Jewellery Care

Each piece of Gardiner Brothers jewellery is crafted with careful consideration and mindful attention to detail. This level of TLC should be applied throughout the day-to-day wear and care of your precious pieces.

We recommend an annual MOT with one of our professional jewellers so they can cast a trained eye over your jewellery to spot any potential issues before they become a real problem.

If you spot anything that doesn’t look quite right, bring it to us immediately.

General Care Advice

If in doubt, take it off!

  • Remove jewellery during any activity that could scratch, knock or damage it.
  • Take your jewellery off when you go to bed, you toss and turn more than you think.
  • Remove your jewellery while cooking or cleaning.
  • Keep your jewellery away from chemicals, especially chlorine. If it does come into contact with chemicals, rinse it with water immediately.

Keep your jewels safe and sound:

  • Store your jewellery separately, ideally in a soft-lined box or case, so that your favourite pieces don't tangle, rub or scratch one another. Pearls in particular should be kept separately as they are easily scratched by hard gemstones.
  • Make sure chains and necklaces are fastened when stored to avoid tangling.
  • Store your jewellery away from sunlight, excessive heat or damp conditions
  • Jewellery should always be the last step in your getting ready routine. Bathe and apply any lotion, cosmetics or perfumes before you put your jewellery on.
  • Organic gemstones like pearls and opals are particularly vulnerable to acids, and even to perspiration.

Jewellery MOT

We recommend that you bring rings and other items of jewellery to us once a year for a full check. We can spot any early signs of unusual wear or issues before it progresses into a real problem. As most insurance companies need an up-to-date valuation each year, this is a perfect time to have items checked over and valuations updated.

If you do notice anything unusual, it is always better to be safe than sorry - we recommend bringing items in to us straight away.

Key things to look out for:

  • Worn, damaged or missing claws on settings.
  • Stones feeling loose in their setting.
  • Rings that are starting to go out of shape.
  • Loose catches and clasps or rough links on chains or bracelets.
  • Any fractures in metals.
  • Pearls that are loose on their thread or where the thread is frayed.
  • Too much movement in jointed hinges.
  • Plating wearing off on white gold.

All of these are things that can happening during normal wearing of items, to avoid further or more serious issues, it is important to have any of these checked straight away.

Gemstone cleaning

Gemstones are chosen for their sparkle and vibrant colour, so it's essential to keep them looking their best.

When it comes to caring for gemstones, less is more. For nearly all coloured gemstones, a simple routine of cleaning with warm water, a couple of drops of washing-up liquid and a soft brush will be more than adequate. Make sure to avoid hard and rigid brushes.

Top tip: A toothbrush is an excellent tool due to the head size and flexibility. If using a toothbrush, it is important to buy one labelled with a soft or extra-soft brush.

Gemstones, such as emeralds, that have been oiled to improve their colour can be damaged by mechanical treatments such as steam and ultrasonic cleaning.

Some like it hot, but gemstones don’t.

Although these stones appear tough, most are vulnerable to heat. Whenever cleaning, make sure to use warm water rather than hot or boiling water. Inclusions within gemstones can weaken their structure if aggressively cleaned so handle with care.

When cleaning malachite, use cool water as it is particularly sensitive to heat and hot water may damage the gemstone.

Cleaning pearl, coral and amber jewellery:

These delicate beauties require care and patience. Do not submerge these gemstones in water. Instead, wet a soft cloth with warm water and gently rub each stone individually. Avoid pulling the stones through the cloth as this is liable to stretch or damage the string. If stubborn dirt remains on some of the gemstones, then a soft brush, such as a toothbrush, should help remove the grime. Be careful and go gently.

Dry the gemstones with a lint-free cloth. Excess moisture can build up in the drill holes and next to the knots, causing discolouration. A hard blow with your breath or daubing with a cloth should remove this. Do not use a hairdryer to remove moisture, as the heat will damage the stones.

Never clean with steam, boiling water, or ultrasonic tools as these will irreversibly damage the gems.

Diamond cleaning

Whether they are mined or lab grown, diamonds are precious and should be treated as such. They can fracture and be scratched by other diamonds due to their directional hardness. Oil deposits from fingers and general dust and grime can adhere to the diamond surface and affect a diamond's brilliance.

Top tips:

  • Clean your diamond regularly by soaking it in warm water with a degreasing solution (a couple of drops of washing-up liquid will suffice).
  • Gently brush with a soft, clean toothbrush before drying with a lint-free cloth.
  • Be extra careful with the stone's setting as this may be fragile.
  • Avoid using bleaches or other hard abrasives - these may damage the precious metal the diamond is mounted in.

Looking after your watch

Your watch is an intricate piece of engineering that works non-stop day after day so following the instructions on servicing your watch is crucial to keep it ticking. As a guide, a service every three or four years should help your watch last for decades.

Give your watch a quick check on a regular basis, making sure that the strap or bracelet is securely attached to the case. If you have a mechanical watch, wind it in a clockwise direction. It is recommended that you do this about the same time each day. Remove the watch from your wrist when winding, to avoid placing undue pressure on the winder.

For a full list of care information we recommend visiting the National Association of Jewellers website: