We recommend removing all your jewelry before jumping into the shower. We know it can be so tempting to leave your stud earrings in or Love bracelet on but here is why bathing with your jewelry on is not a safe idea and the ways in which it can dull or damage your fine jewelry.
Water won’t damage precious metals but it will negatively affect their luster.
We often recommend cleaning jewelry with warm water with a drop of mild dish soap. However, prolonged exposure to water (particularly hot water) can leave your jewelry looking dull.
Steam will cause silver to tarnish faster.
If you love to turn your bathroom into a personal sauna, be sure to remove all your jewelry beforehand. Silver jewelry tarnishes when it is exposed to moisture and sulfur in the air. Humidity and the steam generated from your hot shower will act as a catalyst, causing your jewelry to tarnish faster.
Soap and water can wear away gold plating.
Commonly found on affordable pieces of fine or higher-end costume jewelry, gold plating is when a very thin layer of gold is electroplated on top of another less expensive metal (usually copper or silver). This allows jewelers to keep costs low by not crafting an entire piece of jewelry out of precious gold.
However, gold plating is an incredibly thin (sometimes as thin as .5 microns which is even smaller than the width of a human red blood cell at 6-10 microns). Therefore, it’s easy for the abrasive chemicals in your body wash to also scrub away at the gold plating, too. Read more tips on how to clean and care for gold jewelry here.
Your soap will leave a residue on your gemstones, leaving them dingy and less brilliant.
As resilient as diamonds are, it’s not a good idea to leave your stud earrings or rings on while showering. Soaps, oils, and lotions tend to leave a film on diamonds, effectively dulling their sparkle. While this won’t affect the diamond’s integrity, you will need to have your item deep- or steam-cleaned which is tedious and increases the changes that a stone may be come loose over time.
Moreover, particular gemstones, like pearls, are incredibly delicate by nature. Harsh chemicals (like the ones found in your shampoo or body wash) are likely to irreparably damage your gemstone jewelry so it’s best to remove them before jumping into the shower.
Main image courtesy of Ali Heiss.