You have probably spent years dreaming of the perfect engagement ring and exactly how he will propose. Once your dream ring becomes a permanent accessory on your left hand, you’ll want to ensure it stays just as bright and sparkly for many years to come. We wanted to discuss a few do’s and don’t’s on how to care for your engagement ring.
1. Insure Your Ring
Considering your engagement ring’s sentimental (and financial) value, you’ll want to make sure it lasts a lifetime. As soon as that sparkler lands on your finger, make sure to insure the ring. Most couples choose to add a jewelry rider to their homeowner’s or renter’s insurance policy; however, you can always take out a separate policy with a specialty insurer like Jewelers Mutual. Familiarize yourself with the fine print. A good policy will cover every potential ring-threatening situation from theft to damage to accidentally dropping it in the garbage disposal. In order to insure your ring you will need to provide an appraisal by a certified independent jeweler, describing its cut, carat weight, and metal. You should have your jewelry appraised every five years as the cost of diamonds and precious metals go up. If you were to lose something which was appraised 10 years ago, the insured value would be far less than the actual replacement cost. Keep in mind that the average annual cost to insure your ring is $1 to $2 for every $100 that it would cost to replace. For instance, if your ring is worth $10,000, then you will spend approximately $100-$200 annually to insure it.
2. Get Your Ring Re-sized
Even though it may be hard to go a few days without your new bling, if your ring is too loose or too tight, it is necessary to have it re-sized right away. Since rings usually only come in standard manufactured sizes, we suggest getting your ring re-sized for a custom fit. It would be best to bring your ring to the original jeweler, however, if this is not convenient, you can certainly go to another trustworthy jeweler. When you head to the jeweler, make sure you have them measure your finger and determine a custom size, often in between half or quarter sizes. Another option if your finger size changes drastically and you would like a less permanent solution is to have small metal balls soldered to the inside of the ring. This way the ring feels tighter, however if it becomes too tight, the jeweler could easily remove the balls without affecting the structure of the ring. Also, try to go when it is cold outside or your fingers are cold from the air conditioning so that they are the thinnest they get and therefore when your ring gets re-sized it won’t slip off. Some jewelers can re-size while you wait, however if you have to leave your ring with the jeweler, make sure they provide you a detailed claim receipt. Often if you take it to your original jeweler, they will provide complimentary re-sizing, however private jewelers’ prices may vary from $30-$100 for re-sizing.
3. Cleaning Your Ring
To keep your ring bright and sparkly, clean it often to remove lotions, skin oil, and everyday dirt, which can make it cloudy. You can soak your ring in gemstone cleaner found at jewelry stores or warm water and mild dishwashing liquid, and scrubbing with a soft toothbrush. Then allow your ring to air dry. You can also take your engagement ring to a jeweler to get it properly steam cleaned, which is a complimentary service that many jewelers provide.
4. Visit Your Jeweler Annually
As part of your regular ring maintenance, you should visit your jeweler at least once per year to have your ring cleaned and have the prongs and stone checked to make sure you don’t have any loose settings or chipped diamonds.
5. Miscellaneous Ring Care Tips
We also recommend the following:
- Take your ring off when doing anything involving water or working with your hands (such as dishwashing or swimming), since it can make your fingers shrink. Please remember to put your ring in a secure location.
- Remove your ring when cleaning or touching harsh chemicals. Bleach and other cleaning agents might dull the finish of a ring and actually harm porous colored gemstones like emeralds.
- Never remove your ring in public. If you need to hide it away when you’re on vacation, store it in the hotel safe.
- Don’t put your ring through unnecessary wear and tear. Diamonds may be the hardest natural material; but they could still chipped if knocked against other hard surfaces.
Your engagement ring is a symbol of the love and devotion between you and your husband-to-be. It is important to take the utmost care of your ring, including regular maintenance and keeping it insured, so that it stays bright and sparkly for decades to come.