, jewelery is tucked underneath coats and people miss out on it, unless you’re indoors where there’s proper heating. Wearing jewelery during those long, hot, humid, sweaty and depending on where you are maybe even sandy summer months can be very alluring, but it can also be dangerous for your jewelery, because of all the things that are synonyms with summer, that I mentioned a while ago.
Yes, one of the more problematic things about summer season would be the fact that it’s hot and humid. This combination can be devastating for your jewelry. Increased temperature and humidity are not the only things that can cause headaches, lets not forget sea water and even sand which can find its every in almost every corner of your jewelery. Depending on what kind of jewelry you have exactly, summer traits like these can cause tarnishing, dirt buildup and in some cases maybe even outright corrosion.
Precious metals used in jewelry and type of jewelry that you wear can be very important in determining how exactly will things pan out for jewelery if you plan on wearing it excessively during the summer. Jewelry with low precious metal content, or even worse jewelry who’s precious metal content is non existent, and which isn’t made from one of the more tougher base metals, that type of jewelry is in grave danger of being affected by the conditions that are characteristically connected with summer. Groups of jewelery that should be extra careful would be
Delicate jewelry like cluster rings, any jewelry with gemstones basically
Maybe even filled jewelry
These 4 types of jewelry are in danger of being ruined during the summer if they are worn without being properly taken care of.
All costume jewelery is made from cheap base metals, maybe throw in some platings as well. Thing which makes precious metals more attractive, and which gives them more value would be the fact that they are resistant to tarnish, which is something that cannot be said about base metals used in costume jewelery. Under the influence of humidity, after enough time passes costume jewelry will start showing signs of tarnishing.
Similarly to costume jewelery, plated jewelry is also not very resistant when it comes to dealing with summer conditions. Plating on this type of jewelry is very thin, only a few micrometers thick and if it’s exposed to enough summer conditions long enough, plating might start wearing off or base metal from underneath might start tarnishing and causing tarnish to come up to the surface destroying plating in at the same time. Wearing your plated jewelry on sandy beaches could cause extra friction on the surface of jewelry, friction that can cause plating to wear off.
Jewelery with intricate gemstone designs
I mentioned cluster rings, but jewelry with any kind of gemstones can be in danger when it comes to summer. During the summer most of us are outside doing all kinds of activities from gardening, to playing sports, and yes, some might even visit the beach. Rings, necklaces and bracelets that have complex gemstones designs can cause hide a lot of dirt in their various crevices. If it’s not detected in time, something like this can be responsible for tarnish development, especially if the setting of gemstones is made from poor quality metals, like the ones that we mentioned before.
With filled jewelry chances are lower of something going wrong, but that still doens’t mean that you are in the clear completely. Filled jewelry, like we already said before is plating only a lot more thicker. Increased thickness does give filled jewelery better characteristics, but that doesn’t mean that it’s completely impervious to all the bad things that we’ve talked about until now. Don’t get too relaxed and treat filled jewelery like you would basic plating because you never know what kind of fill you have, and if it will withstand your maltreatment.
High temperatures which are present during the summer will also cause problems, mainly because high temperatures cause us to sweat. Perspiration contains salts which can, similarly to salts from sea water speed up the tarnishing and corrosive effects on jewelery. Hot weather also acts as a catalyst, so make sure that you do one of the things that I’m about to suggest to protect your jewelery during the summer.
What to do, how to protect jewelery?
Best thing that you can do for your jewelry during the summer months is to increase the frequency of cleaning. Jewelry which is cleaned often, for example once a week, will be free from having any kind of harmful residue on the surface, may it be sweat, salt, dust or even body lotions and deodorants, which are another big threat for jewelry during the summer. To protect ourselves against the Sun, we use various lotions, and eventually some of it ends up on our jewelery. We’re not even go into what kind of chemicals are contained in these products, but let’s just say that they are not that kind on jewelery either.
With proper and frequent cleaning jewelery should last longer, but for ultimate protection of jewelry, you should really consider not carrying it while being at the beach or doing things which might cause you to perspire excessively. This goes especially if jewelry that’s in your possession is not of good quality, if it’s costume or plated. There is a lot of cheap metals of high quality that are used in jewelry nowadays, like tungsten, stainless steel and titanium, they are highly resistant to tarnish and very beautiful, perfect for the strain that summer time puts on jewelry. If you can afford it, there’s also the option of going with 18K gold, or platinum jewelery, which is also very resistant to environmental influences and it should last you a long time.