If your preferred activities include laying out in the sun, swimming, and eating outdoors (to name a few), then the summer months are likely your favorite time of year. Between taking family vacations, beach excursions, and just wholehearted fun, there’s so much to love about the time frame between June through August. But for brides who are currently rocking a beautiful engagement ring during these sun-filled months, you may not realize that your sparkler is in jeopardy during this particular season.
Yes, while there are endless possibilities for your engagement ring to be exposed to unfavorable elements, the summer, in particular, is filled with numerous hazards and risks that are detrimental to fine jewelry. However, before you start to panic about damaging your rock, we have a few tips to help you keep your sparkler safe and clean during this special time of year.
Ready to learn more? Ahead, with the help of Lorraine Brantner, gemologist and sales manager for James Allen, here are five ways you’re putting your engagement ring at risk this summer.
Let’s face it, during the summer months, the only thing you probably want to do is jump into a large body of water, especially a pool. Before you dive in head first, though, be sure to take off your engagement ring and store it in a safe place. “Most pools and hot tubs have harsh chlorine-based chemicals which can harm precious metals and most gems over time. It is highly recommended to remove your jewelry before swimming to prevent chemical exposure,” shares Brantner.
It’s absolutely important to be attentive when applying sunscreen if wearing an engagement ring. “While SPF and lotions, in general, do not harm gold, platinum, and diamonds, it can make your jewelry dirty very quickly if you do not remove your pieces before application,” notes Brantner. After all, the last thing you want is for your engagement ring to look less than perfect before it’s time to walk down the aisle.
Going to the Beach
You may or may not realize, but beaches are the riskiest places to bring your engagement ring. Between the ocean, the sand, and the vast landscape, there are tons of ways to lose or damage your sparkler while trying to enjoy some fun in the sun.
“It is best to remove your jewelry before going to the beach to keep it clean and safe. Applying sunscreen in a sandy environment can increase dirt buildup on engagement rings,” Brantner says. “Sand is an abrasive material which can also harm fine jewelry. Plus, you don’t want to accidentally lose your jewelry in the water (Kim Kardashian taught us this with her diamond earring!).”
Cooking and Grilling
If you’re anything like us, you likely enjoy cooking outdoors during the summer months. However, before you throw a burger onto the grill, don’t forget to remove your sparkler in case of any unexpected cooking mishaps. “Any time you are using your hands to dig into food (like making dough or forming meatballs), it’s important to place your rings in a safe container or dish away from the kitchen sink to keep them safe and clean,” Brantner adds.
Indoor and Outdoor Cleaning
“It is always best to avoid chemical exposure to your jewelry. Classic window cleaner is generally safe for gold, platinum, and most gems, but harsher chemicals such as bleach should always be avoided,” says Brantner. “If you are unable to remove your rings during cleaning, use a pair of protective gloves to shield your jewelry and skin from the chemicals.”
Brantner also notes that, regardless of the season, brides should always take out insurance for their engagement rings. “Be sure to have your jewelry insured! No matter how many precautions you take, accidents can still happen, and having your jewelry insured provides peace of mind,” she shares.