Jewelry Care Guide
Most pieces of Bela Begonias jewelry are made with 14k gold-filled and / or sterling silver to ensure your jewelry will last a lifetime! These are high quality metals and some care is suggested to ensure it's longevity. Your jewelry is meant to be worn and enjoyed - take these simple steps to keep your jewelry looking its best!
14k Gold-Filled. Gold-filled jewelry is much higher quality than jewelry that is gold plated. When something is gold-filled, it has a thick sheet of gold applied to a base metal, 100 to 100,000 times thicker than gold plating. Gold-filled, unlike gold plated jewelry, will not chip, tarnish or fade. Most people with metal allergies who can wear solid gold jewelry find that they can wear gold-filled jewelry as well. You can expect your gold-filled jewelry to perform and feel much the same as true 14k gold, therefore, you will find it is more expensive than gold-plated while keeping the price more manageable than pure gold! It is an investment in quality.
Proper care: When your jewelry is not being worn, store your jewelry in a safe place (preferably a lined box) where it will not be tangled. It can certainly be worn in the shower and to exercise although, as with all fine metals, it is suggested that you avoid extreme sweat, chlorine, and other out of the 'normal' day to day conditions while wearing your jewelry. To clean your gold-filled piece, very gently polish with a Sunshine jewelry cloth or use a couple drops of gentle dish cleaning soap mixed with water and gently dry with a very soft cloth. Stop into your local jewelry shop for a quick, professional touch up.
Sterling Silver. All of Bela Begonias silver is certified .925 sterling silver to ensure quality. Over time, any sterling silver jewelry exposed to air will tarnish. Sterling silver is 92.5% silver and 7.5% other metals. It is these other metals, primarily copper, that make sterling silver tarnish. The copper reacts to moisture and sulfur in the air, causing the sterling silver tarnish. Silver tarnishes faster in areas with high humidity and air pollution. Chemicals like hairspray, perfume, deodorant, body lotion, and bleach can speed up the tarnishing process.
Proper Care: The best way to prevent tarnishing is to store sterling silver in an airtight plastic bag when not in wear. If tarnish does begin to show, cleaning it right away is best. A ‘Blitz’ silver shine jewelry cleaning kit is suggested - it is non toxic, easy to use and has wonderful results. The kit comes with a silver polishing cloth that works beautifully to prevent future tarnish. Like gold-filled metals, stopping into a jewelry store for a quick professional cleaning will have your jewelry looking like new. Again, with sterling, the best thing you can do is to PREVENT tarnish in the first place. Do not store sterling in a humid bathroom. Keep it in a dry, airtight container when not being worn.
Copper. Our copper jewelry is natural and untreated. Copper naturally oxidizes over time. Many people enjoy this oxidized look, while some want to keep the bright copper sheen. Keep your copper jewelry clean by occasionally washing it with lukewarm, soapy water. Then, dry and polish with a soft cloth. You can also use a soft Sunshine cloth to gently polish your jewelry.
If your copper should tarnish, as copper naturally does, you can clean your jewelry using one of the following methods to restore its original shine:
Use table salt and vinegar - Pour salt and vinegar over your jewelry and gently rub into the jewelry until any grime or tarnishing is removed. Rinse with water and polish with a soft, dry cloth.
Use salt and lemon - Pour salt on half of a lemon and rub over jewelry, or pour salt and squeezed lemon juice onto jewelry and gently rub in. Rinse with water and polish with a soft, dry cloth.
When your copper is not in use, store in plastic bags to slow the tarnishing process. Do not use sterling silver cleaning solutions!