You may be washing your hands multiple times a day. You may be squirting hand sanitizer countless times a day. And most important of all, you may be practising social distancing and staying indoors as per the COVID-19 health advisories issued by the government. But there are a few things beyond just maintaining good hygiene that you should consider. For instance, cleaning your jewellery.
Fact check: COVID-19 can survive on your jewellery. A fashionista's nightmare, right? Well, if you wear certain everyday jewellery pieces like your rings, it's important to know whether you should continue to wear them at all or how to keep them clean if you can't part with them. Just like you clean and disinfect your clothes and kitchen surfaces, you should keep your jewellery clean to avoid contracting the virus via those beautiful, precious gemstones. Because these pieces go with you everywhere even when you step out to buy your groceries. So, how do you keep your jewellery clean? Read on!
According to US agency, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, coronavirus can remain active on metals and objects for anytime between three hours to three days. Therefore, it is advisable to clean and sanitise all kinds of jewellery that you wear. Most of us remove our rings and bracelets while washing hands, however, we must say no to this habit now. Because if your rings are contaminated and you are putting them back on after washing your hands, you've have recontaminated your hands. So keep wearing your rings while you are washing your hands with soap. If you're worried about missing a spot where your rings are, just move them a little and wash your hands properly.
However, this is not the most efficient way to go about the situation as there would still be parts of your ring that might carry the virus. While the easiest way to avoid transmission through jewellery would be to not wear any, but if your fashionista soul doesn't allow you to do that then you must opt for the following methods.
Different jewellery pieces require different cleaning techniques.
Using antibacterial wash: you can use an antibacterial wash to clean your rings. According to Laura Lambert, founder of Fenton & Co (Jewellery manufacturer in London, England), soap can form a layer of dirt to build up behind gemstones like sapphire, ruby, aquamarine, garnet and diamond. Therefore, in order to maintain the sheen of your gemstone, it is advised that you soak your jewellery piece in lukewarm, soapy water to soften the layer of dirt and then brush it off with the help of a soft toothbrush.
Hand sanitizer to disinfect silver jewellery: Yes, a life-saver for all of us these days, hand sanitizer can also be used to disinfect and polish your silver jewellery. All you need to do is squirt a few drops on a soft cloth and rub away the tarnish.
Note: You should, however, avoid chlorine-based sanitizers on gold pieces. It attacks the copper that can be found in gold solders and results in discoloration.
Soak jewellery in alcohol solution: According to CDC, any solution that has above 60% alcohol can help in killing the virus. Therefore, if your hands have frequently come into contact with many surfaces during the day, you can soak your rings in a rubbing alcohol solution. You can also spray some DIY disinfectant on your jewellery.
Note: Once the alcohol evaporates, a residual film layer may get formed and dull the brilliance of the gemstone. Therefore, it is advised for you to soak the ring in lukewarm soapy water post that then dab it to dry it.
Disinfect via sanitizing wipes: Laura Lambert has also advised that sapphire, ruby, aquamarine, garnet and diamond jewellery, will not get damaged by being wiped with an alcohol-based hand sanitizer or a sanitizing wipe. Also, if you are wearing a watch, (though I would recommend that you do not wear one and step out), you must use sanitizing wipes to clean and disinfect it thoroughly.
Besides the methods explained above, there are some other hacks that you can try. For instance, cleaning your jewellery pieces with the help of ammonia, baking soda, and toothpaste but there is no medical clarification if these methods would be enough to disinfect your jewellery.
The need of the hour lies in taking as much care as you can. We have to get through this pandemic safe and sound. So, if you haven't been cleaning your jewellery, start cleaning them now.
Featured Image: Unsplash
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