Stone Care

Posted by Carolina Mendoza in

Each stone is unique and different, so we recommend taking special care depending on the type of stone in your jewelry. An opal has very different care than a diamond.

This guide is divided into 2 parts:

  • General Recommendations
  • Characteristics by Stone

General Recommendations

Avoid doing household chores with your jewelry with stones. Chlorine, bleach, and other chemicals can damage most stones.

Do not wear your jewelry when you do physical activities or sports. A strong blow can create fissures or break a large number of stones. Even diamond (which is the hardest stone in existence) can be damaged, broken, or loosen from its setting with a forceful blow.

Stored

It is important that each piece is kept in its own packaging. Friction with harder stones or some metals can scratch them. In jewelry, the Mohs Scale is used to mark the general hardness of each mineral and see how resistant it is to scratches. The 10 marks the maximum hardness and from there it goes down. In the characteristics of each stone you can find the hardness number to know where your stone is.

Ultrasound Cleaning

When the stones present cracks or inclusions (which are these figures as feathers or traces of interior minerals) the use of ultrasound is not recommended. Regardless of its hardness, vibration can irreparably damage stones. In these cases, it would be preferable for a professional to first disassemble the stone before subjecting the piece to this type of treatment.

Emerald with Visible Inclusions

House Cleaning

To safely wash your stones, use a damp cloth or water and mild liquid soap. The soap can be either hand soap or neutral soap. Do not scrub or use abrasive jewelry cleaners.

Rinse well so that no soap residue remains and dry immediately with a hair dryer on cold or warm temperature to avoid water stains.

for

Characteristics by Stone

AQUAMARINE

Hardness on the Mohs Scale : 7.5 to 8
Shock Resistance : Good

Heat Stability : Exposure to high temperatures is not recommended.
Light Stability : Stable
Reaction to Chemicals : acids can damage it.

Ultrasound : Usually Safe
Steam Cleaning : Usually Safe
Warm Water and Hand Soap : Safe

ALEJANDRITA

Known as the Stone of Transformation. Its main characteristic is its color change; green in daylight or fluorescent light, to purplish red in incandescent light.

Hardness on the Mohs Scale : 8.5
Shock Resistance : Excellent

Heat Stability : Stable
Light Stability : Stable
Reaction to Chemicals : None

Ultrasound : Usually Safe
Steam Cleaning : Usually Safe
Warm Water and Hand Soap : Safe

AMETHYST

Hardness on the Mohs Scale : 7
Shock Resistance : Good

Heat Stability : Abrupt changes in temperature can fracture the stone or change its color
Light Stability : Some amethysts can discolor.
Chemical Reaction : Damaged by hydrofluoric acid, ammonium fluoride and alkali.

Ultrasound : Usually Safe
Steam Cleaning : Not recommended
Warm Water and Hand Soap : Safe

AMBER

Amber belongs to the category of organic gems; It was formed millions of years ago, when the sap of ancient trees hardened and fossilized.

Hardness on the Mohs Scale : 2 - 2.5
Shock Resistance : Poor

Heat Stability : Burns at low temperatures.
Light Stability : May darken over time.
Reaction to Chemicals : It is damaged by acids, alcohol, gasoline and caustics.

Ultrasound : Never
Steam Cleaning : Never
Warm Water and Hand Soap : Safe; but avoid rubbing it hard because it can scratch.

CHALCEDONIA

Chalcedony is one of the oldest, most abundant and popular gemstones in the world. It is also quite affordable and comes in an incredibly wide range of colors and patterns. Among its most popular varieties are: Agate, Onix, Bloodstone and Jasper.

Hardness on the Mohs Scale : 6.5 - 7
Shock Resistance : Good

Heat Stability : May alter color.
Stability to Light : Stable
Reaction to Chemicals : Damaged by hydrofluoric acid and nitric acid.

Ultrasound : Usually Safe
Steam Cleaning : Usually Safe
Warm Water and Hand Soap : Safe

CITRINE

Citrine is known as the Stone of Abundance and is one of the stones of the month of November.

Hardness on the Mohs Scale : 7
Shock Resistance : Good

Heat Stability : High temperatures can cause it to lose its color. Sudden changes in temperature can cause fractures.
Stability to Light : Stable
Reaction to Chemicals : Soluble in hydrofluoric acid and ammonium fluoride;
slightly soluble in alkalis.

Ultrasound : Usually safe
Steam Cleaning : Not recommended
Warm Water and Hand Soap : Safe

CORAL

All coral is made up of remains of support structures that were built by colonies of small marine animals.

Hardness on the Mohs Scale : 3 - 4
Shock Resistance : Fair to Good

Heat Stability : Blackens or burns if exposed to a flame
Light Stability : Generally stable; dyed material may eventually fade.
Reaction to Chemicals : Easily damaged by acids and other chemicals.

Ultrasound : Dangerous
Steam Cleaning : Never
Warm Water and Hand Soap : Safe

QUARTZ

(PINK, SMOKED, RUTILATED)

Hardness on the Mohs Scale : 7
Shock Resistance : Good

Heat Stability : High temperatures can cause it to change or lose its color. Abrupt changes in temperature can fracture the stone.
Light Stability : Sometimes discolored with prolonged exposure to bright light.
Chemical Reaction : Soluble in hydrofluoric acid and ammonium fluoride; very slightly soluble in alkalis. Quartz are also slightly porous, so be careful not to expose them to liquids and chemicals with dyes, as they could absorb them and change their color.

Ultrasound : Usually Safe
Steam Cleaning : Risky.
Warm Water and Hand Soap : Safe

DIAMOND

Hardness on the Mohs Scale : 10
Shock Resistance : Good

Heat Stability : Stable
Light Stability : Stable
Reaction to Chemicals : None

Ultrasound : Usually Safe unless it has inclusions as in Salt & Pepper diamonds; in that case, this cleaning treatment is risky.
Steam Cleaning : Usually Safe unless it has inclusions like in diamonds Salt & Pepper; in that case, this cleaning treatment is risky.
Warm Water and Hand Soap : Safe

EMERALD

Hardness on the Mohs Scale : 7.5 - 8
Shock Resistance : Poor to Good

Heat Stability : May cause fractures.
Light Stability : Emeralds usually go through a treatment that fills in cracks and imperfections; This treatment can dry out and / or alter in bright light.
Reaction to Chemicals : Emerald itself is resistant to all types of acid, except hydrofluoric acid. But if you have treatment for fractures, it can be affected.

Ultrasound : Never
Steam Cleaning : Never
Warm Water and Hand Soap : Safe; but you have to avoid rubbing it hard.

SPINEL

Hardness on the Mohs Scale : 8
Shock Resistance : Good

Heat Stability : Color may fade at high temperatures.
Stability to Light : Stable
Reaction to Chemicals : Stable

Ultrasound : Usually Safe
Steam Cleaning : Usually Safe
Warm Water and Hand Soap : Safe

GARNET

Hardness on the Mohs Scale : 7 - 7.5
Shock Resistance : Fair to Good

Heat Stability : Abrupt changes in temperature can cause fractures.
Stability to Light : Stable
Reaction to Chemicals : Hydrofluoric acid can damage it.

Ultrasound : Usually Safe
Steam Cleaning : Never
Warm Water and Hand Soap : Safe

KUNZITA

Hardness on the Mohs Scale : 6.5 - 7
Shock Resistance : Poor. Kunzite has a beautiful structure that gives it its shine, but also makes it brittle if hit hard enough.

Heat Stability : High temperatures can cause color loss. Abrupt changes in temperature can cause fractures.
Light Stability : Bright light causes it to lose color.It is not recommended to use on the beach or outdoor day activities
Reaction to Chemicals : Very slowly damaged by concentrated fluoride.

Ultrasound : Never
Steam Cleaning : Never
Warm Water and Hand Soap : Safe

LABRADORITE

Hardness on the Mohs Scale : 6 - 6.5
Shock Resistance : Poor due to its layered structure.

Heat Stability : High temperatures or sudden changes can cause fractures.
Stability to Light : Stable
Reaction to Chemicals : Damaged by hydrofluoric acid. Don't use abrasive cleaners on it.

Ultrasound : Never
Steam Cleaning : Never
Warm Water and Hand Soap : Safe, but scrubbing is not recommended strength.

for

LAPIS LAZULI

Hardness on the Mohs Scale : 5 - 6
Shock Resistance : Fair

Heat Stability : High heat can induce an undesirable green color, or cause a complete loss of color.
Stability to Light : Stable
Reaction to Chemicals : It decomposes slowly in hydrochloric acid; and is discolored with the cyanide solution. (This is why it was used to decorate royal dishes, to detect if the food had been poisoned!)

Ultrasound : Dangerous
Steam Cleaning : Never
Warm Water and Hand Soap : Safe

MORGANITE

Hardness on the Mohs Scale : 7.5 - 8
Shock Resistance : Good

Heat Stability : Pink orange may turn pink; it may fracture if liquid inclusions are present.
Stability to Light : Stable
Reaction to Chemicals : Resistant to all acids except hydrofluoric. Chlorine and bleach can damage stone.

Ultrasound : Risky if it has many inclusions (rare)
Steam Cleaning : Risky if it has many inclusions (rare)
Warm Water and Soap de Manos : Sure.

ONYX

Hardness on the Mohs Scale : 6.5 - 7
Shock Resistance : Good

Heat Stability : You can change the color.
Light Stability : Stable.
Reaction to Chemicals : Damaged by hydrofluoric acid.

Ultrasound : Usually Safe
Steam Cleaning : Usually Safe
Warm Water and Hand Soap : Safe

OPAL

Hardness on the Mohs Scale : 5 to 6.5
Shock Resistance : Very Poor to Fair

Heat Stability : Opal contains a small percentage of water that expands if exposed to high temperatures or sudden changes, it is crucial to keep it away from fire as it will break immediately.
Light Stability : Generally stable, but strong light can cause fractures.
Reaction to Chemicals : Damaged by hydrofluoric acid and caustic alkalis. Given the porosity of opal, it can absorb liquids, chemicals and oils that change its color and finish forever. Therefore, it is necessary to keep it away from these substances.

Ultrasound : Never
Steam Cleaning : Never
Warm Water and Hand Soap : Safe; but avoid rubbing it hard.

Important : To keep the opal moist, it should be stored in the shade and hydrated approximately every 3 months, leaving it for a few minutes in water . During this process it can change its color, but it will be restored in a few minutes.

PERIDOT

Hardness on the Mohs Scale : 65 - 7
Shock Resistance : Fair to Good

Heat Stability : Rapid or uneven heat can cause fractures
Light Stability : Stable
Reaction to Chemicals : Damaged easily by sulfuric acid, and by hydrochloric acid; It can also be damaged if it is exposed to acid perspiration for a long time.

Ultrasound : Risky
Steam Cleaning : Never
Warm Water and Hand Soap : Safe

PEARL

Hardness on the Mohs Scale : 2.5 - 4
Shock Resistance : Usually Good, but varies due to aging, dehydration and sometimes Excessive bleaching during initial processing.

Heat Stability : High heat can burn cultured pearls or cause discoloration, splitting or cracking.
Light Stability : Generally stable, but the heat of intense light can cause dehydration and cracking of the nacre.
Reaction to Chemicals : It is damaged by many chemicals and all acids; Hair spray, perfumes, cosmetics, and even acid perspiration can damage mother-of-pearl, so they should be applied after you have finished putting on makeup and putting on perfume.

Ultrasound : Never
Steam Cleaning : Never
Warm Water and Hand Soap : Safe

Important : The pearls are covered with an organic substance called nacre, which must maintain a certain humidity and temperature. We recommend using them regularly, as our skin's own moisture helps preserve the beautiful shine of pearls.

MOONSTONE

Hardness on the Mohs Scale : 6 - 6.5
Shock Resistance : Poor due to its layered structure that makes it brittle when hit.

Heat Stability : High temperatures or sudden changes can cause fractures.
Stability to Light : Stable
Reaction to Chemicals : Damaged by hydrofluoric acid. Don't use abrasive cleaners on it.

Ultrasound : Never
Steam Cleaning : Never
Warm Water and Hand Soap : Safe, but scrubbing is not recommended strength.

RUBY

Hardness on the Mohs Scale : 9
Shock Resistance : Usually Excellent, but stones with certain treatments, large fractures or inclusions may be less durable.

Heat Stability : High temperatures can cause a change in color or clarity; it can also damage or destroy the fracture and cavity arrangements in the stone if it has been treated.
Light Stability : Generally stable, but some stones are treated with oils and the heat from bright lights can cause the oil to spill or dry out.
Chemical Reaction : May damage arrays and remove oil. Boric acid can damage even untreated stones.

Ultrasound : Usually safe, but should never be used on stones with inclusions or treated for fractures.
Steam Cleaning : Usually safe, but should never be used on stones with inclusions or treated for fractures.
Warm Water and Hand Soap : Safe, but avoid strong detergents
and scrub vigorously.

TANZANITE

Hardness on the Mohs Scale : 6 - 7
Shock Resistance : Fair to Poor due to its layered structure and sensitivity to thermal shocks.

Heat Stability : Abrupt changes in temperature can cause fractures.
Stability to Light : Stable
Reaction to Chemicals : Damaged by hydrochloric and hydrofluoric acid

Ultrasound : Never
Steam Cleaning : Never
Warm Water and Hand Soap : Safe

TOPAZ

Hardness on the Mohs Scale : 8
Shock Resistance : Poor due to its structure

Heat Stability : High temperatures can alter color; and abrupt changes can cause fractures.
Light Stability : Generally stable, but some brown stones fade.
Reaction to Chemicals : Very slightly affected.

Ultrasound : Never
Steam Cleaning : Never
Warm Water and Hand Soap : Safe

TOURMALINE

Hardness on the Mohs Scale : 7 - 7.5
Shock Resistance : Fair

Heat Stability : High temperatures can alter color; and abrupt changes can cause fractures.
Light Stability : Generally Stable
Reaction to Chemicals : None

Ultrasound : Risky
Steam Cleaning : Risky
Warm Water and Hand Soap : Safe

TURQUOISE

Hardness on the Mohs Scale : 6 - 7
Shock Resistance : Generally Fair to Good

Heat Stability : High temperatures can cause discoloration
and surface damage.
Stability to Light : Stable
Reaction to Chemicals : It dissolves slowly in hydrochloric acid; can be discolored by chemicals, cosmetics, skin oils, and even perspiration.

Ultrasound : Never
Steam Cleaning : Never
Warm Water and Hand Soap : Safe

SAPPHIRE

Hardness on the Mohs Scale : 9
Shock Resistance : Usually Excellent, but stones with certain treatments, large fractures or inclusions may be less durable.

Heat Stability : High temperatures can cause a change in color or clarity; it can also damage or destroy the fracture and cavity arrangements in the stone if it has been treated.
Light Stability : Generally stable, but some stones are treated with oils and the heat from bright lights can cause the oil to spill or dry out.
Chemical Reaction : May damage arrays and remove oil. Boric acid can damage even untreated stones.

Ultrasound : Usually safe, but should never be used on stones with inclusions or treated for fractures.
Steam Cleaning : Usually safe, but should never be used on stones with inclusions or treated for fractures.
Warm Water and Hand Soap : Safe, but avoid strong detergents
and scrub vigorously.

ZIRCON

Hardness on the Mohs Scale : 6 - 7.5
Shock Resistance : Fair to Good. Heat treated stones can be brittle and could easily wear away.

Heat Stability : High temperatures can alter the color.
Light Stability : Generally stable; some heat-treated stones return to their original color (light brown).
Reaction to Chemicals : None.

Ultrasound : Risky
Steam Cleaning : Risky
Warm Water and Hand Soap : Safe

If you have any additional questions about how to care for your gemstone jewelry, please don't hesitate to contact us at: info @ ikcha.com

---

* All images belong to the Gemoligical Institute of America (GIA) and were obtained from https://wwwgia.edu/gem-encyclopedia
.

← Oldest post Most recent post →



Leave a comment