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Guide to Cleaning and Caring for Pearls

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  • #76
    Here is a tip I got from Betty Sue King that never fails for daily care:

    Dip your hand in water and then run the strand gently through your closed hand. Blot or wipe the water off the pearls with a clean, soft cloth. Repeat before wiping if they are really grubby. This loosens the dirt from the area that touches your body without wetting the string. And most of the time it's all they need.

    And my tip:
    Don't use towels that have been hanging out in the open for a long time. Dust settles on the surface and it contains tiny mineral particles (like quartz) that can dull your pearls with repeated use.

    Hey, is peppermint castile okay? I have some Dr. Bronner's right here!

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    • #77
      Peppermint should make you feel really refreshed!

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      • #78
        Originally posted by Heidi View Post
        Peppermint should make you feel really refreshed!
        Ha - you made me snort! I'll have to try it on Octavia when she comes home!

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        • #79
          I know Dr Bronner's plain castile is great. I wonder if the peppermint oil adds acidity? I think whatever one uses, the formula should be a little to the basic side of the Ph balance.
          Caitlin

          How to hand-knot pearls without a tool

          My avatar is a Sea of Cortez mabe pearl. One of a pair of Mexican handmade earrings.

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          • #80
            Originally posted by Caitlin View Post
            I know Dr Bronner's plain castile is great. I wonder if the peppermint oil adds acidity? I think whatever one uses, the formula should be a little to the basic side of the Ph balance.
            Yes, to get serious - the plain would be best. The peppermint quantity probably isn't very great as its a strong oil, but a person can get the unscented stuff just as easily.

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            • #81
              I clean pearls using pure soap flakes-I put the pearls in old stockings.
              I let them soak for a while, then rub them gently and rinse.
              https://www.beaderssecret.com
              https://www.etsy.com/shop/BeadersSecret

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              • #82
                I have a question about pearls kept in the Northern hemisphere - as I am from Norway. I was wondering whether low temperatures might damage pearls? In Norway winter time it gets very cold (sometimes minus 25C).
                Many thanks

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                • #83
                  Originally posted by Bernadette View Post
                  I clean pearls using pure soap flakes-I put the pearls in old stockings.
                  I let them soak for a while, then rub them gently and rinse.
                  I like this... I am debating which method to use when cleaning pearls when restringing and this sounds perfect for me!

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                  • #84
                    Hi I am new to this site and I have joined because I am looking for pearl care information. My boyfriend surprised me with an early Christmas gift of a princes style pearl necklace and matching pearl earrings. I want to keep them looking as stunning as possible.

                    I have read some basic things like:

                    -last thing on first thing off
                    - Always wipe the pearls down after wearing (I bought an eye glass cleaning cloth for that)
                    - Store them seprate from other jewelry
                    - have the necklace restrung once a year

                    are there any other things I can be doing to keep them looking great?
                    Who needs Diamonds when I?ve got Pearls?

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                    • #85
                      are there any other things I can be doing to keep them looking great?[/QUOTE]

                      Wear them!
                      They love being worn. Of course we would love to see photos, and many of the others will require neck shots...
                      What a thoughtful boyfriend. Welcome to PG, there is much to learn, & many posters to share information and passions with.

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                      • #86
                        That's absolutly right, the love being worn. My mother's father was in the pearl business from 1960 to about late 1990 and he had told my mother that pearls is a living thing. As more you wear them the luster will even look shinier. A littel while ago I restrung pearls for an older lady that used to live in CA and used to be pearl business and confirmed this statement. Could you tell me if you ever heard of this.
                        Meilech & Esther Sonenblick
                        Pearls by Perl Imports

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                        • #87
                          Hello Esther - I agree to a point that pearls should be worn and allowed to "live" - not tucked away to languish out of sight - BUT.

                          There "is" a downside - the more they're worn, the more wear they will have - so there is a self defeating limit that can come back to bite you (well the strand of pearls to be precise).

                          I have seen many strands which I describe as "bony Pearls" where the nacre has become so worn and thin, or essentially non existent - that there's no life left in them.

                          Obviously the quality of the base pearl is a large factor - in that the better\thicker the nacre the more use the pearls can withstand.

                          Regular restringing is absolutely vital - firstly to make sure the thread is in good order - and secondly to gain an evaluation of the condition of the pearls - especially those around the back of the strand that tend to take the heaviest wear\abrasion.

                          Lastly - the "Human factor" must be strongly considered - some individuals have a body chemistry that is hell on earth to pearls and Jewellery in general - and this can be variable even with one individual if they take certain medications (Some heart medicines are notorious for their impact)
                          https://www.beaderssecret.com
                          https://www.etsy.com/shop/BeadersSecret

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                          • #88
                            Hummm, good points, Bernadette.

                            Perhaps best that a strand "die" being worn to death and enjoyed than languishing in a safe deposit box somewhere.

                            We've touched very little on the body chemistry factor, but I'm sure that is true. An educated consumer who has a jeweler they trust is a good combo.

                            In my limited experience Akoya seem to be the most fragile in general, earning their moniker of PPBs (pearl plated beads).
                            Pattye


                            PatriciaSaabDesigns.etsy.com

                            facebook.com/PatriciaSaabDesigns

                            SO MANY PEARLS, SO LITTLE TIME----

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                            • #89
                              Originally posted by pattye View Post

                              Perhaps best that a strand "die" being worn to death and enjoyed than languishing in a safe deposit box somewhere.

                              In my limited experience Akoya seem to be the most fragile in general, earning their moniker of PPBs (pearl plated beads).
                              I absolutely agree - in order to enjoy your pearls one needs to wear them.
                              Does anybody have experience or could guess how long would average Akoya last with frequent wear?

                              Maria

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                              • #90
                                My MIL had a collection of akoyas from the 30's- very good quality. She did wear ropes and ropes of them a lot- almost daily to the mid-90's. They showed quite a bit of wear around the holes particularly. Slightly less than half of them needed replacement when she passed them on.
                                Caitlin

                                How to hand-knot pearls without a tool

                                My avatar is a Sea of Cortez mabe pearl. One of a pair of Mexican handmade earrings.

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