The diamond you've just bought is the hardest substance on earth. It's uniquely resistant to damage by heat or scratching. It can be cut or polished only by another diamond, but that doesn't mean it's infallible.
An extremely hard blow to the girdle can cause a diamond to chip. By choosing a relatively protective setting, you've taken the first step toward preserving your diamond. But there are still many precautions and maintenance steps that can be taken to improve the chances your great-grandchildren will inherit your prized possession with as much brilliance as when you first tried it on.
When a diamond is worn, exposure to perspiration and household chemicals, especially chlorine and hairspray, can cause buildup that dulls its surface. Diamonds have an affinity for grease and literally collect oils in dishwater.
Put jewelry on after you apply hairspray or cosmetics
Remove rings before performing household chores.
Don't wear your ring when gardening, playing sports or working with hand tools.
Clean your diamond and your ring regularly.
When improperly stored, diamonds will scratch all other gemstones including rubies, sapphires and emeralds.
To prevent a diamond from scratching or dulling another diamond or other jewelry, store your ring in a soft cloth pouch.
Protect your jewelry when you're not wearing it by using separate compartments in your jewelry box. Remember most gemstones will scratch gold, silver and platinum, so this is a good idea for all your jewelry, not just diamond rings.
To keep your diamond brilliant and refractive, you will need to periodically clean it to remove the film caused by perspiration, soap, and cosmetics. Following is a list of methods and solutions suitable for cleaning diamonds. Once a year, have your diamond professionally cleaned and have the security of the setting checked to make sure prongs haven't bent or weakened.
When cleaning your own diamond jewelry at home, try a solution of one part ammonia and six parts cold water. Place your ring in a bowl of this solution for 30 minutes. Next, lift the ring out of the solution and us a small, soft brush to gently tap around the front and back of the mounting. Gentle scrubbing should loosen most dirt, but be careful not to scratch the metal of your setting. Swish the ring in the solution a second time, then rinse it in cool, clear water and drain on tissue paper.
Important note: Make sure to always stopper your sink when rinsing your jewelry.
You can also soak your ring in a small bowl of warm, sudsy water made with any mild liquid detergent. Gently brush the diamond with a soft toothbrush while it's in the suds, being careful not to scratch the metal of your setting. Then, rinse your ring under warm running water. Pat dry with a soft, lint-free cloth.
Important note: Do not use paper towels; they can scratch the metal in your setting. There are polishing cloths made specifically for karat gold or sterling silver.
It's safe to use any brand name liquid jewelry cleaner on diamond rings. Just carefully follow the instructions given on the label. Important note: Home ultrasonic cleaners are best used for karat gold jewelry with no gemstones; the intense vibrations can loosen diamonds and gems from settings.
An imaginative, yet effective way to clean diamonds. Simply set your diamond ring in a glass of vodka (preferably one you're not sipping on) and let it soak. Afterwards, rinse your ring under warm running water. Pat dry with a soft, lint-free cloth.