I thought these few helpful tips might come in useful for keeping your jewels in tip top sparkling condition.
The best way to keep silver jewellery bright and shining is to wear it all the time. Silver will oxidise (darken) if left on the side unworn. The natural oils on our skin help to keep silver looking bright. If a piece of jewellery isn't going to be worn for sometime, please place it in an airtight sealy type bag. This will keep it safe from the oxidising nature of air.
Moisturisers, perfumes and sunscreen can also speed up the oxidising process, so it's best to put your jewels on last.
I use two types of gemstones in my work, faceted and cabochon, they require differing styles of setting.
A faceted gem, has a pointy bottom and will have a space under the setting to allow light through. If it lets light in, then it will also let other things collect under the stone, moisturisers etc, this will make the gemstone appear dull. Thankfully this type of setting is easy to clean, a simple soak in warm mild soapy water and a gentle brush with a soft toothbrush will make the gemstone sparkle again.
Cabochon settings are different, these gemstones have a flat bottom and will be set straight onto silver sheet, so no way to clean under the gem. The best way to keep this type of gem good as new, is to avoid submerging in water, so definitely no washing up with a cabochon ring, imagine the mungo that can get trapped underneath!
There are silver jewellery cloths available out there. They are great but can tend to spread the oxidisation over the jewellery. If using one of these cloths, it's best to give it a gentle mild soapy bath afterwards, then wipe with a lint free cloth.
There is a method to brighten silver using warm water, tin foil and bicarb of soda, lots of info online about this way. I've tried it and seems to work quite well. Some gemstones aren't suitable for submerging in water, they may be porous, like a Turquoise or very delicate like an opal so please check before trying any cleaning method that requires water.
Hope this helps, any questions, just get in touch.