08 JANUARY 2014
Diamonds are the hardest substance on earth, and while nothing can break, scratch or cut a diamond apart from another one, they do need to be handled with care.
Follow these top tips on how to look after your diamond engagement ring, according to expert Vashi Dominguez, founder of online jewellers Vashi.com.
Vodka is the best way to bring back your diamond's sparkle. Simply soak it in a glass of vodka (doesn't have to be premium) for half an hour, then rinse it under a warm tap and rub it dry with a lint-free cloth.
Alternatively, soak the ring in a bowl that contains four parts warm water and one part household ammonia for no more than ten minutes. Brush the ring very gently with a very soft small brush, such as a child's toothbrush or a soft toothbrush, dip it back into the solution, rinse it in cool or lukewarm water and leave it to drain on a lint-free cloth or towel.
If you'd prefer not to use ammonia, make a bowl of warm, soapy water using liquid detergent and leave your ring to soak for around 30 minutes.
Note: Paper tissues can leave fibres and dust on the ring and are therefore less suitable for rubbing your ring dry than jewellery cloths or other lint-free fabrics.
Always pick up your ring from the band, not the diamond, to avoid natural oils from your fingers building up around the stone's setting and preventing the rock from coming loose.
It's always advisable to remove your diamonds when cleaning or using harsh chemicals such as bleach and hair dye, as they may have the potential to cause lasting damage.
Never take your ring off when washing your hands in public, as it could accidentally slip down the drain.
As diamonds can scratch other jewellery and gem stones, keep your ring away from other items, in a soft fabric or leather pouch or the original jewellery box it came in. Don't leave them loosely — when a diamond breaks, it can't be fixed.
Taking it to the jewellers
Diamond settings may loosen over time, therefore taking your ring to a specialist diamond jeweller is always advisable. Have the ring checked for any wear and tear, warped prongs and ask for an expert clean.
Vashi.com offers a complimentary cleaning and expert check-up service for life on their rings.