We’ve all been there. Some careless moment, and our favorite fashion jewelry piece has changed forever. It’s called patina, and it’s the result of metal oxidation (it is a process during which oxygen interacts with non-precious metals).
Full disclosure-I like this patina. I believe it gives every piece its special character and a story (like my favorite bracelet, that got it when I wore it in the pool of a boutique luxury hotel in Crete). How would vintage jewelry look without their patina, anyway?
I believe character is way more interesting than perfection. I believe stories give a deeper meaning to what we wear. I believe our jewelry can still be gorgeous and loved with their patina much like we deserve to feel gorgeous and loved as we change over time. This is the reason why I choose to work with metal elements that will change in appearance sooner or later.
In a way, patina is inevitable. It depends not only due to outside circumstances, but also due to the acids and lotions on our skin. Sometimes it makes our skin turn green-which is for sure non-desirable, but you can rest assured it’s not dangerous, it’s a purely aesthetic problem.
However, if you develop an itchy rash, please take that piece of jewelry off asap and consult with your doctor-you may have an allergy.
All the former being said, your fashion jewelry pieces can be preserved for a significantly longer time, with a few precautions that can help protect their shine.
A designer friend of mine calls them the “Fashion Jewelry Deadly Sins” and although it sounds a bit dramatic it sure is true that you should avoid them.
So, what are they?
- Storing jewelry wrong, like storing it in places with high moisture and under direct sunlight
- Sweating in it, like wearing your jewelry while doing sports
- Sleeping in it,
- Spraying on it, anything-from water to perfume
- Showering in it,
- Swimming in it-either in a pool or in salty water
- Prolonged direct sunlight,
- Scorching Temperatures AND
- Any combination of the above, especially spray or lotion in a hot humid day under the sun.
But don’t feel stressed!
Thankfully, there are some simple steps you can take to protect your fashion jewelry:
- Store it safely, in a dry place away from the sun, one by one, preferably in zip lock bags like the one included in your packaging. Added bonus: no untangling needed if each is in its dedicated bag.
- Keep it dry, and if it’s wet for any reason make sure you dry it asap
- Let it rest, at least for a day
- Use an anti-tarnish strip like the one included in your packaging
- Cover metal parts with an anti-tarnish spray like tarnish me not or renaissance wax. Some use clear nail polish and it will work but it will flake off, so keep in mind you will need to apply it again.
- Do not spray perfume on your neck if you are going to wear shoulder dusters, or your wrist if your bracelets have metal parts on, right before you put on your jewelry. You can put your perfume on earlier, let it dry, and then wear your jewelry.
- Treated stones, especially bamboo coral and howlite will shed their color if you spray them or sweat in them and they may leave marks on your clothes or your skin. These marks will wash out during your bath or in a regular cycle in the washing machine, but I would suggest that you avoid treated stones on white clothes unless you give them the “baby wipe” test. Rub a part with a baby wipe and if you see any color shedding then wear them with darker clothes-they will still look fantastic.
But rest assured- even if your Next Door Goddess jewelry develops a patina, they will still be beautiful to you and you will keep wearing them if you have loved them and you have shared special moments with them.
On a final note,
PLEASE keep in mind these 3 things that will protect you and your loved ones
- NEVER put your jewelry in your mouth. Metal alloys may contain traces of heavy metals, rings with set stones may have germs trapped in the prongs…you get the idea.
- ALWAYS contact your doctor if you suspect an allergy and ALWAYS let your jewelry designer know if have an allergy to specific metals.
- Keep your jewelry AWAY from the reach of children. Jewelry is not a toy. Small parts can be swallowed and cause suffocation, while metal alloys may contain lead that is harmful to children if put in their mouths. Keep little hands away from them, and I would strongly suggest that you give it more than a second thought before buying your little ones children’s jewelry. Consult with your doctor first, especially for children under 6, and always get children’s jewelry from a trusted source.
That’s all for today, girls!