Ever noticed that over time your pearls start to lose their luster and can start looking a bit yellow? Pearls can be very delicate compared to other gemstones because they're porous and soft. They're prone to being scratched and damaged much more easily because of that. But with the right care, you can keep your pearls looking absolutely stunning and ensure they last a long time.
Once pearls have been damaged it's nearly impossible to "fix" them. Pearls can get pits, scratches, or lose their luster entirely. Once the nacre, the pearl's outside shell, is damaged it's pretty much game over. To avoid doing further damage to your pearls don't:
- Use an ultrasonic or steam cleaner
- Use harsh jewelry cleansers
- Use any acidic liquid (ex: vinegar)
- Use anything abrasive to wipe them
The best way to clean your pearls is to prevent them from getting dirty in the first place by wiping them down with a soft/cotton cloth after you've worn them. There's 2 safe ways to clean pearls depending on how they're strung. If they're a strand of pearls then submerging them in liquid isn't a good idea because the silk in the thread can fray and become damaged. Use a drop of woolite and cool water and using a soft cloth rub each pearl individually. Allow the pearls to lay flat and air dry completely before storing them. If the pearl isn't a strand and instead on a chain design or a pendant for example, then you can mix a drop of dawn dish detergent with water and clean them using a soft cloth.
Pearls can last quite a long time if cared for gently and properly.